Godlike: Adamantine

   Here we have yet another character for Godlike or Wild Talents – Adamantine, a nigh-indestructible sort.

   Adamantine is basically a video-game or action-movie character: he’s virtually impervious to harm and pretty good at everything – but he has no other powers except durability. He doesn’t need to eat, or drink, or – in general – keep track of damage. He rolls seven dice for pretty much everything he wants to do; in a few cases (where he has no relevant skill) he’ll roll six dice. In one case (his automatic defensive Zed) he’ll roll five. In one other case (Mental Stability checks) he’ll roll eight. It probably wouldn’t really hurt to assume that it’s always seven dice. Everybody has at least one player who wants a character like that sometimes.

   Niels Stephensen isn’t at all sure when he acquired his powers. Looking back, he can see that he had been getting increasingly careless – presumably the lack of pain and minor injuries led to that – and having to put very little effort into getting things done competently, for quite awhile. When the horse kicked him and it didn’t hurt, he presumed that he’d just gotten lucky.

   When another talent on leave told him he had a Talent, he went in to find out what it was – which gave the recruiter something of a shock: they didn’t get too many who didn’t know.

   It took awhile, and some observation, to determine that Niels only ate, drank, and breathed out of habit and otherwise seemed pretty much invulnerable to injury. Secondarily, he simply seemed to be innately competent at pretty much anything he tried. On the other hand, he was also absurdly conspicuous to any other talent – which drastically limited his usefulness on stealth missions. So did the fact that his power “protected” him against friendly talents.

   Niels didn’t worry about it, just as he didn’t worry about much.

   That attitude used to infuriate his drill instructors, although Niels tended to simply claim that it was a part of his power. It wasn’t his fault that he was impervious to sarcasm, embarrassment, and reason or almost impossible to discipline; that was just a part of his immunity to everything.

   That was how he acquired his Nom de Plume; it wasn’t for his physical imperviousness…

   Niels is good-humored, relaxed, and inclined towards womanizing. He hasn’t had to put much of any effort into anything to exceed expectations in years, and it shows a bit. After all, he makes it all look easy.

  • Attributes: Body 2, Coordination 2, Sense 2, Brains 2, Command 2, Cool 2.
  • Skills (20 + 20 TOG Commando skills):
    • Body: Athletics 1, Brawl 1, Climb 1, Endurance 1, Health 1, Running 1, Swim 1, Throw 1.
    • Coordination: Anti-Tank Rocket 1, Driving (Car and Truck) 1, Flamethrower 1, Grenade 1, Knife Fighting 1, Machine Gun 1, Pistol 1, Rifle 1, Stealth 1, Submachine Gun 1.
    • Sense: Hearing 1, Sight 1.
    • Brains: Cryptography 1, Education 1, Electronics 1, Explosives 1, First Aid 1, Map Reading 1, Mechanics 1, Mortar 1, Navigation (Land) 1, Radio Operation 1, Survival 1, Tactics 1.
    • Command: Inspire 1, Leadership 1, Perform (Sing) 1, Seduction 1.
    • Cool: Bluff 1, Lie 1, Mental Stability 2.

   At least some of his experience points are likely to go into picking up new languages, and many of the rest into picking up the rest of the possible skills at rank one. As far as Niels is concerned, generic competence is good.

  • Talent Basics:
    • Quirks: Laid-Back (1) and Lazy (1).
    • Will Base: 2 Command + 2 Cool + 0 (remainder of base 25) + 2 (Quirks) = 6.
  • Talent Powers (25 Will):
    • Affinity (1D, 10) (Base 5/10/20), Universal (works in all environments, +5/10/20), Your Element (+4D to all actions with a successful check, +6/12/24), Unshaken (+1/2/4), Life Support (immune to aging, chemical, and biological agents, need not eat, drink, or breathe +1/2/4 since most of that’s already included), Beacon (-4/8/16), Go Last (-2/4/8), Loopy (whenever changing environments, -2/4/8) = (10/20/40).
    • Hyperskill (+1D, 1) Power Stunt (Meditative Environmental Adaption) (Base 1/3/7).
    • Immunity (1D, 10) (Base 5/10/20) to Kinetic Energy (+4/8/16) and Electromagnetic Energy (+4/8/16), Unshaken (+1/2/4), Resilient (+1/2/4), Cannot Interfere (-2/4/8), Attached to Affinity (-1/2/4), Loopy (whenever this protects him from killing damage, -2/4/8) = (10/20/40). Essentially, all shock damage from energy- and physically-based attacks is ignored and all killing damage from such attacks is reduced by one box and converted into shock.
    • Light Armor (Level 1, 2) (Defends, Robust, Useful outside of Combat, Always On, Unshaken, cost of 6 points for 3 levels of Light Armor OR two points per rank).
    • Alternate Form (1D, 1) (Base 5/10/20): Remains while asleep (+1/2/4), Loopy (-2/4/8), Slow (requires several minute to activate, -3/6/12), Does not actually change anything; only provides extra “lives” (and their damage monitors) at one per die (-1/2/4) = (1/2/4).
    • Zed (1D, 1): Base (4/8/16), Precognitive (works normally against surprise attacks and does not require seeing the power in use first, +2/4/8), Unconscious (+1/2/4), Attached to Affinity (-1/2/4), Cannot Attack (-1/2/4), No Range (-2/4/8), must roll and gobble dice against helpful talents (-2/4/8) = (1/2/4). In effect, this is simply a die pool which is automatically rolled to generate gobble dice against incoming talent attacks – as long as they have some physical effect.

   OK, this character is intended to be indestructible. He isn’t quite there yet, but given about twenty more Will to spend (+5 Alternate Form, +5 Zed with hard dice upgrades), he’ll come pretty close. Now, how this works is (1): if his powers have – somehow – been deactivated, he uses his Hyperskill to reactivate his Affinity. Now he gets a +4D bonus on everything else he does, including his other talent powers. His Universal Affinity protects him from chemicals, diseases, thirst, starvation, and suffocation. His Immunity will protect him against all other forms of physical damage – eliminating all shock, reducing all killing damage by his new total of 5D, and converting the remainder into Shock which is applied against his Light Armor – reducing it to a single point. That goes into the damage boxes available to his “Alternate Form” (he’s not buying more dice when he spends more on his alternate form, he’s buying more identical forms and stacking them). Secondarily, if he gets disintegrated or transmuted or something, it’s his alternate form that will go – which is a pain, but it’s better than dying. Of course, his Zed power will automatically intervene to try and prevent that sort of thing – also with that four-die bonus.

   Basically, if the sun goes nova, he’s going to take one point of shock damage. A high-powered artillery barrage would take him down eventually; once you blast your way through his alternate forms you can build up enough shock damage to start converting it into killing damage eventually – but it’s going to take a very long time. Most Talents will find him pretty frustrating unless they can lure him into a series of will battles – something which he generally avoids, since – for him – it’s far better to let most talent attacks “succeed” (and accomplish very little) than to take the risk of having his powers shut down due to lack of Will.

   On the other hand, a squad of normal guys can simply tackle him and tie him up. A bunch of hits with killing weapons will keep triggering his “loopy” limitation, effectively stunning him. A string of Will battles can take him down. If you park a big rock on him, or put him into handcuffs, there’s not much he can do. He’s just as resistant to helpful talents as to attacks. His only active power is the die-roll boost from his Affinity. That’s nice – but it’s nothing all that inhuman.

Godlike: Nonoma

   Here we have another character for the Godlike or Wild Talents games – in this case a minor Thunder God.

Nonoma (“Thunder”) / Paketa Soeohtse, Cheyenne.

   It was one hell of a storm. Water pouring down the slopes, trees coming down, and rocks sliding. Paketa found a partially-sheltered spot beneath a bit of an overhang on a hillside and settled down to watch. It might be cold, wet, and with a gale-force wind blowing, but it wasn’t like there was much he could do about that.

   For some reason he gave in to a weird impulse to dab on a bit of paint and gesture dramatically at a tree overhanging the ravine down the slope. A bit of left-over fantasy from his grandfather’s stories? An inability to resist the dramatic image? The prompting of some spirit?

   He would never know – but the thunder answered, and the tree exploded violently, struck by the lightning which answered his gesture.

   Several rocks and stones did the same.

   The lightning would bring things to him, suspend things in the sky at his whim, and – with a mighty effort – even strike at many targets at once.

   The Thunder-Spirits had granted him a portion of their power. With a war raging, the message could not be clearer. He would walk the warriors wheel, and prove himself in battle.

  • Attributes: Body 3 (10), Coordination 2, Sense 1, Brains 2, Command 1, Cool 3.
  • Skills (20 + 20 TOG Commando skills):
    • Body: Brawling 1, Climb 1, Endurance 1, Ride 1, Running 1, Swim 1
    • Coordination: Bow 1, Dodge 2, Grenade 1, Knife Fighting 2, Machine Gun 1, Pistol 1, Rifle 2, Stealth 2, Submachine Gun 1,
    • Sense: Sight 1, Hearing 1
    • Brains: Cryptography 1, Explosives 1, Map Reading 2, Mortar 1, Navigation (Land) 2, Radio Operation 1, Survival 2, Tactics 2.
    • Command: Perform (Storytelling) 1
    • Cool: Bluff 3, Mental Stability 3

   Nonoma possess slightly more-than-human toughness, inhuman strength – although it’s pretty much impossible for him to use it stealthily unless there’s already a thunderstorm going on – and the ability to unleash that strength across massive areas, affecting each barrier, object, and untalented creature in that area equally. He can shove or throw everything affected with his full strength, “punch” with fairly devastating effects, and generally make one hell of a mess. Perhaps fortunately, unleashing that kind of power is quite a strain – but it’s still an excellent first move when you go to assault an opposing army. Sadly, such a maneuver does not spare any friendly forces or noncombatants in the area affected, although he can restrict and roughly shape the area that actually is hit.

  • Talent Basics:
    • Quirks: Earnestly wants to prove himself to the Thunder Spirits (2).
    • Will Base: 1 Command + 3 Cool + 4 (remainder of base 25) + 2 (Quirks) = 10.
  • Talent Abilities (21 points):
    • Extra Tough (One Level, 4)
    • Hyper-Body (7D, 7) (Base 2/5/10): Controllable (lines, cones, and other simple shapes) Area (normally +4/8/16, but causes one point of shock damage to the head when used, one point of killing damage to the torso when used, and cannot affect other talents when used, for a net +1/2/4)), Ranged (+1/2/4), Nervous Habit (only when wearing war paint, -1/2/4), Loud (steady rumble of distant thunder when used, -1/2/4), Glow (-1/2/4) = (1/2/4). It’s worth nothing that – while he can apply his strength at range – his power does not obviate leverage except when the “area effect” part is applied (in which case it makes no sense): while he can readily push, pull, and strike at distant objects, his ability to apply traverse forces is quite limited: he can only lift relatively small objects at close range. On the other hand, a light object can be “thrown” at enormous speeds.
      • Area: 10 Ranks (up to a 10-mile radius, 10) (Base 3/Rank): Cannot be sustained (can generate shockwaves, violently push targets away, and so on, cannot hold things up or hold everything still for more than a few seconds, -1/level), Graphic (tends to cause mass destruction in the horrific lightning storm, -1/Level). This is grossly spectacular, as a wall of lightning, hurricane-force winds, and a thunderclap/sonic boom powerful enough to shatter stone, sweeps out and across the affected area.

   I considered adding “No Upward Limit” and the “Beacon” flaw, but – considering that this would allow him to simply, say, destroy most of the planet if he felt like it, it seemed a bit much. Still, except for that area effect, Nonoma is a fairly ordinary talent. A great one to have on your side when you’re up against a horde of normal people though.