Chat about the game...

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  deeyin on Mon Apr 01 2013, 03:29

Admin, thank you for the background information. If you could shrink it down a slight bit more, it would be helpful. The right side is missing a word or two. In most cases it is still understandable, but there are others where names are mentioned that are incomplete or lost, or adjectives might be missing that are valuable qualifiers.

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  DavidMcMahon on Mon Apr 01 2013, 03:48

Whereas for me, it came in perfectly. Guess it all depends on the size of the screen and what we have it set up at. Arrow
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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  dunecat on Mon Apr 01 2013, 04:27

I also had trouble with the right side missing a little, though only the tail end of the words along that side. Great to get some more info! I'd still love to see someone in the initial info thread ask the guy at the podium about reports of magic. It would be fun to see the 'official' statement about it Very Happy

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  deeyin on Mon Apr 01 2013, 05:33

David, you might be correct. I am looking at it on my computer now, and it shows as fine here. It was on my iphone that it was cut off, so I suppose it was a setting issue between the two.

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  Steeple_jackuk on Mon Apr 01 2013, 07:50

deeyin wrote:David, you might be correct. I am looking at it on my computer now, and it shows as fine here. It was on my iphone that it was cut off, so I suppose it was a setting issue between the two.

Ah sadly for us with smaller 19" monitors much of the right hand is missing. Sorry Paul, difficult to read otherwise. I decided to see if I could save the images and read them, which I did with the first one. Only the last two or sometimes three letters are missing from the right hand side. I could read them by saving the images. Maybe I'll do that later, thanks for posting it up anyway.

Have a good day.

Sj
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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  Admin on Mon Apr 01 2013, 19:02

I'll try shrinking it a bit. Say... 10% smaller? Tricky getting the balance on fitting to the screen and still being able to read, though if anyone wants a pdf emailing to them I can sort that out too.
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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  Steeple_jackuk on Mon Apr 01 2013, 20:39

Admin wrote:I'll try shrinking it a bit. Say... 10% smaller? Tricky getting the balance on fitting to the screen and still being able to read, though if anyone wants a pdf emailing to them I can sort that out too.

Hey mate why don't you just include a link at the bottom of the page to a pdf for folk like me who can't read it properly.

Thanks

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  Admin on Tue Apr 02 2013, 00:35

Updated the size of the images and will host the files as pdfs with links as well :0
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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  dunecat on Tue Apr 02 2013, 00:59

By the way Paul, I'd like to suggest that we either move the DC vs Marvel game to this forum and try to get some of these guys into it, or run another recruitment drive on the murpg site. It's a fun game that's just lacking a little in players! Very Happy

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  deeyin on Tue Apr 02 2013, 16:00

Dunecat- it might be better to leave the game there rather than move it here. While it is more convenient all in one place of course, keeping it there allows the opportunity to expose the game system to people who might not otherwise have the chance to see it. And while I would certainly not begrudge more players as the more the merrier, I would not say they are completely necessary either. If it is run as this one is, half the time solo, then the need goes down quite a bit due to that, but also since that is the game updated only when there is time and falls in precedence after the ones here, it might not be as attractive to people who would refer greater updates, or do not wish to feel a game they are joining is the B game. Laughing

To get back to your other post, the longer one about hero points, I agree with you. I like just awarding hero points normally, keeping them all in one pool, but allowing them to count for double when spending for advancement. I think that keeps the best flexibility, establishes a regualr dynamic for advanvement, and reduces the bookkeeping.

On increasing artifacts and gadgets, I would ~strongly~ argue that increasing them should be an in game action and not a character advancement. If it is done behind the scenes through character advancement, then it throws the balance of the game completely off. Gadgets are far cheaper than purchasing powers normally. If they can then be raised through advancement just as a power is, then why should anyone take a power at all as opposed to a gadget that cannot be Taken Away? You have essentially gotten rid of any drawback that an item might have, and comparitively lowered the effectiveness of anyone who took powers. Because they do have the advantage of being far cheaper to create and you can have thus considerably more power and at a higher level with a gadget to start, gadgets and artifacts have to be limited by the difficulty of increasing their effectiveness afterwards or it becomes horribly unfair, and also the gadget cost break has no balance. After all, it is specifically mentioned that the reasons gadgets get that cost break is because of the inherent limitations they have. Remove those limitations and there should be no cost break.

For using superspeed for artifact creation (or gadget creation), those are very intriguing ideas! But I do not think they are necessary? I do not see why you cannot just use your full superspeed score to lower the time as usual. One of the subabilities of superspeed (which IMO is overly powerful for its cost as was mentioned before) is to lower the time it takes to perform tasks. There is no reason I can see why that would not be applicable to building gadgets and artifacts. If your sword while sheathed gives you 5 APs of superspeed, then you should be able to reduce the amount of time by 5APs. You bought the power, so you should have full use of it as normal.

For the creation of workshops, or laboratories, that is simple enough, as it just requires the expenditure of hero points to have one, and one wealth check per year to maintain. It does say it takes two weeks at a minimum to build one as well, and superspeed might be applicable to this, or it might not. I supose it depends on if you are gathering and putting it all together yourself, or if part of that two week period is the shipping and acquisition of things from elsewhere you are not doing yourself. This might be a useful application of your suggestion- comparing the person's gadgetry or occultist skill to the AP of the lab or workshop, and using that to determine how much the individual is doing themself, and thus how much superspeed can be used to reduce the time. It is likely though that if the hero cannot use his full superspeed (indicating he or she is not doing it all themself or is waiting for items to come from elsewhere through shipping, etc), then he or she can probably still adventure during that time, unlike with gadget or artfact building where they must be focused on that alone.

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  dunecat on Tue Apr 02 2013, 19:32

Well, by the rules superspeed applies fully to gadgets. However making artifacts involves calling on powerful entities and complex rituals. Rushing them can be bad, you can either annoy the entities or not give the rituals the proper time to take effect the way they're intended.. Thus my suggested way to handle the situation. It also occurred to me that with the skills as powers rule, Kyoko can use Sorcery to mimic Occultist as a power to create artifacts without having to train the skill.. handy Very Happy

As for artifacts/gadgets being an in character process, I agree for the most part, I'd count exceptions for things where the item can advance on its own without the intervention of a character to improve it. Stormbreaker (the sword) for instance grants powers to its wielder and is very strict about not giving more then earned. On its own it's considerably more powerful then Alex can use currently. I would consider that advancing the sword should be a part of character advancement rather then a character action. Perhaps with a slight cost advantage as the sword can be taken away in combat. For most items however I agree. That does however mean that if a particular issue covers enough time, or all the work is simple enough to apply superspeed to (or just a gadget) that a character can 'improve' inside of an issue rather then in between them.

For example someone with gadgetry is issued an ultimatum that they have 3 days to stop a villain from setting a bomb somewhere. They do some digging and find out the villain is weak against a certain type of energy, and relies on another type to fight with. Already having a temporal displacement field device (gadget that grants superspeed), they set about making a weapon that fires off the appropriate energy blast, and then a suit of armor that defends against the right energy to give them an advantage. With enough superspeed they could finish the work in a day or two, probably tired but they're now sporting fancy new tailor made gear to fight this bad guy with. A huge advantage compared to if they just went in with their normal stuff.. especially if they can bring all their gear at the same time. Normally to make improvements like that a character would have to wait for the current issue to end, get their HP award and then spend those points if they were able to.

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  dunecat on Tue Apr 02 2013, 19:42

Aaand.. just because I forgot to ask in my last post. Paul, is the new copy of Stormbreaker I sent you ok? And on that topic, is it ok if I use it going forwards? Having that AoE lightening might be handy right about now... Shocked

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  deeyin on Wed Apr 03 2013, 02:55

Dunecat, on the subject of super speed and object creation, the creation of occult artifacts does not necessarily require otherworldly entities, and where neefed, likely not for the entire ritual. Mechanically, is not a requirement in game, which is stated as being done just as gadget creation, save with different skills. While what you are saying is reasonable, it is just as reasonable to say those entities are annoyed with the interruption of their time by mere mortals and welcome super speed being used since it gets the process over faster, or it could be argued that the entity only charges it with power at the very end of the creation and is not involved diring the earlier part and all the earlier parts are ritualistic that can be done with super speed, or other similar rationales as an explanation. But by the rules, there is no difference and so superspeed should be able to be used normally. After all, a similar argument is that chemical reactions cannot be sped up by a speedster, and rushing minute electronics work and coding coild also lead to failure, but we do not make those arguments and agree superspeed can be used for gadgetry normally.

Sorcery has been aptly described as '#APs of anything I want' so yes, that is possible, and it certainly has not escaped my attention to use it for skills, etc. However, she has occultist skill already, although I do not see her using several of the subskills in play, and I took them more for fitting her background than a desire to have or use them.

And as for exceptions to character advancement, I will have to completely disagree with you. To take your example of storm bringer, it does not matter if it is a major demon giving only strictly limited amounts of its ability at a time by background. The fact of the matter is it is still mechanically a gadget, if that was how it was built, and if doong so allowed the advantages of the gadget bonuses of vastly reduced cost, even considering for reliability numbers, then it should have to have the gadget drawbacks of being very difficult to modify to balance that. If not, then it is no longer balanced. The character has instead gotten a four to one advantage on character creation hero points for something that can be taken away, and suffers little for it, especially as that is not likely to happen often. Further, will the argument then be it will not work for someone who takes it away? If it is a gadget, that should be codified as a bonus. If not, then you do not really have a gadget. You essentially really have powers with a limitation that they are only active through the swords power, not alone. And that is only a factor cost limit if -1cs, not a limitation essentially quadrupling the hero points that the character has used for creation and applied to the gadget. The background flavor is nice and essential, but it still falls under the rule guidelines, or should, in exchange for those benefits. As a background, I could say Kyoko has unlimited untapped potential for great powers, including other genie abilities, but has not developed them yet. But there is no cost break to develop them even though her background states she should have them. Instead it is simply part of the give and take of balance and weighing the immediate costs granted by gadgets against the long term effects of being gadget as opposed to personal power based. The gadgeteer starts of much much stronger, but the latter is easier to develop.

I do not completely understand your last example. A character can create a gadget in play; it does it have to be between issues. Are you referring to one set of hero points, rather than two? If so, I partially agree. But if not, it should be pointed out gadgetry can be used at any time, as long as hero points are unspent and you have the time available. One does not have to spend points immediately, after all, whether they are advancement or normal, I would not think.

This is a very good discussion! Very Happy

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  dunecat on Wed Apr 03 2013, 06:26

Stormbringer would work for someone else, thought not in exactly the same way as it does for Alex. The trouble here is that the sword is a transmuted elemental. It has will and determination of who gets what with its abilities, though anyone who picks up the sword gets something. A random shlub who picked it up would become extremely dangerous, enhanced Dex, Str and physical RV, lightening around 7 APs and a EV 15 sword. Many of the abilities Alex has that are from stormbreaker by fluff are actually on his character rather then the sword. Invulnerability and flight are the main ones. What I would like to do in the future is add Weather Control to the sword. However Alex shouldn't have to enchant a sword formed from a storm elemental with that power, it makes no sense. Some other method is needed, personally I'd love that kind of thing to be the result of a sub-plot. If I can pass the objectives then I get to spend however many points to gain the ability. I suggested spending character advancement points at 1/2 rate because Stormbreaker can be taken away in combat, it would still be purchased on the character advancement table however, which is CONSIDERABLY more expensive then adding abilities to an artifact would be. Mechanically speaking I'd be better off making a 9 AP omni-artifact for 19 HP and just choosing to use it as weather controle.. sure it takes time but I could make.. 50 or so of them for the same cost as getting weather controle at ZERO Aps.. I figure that's ballanced.

Also, as for artifacts and superspeed.. there's a sidebar in BoH that says superspeed and artifacts might not mix, depending on the GM. My other source is that Paul told me via PM that they wouldn't mix 100% and that he'd have to work something out. That's my suggested way of making it work. Very Happy

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  deeyin on Wed Apr 03 2013, 11:39

I am curious, if the sword can stop Alex from accessing powers it has but does not want him to use, then why can it not stop any other shlub from using any of its powers? Why would it work differently?

I agree it seems odd to have to enchant a storm elemental with that power, but I disagree with you on the necessity of having to enchant it. If the ability has not been purchased in the first place, then yes, I would say he should have to enchant it, or rather go through the mechanics of enchanting it. That is the tradeoff for getting the cost advantage for a gadget. And the counter for those benefits were that there are drawbacks to artifacts and gadgets and those should not be ignored. And I do not think that it is nonsensical either to expect this. We designed our characters completely and on quite a few points, so it is hard to say that someone or something should have an ability when it was something we did not add ourselves. A genie should have the natural ability to self link to fog, but Kyoko cannot do so since the points were not put there, so I cannot really make the argument that it is something she should have or that there should be an easier way for her to attain it. Likewise, the points for weather control were not put into the elemental, and benefits were gained by making it an artifact rather than as powers.

I think you might be mistaken on the subject of cost effectiveness?
Fifty omni gadgets at 9APs at 19hp equals 950 hero points.
Modifying an artifact to add weather control at 9APs is much, much cheaper. If the gadget can be taken away and has a reliability number of 0 (always works), then would only cost a mere 38 hero points. (15 for BC+132 for FC of 11=147 divided by 4=37). That is much cheaper than any other option, but it is balanced by the fact that modifying the gadget has the OV and RV penalty.
Using the character advancement table as you suggest as opposed to the standard creation table changes that cost upwards to 299 points. If the gadget can be taken away and has a reliability number of 0, the the cost is (150 for Base cost+1045 for FC of 11=1195 divided by 4=299). That is certainly cheaper than buying omni-gadgets, but it is also much cheaper than someone who has to buy the power for themselves. Buying the power itself normally at 9APs would cost 910 hero points (150+760 for FC of 8 ). Even if you used a 1/2 multiplier for a gadget that cannot be taken away instead of a 1/4 for one that can, it is still much cheaper than buying the power on its own. (598 compared to 910).

So, for the cost break that is being received, it should have to use the artifact creation and modification rules. Gadgets in all cases are much cheaper than a power is, especially if they are of lower reliability. The limiting factor for artifacts/gadgets comes out when the OV and RV become too difficult to build. If a gadget is going to be increased by normal character advancement, then it should have not have the advantages it does have. It should cost the same as adding or raising a power normally, not at a lower rate, and at best should only get a -1 FC limitation for the ~possibility~ that it could be Taken Away, since that is the cost break a normal power gets if it has a limitation on its use.

Personally, I would not make adding additional abilities to gadgets or characters as the result of a subplot. A subplot already grants additional hero points for engaging in them, and those could be saved for using them to increase the abilities. But this is completely a matter of taste.

However, perhaps the true issue here is one of definition and not of function, or how to interpret it in the game? Calling it enchantment or creation is simply a game description of what happens, since that is the situation in most cases. In your case, perhaps Alex would not be enchanting it per se, but is instead offering a sacrifice of hero points and attempting to make an occult roll to appease the elemental so it will unlock it's weather control for him. That makes perfect sense, fits with what you have essentially stated, still mechanically follows the exact procedure in game rules, and keeps the balance that artifacts and gadgets have, both pro and con.
And it also makes sense in that Alex would have to be a very skilled occultist before the elemental would unlock its most potent abilities (high APs) or new abilities for him.

Finally, you are correct that it does say it is up to the DM if superspeed works with Artifact Creation with the rationale that sometimes time is required for alchemy, which suggests it would be a case by case basis. But you are quite correct that the Admin trumps that entirely in either direction. Is he the otherworldly entity to which you were referring? Razz

PS: I hope I am not coming across as shrill! It is simply my viewpoint on the matter. The Admin will, of course, have the final decision. Very Happy

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  dunecat on Wed Apr 03 2013, 17:34

Not shrill at all. :-)

You did however miss my proposed idea, or how I picture it. I would be paying 150 for the base cost, then 9 APs at factor cost 11 then divided by by 2 not 4. This is all on the character growth chart, and only after accomplishing enough IC that it's earned. Essentialy meaning that kind of advancement is restrained to when and how I'm told I can make it

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  dunecat on Wed Apr 03 2013, 19:53

Now that I'm at a computer I can answer the question about the sword permitting others to use it. The simple answer is that it could. It - or possibly he - chooses not to. Outright cowardice is the only thing that will have all it's abilities denied. Outside of that the sword generally is willing to explore the potential of each person who takes it up, learns a little about each persons take on fighting and gives them a slightly modified version of the same basic power set depending. Someone who favors precision would gain more of of that from the sword and less strength and resilience, while someone who favors brute strength would gain more power and less agility (reflected in slight FC adjustments to the Superspeed and Density Increase powers per individual).

The sword is an NPC in it's own right, an advantage that I paid 100 points for (25 after cost cuts, admittedly) that could have been spent on weather control or other secondary abilities outside of the basics I envisioned for the character. The stats for stormbreaker (the sword) are not the same as the stats for Stormbreaker (the entity), and mechanically are unavailable to me.

As for the reason WHY the sword will grant a portion of its power to anyone who takes it up. It's fairly simple, either they took it from Alex, meaning they are most likely a better warrior, or Alex was careless and let someone else take the weapon while not paying attention. Both cases mean Alex was unable to fill his responsibility as the weapon's wielder. Now, if he later comes back and reclaims the the sword he would still have the measure of his ability left. Though he might be penalized based on why he lost the sword, or how he took it back.

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  deeyin on Fri Apr 05 2013, 10:42

Hello duncecat, I am very glad I am not coming off ion that manner. I am actually very happy we are having this conversation so politely, and have the oportunity to discuss our viewpoints so collegially.

I had not missed your proposed idea, I just did not explicitly specify it in the various scenarios as that, but that was what I was referring to when I said `Even if you used a 1/2 multiplier for a gadget that cannot be taken away instead of a 1/4 for one that can'. I used the broader example since it covers more cases, but this is the same cost as your proposed idea. I should have been more specific, I am sorry. But the math works out the same. It still means you would only be spending 598 points instead of 910 points, so even half off, you are still getting much too much of a break on the coist if the artifact/gadgetry disadvantages are being ignored. To me, it seems that tyou will be getting the gadget benefits, but ignoring the biggest gadget disadvantage, which is the major reason for the gadget advantage of a lesser cost. And it just does not seem right to me.

I should hasten to add before I give another wrong impression that I do not mind the relative strength of the characters and their various advancement. I do not particularly care about that. It does me no harm if someone else has a more powerful character, is built on more points, or such things. We are not in competition after all. So if the Admin agrees with you, it certainly does not bother me. I am seaking more on the game and ruleset in general, on balance, and overall fairness, but no animosity in any way is felt! Smile

On the subject of the sword, that is an interesting and intriguing description. However, while it certainly leads to many more questions and play hooks, I do not think it changes my earlier thought that yes, if you did not put the points into weather control, then you should have to develop it as per a normal addition of any power to a gadget. It might be an NPC you paid 25 points for as a gadget (gadget cost as opposed to the usual 1/2 cost for other NPCs such as pets and sidekicks, perhaps due to the level of use?), but if there is something you want to have access to, it should have been paid for or developed normally, since as you state, anything beyond that is unavailable to you. As noted, there are numerous rationales for why you would have to do so, and even more are suggested by your background on the sword as its own entity.

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  dunecat on Fri Apr 05 2013, 18:41

Well, I could pay 36.75 HP to add 9 APs of weather controle to the sword if you really want.. That's what it would cost to add to the sword via gadgetry. There are some complications and chances to fail due to dice rolls admittedly, but I would certainly be able to pull that off given my stats. Very Happy I did actually like your idea of using differently flavoured rolls that essentially follow the same rules. Admittedly they would need to be something other then occultist. Stormbreaker is hardly a weapon exclusive to those schooled in the occult. The majority of it's powers are physical in nature after all and it favores a warriors approach to life, not a scholars. I have no idea what the appropriate rolls might be, but sure, I'll pay 37 points to get 9 APs of Weather controle, I have no problem with advancing for less then 1/10th the cost.

Hmm.. I think I just came off more sarcastic then I intended to.. Essentially though, advancing via gadgetry/occultist is considerably cheeper, if more complex. I'm ok with either way, there just needs to be a way to advance the sword granted abilities that are on the sword for someone who isn't an occultist. You know, incase I have an arch enemy who's hell bent on stealing it.. and he manages to do that Cool


... Wait.. that would be bad..

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  deeyin on Fri Apr 05 2013, 19:17

If it was up to me, then yes, since the Admin accepted Stormbringer as an artifact, then I would go with the 37 points to upgrade the sword as long as it kept the occultist roll. As I intimated, that is what I see as the real issue, not the hero point cost. The relative hero point cost only matters if the rolls are taken out. Remove them, and the question is why is a point break on the hero points being given? But with them, yes, I see no reason not to go with 37, if that is all it takes. You may spend some extra to ensure successes, perhaps fail a roll and have to try it again, but that is fine. Yes, it is much much cheaper that way, but it is inherently limited by needing the roll to succeed, which is harder with more APs added, through the time that it takes to do those advancements (whether that is described as adding them new or unlocking them), by the successful wealth cost that is needed for the attempt, and that it is done anew for each increase.

Since you asked what I wanted, if it was all up to me, both in play and also as a game system, I would use the rules as stated, but I would require the use of the increasing attribute table rather than the creation table for all gadgets and artifacts built or modified after initial creation. But I would absolutely keep all of the occultist/gadgetry rolls in place. Eliminate them and the gadgetry system becomes as broken as a fork with charges.

There is one bit of confusion though. I had not suggested using other skills for the roll. Occultist is the one that is aplicable. I suggested interpreting the roll differently. Stating you were reforming a ritual to unlock abilities the sword already has, or beseeching the sword to allow you to use them, as oosed to creating or adding them to the sword. But mechanically, I do not suggest any change. And I would not allow other subskills to substitute for making those modifications. The other skills all have their own use, and almost every other subskill is cheaper in cost, so it is not right to give them the ability to accomplish something they were not designed to do and at a lower cost than the subskills that are designed to do that feat.

I do not particularly think there needs to be a way for a non-occultist to increase the sword granted abilities, such as for he arch enemy you mention. The ones that you had designed the sword with and were paid for when the sword was designed would already be unlocked, one would think. If not, then there are still options.
1. The Admin could take the amount of points you had spend on abilities and give the new wielder the same point total in abilities, either the same ones or differrent ones, since that number of points had been built into the swords creation.
2. The new holder could add powers normally to himself (with the added limitation that they only work through the sword), similar to how you said you had done with a power or two.
3. The new wielder could realize it will take some effort to untravel the mysteries of this owerful artifact and begin to learn the Occult skill.
4. The new wielder can seek out an occultist who can unlock things for them and persuade (if good) or coerce (if evil) the occultist into assisting him.
5. Your example was an archfoe. In that case, as the archfoe is actually a plot hook, then Admin fiat can simply declare that the sword, being intelligent, really likes this person and grants certain abilities that the PC hero has to earn. After all, despite the gadgetry example, in play the Admin likely would not roll to have Lex Luthor build a robot for the adventure. It would be assumed that Luither did so, and that is why the robot is there to oppose Superman. This would be the same.

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  dunecat on Fri Apr 05 2013, 21:11

I think we're approaching this from opposing ends. I'm trying to slightly work the rules around to better match the in character perspective of events, and you're arguing that the in character experience should be tweaked to fit the way the rules stand. Both viewpoints are valid.. but they don't work together well. You're arguing that the occultist skill should be used to further the advancement of any abilities that stormbreaker has that are contained in the sword. I'm arguing that Stormbreaker puts no weight on occultist knowledge or power. What would appease him is conducting oneself courageously and honourably. To not shrink away from any challenge and to put oneself at the forefront of any battle. The Occultist skill has nothing to do with any of that. Admittedly none of the other skills do either, and as you mentioned, they already have their own purposes. I would instead suggest going by the characters actions during play as a way to assign a column shift or two to a Influence/Aura check handled in much the way that an occultist check would be. That would allow a character with lower mystical abilities to advance the sword some, but ultimately someone with mystical tallent would be needed to get to the more potent abilities - fitting as Stormbreaker was forged as a weapon against supernatural influences in the world.

The reason I'm keen on how this would interact with a character other then Alex is because I believe that the rules also need to apply to an NPC.. or potentially other characters. If Alex somehow died, I would love if someone else picked up the sword. Lionheart in particular would be absolutely terrifying with it, but any of the characters in the group should be able to take considerable advantage from it.

On that note, I may as well lay out what the sword has currently.

Stormbreaker.

EV 15 Body 9

Superspeed 5 - Adds to Dex rather then substituting for it +2
Density Increase 5 - No Dex Penalty +2, Always active -1, 1/2 (round down) bonus to Str) +1
Lightening 12
Dimension Travel 2 - Tesserect limitaion, travel only. (also, it has area familiarity with its tesserect, so no roll is needed)
Telepathy 6 - (Between Stormbreaker and bonded wielders only)

For someone who just picked up the sword, I would picture things more like this.

EV 15 Body 9

Superspeed 5 - variable*
Density Increase 5 - variable*
Lightening 7


The variable bits are to represent the fact that some wielders like Alex favor agility, while some, like its last owner favor power. Someone who favores power would have the full +3 FC bonus on Density Increase that it adds to strength while having no adjustment to super speed, or a +1 FC bonus that Super speed adds half value to Dex. Additionally, Stormbreaker won't just talk with a new wielder off the bat, that has to be earned, same with being allowed into its home.

Mechanically determining this is difficult between differing characters. What I've paid for hasn't been earned by anyone else and shouldn't be open to them. They could however get a huge bonus to power. Someone with 15 strength who picked up the sword could end up with 20 strength. Theorettically someone well enough balanced could get +5 dex from super speed and +5 str from density increase along with the +5 physical RV..

Is this all balanced with the character creation aspect? Nope, but we're not in character creation now. Once you're in game things get kind of tangled like that.


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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  deeyin on Sat Apr 06 2013, 17:22

Hello dunecat, I think that is a succinct way of putting it. I do think the in character experience should be reflective of the rules of the game we are playing, just as you do think that they should be secondary. So, in that, yes, we are of differing views.

And because of that, yes, I do think that if the sword was built as a gadget or an artifact, and gained the benefirts of being built as a gadget or an artifact, then it should suffer the drawbacks of them as well. There were numerous other ways such a thing could have been built or designed where that would have not been the case, but if that is what had been created and the benefits gained, then it is not unreasonable that it be the case. The fact that it does require a skill that is not useable via unskilled us is another limiting factor on the vastly lowered costs of artifacts and gadgets. And following that method, it does apply equally to Alex, another PC, or an NPC. They all have the means to increase it. Whether it is worth it to them to do so, or to stay with the beginning powers as already granted, that is up to them to decide.

So, the sword itself might not care about Occultism, even if it was designed as a weapon against supernatural influence in the world. Then it is contradictory to also say that someone with mystical talents would be needed to get the more potent abilities. But again, this comes back to interpretation. The sword may not care about occultism, but that still might be the requirement to allow it to grant those other greater abilities. It is simply a matter of definition. And if someone is acting heroically and courageously, then they are earmning hero points, which are also part of the requirement to increase anything, so that aspect is already satisfied.

Looking at the sword, I think you have been able to talk the Admin into better factor costs than I have. Very Happy
I would have considered the adding to dexterity instead of replacing it to be far more than a +2 FC, as +2 is essentially the FC for allowing substitution at all, and both of the powers that allow the direct adding of APs to a score (as opposed to only adding to an AV/OV/EV/RV instead or some other limited form) are both are of much much higher base costs than suerspeed and both have factor costs of 10 just to be able to do the addition and nothing else (Power Reserve and Enchantment). So, that it was +2CS was a good bargain! On the 1/2 str addition, since the full addition is a +3CS, I would have considered 1/2 to be a +2 FC, and things less than half such as a quarter or just a single point or so to be a +1CS.

As for the sword itself, I must say it looks very interesting. So the lightning bolt is a blast from the sword then, using the lightning for AV and EV, and not the blade itself, correct? And I like the tesseract idea a lot. It is a pity you did not also take the headquarters advantage to have a nice base there as well.

I have to disagree with you when it comes to whether someone else should be able to access what you have. I do see what you are saying, but there is nothing mechanically on the sword that keeps it from being so otherwise. I see no mental or mystical attributes for the sword, no limitations or bonuses about being courageous or having heroic motivations or deeds, or anything else that would cause that not to be the case. Again, it is good to say that it has many more incredible abilities as a background, but unless that has been paid for, it is not right to use those abilities to concretely affect play. With 1000 points to make a character, and a cost break of 1/4 for the way it was being built, there are more than enough points to have added in much of those if they are to govern how the sword operates. It also does not matter if you paid the hero points or someone else did. Batman has many gadgets and Green Lantern has a ring, but anyone else who did not pay the hero points for them can still use them. Gadgets and objects are interchangeable without something designed to kee it otherwise. So, there is no reason not to have someone have the same access you have, although it could be suggested that it is a power complication subplot for a new user (although subplots can be declined or have the plug pulled on them), and it is also fair to state that the weaonry (exotic) subskill is required at first as in some ways the sword could be construed to that definition.

And you are correct about how things might go past 15 with certain builds or combinations. But it does not have to get tangled. The Admin can simply declare that 15 is the PC's cap for any AP as a genre rule, and then the top limit is 15. That is something the Admin and I discussed in passing, about not exceeding a 15 without express permission. For instance, with sorcery, Kyoko can use it to duplicate the enchantment power to raise someone's powers or abilities, and that could obviously very easily cause something to go past 15. But if 15 is the genre rule maximum, then we have the limit right there, and there is no conflict between character creation and play limits.

It seems that on a lot of things, we will simply have to agree to disagree, as it does not seem as if either of us are likely to convince the other, and as you mentioned, both viewpoints do have their own validities. So, it seems it will be up to the Admin to decide how he would like to proceed. And as noted, that decision really does not affect me one way or another nor will I be in distress if he agrees with your views. If it is easier for you to raise your abilities than the `by the book' method, there is no slight or hurt on my part and I do not begrudge you a more powerful character. Nor will this ever likely apply to me, since I do not envision myself building or modifying artifacts or gadgets due to my inherent dislike of them. So, no matter what he decides, I am more than fine with the decision. And overall, it was a very fruitful, interesting discussion that I am very glad has been kept respectful to differing views, and I am looking forward to the next one! ...

... Although we do have the one on the ethics of tasering innocent bystanders and destroying property to protect secret identities going on elsewhere. Razz

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  dunecat on Sat Apr 06 2013, 22:40

I initially did take the expansive HQ advantage. But in my mind I wanted it to function as the tesserect did. Unfortunately I couldn't quite squeeze both in. So I opted for the tesserect.

As for superspeed, it's patterned along the same lines as density increase, which grants a full AP bonus to Str for +3. As Superspeed can already stand in for strength (I figured about a +1 FC bonus), then stepping that up to adding would be a +2.

For Density Increase, 1/2 APs, rounded down seems like an ok amount for a +1 in my opinion. And paying over 150 hp to get 2 points of strength while holding the sword is a little bit quacky. I could admittedly have tried for something native to the character.. say some kind of -1 FC thing on strength (reduce by 1/4 when Stormbreaker is not on his person), or perhaps a miscellaneous disadvantage to equal effect. I may in fact try for a more streamlined version of the character.. though I dont know if I'll be able to make it all come out right.

The first drafts of him had power reserve that was limited to a specific layout of its APs, rather then playing around with superspeed and density increase. Power Reserve is extremely flexible, which I think is part of it's high base cost, while the FC at 10 is about right. Density increase that doesn't have penalties and adds to Str is a FC 10, but only a base cost of 10. Superspeed, per the BoH rules, with out the crazy extra actions function, but with the ability to add to Dex is also a FC 10 power.. I think that's right in line with how it should be. I've been considering using Adrenaline surge hooked up to my Dex and Str with some kind of +3 or so bonus that it can sustain a its check result for a little while so long as an auto action is spent to do so each round.. but then I'd blow my strength way up over 8 points for it to be able to get my Dex up to 14 like I'm sitting on now.. I think my biggest problem is that I know where I want everything to be and how I want it to work out.. but the rules dont quite mesh up with it. That leaves me in a ever complicating spiral when I'd really just like to do something a lot more simple. I want a sword that makes whoever picks it up, faster, stronger and tougher, and shoots lightening. That simple idea got rather complicated though.

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  deeyin on Sun Apr 07 2013, 03:15

Hello again! It was late when I posted and something was bothering me, but I could not determine what it was. And I woke up, with the thought nagging me. And after church, I was standing in line at a coffee shop and then it suddenly came to me what it was that was disturbing me. It was the FC discussion about increasing an attribute, and I recalled what I had written and the fact that we had just discussed density control in the same line. So, I was going to modify what I had written, but I see you have already answered and mentioned it. Razz I will return to that in a moment.

If I was not clear, I meant Expansive HQ and the tesseract, so the HQ was in the tesseract. With a cost break of 1/4, it would have only been 4 hero points, is that not so? But I understand. Even with 1000 points, sometimes you have deliberate use for each and every one. I know I did, which is why Kyoko could not afford the magic sense, even though it is a very inexpensive power.

As for the superspeed, I see what you are saying and that does make total sense. Still, I do think it is underpriced, given the examples I mentioned where it is much higher in cost, and that I believe every power that adds only to an AV/OV/EV/RV as oposed to an ability itself is, at a minimum, of at least a FC:4. So, I think 2 CS is inexpensive, and would also state that the str addition for density increase of +3CS is also overly generous and not in line with the rest of the pricing schemes. But I also think suerseed on the whole is vastly underpriced. Just from memory, it allows you to substite for dex itself (not just AV and OV), and for EV, and allows greater movement, and can be applied to other forms of movement, and it adds to initiative, and it lowers the time for tasks, and in BoH it also allows you substitute for the AV or EV of perception checks as well, and somehow it is only a BC: 25 FC: 8 power, which is absurd for all it can do. But it is what it is. Smile
And there is no reason that FC: 10 should be the limit when one has that much in ability granted. Split power with some of the abilities listed can be a FC: 16 power, and Kyoko's regeneration is a FC: 14 power, for instance.

For the density increase of +1CS, I disagree, both because of the reasons above and the ones stated before. It might be quacky to send 150 points to gain 2 points of strength, but given the cost break of 1/4 you received, it works out to far less, and if density increase is increased, so does the str. However, even I was not arguing the base cost should have been increased. What I had thought and stated in terms of cost would have only been an additional cost of 1 hero point. (FC+2 instead of FC +1, making it 4 points, divided by 4 for the bonus you received for a net additional cost of 1 hero point).

I agree Power Reserve can be more flexible, but not much moreso. It only comes with 2 abilities that can be raised. Any others desired add to the base cost of the power. And the points have to be divided among the abilities or powers it raises, so in some ways it is less flexible as well.

I disagree with Superspeed as a FC: 10 is about in line with Power Reserve or Density Increase. Neither of the latter has nearly the use, the utility, the flexibility or the overall abilities that Superspeed has, enumerated above, and yes, that does not even discuss those horrible, horrible multi-action optional rules.

if you simply just wanted the str to shoot lightning and increase the wearer's physical statistics, then I really do not see why it became so complicated. If you did not want to use italicized attributes for the sword, then it is what you had suggested first- power reserve with three abilities. Taking it at say 12APs would be a total cost of 395 (155+240). Put on a limitation that the points have to be divided equally or in a set pattern as opposed to being allowed to be adjusted as you mentioned (the set layout), and it goes to 371 (155+216). With the cost break of 1/4, that goes down to 93 points, which is reasonable for +4 points being added to all physical statistics, or however they are being divided.

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Re: Chat about the game...

Post  dunecat on Sun Apr 07 2013, 04:44

You make a good point, I think I'll take a look at reworking the sword again tomorrow (Sorry Paul!). I believe the main reason I switched was a matter of points to start with. Using Density Increase and Superspeed was significantly cheeper, which was quite important for a while there - I first made this character on the 450 HP budget after all. Though at the most up to the 12 AP range I believe it was.

Going back a couple posts, the reason that I suggested that mystical stats are important is that the swords purpose is to combat mystical foes. Without the basic ability to content with magical attacks any wielder who attempted to do so would be over run by comparatively low powered foes. I was also essentially suggesting a social interaction between the character and Stormbreaker. That would be adding in rolls, the almost compulsory expense of hero points to be able to do well, and the chance at failure simply in performing the deeds needed to earn a shot at being successful. It would meet all, if not more, of the complexity involved in an occultist check for improving an artifact. I'll take a brows through the item creation rules in BoH tomorrow as well and make a sample draft of something to work with that.

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