Eclipsing Cannonballs

Samuel Guthrie / Cannonball is a pretty typical “hometown country hero”. He’s serious, very mature and responsible for his age, a reluctant – but fairly effective – leader, shows high intelligence in the form of common sense and reasonableness rather than “book-larnin”, has a “country” accent, took over looking after his mother and (many) younger siblings after his father died, has been known to reach for a shotgun when “something is going on out there”, and is honest, dependable, and all the rest of the boy scout oath.

He’s also a much more typical hero than Magick. He’s only got a few major special abilities, but they’re quite flexible and very powerful.

  • Rocket Blasts: He can release blasts resembling a high-powered rocket exhaust from his skin – strong enough to drive him through the ground at fair speed.
  • Blast Shield: He can generate and manipulate a powerful force field, capable of absorbing and rechanneling great quantities of kinetic energy, around himself. This also seems to protect him against most environmental complications. Unfortunately, like many comic book (and few RPG) characters, his power level varies wildly to suit the story.
  • Immortality: As a secondary mutation he heals very rapidly, and can heal from death. Some writers have ignored this, but it’s hard to just write it off considering that he has indeed been killed and regenerated himself.
  • He also has excellent psychic defenses, thanks to his training by Professor Xavier – basically a good Will save.

His basic, instinctive, combo is to shield himself and whoever he might be carrying with the blast shield and rocket away, ramming into (and often through) anything in the way. Thus “Cannonball”.

Finally, at least according to THIS build. he’s got a VERY nice attribute array – Str 16, Int 14, Wis 16, Dex 14, Con 18, Chr 14, and BAB +7 – as an adult. Personally I don’t really see it – Cannonball always struck me as a “straight 12’s” kind of guy – but I suppose the points for being power level nine or ten had to go SOMEWHERE.

So:

Available Character Points: I’ll assume Level Seven to match Magick. That’s 192 CP (L6 Base) +30 (Human, L1, L3, L5, and L7 Bonus Feats) +10 (Disadvantages; Obligations to his large family, History, and Outcast (Mutant)) +14 (Duties: As a good guy, Sam will not use poisons or other dishonorable weapons, keeps his promises, will avoid endangering civilians if at all possible, places a high priority on rescues, and so on) = 246 Points.

To spend these buy…

The basic four-color character package (24 CP).

Attributes: Starting with an array of 16/16/14/12/10/8 (25 Point-Buy Base) we have a total of 76. We need to get up to 92, so we need sixteen more attribute points. Two of those (getting his Con up to 18) come from being a Pathfinder Human.

  • Berserker with Odinpower, Odinmight, Controlled, and Enduring, powered by Mana. That gets us a total of +18 in bonuses to his attributes and things to play with – four of which can go to BAB (21 CP). Keep his base intelligence and (especially!) constitution high; he can use the skill and mana points. That gets him up to
  • Str 16 (20 when blasting, see below), Int 14, Wis 16, Dex 14, Con 18, and Chr 14.

Skills:

  • Upgrade Human Fast Learner to +2 SP/Level (3 CP). Assume Fast Learner, Specialized in Skills at level One (6 CP).

Skills as Listed: Acrobatics 2, Athletics 1, Close Combat (Unarmed) 1, Close Combat (Blast Field Ram) 3, Deception 4, Expertise (Pop Culture) 5, Expertise (Farming/Mining) 2, Insight 5, Investigation 2, Perception 3, Persuasion 5, Stealth 2,Technology 2, Vehicles 5.

That’s a total of 42 SP. Of course with Int 14 and Fast Learner (once from birth, once from level -1) he gets a minimum of 20 SP at level one and +6 per additional level. Presuming level seven… that’s 56 SP as a base. More than enough, even figuring that his “Close Combat” skills get merged into an Unarmed Combat skill and upgraded

Unarmed Combat Style (Str-Based): 10 SP = +13, +15 when blasting. 7 or 8 techniques. +2 to Attacks (2), Strike (can do stun or lethal, always considered armed, 1), Power 1 (1d6 damage, 1), Mighty Blow (1), Master Techniques: Combat Reflexes (1), Expertise (May reduce AC by up to 5 to add a similar bonus to attacks, 1), and – only when “blasting” – Improved Critical).

  • +4 BAB (24 CP). With his attribute boosts, that’s +8. His attacks are usually at (+8 BAB, +3 (5 when blasting) Str +2 Martial Art = +13 (+15 when blasting). Usually 1 attack for 7d6 + Str Mod damage, Crit 19-20/x2 and knockdown. (Mutants and Masterminds that’s usually damage +10, +12 when blasting).

His flight and “blasting” capabilities are mana-powered inherent spells.

  • Inherent Spell I: Rocket Blast / Master Air (L2 Druid, Flight 90, Good Maneuverability), Specialized and Corrupted for Increased Effect (very high speed, greatly increased lifting capacity) / has horrible maneuverability, must make acrobatics checks to turn or perform even basic maneuvers (6 CP). Does not get a second base use, but does cost only 1 Mana to activate. Sam was originally very noisy, but has since bought off that limitation.
  • Inherent Spell II: Blasting Touch (L3. The user may add +6d6 damage to his or her melee attacks each round. If making multiple attacks, it may be devided as desired, but the amount used on each attack must be specified before the roll is made and damage added to missed attacks is wasted. This lasts for (Caster Level +2) Rounds). This is normal physical damage, but may cause knockback. 2 Mana to activate (6 CP).
  • Inherent Spell III: Shockwave Blast (L4): Cast as a part of a move action this spell turns your normal melee attack into an area effect – a 30′ radius, a 120′ line, or 60′ Cone, set off at some point along your path. This costs 2 Mana. (This also lets him blast through a line of thugs to reach someone, then stop and have a standard action to help them) (6 CP).

His basic “while blasting” defense is…

  • Innate Enchantment, Specialized for Double Effect/only while “Blasting”. The first three automatically extend to anyone he’s carrying (7400 GP effective value, 8 CP). Note that, as a “mutant power”, this is subject to power neutralizers and supressor fields, not “dispel magic” and “antimagic”.
    • Force Armor I: +4 (8) Force Armor Bonus to AC. (2000 GP).
    • Force Shield I: +4 (8) Force Shield Bonus to AC. (2000 GP).
    • Resist Energy: 10 (20) Point Resistance to All Energy Attacks (2000 GP).
    • Enhanced Strength: +2 (4) Enhancement Bonus to Strength, Personal-Only (1400 GP).
  • This results in AC 15 (+2 Dex +3 Armor, see Equipment, below) normally, AC 28 (+2 Dex, +8 Armor, +8 Shield) when “blasting”.

Converting Sam’s Force Field in full is awkward because it’s a plot device power. Sam, and anything he extends his field around, is pretty much invulnerable and nigh-unstoppable – until, whenever it’s convenient for the story, he gets hit with some effect that bypasses it (psychic attack, sensory disruption, teleportation, induced suspended animation, magical bindings, whatever) or gets hit when his protection is weakened or down – when he has to stop to help someone, or gets distracted, or hits the ground (or a target) and has to reorient himself, or simply has turned off his power to twist around and make a sharp turn. Then he goes down.

So… High AC? That would fit most of it, but won’t protect against area effects or hitting things. Damage Reduction and Energy Resistance? But it’s going to be really expensive to buy that much and would make him take ages to take down – and Sam doesn’t usually last all that long in a fight. Damage absorbing effect? Maybe – but Sam seems to have no reasonable upper limits up until the point where he just goes down.

Ergo:

  • Blasting Stunts: 2d6 Mana with Reality Editing, Specialized and Corrupted for Increased Effect / Only for Reality Editing, only for edits related to his powers, only for a list of specific edits and up to (Wis Mod) “stunts” during any single combat, must be “blasting” (IE: no giving medical care, working on defusing bombs, etc) to use this ability. In any case, his tricks usually cover himself and anyone he’s carrying (12 CP).
    • 1 Mana (Minor): Ignore a minor physical attack, blast free of chains or similar restraints. project his blasting touch as a ranged attack, use his field as temporary life support, pull off a “bootlegger reverse” or similar maneuver (and thus leave himself briefly vulnerable), survive a high speed crash only briefly dazed.
    • 2 Mana (Notable): Ignore a serious physical attack, protect a small area against minor attacks, blast free of being held by moderate superhuman strength, disperse a mist or “cloud” type effect.
    • 3 Mana (Major): Ignore a major physical attack or protect a fair sized area against notable physical attacks, collapsing buildings, and similar, blast out of the grip of a major superhuman, drill through the ground at high speed, carry a giant robot into orbit with him.
    • 4 Mana (Grandiose, always count as “stunts” as above): Protect an area against a major physical attack, absorb and redirect a massive attack, contain a strategic nuclear weapon, catch a space ship entering FTL flight.
  • Reflex Training with +4 Bonus Uses, Specialized for Reduced Cost / no more than three actions may be used during any one fight (6 CP).
  • Rite of Chi with +8 Bonus Uses, Specialized and Corrupted / only to renew the pool above, only restores one die per ten minutes of downtime (6 CP).

That makes Sam pretty nearly invulnerable – but only while “blasting”, not if too many attacks hit at one time, and not against non-physical attacks. Moreover, if he’s busy making fancy maneuvers. he’ll have to shut down his major defenses, even if only briefly.

Immortality:

  • Grant of Aid with Spark of Life, Mighty, and Regenerative, Powered by Mana, Specialized/maximum of 1 Mana every three turns (9 CP).
  • Returning (6 CP).
  • Immunity to Aging (Uncommon, Severe, Major, 6 CP).

Sam has fairly low-grade immortality – more or less “Highlander” style. You can kill him – although it takes a while – and if you then burn him to ashes in a blast furnace or something, he’s dead until a normal comic-book resurrection pops up. Still, destroying his heart, or pulling his guts out, or a lot of other usually-fatal injuries won’t slow him up for long.

Other Basics:

  • Hit Dice: 10 (L1d10, 6 CP) +17 (L2-L7d4, 0 CP) +49 (( Con Mod + Str Mod) x 7)) = 86, 100 when “blasting”. In Mutants and Masterminds, that’s a base Toughness of 10 (11 when “blasting”).
  • Advanced Improved Augmented Bonus: Adds (Str Mod) to (Con Mod) for determining HP (18 CP).
  • Saves: Fortitude +4, Reflex +2, Will +4 (30 CP).
  • Proficiencies: Sam knows how to use various weapons, but isn’t especially well-practiced with any of them. In game terms, he is not proficient with weapons or armor and will just have to live with the -4 penalty on weapons and the armor check penalty (fortunately, his uniform does not have such a penalty to worry about).

Minor Notes:

  • Improved Initiative +4 (6 CP). +7 Total.
  • Opportunist: May take an attack for any target within normal movement range once per round (6 CP).
  • Leadership: Mystic Artist / Oratory, Specialized for Increased Effect and Corrupted for Reduced Cost / only to use Inspiration abilities, only positive effects are possible, only through Skill 18, Costs 2 Mana per use (4 CP). Sam’s style of leadership shows up early – in the “Demon Bear” storyline in The New Mutants – and seems to mostly revolve around “Common sense, stick to what’s important, and invoke people’s finer qualities to inspire them”. Ergo a bardic-style knack.
  • +10 to Oratory (10 CP). This isn’t one of his listed skills, but – looking at the Demon Bear storyline again – I think he showed a knack for it early on.
    Luck with +4 Bonus Uses, Specialized in Initiative for Reduced Cost (6 CP). Maybe it’s only having one basic approach to things (Charge!), but Sam is very, VERY, often first to act.Major Favors (The various X-Groups) (6 CP). Good old reliable Sam gets along just fine with pretty much everyone he’s EVER worked with. That… isn’t bad for a christian country boy who’s just found out that someone is a demon-witch.

Total Costs:

  • Four-Color Package (24 CP)
  • Attribute Boosts (21 CP)
  • Skill Boosts (9 CP)
  • BAB (24 CP)
  • Inherent Spells (18 CP)
  • Innate Enchantment (8 CP)
  • Blasting Stunts (18 CP)
  • Immortality (21 CP)
  • Hit Dice (24 CP)
  • Saves (30 CP)
  • Minor Items (38 CP).

That comes to 235 CP – which leaves 11 CP left over. I’m going to save those in case I forgot about something (or there’s something in later books that I haven’t seen).

For the remaining details… we have a minor effect or two to add from the Four Color Package and his Wealth-By-Level equipment.

  • For the minor effect, we’ll pick up Air Bubble (Sam has had no trouble operating at extremely high altitude).
  • Equipment is basically the same as Magick’s – as is his 13,000 GP equipment allowance.
  • Kevlar Reinforced Costume (“Leather Armor”, but 40 GP and only 5 pounds), Masterwork (+150 GP), +1 (+1000 GP), Amulet of Tears (2300 GP. This can provide up to +36 HP per day. Throwing that into his HP total for the purposes of calculation in M&M provides Toughness 12 normally, 13 when “blasting”. Armor Crystal: a Lesser Iron Ward Diamond (2000 GP). This isn’t a big deal, but every little bit helps.
  • Advanced First Aid Kit / Healing Belt (750 GP).
  • “Pocket Secretary”/Hero Team Comlink: Satellite Smartphone with HUD and hands-free links (250 GP), Smartsearch (As per a Tome of Worldly Memory, 1500 GP), Intelligent (500 GP), Int, Wis, Chr all 10 (0 GP), 30′ senses, uses Message at will (1000 GP). Note that, since smartphones can talk anyway, there is no need to buy speech for it.
  • Reactive Contact Lenses / Raptors Mask (3500 GP).+5 to Spot (Perception), Immunity to being Blinded or Dazzled.
  • Utility Pouch: Keys, LED minilight, multitool, chalk, nylon ties, etc. All the little junk that pops up once in a blue moon (10 GP).

Sam comes out significantly more powerful than the linked Mutants and Masterminds build. He’s tougher (+13, even before just bending reality to ignore attacks), he’s stronger (+5), he’s more accurate (+15), he hits harder (+12 Damage, with various area-effect options), and he’s a LOT harder to hit (Dodge/Parry only +5 when not blasting but +18 when blasting). Fortitude +8, Reflex +4, Will +7 (but access to Protection From Evil through the four-color package), he has more skills, and he regenerates faster. At least his +7 Initiative is the same.

That’s actually fair enough; Sam’s had a high-powered (if focused and fairly clumsy) ability set in the first place, has lots of experience under his belt, and has beaten more than a few major opponents such as Gladiator – and Gladiator’s basically a Superman knockoff. (Of course, Sam too is a down-on-the-farm flying, nigh-indestructible, hits-super-hard boy scout…).

On the other hand, Sam pretty well defines “straightforward”. Throw him up against a telepath, or an illusionist, or a demon-possessed child, or pretty much anyone who isn’t in the “trade mighty blows” club, and there isn’t a whole lot he can do.

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Eclipsing Magick

So; first up among the New Mutants… an Eclipse version of a character who’s kind of tricky in Mutants and Masterminds: Illyana Rasputin – A.K.A, Magick. The problem here is pretty basic; RPG’s give the characters pretty definite attributes and abilities, while comic-book magic-users tend to vary in ability to fit the plot even more than most comic book characters do. Secondarily, they usually have a lot of minor abilities that don’t make it into the statistics, simply because the writers have them do all kinds of minor things more or less at random because it shows that they’re mysterious and magical without actually disrupting their plots. Finally, the Marvel Universe has a fairly complex magic system – personal energy magic, “universal” energy magic (which varies with the dimension), invocations of mystical beings, white and black magic (drawing on other creatures life forces), and a whole lot of minor disciplines drawing on specific power sources. Shamans calling on land-spirits, “priests” calling on various dimensions and their dimensional rulers, gaian magic, necromancy, magic channeling the power of coincidence, and many, MANY, more. Not surprisingly, building all that out of basic effects is incredibly awkward and time-consuming.

I’m most familiar with the character from the early New Mutants years, so that – and this series of posts over HERE (as requested) – is going to be my basis for comparison.

Magick was a fundamentally tragic character, a survivor of frightful abuse who’s “inner demons” (such as her “psychic familiars” when she first joined the New Mutants) were quite capable of getting loose and wrecking the area, even if that did make them easier to fight. Her choice was between accepting her role as the gateway through which the Lovecraftian Elder Gods would enter the world (and ruling over the resulting hellscape as a demon-queen) or to constantly battle her own nature to stand as a guardian at that gate – knowing that, no matter how much she might strive to do good, with three-fifths of her soul bound to evil her efforts would always be corrupt. There would always be a price – and her heroism lay in paying it herself, rather than laying it off onto others.

In many ways she was a surprisingly uncomfortable character to see. Even in the X-books which had always been metaphors for racial prejudice and hatred the incredibly blunt metaphor for child sexual abuse was well beyond the norm. Still, it did give her stories unusual depths.

As a member of the New Mutants Magick was the bad girl – a relatively limited witch who was willing to use her dark powers to their fullest extent, who voiced the unpleasant truths, and who promised vengeance against whatever hurt her friends. Cannonball rammed you like a football player, Sunspot punched you in the nose… Magick stuck a sword in your heart. Sure, it was a (usually) non-lethal magic-disrupting sword, but it was still a pretty firm statement that “My teammates would prefer to spare you. ->I<- will do what is necessary”.

“If you’ve harmed Kitty, woman, I’ll bring this entire mountain down around your ears. I’ll use my magic to move your precious academy from Earth to the heart of hell itself!”

-Magick’s internal monologue at the Massachusetts Academy – and well within her power. Given that she knew that her mind was unreadable, this was a statement of personal intent – and of her willingness to send hundreds of random teenagers to hell just to upset the White Queen.

Now when it comes to comparing or converting Eclipse / 3.5 and Mutants and Masterminds, a lot of things are very direct indeed.

Basic Attributes: 3.5-style attribute modifiers convert to the various M&M attributes and vice-versa with two complications: d20 Str has been split into M&M Str (governing melee damage) and Fighting (governing melee attacks and taking over the melee part of Dex’s AC bonus). D20 Dex has been split into M&M Dex and Agi, possibly on the theory that Initiative, Ranged Attack Bonus, AC Bonus, and Reflex Saves are bit much to load into a single attribute.

Regardless… D20 Str Mod = M&M Str. D20 Int Mod = M&M Int. D20 Wis Mod = M&M Awa. D20 Con = M&M Sta. D20 Dex Mod = M&M (Dex + Agi)/2. D20 Cha = M& Pre. Fighting is generally BAB (Specialized in Melee Only for Double Effect; Also provides a AC Bonus versus Melee Attacks, Corrupted/no iterative attacks).

Magick is shown to have Str -1, Sta 2, Agi 2, Fight 6, Dex 3, Int 0, Awa 2, and Pre 2 at PL7. The PL 10 adult version gets Str 0, Sta 2, Agi 3, Fight 6, Dex 3, Int 1, Awa 3, and Pre 3.

Personally I’m not so sure about Presence / Charisma having a positive modifier at all – Magick is notable for her prickly personality, general grumpiness, sarcasm, failures of leadership, lack of ability to manage people, constantly being betrayed, and lack of close personal relationships. She hid her own nature from the people who wanted to help her since she didn’t know how to talk about it – perhaps the first of a long string of obvious bad decisions that cast serious doubt on her Intelligence and/or Awareness as well.

Oh well. I shall chalk it up to her youth and rather extensive psychological damage.

I’ll go with Str 8 (-1), Int 12 (1), Wis 16 (3), Con 14 (2), Dex 16 (3), Chr 14 (2), and BAB 6. Given a base attribute array of 16/16/14/12/10/8 (25 Point Buy) we need two “+2’s” to get there. Of course, she gets one for being a Pathfinder Human and picking up a +2 to an attribute should be easy enough.

Special Abilities:

  • Expertise (May reduce AC by 5 to add 5 to her Attacks, 6 CP).
  • Sanctum (Limbo, 6 CP). Magick “rules” Limbo and controls it’s magic. Unfortunately, all of the power she gains in Limbo is corrupt black magic, involves constantly defending the place against various horrific magical entities who want to take it over, her control is little longer than arms reach, and the local demons are quite treacherous. This is quite enough to specialize and corrupt every power she gets from this ability. The extra 24 CP she gets in Limbo go to…
    • Ritual Magic (2 CP). Magick can perform all kinds of powerful rituals in Limbo. They usually go badly wrong of course, but she CAN.
    • Augmented Bonus: Adds (Dex Mod) to her Rune Magic Skills, Specialized and Corrupted for Triple Effect (+9) (6 CP).
    • +14 Skill Points (Wisdom-based Mastery and Casting for abjuration, conjuration, divination, enchantment, evocation, necromancy, and transmutation rune magic). Double Effect and Two-Thirds Cost. While in Limbo this provides a base of +14 (allowing the user of third level effects and providing caster level seven within those fields) (9 CP).
    • Runic Ritual (2 CP). While in Limbo Magick can use +1 Mana, ceremonies, and invocations, to increase the power of her spells.
    • Hysteria (Magical) (2 CP). Magick can draw on Limbo’s energies to augment her power.
    • Lore (Magical Artifacts, Realms, Rituals, and Creatures) (2 CP). While in Limbo Magick has an extensive magical library to draw on.
    • Specific Knowledge / the layout of Limbo (1 CP).
    • She also has a big castle full of treacherous demons, wholly unsuitable clothing, horrific relics of her gruesome past, no defenses of note, and a large bed with a soft mattress. The abuse metaphor is working overtime isn’t it?

As the Sorcereress Supreme of the Limbo Dimension, Magick commands massive magical powers there. She’s capable of pulling off sixth level effects at caster level thirteen if she cares to bother. In fact, if she uses those modifiers with her Stepping Disks… she’s quite capable of creating a dimensional overlay that will combine Limbo and Earth (and set up an entire “Inferno” storyline). Similarly, pumping up her Soulsword with those modifiers will make her a genuinely serious threat to intruding ancient dimensional overlords, such as the Dread Dormammu.

  • Blessing (6 CP): Magick is capable of passing on portions of her powers and benefits – ranging from allowing someone else to take advantage of her rendering someone else flat-footed against an attack on up to passing on her arcane powers to someone else (usually Kitty Pride) if she is slain or somehow stripped of them.
  • Evasive and Specialist (Sunder): Gains a +4 bonus and provokes no AOO when using the Sunder maneuver (6 CP, 3 CP if you skip the “No AOO” part. If you’re just building for conversion, you might want to; Mutants and Masterminds doesn’t really have attacks of opportunity, or iterative attacks, or a lot of other stuff. Of course, if you want to actually convert a character… you’ll need to either build those abilities or leave them out in the first place.
  • Mystic Artist / Intimidation, Specialized and Corrupted/only to gain the “Fascinate” ability (2 CP).
  • Leadership (The Demons of Limbo), Specialized and Corrupted for Double Effect and two-thirds cost / they’re DEMONS. They are rebellious, treacherous, misinterpret what they’re asked to do, and make endless amounts of trouble (6 CP). Magick can call up swarms of demons. This almost always proves to be more trouble than it’s worth in the end.

Magick’s supernatural armor was exceptionally ill-defined. According to the original Marvel Super Heroes rules it varied between Excellent (sufficient to automatically shrug off rifles and such) to Monstrous (sufficient to automatically shrug off nuclear weapons). In actual stories, she never seemed to be all that invulnerable, even if it did protect her from the demon-bears claws during her armors first (completely unexpected) appearance.

Well, it mostly acted like plate armor, so…

  • Innate Enchantment, Specialized for Double Effect / only while wielding her Soulsword. All spells Spell Level Zero or One x Caster Level One x 2000 GP (Unlimited-Use Use-Activated).
    • Mage Armor, Personal-Only (x.7) = 1400 GP. +8 Force Bonus to AC.
    • Immortal Vigor I, Personal Only (x.7) = 1400 GP. +(24 + 4 x Con Mod) HP.
    • Weapon Mastery (Soulsword) L0 = 1000 GP. +6 BAB with Soulsword.
    • Resistance (L0), Personal Only (x.7) = 700 GP. +2 Resistance Bonus to all Saves.
    • Stabilize (L0), Personal Only (x.7) = 700 GP. The wearer automatically stabilizes if below zero hit points.

At an effective value of 5200 GP, this costs (6 CP). Doubling the effect of the spells instead of manipulating the cost is kind of dubious, but every character is entitled to a little cheese – and doubling up on the number of spells could produce similar results, albeit with a far more complex mess of bonus types.

  • Immunity to Dispelling (Common, Minor, Great), Specialized and Corrupted / only to protect Magick’s supernatural armor, above (4 CP).

Personal Energy Magic: The weakest, if by far the safest and easiest, form of magic in the Marvel Universe is basically “psychic tricks” – little stuff that a talented child might pull off with little or no training at all. This can actually be quite effective if used cleverly, but on superheroic scales… you’d better have SOMETHING else to draw on. This, of course, is exactly what the Witchcraft system in Eclipse represents. So… Witchcraft III with an extra 6d6 (22) Power (although she usually fuels her abilities with Mana), Pacts of Guardianship (keeping the gate to the realms of the Elder Gods closed) and Possession (Magick was occasionally possessed by her own dark side) (18 CP).

  • The Adamant Will: Magick’s psychic shields are capable of standing up to Professor Xavier, at least for a time – which is exactly what The Adamant Will does.
  • Glamour. Magick is capable of hypnosis, of causing a normal person to forget brief periods, and similar minor mental tricks.
  • Dreamfaring. Magick is capable of astral projection, quasi-clairvoyance using it, and sensing things in nearby dimensions.
  • Healing: Magick isn’t a particularly GOOD healer, but – as an adventuress – she knows a few tricks along those lines. Don’t expect anything much past first aid though.
  • Shadoweave: Magick can generate simple, obvious images, lights, and similar effects.
  • Witchsight, Specialized in Magical Detection to make it continuously active at no cost. Like most trained Marvel Universe mages, Magick pretty much automatically feels any major magical disturbances nearby thanks to their effect on her own magical core.
  • Hand of Shadows with an Upgrade (may generate telekinesis and force effects of up to level three, +6 CP). Magick can generate force-blasts and bonds, make basic shields, barriers, and “wards”, move things around, clean up rooms, and perform a lot of minor tricks.

In her very first on-earth fight, Magick deployed a variety of spells – mystic chains, bolts, a spell of forgetfulness, and likely more. They didn’t have much effect on Sym, which is why she had to use her Soulsword – but obviously at least some of her powers worked just fine on Earth. Later… she said that they didn’t, but then kept using various spells. As a compromise, her personal magic works just fine on Earth, even if it IS pretty weak by superheroic mage standards. The grandiose stuff she can pull off in Limbo does not work on Earth.

Magicks access to Universal – or Ambient – Magical Energies was far more limited on Earth; which shouldn’t be all that surprising; she learned to use the dark energies of Limbo, not the natural magic of the Earth. She only had access to some Earthly ambient magic because her mutant power was the ability to tap into some aspects of it.

OK, that makes just as much sense as being able to tap into magnetism with your mutant powers, but it still seems really awkward – if only because perfectly normal, non-mutant, human beings can learn to tap into magical energies at least as well. It’s like having your mutant power be that you’re amazingly good at literary criticism without having to study it very much. Isn’t that just a bit lame?

Access to limited fields of Universal Magic is probably best represented by Rune Magic – which relies on skill, the Mana that being in a superhero universe provides, and neatly sorts itself into a variety of specific fields which you can ignore, study, or master, entirely independently of each other. In her case, it’s going to be Wisdom-Based.

  • Augmented Bonus: Adds (Dex Mod) to Wisdom-Based Skills, Specialized for Increased Effect / only for Rune Magic Skills, Corrupted for Reduced Cost / only for Soulsword, Stepping Disk, and Time Bender Rune Magic (4 CP).
  • Adept, Soulsword (Casting and Mastery) and Stepping Disks (Casting and Mastery) (6 CP).
  • 10 Skill Points (Paid for later). Four go to getting a +3 base in her Adept skills, the remaining six go to getting a +3 base in Time Bending (Casting and Mastery). That gives her a base of +12 in those six skills.

Magick’s Soulsword was always a very questionable thing. A spell of creation, meant to shape a pure focus for a soul touched by black magic, was fused with black magic and corruption to turn purity into a devastating weapon. It is little wonder that – the more Magick wielded the resulting abomination – the more demonic she became. Worse, like most major comic-book magics, it was never particularly consistent as to what it did, or how, or even what it looked like. Sometimes it only disrupted magic, sometimes it disrupted psychic powers, sometimes it could hurt people (at least as if it was a normal sword), and sometimes it couldn’t. That’s not “a” power. That’s a suite of powers.

  • Soulsword: Rune Magic / Negation, Specialized and Corrupted for Increased Effect / Only for negating / disrupting magical / psionic effects and beings, the more Magick uses the blade the more demonic she becomes, the user becomes an evil that exists to fight other evils, drawing the attention of demon lords and eldritch horrors, she can be at least briefly “disarmed”, although the blade always seems to show up again. Magicks +12 bonus would normally give her a casting level of 6 and let her use third level effects. At triple effect, that’s casting level 18 and ninth level effects for three mana – although three of those levels normally go to making the “casting” a simple part of attacking with the sword (this is most often a touch attack). This doesn’t cover using the Soulsword as if it was a normal sword, but she can manifest a normal sword with Hand of Shadows quite casually, which covers that.
  • Stepping Disks: Rune Magic / Travel (Mastery and Casting), Specialized and Corrupted for Increased Effect / all travel involves opening portals, all portals must go through “limbo”, may accidentally move across time or scatter travelers as a GM plot option, accuracy decreases as range increases, occasional portals may open nearby without conscious control. Magick is quite capable of moving a small area to Limbo and back in the same round using two quickened effects – such as when she pulled the New Mutants (and a car) into the X-Mansion to fight Sym.
  • Time Bender: Rune Magic / Time Manipulation, Specialized and Corrupted for Triple Effect / Magick basically has very limited control over this at best. She can twist timelines, travel to the past and future, change her own timeline, and reverse catastrophic magical effects across entire cities, but none of that is ever what you’d call reliable. About all she ever did that WAS reliable was return from Limbo so quickly that it looked like direct teleportation rather than a two-step process, and that might not even have involved time magic; it could have just been two quickened stepping disks. It’s notable, however, that Dr Strange tapped into this ability to let him reshape time on a level beyond what he could handle on his own.
  • 4d6 (16) Mana, Specialized for Double Effect (32 Mana) / only for Rune Magic (24 CP). Being in a superhero universe provides Mana to work with each round – but quickened spellcasting and such can easily outrun that supply. Ergo, Magick has some mana reserves.
  • Rite of Chi with +12 Bonus Uses, Specialized and Corrupted for Reduced Cost / requires at least twenty minutes worth of rest or meditation per die regained, only to restore the Mana Pool noted above (8 CP).

Combat Bonuses:

  • Finesse: Uses (Dex Mod) in place of (Str Mod) for magically empowered melee attacks (6 CP).
  • +6 BAB (36 CP). Melee +9, Soulsword +15, Ranged +9. Damage is per the magical effect used (whether Witchcraft-based, her Soulsword, or whatever she decides to do in Limbo).
  • +2 to All Saves (Fort +6, Ref +7, Will +7, 18 CP)
  • HP 12 (L1d12, 8 CP) +30 (L2-7d8, 24 CP) + 14 (Con Mod x7) +32 (Immortal Vigor) = 88 HP.
  • AC 10 (Base) +3 (Dex) +8 (Mystic Armor) = 21. M&M splits that into Melee (Parry) and Ranged (Dodge), but we don’t need to bother.
  • Initiative +3 (Dex)

Converting d20 damage to M&M damage is difficult because – fundamentally – neither system actually makes any sense. For the first and most obvious benchmark… take a normal person. To score an automatic instant kill in d20 you need to inflict a minimum of 14 damage. To score an automatic instant kill in M&M they have to miss their damage resistance check by 30. A normal person will have a +0 bonus on that check, but might roll a “20″. So an automatic kill requires a DC of 50, and a damage bonus of +35. So many low-level fighters – perhaps inflicting 2d4+12 – can do +35 in M&M. But M&M defines a one megaton strategic weapon as doing +30 damage. A one megaton blast to the face thus only has a 70% chance of immediately killing a normal person in M&M.

Ergo, melee attacks default to (Str Mod + Level), while others just use (Level).

Thus most of Magicks Witchcraft effects will be Rank 7 in M&M (very effective against normal people, but easily shrugged off by Sym). Her Limbo Magics have a base effect rank of 7 but can be boosted to rank 13. Her Stepping Disks and Soulsword are at rank 18, but can be boosted to rank 24 in Limbo.

Toughness is awkward. As written, Magick can – on average, and assuming that she doesn’t throw up a force sphere or something – take one nuke to the face, but it will leave her on the verge of dropping. So against DC 45, with an average roll of 10, she’d miss by 15. Yet Toughness 20 is obviously too much. I’d go with the (square root of the characters hit points + 1). In her case… that’s 10. Good, but hardly invulnerable.

And that takes us to Skills – although we can disregard the various combat-booster skills unless she wants to purchase a martial art or two since those have been incorporated into her boosts, above. At her lower power level the M&M writeup gives her Acrobatics 2, Athletics 3, Deception 4, Expertise (Magic) 12, Expertise (Queen of Limbo) 5, Insight 3, Intimidation 6, Perception 2, and Stealth 3, for a total of 40 SP.

At the higher power level her M&M writeup gives her Acrobatics 2, Athletics 2, Deception 4, Expertise (Magic) 13, Expertise (Queen of Limbo) 5, Insight 4, Intimidation 10, Perception 4, and Stealth 4. That’s 48 SP. Superhero advancement tends to be pretty slow, but she probably picked up a level or two, which would explain it.

Personally, I’m dumping “Expertise (Queen of Limbo) because Magick has quite spectacularly (and repeatedly) demonstrated that she is, in fact, no good at all at running Limbo – a task which consists almost exclusively of keeping the demons under control.

She’s going to want to increase the human skill bonus to +2 SP/Level (3 CP), Acquire Fast Learner Specialized in Skills (6 CP), and Adept (Specialized in two skills only for Increased Effect (Adept Skills get an extra +4 Bonus)/Expertise (Magic) and Intimidation, 6 CP). That gets her 20 SP at L1, plus 5 SP/additional level, and lets her get the Adept skills at half cost. She’ll still have to purchase a few skill points – I’ll say 12 (12 CP) at level six.

Available Skill Points: 5 x (Level +3) = 50 +14 (Purchased) = 64 SP.

That will give her the high-end skill package of Acrobatics 2 (+5), Athletics 2 (+1), Deception 4 (+6), Expertise (Magic) 13 (+14), Insight 4 (+7), Intimidation 10 (+12), Perception 4 (+7), and Stealth 4 (+7) at a cost of 27 SP. Since she has another 37 available, she can boost her rune magic and other skills some more – such as buying her second language since she is bilingual and throwing in a few points in knowledge / expertise skills or perhaps some martial arts since she did all right in Xavier’s school.

So let’s add this up:

  • Four-Color Package (24 CP). As a Sorceress, she gets her Mana from her Wisdom.
  • Expertise (6 CP)
  • Sanctum (Limbo, 6 CP)
  • Blessing (6 CP).
  • Improved Sunder (6 CP).
  • Fascinating Intimidation (2 CP).
  • Leadership (6 P)
  • Darkchilde Armor (10 CP).
  • Witchery (18 CP)
  • Universal Magic (10 CP, also requires 10 SP)
  • Mana Pool and Recovery (32 CP).
  • Finesse (6 CP)
  • +6 BAB (36 CP)
  • +2 to all Saves (18 GP).
  • Hit Points (32 CP).
  • Skills (29 CP).

That’s 247 CP. It’s been shaping up to look like level seven or eight, so lets see what we need:

Available Character Points: 192 (Level Seven Base) +30 (Human Bonus, L1, L3, L5, and l7 Feats) +14 (Duties) +7 (Restrictions; can only call on the Elder Gods for dimensional magic, and will not do so) +10 (Disadvantages: Accursed (Bloodstones bind soul to evil and prevent the use of pure white magic), History, and Hunted (Belasco and other evils)) = 253 CP.

  • So we have 6 CP left over. Given the superheroic tendency to leap in front of attacks meant for others, throw up shields in front of incoming attacks, and so on… I’d recommend Reflex Training (the three action per day variant).

For remaining details… we have a minor effect or two to add from the Four Color Package and her Wealth-By-Level equipment.

  • For the minor effect, we’ll pick up the remaining +2 to an Attribute that she needs (a first level effect) and a +3 competence bonus to Intimidate when she goes all demony.
  • Her equipment allowance is 13,000 GP. According to Urban Arcana, 1 GP = 20$. According to the Price Conversion Table from d20 Modern up to Purchase DC 10 is about $10 per DC. 10 = $120, 11 = $150, 12 = $200, 13= $275, 14 = $350, 15 = $500, 16 = $650, and 17 = $900. From there, each +8 DC is x10 dollars. Fortunately, we can ignore much of that except for calculating the base price of her phone.
    • Kevlar Reinforced Costume (“Leather Armor”, but 40 GP and only 5 pounds. Note that Arcane Spell Failure does not apply to Rune Magic or Witchcraft), Masterwork (+150 GP), +1 (+1000 GP), Amulet of Tears (2300 GP. This can provide up to +36 HP per day. Throwing that into her HP total for the purposes of calculation in M&M provides +2 to her Toughness – although that effect will wane as hit points increase. In theory this still takes up the appropriate item slot, but Superheroes rarely care). Armor Crystal: a Lesser Iron Ward Diamond (2000 GP).
    • Advanced First Aid Kit / Healing Belt (750 GP).
    • “Pocket Secretary”/Hero Team Comlink: Satellite Smartphone with HUD and hands-free links (250 GP), Smartsearch (As per a Tome of Worldly Memory, 1500 GP), Intelligent (500 GP), Int, Wis, Chr all 10 (0 GP), 30′ senses, uses Message at will (1000 GP). Note that, since smartphones can talk anyway, there is no need to buy speech for it.
    • Reactive Contact Lenses / Raptors Mask (3500 GP).+5 to Spot (Perception), Immunity to being Blinded or Dazzled.
    • Utility Pouch: Keys, LED minilight, multitool, chalk, nylon ties, etc. All the little junk that pops up once in a blue moon (10 GP).

And that’s 13,000 GP.

When it comes to equipment, Superheroes are much more vulnerable than d20 characters. That’s mostly because comic books are created by writers to present to third party audiences. If a Green Lantern is deprived of his or her power ring… even if it’s a team book in the first place, the rest of the team will either be shuffled offstage to allow a solo story, handed the idiot ball so that the powerless character can still be a leader in their adventures, or land in an incredibly contrived set of situations that still allow the character who can’t do much of anything to be the hero. None of those are good options for a RPG, since they ALL translate to “GM railroading” and/or “one or more players is not getting to actually play tonight”. Thus d20 characters may lose a piece or two of gear, and be put at a short-term disadvantage – but they pretty much never lose all their gear and get put out of action. If you’re converting to M&M, a d20 or Eclipse characters wealth-by-level is one of their powers,

Overall, this version of Magick is a fine demonstration of why throwing “an endless stream of Mana” into the character design process takes a character from a hero to a superhero. While she turns out to be built on almost exactly the same number of points in both Eclipse and in Mutants and Masterminds, the Eclipse version has a major advantage in versatility and a slight advantage in raw power – mostly because Eclipse is built using versatile fantasy magic tropes, rather than specific-powers superhero tropes. The rest of the New Mutants tend to have more specific powers, and may be a bit more awkward in Eclipse terms.

Eclipse and Four Color Heroics

The question this time is basically how some Eclipse-style superhero builds match up to Mutants and Masterminds third edition builds – with specific reference to the original “New Mutants” and their writeups over at the “Atomic Think Tank”.

Well, why not? I haven’t built very many superheroes, so this is a perfectly reasonable topic to get back to posting with.

So what do you need to buy to be a four-color superhero?

First up… the Superheroic World Template obviously applies. That’s pretty simple; it gives each character (Con Mod) points of Mana to spend each round. You generally can’t augment this, but the GM may well let you use another attribute without even taking Finesse. It only defaults to Constitution because Superheroes are almost invariably healthy types who push through terrible conditions and massive injuries, recover quickly and completely, and hardly ever get sick. Ergo, a high Constitution is encouraged – but if you must play a frail psychic or studious elderly wizard or something, swapping to Wisdom or Intelligence is pretty reasonable.

The obvious way to use that power is to make normally limited-use abilities unlimited. Go ahead. Use Berserker to keep your strength jacked up to superhuman levels all the time, or turn Grant of Aid into and endless font of regeneration, or exercise endless telekinetic control over the earth, or whatever. Really, that’s quite enough to make you a street-level superhero.

But if you want to be a true four-color superhero you’ll need a few extra ways to use that power.

Superheroic Physics (6 CP):

In some settings, characters with mighty superhuman powers have to deal with “consequences”. They have to worrry about what gets hit when they miss with an attack, the fact that buildings do not have the structural integrity to be picked up, and that trying to punch through three feet of steel will simply drive you backwards and (probably) massively damage whatever you’re standing on because it will be hit just as hard. People in such street-level superhero universes have to deal with those pesky conservation laws, leverage, and all the other factors that real people have to deal with. Superman may be strong, but no amount of strength will actually let you move planets, or lift mountain ranges, instead of going through them.

In “four-color” superhero settings – the default type for Mutants and Masterminds, Champions / Hero System, and many other games – reality need not apply. Superman is simply altering reality to go along with his heroic narrative. To do that, we want to buy an:

  • Mana / Additional Form of Natural Magic (Reality Editing), Specialized and Corrupted for Increased Effect / only to support the user’s heroic narrative and let the user’s abilities function without normal scaling restrictions (6 CP).

And there you go. Go ahead and lift that building and smack someone with it without having it fall apart. Catch someone who’s falling without killing them with the impact with you. Run down the stairs faster than someone can fall. Fly at incredible speeds without smashing the city around you with sonic booms. This won’t really help when you’re up against another superhuman though. When both characters are using this effect it just goes back to comparing the underlying abilities – but it will allow (for a very dramatic example) Binary to punch Rogue into orbit without serious harm to either character OR destroying the area, just as it will then allow Rogue to return from the vicinity of the moon and locate her destination in mere seconds. It means that long-range travel operates at the speed of plot rather than according to actual time and distance – with the only important measurements being however the game master chooses to distinguish between “way too late”, “just too late”, “just in time”, and “way early”.

As a side-benefit, this also means that you can and will function normally – without smashing up the scenery, punching too hard and obliterating minor street gang members, or killing your sexual partners – whenever over-the-top super-abilities do not fit your narrative.

Any character headed into a four-color superhero setting should gain this ability for free as a world law, just as they normally no longer need to worry about having limited power sources – but it’s cheap enough to buy.

Superheroic Durability (6 CP):

Superheroes are very often stunned, knocked out, or injured by their opponents attacks.

Wait. Lets just think about that for a moment. Quite a lot of superheroes are fairly normal people under their battle armor, or force field, or whatever – a lot like a normal soldier sitting in a tank. But looking at attacks on tanks… the vast majority of the time attacks either fail to get through (and leave the crew rattled but basically unscathed) or they wreck the tank and leave the crew dead. When one percent of a weapons impact is more than enough to kill someone you only get injured targets on a hit if something has used up more than 99% of the weapons total energy but still less than 99.99% or so (whatever it takes to get it down below the threshold of serious injury).

That’s a VERY narrow zone. Yet comic book characters with wildly varying defenses engage in quite a lot of combat against wildly varying opponents with all kinds of weapons, and take a fair number of hits, and yet they generally have long survival times.

3.5 and Eclipse handle this by making hit points utterly abstract and damage non-linear. A hit from a Colossal Mace should – by virtue of basic physics – be capable of doing hundreds of thousands of times as much damage as a hit from a 1d8 Medium Mace, yet according to the d20 rules it only does 6d6. That’s as if dropping a can of soup on your foot five times in a row was equivalent to being caught between a high speed loaded truck and a rockface.

Want to consider a nuke? Well, d20 Future tells us that a one-megaton nuke (one of the few weapons on the list that’s actually real and comparable) does 16d8 damage – an average of 72 points. My scaling calculations (from hand-held explosives, but the same article again) tell me that a one-megaton blast would cause either 20 or 21 d6 damage (averaging 70 and 73.5 respectively, or 71.75 together). Alternatively, we can also just go by the standard charts for explosives and weapon sizes – which tell us that a Tiny explosion causing 3d6 damage can be scaled up to a Colossal explosion causing 18d8 damage. That’s remarkably consistent really. As for what it shows us…

  • In d20 each +1 multiplier to your hit point damage represents ten times as much actual physical damage. How does that work? It’s because inflicting injury in d20 is more about convincing your target that they SHOULD be hurt than it is about actual forces that cause physical injury. Because RPG’s are “Let’s Pretend” with rules – and the hit point rules are aimed at convincing the player that their character “should be dead”. There are plenty of mid-level d20 fighter types who can take a nuke to the face without so much as flinching – and can still be wiped out by twenty to thirty blows from a club. Bombs? A bright flash, a loud noise, and a bit of an impact? Why would they believe that something that is over so fast can really hurt them? But a club now… a club is CONVINCING. EVERYONE knows that a club hurts! You learned that as a little kid!

No, that doesn’t make much of any sense from a “realistic” prospective. Because, you know, MAGIC.

Fortunately, this system works just fine for superheroes – but it’s worth noting that Superheroes are knocked out a lot more often than they’re seriously hurt or killed and take even more hits than a low-level 3.5 character can. In the comics… this is usually a version of professional courtesy. “If you restrain yourselves, so will we – because we WILL lose sometimes, and we’d rather get to survive doing so”.

When superheroes do take a serious wound it tends to be quite dramatic though. Ergo, we’ll want to buy…

  • Superhuman Resilience: DR 3/- (affecting both physical and energy damage), Specialized and Corrupted for Increased Effect (9/-) / only to reduce lethal damage to nonlethal damage, bypassed by critical hits (6 CP).

That basically amounts to “I can take twenty times as much damage as a normal person without serious harm, but can be knocked out without incredible difficulty.

Superheroic Build (A.K.A. “The Most Common Power”) (3 CP):

Ever noticed that almost all the major characters in comics look really good? Is that a standard secondary power that comes with everything?

Not really. Standard “superheroic good looks” are a consequence of the medium. Humans tend to see clearly defined and highly symmetrical features, clear skin, an average-to-slim build, and somewhat “generic” features, as indicators for good health and good genes – in other words, an attractive/handsome/beautiful potential mate. There are a lot of nonvisual cues too, but comics are primarily a visual medium.

All of those features turn up in comics simply because comics start off as long sequences of line drawings. That means that making the main characters easier to draw is quite important. Clearly defined features? Line drawing. Highly symmetrical? Far easier to draw in a variety of poses and from various angles. Clear skin? Who wants to waste time and effort drawing skin blemishes? Average build? Easy to draw and lots of sample shots to look at. Somewhat generic features? Helps avoid any accusations of drawing stereotypes AND makes it easy for the audience to accept and identify with the characters. Result: standardized generic good looks. Buy this as…

  • Minor Privilege: Cultivated Appearance. Regardless of their actual Charisma, this character gets to describe themselves as good looking, horrifying, or utterly ordinary as they prefer (3 CP). Yes, pretty much ANY super can get groupies.

Rapid Recovery (3 CP):

Real people break bones, lose blood, and can take a vary long time indeed to recover from very small amounts of damage. Supers, however, recover quickly, rarely suffer lingering effects from their injuries, and wake up again on a moments notice. That’s…

  • Grant of Aid, Specialized/requires at least one minute to activate (3 CP).

That’s not a LOT of recovery – but it’s fairly broad spectrum, will suffice to automatically stabilize a dying character, and will start at the player’s call – so it will wake the character up if he or she is unconscious or something.

Minor Conventions (6 CP):

Given that everyone needs to be readily identifiable, and that drawing costume changes and/or damage complicates things, comic book characters tend to wear their colorful, easily-identifiable, negative stealth modifier, and wholly impractical costumes everywhere (or at least change into them impractically fast). For the same reason they’re virtually never damaged too badly and are good enough for broiling deserts and arctic conditions – although, to be fair, most superheroes seem to shrug off petty inconveniences like “estimated survival time of twenty minutes” anyway.

  • Innate Enchantment, all powers Spell Level One x Caster Level One x 2000 GP Unlimited-Use Use-Activated. Specialized for Increased Effect (counts as extraordinary abilities, not magic) /
    • Ready for Inspection: Prestidigitation, Only to keep the user clean and neat and help perform quick costume changes (Note that characters with minor signature traits – always chewing on a cigar, having a few jelly babies in a pocket, etc, may count a couple of those as a part of their “costume”) x.5 = 500 GP.
    • Comics Code: Mending, Only to keep the “necessary” bits of the user’s costume in good repair. Thus, men can lose their shirts, but never their pants – unless it’s THAT sort of comic of course. X.25 = 250 GP.
    • It’s Sufficient: Endure Elements , Personal Only (x.7), 2/Day Only (x.4) = 560 GP. Whatever the costume looks like, it’s perfectly comfortable and adequate for all normal earthly climactic conditions.
    • Heroic Will: Protection From Evil, Personal Only (x.7), 3/Day Only (x.6), Only when the GM feels that the user is being compelled to do something against their personal code or otherwise is likely to summon a mighty surge of will to throw off possession/mind control/etc (x.25) = 210 GP.
    • Heroic Rally: Remove Fear, 2/Day Only (x.4), user must make an adequate inspiring speech (x.6) = 480 GP.
    • Coincidental Catch: Feather Fall, 2/Day Only (x.4), activates automatically (x1.5), but only works 50% of the time (x.4) = 480 GP. When a hero falls off a roof or gets dropped, there is a substantial chance that SOMETHING will happen to break his or her fall.
    • Heroic Health: Relieve Illness (from the Hedge Wizardry spell list) 1/Day (x.2), Personal Only (x.7) = 280 GP. Relieve Poison (from the Hedge Wizardry spell list) 1/Day (x.2), Personal Only (x.7) = 280 GP, Lesser Restoration 1/Day (x.2), Personal Only (x.7) = 280 GP. Fast Healing I (from The Practical Enchanter, for 18 rounds, 2/Day (x.4), Personal Only (x.7)) = 560 GP.

This leaves 2100 GP value open – enough for a trio of personal-only cantrips, an as-needed first level spell (even if perpetual healing is banned). Can you evaluate an area at a glance (L1, Sift), perform impressive card tricks (very limited Prestidigitation, L0), be perpetually optimistic (Good Hope, L1), never run out of bullets (Abundant Ammunition, L1), disguise yourself quickly (Disguise, L1), act extremely innocent (Innocence, L1), perform ventriloquism (ventriloquism, L1), look young despite your advanced age (Youthful Appearance, L1), smell poison (Detect Poison, L0), always know True North (Know Direction, L0), have small bonuses on a few skills (Skill Mastery spell template from The Practical Enchanter), always Stabilize when dying? (Stabilize, L0), hold your breath for a long time (Air Bubble, L1), have a knack with animals (Calm or Charm Animal, both L1), ignore movement penalties for difficult terrain (Feather Step, L1), jump well (Jump, L1), have exceptional senses (Keen Senses, L1), leave no tracks (Pass Without Trace, L1), communicate with animals (Speak With Animals, L1), or just swim really well (Touch of the Sea, L1)? Well, here’s a way to add it to your list of attributes as a minor quirk, mostly unrelated to being a super. You don’t have to limit yourself to what’s listed; if you want to always have a pocketful of smoke pellets… well, “produce puff of smoke” is probably a L0 effect.

That’s 24 CP – half of what a first level character gets as a base. And while it doesn’t provide any major powers as of yet… it’s not a bad start. Next up; building a few mutants.

Champions – Ares Reborn

The untamed violence of war is not what it was. In a world of drones, snipers, carpet bombing, trenches, machine guns, and mortars… individual strength, and courage, and personal skill means a lot less than it did. Even looking back into history, personal battle skills and the terrible joy of battle lust began to fade long, long, ago. Even at the time of the Trojan War… organized warfare under the aegis of Athena was beginning to surpass personal valor.

The Romans improved things for quite some time – but twisted things more towards the virtues of an organized soldier. There was strength in their worship – but a subtle disconnect as well.

Eventually, on the blood-soaked battlegrounds of the first world war… valor meant almost nothing. To survive, one cowered in trenches, or crawled to the attack, darting from cover to cover to avoid the machine gun fire, hoping that you would not inhale a lethal dose of mustard gas, and – preferably – killing with stealth and surprise, rather than valiant challenge.

And Ares fell to Athena, was slain, and was cast into the formless void of fallen Titans – his connection to the greater aspects of his portfolio, as well as his old persona, lost.

But then Jann – the Voice Of Ancient Sorrows, a channel for the fallen – meddled recklessly, as he so often does. He called upon powers far beyond his control or understanding – opening a way for Ares (if weakened and cut off from his original sources of power) to return to the world and bond with a new aspect of war.

Jann, for his own reasons, has cheerily set about getting this new version of Ares hooked up with a new myth – one that’s surprisingly ubiquitous, but which has never really drawn a Titan to take it up. That’s because, under normal circumstances, they are too independent for this particular semi-faceless role. Still, there’s plenty of unclaimed belief and myth there – even if Ares WILL have to put up with being mostly known as “Sarge”.

Sarge, of course, is a pragmatic, tough-as-nails, career military man. Grand strategies and determining objectives are not for him; his task is to take a squad into battle and carry out whatever mission he’s been given. Fortunately, he’s got enough weapons to equip a battalion, is an expert in small unit tactics, and is pretty tough.

Ares is not entirely happy with his new tendency to let other people set the agenda – but it’s a LOT better than the condition he was in just a little while ago and this mythos… has a surprising amount of raw power behind it (thanks to appearing in virtually every war movie ever made) and is a fabulous step up from being lost in the formless void searching for a new role to step into.

Ol’ Sarge, Incarnation of Ares

Value Characteristic Points
25 STR 15
23 DEX 39
23 CON 26
10 BODY 0
13 INT 3
11 EGO 2
15 PRE 5
8 COM -1
5 PD 0
5 ED 0
4 SPD 7
10 REC 0
36 END -5
35 STUN 0
Total 91

 

Points Powers END
0 Minor Titan Racial Package
(20) Physical Limitation: Shaped By Belief. Titans may be powerful in their fields, but they are limited to a single, and invariably fairly straightforward, domain. A Spirit of Invention makes gadgets and – possibly – provides grants and teaches. Similarly, the spirit of Memorial Day is a formidable soldier, has lots of weapons, and can operate military vehicles – but that’s about it . (Frequently, Fully)
(20) Mental Characteristic Maxima of 15 (-20 Points). People never really think that their “gods” are really much smarter, or more perceptive, or whatever, than they are – no matter what their theme is. The God of Knowledge may have a lot of knowledge skills, but he or she normally won’t actually be much smarter than the average person. If there’s any one thing that the Titans find annoying about their relationship with mortals… this may be it. (All the Time, Greatly)
(20) Psychological Limitation: Themed. Titans aren’t even CAPABLE of getting seriously off-theme. A war god won’t be negotiating, the healing goddess won’t be building gadgets, and the god of justice won’t be letting criminals go, no matter how necessary it may be (Common, Total)
(12) Regeneration (1 BODY/week); Regenerate: From Death, +20
(3) Immune to Aging
16 Domain: 15 Points worth of ablities appropriate to their domain.
(16) +2 level w/All Combat
1 Overcost on his Domain Powers, above
20 Multipower (75-pt reserve); Generic Limitation (Infantry Powers Only): -½; Visible (Mystically Conspicuous to Other Titans): -¼; Side Effects (Various Hunteds): 30/Half, -½; Generic Limitation (Side Effects cannot be avoided): -½; Variable Limitations: -1, -½; Generic Limitation (Cannot subdivide the points in the reserve, even if a slot does not use all of them): -½
Portfolio Powers
u-1 2d6 Righteous Wrath: Aid to All Physical Attributes (Fade/min., Max. 20); Range: 0; Affects: All Powers of Special Effect, +2; Autofire: 5 shots, ½; Reduced END: Zero, +1; Generic Limitation (Aid to self only): -½; Extra Time: full phase, -½; Only in Hero ID: -¼; Visible (Creates quite a flare of magical power): -¼

Net: +20 Str, +2 OCV, +2 DCV, +10 Con, +10 PD, +10 ED, +2 Spd, +10 Recovery, +40 Endurance, +20 Stun.

0
u-1 2d6 Campaign Outfitting: Aid to Papers, Maps, Languages, Vehicles, More Multipower Slots, Etc (Fade/day, Max. 50); Range: 0; Extra Time: 1 min., -1½; Generic Limitation (Only between missions or when a source is available)): -1½; Affects: Single Power of Special Effect, +¼

In general, outfitting for a campaign will include a low-level military vehicle (Jeep, APC, or similar), maps and a GPS (Area Knowledge), the local Language, an ID and any necessary permits/orders, MRE’s, a tent, and whatever other specialty gear (or multipower weapons slots) is appropriate for the job.

2
u-1 Commando Training
(4) +4 level w/HTH Combat; Only in Hero ID: -¼; Visible (Creates quite a flare of magical power): -¼; Generic Limitation (Must be struck in melee before this can be activated): -½
(11) Hand-to-Hand Attack (6d6, Total 7½d6); Range: 0; Variable Advantage: Max. Advantage 1, +2

Total of 9d6 when Str boosted to 45. Can also just be 0 End and do 15d strikes under similar circumstances.

5
u-1 Small Unit Tactics
(15) +2 level w/All Combat; Area Effect (Radius): 128″ radius, +1; Selective Target: +¼; Increased Area: ×32, +1¼; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Uncontrolled: +½; Generic Limitation (Only works on people who are willing to listen to his orders): -½; Generic Limitation (Lasts a maximum of five minutes after he stops shouting): -½
u-1 Plot Armor; Focus (Wrist Bracer): Obvious Inaccessible, -½; Activation: 14-, -½; Charges: 16, +¾; Continuing Charges: 1 Minute, -3 lev
(7) Force Field (10 PD/10 ED) 0
(4) Power Defense (10 pts)
(4) Mental Defense (12 pts)
General Equipment
u-1 Flares: Change Environment/Brightly Lit (32″ rad.); Effect: Fixed, +0; Charges: 6, +0; Continuing Charges: 1 Minute, -3 lev 0
u-1 2d6 Heavy Pistol/Bow/Crossbow/Gyrojet: Killing Attack (RKA); Range: 150; Charges: +8, +0; Clips: 4 0
u-1 Entrenching Tool / Tunneling (1″ through DEF 8); Extra Time: 1 turn, -1; Focus (Entrenching Tool): Obvious Accessible, -1; Tunnels: Left Behind, +0 1
u-1 6d6 Concussion Grenade Stun-Only Energy Blast; Range: 225; Versus: PD; Explosion (Extended Area +0″/DC): +½; OAF: -1; Charges: +12, -¼ 0
u-1 2d6 Fragmentation Grenades: Killing Attack (RKA); Range: 225; Explosion (Extended Area +0″/DC): +½; Charges: 8, -½; OAF: – 0
u-1 6d6 Inciendary Grenade: Energy Blast (Fire); Range: 225; Versus: ED; Explosion (Extended Area +0″/DC): +½; OAF: -1; Charges: +8, -½ 0
u-1 1d6+1 Light Machine Gun: Killing Attack (RKA); Range: 300; Autofire: 5 shots, ½; Area Effect (Radius): 4″ radius, +1; Charges: 60, +½; OAF: -1; Extra Time: full phase, -½

Yes, a machine gun fires a lot faster than this, it just rarely hits the same target more than this.

0
u-1 4d6 LAW Missile Launcher: Killing Attack (RKA); Range: 300; OAF: -1; Charges: 8, -½ 0
u-1 4d6 Sword: Killing Attack (HTH) (Total 5½d6); Range: 0; Focus (Sword): Obvious Accessible, -1 6
u-1 15d6 Assault Cannon: Energy Blast; Range: 375; Versus: PD; Focus: Obvious Accessible, -1; Focus Mobility: Bulky, -½; Extra Time: full phase, -½; Charges: 6, -¼; Clips: 4 0
u-1 2d6 Claymore Mine: Killing Attack (RKA); Range: 375; Area Effect (Cone): 14″ long, +1; Increased Area: ×2, +¼; Trigger: Set, +¼; OAF: -1; Focus Mobility: Immobile, -1; Extra Time: full phase, -½ 7
u-1 1d6+1 Flamethrower: Killing Attack (RKA); Range: 350; Area Effect (Radius): 5″ radius, +1; Penetrating: +½; Continuous: +1; Charges: +6, +0; Continuing Charges: 1 Minute, -3 lev; OAF: -1; Focus Mobility: Bulky, -½ 0
u-1 2d6 Heavy Machine Gun: Killing Attack (RKA); Range: 335; Autofire: 5 shots, ½; Armor Piercing: 1, +½; Charges: 16, +¼; Clips: 4; OAF: -1; Extra Time: full phase, -½; Focus Mobility: Immobile, -1 0
u-1 2d6 Surface to Air Guided Missile: Killing Attack (RKA); Range: 3000; No Range Penalty: +½; Armor Piercing: 1, +½; Increased Maximum Range: ×25, +½; OAF: -1; Charges: 8, -½; Extra Time: full phase, -½; Focus Mobility: Bulky, -½ 0
2 Light Power Armor Elemental Control (6-pt reserve); All abilities -.5 OIF (Power Armor), -1 (Conventional Technology Only), -.25 (Visible: power armor is pretty obvious).
a-10 Armor (12 PD/8 ED); Hardened: ×1, ¼; Always On: -½
b-2 Flash Defense (Sight, 12 pts)
c-4 Life Support Systems
(1) Life Support: High Pressure/Vacuum
(1) Life Support: High Radiation
(4) Need Not Breathe
(1) Life Support: Intense Heat/Cold
d-2 Running (+4″, 10″, NC: 20″); Non-Combat Multiplier: ×2, +0; Non-Combat (MPH): 12; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 0
e-2 Superleap (+12″, 17″, NC: 34″); Non-Combat Multiplier: ×2, +0; Non-Combat (MPH): 36 2
62 Total Powers  

 

Points Skills, Talents, Perks Roll
16 +2 level w/All Combat
3 Combat Driving 14-
3 Stealth 14-
3 Survival 11-
0 English (Native Accent); Literacy: Standard, 0
0 Greek (Native Accent); Literacy: Standard, 0
2 German (Fluent Conv.); Literacy: Standard, 0
27 Total Skills, Talents, Perks  

 

100+ Disadvantages
10 Vengeful (Uncommon, Strong)
20 Extremely Violent (Very Common, Strong)
10 Public Identity
15 Reputation (14-)
5 Rivalry: Tacticians; Situation: Professional, 5; Position: Equal, +0; Rival: NPC, +0
10 2d6 Unluck
20 Hunted: Divine Enemies (8-); Capabilities: More Powerful, 15; Non-combat Influence: Extensive, +5; Geographical Area: Unlimited, -0; Actions: Hunting, ×1; Punishment: Harsh, 0
90 Total Disadvantages

 

COSTS: Char. Powers Total Total Disadv. Base
91 + 89 = 180 190 = 90 + 100

 

OCV DCV ECV Mental Def. PD/rPD ED/rED Phases
8 8 4 12 17/12 13/8 3, 6, 9, 12

 

Height: 182cm (6’0″), Weight: 73kg (161 lbs), Sex: Male, Race: Titan

Apex – Prince Blueblood Escapes From My Little Pony

And today… I’m going to turn Prince Blueblood of Equestria into a hero in the Apex setting – mostly because the thought amuses me.

Equestria… `is a patchwork nation. Why not? It’s inhabited by a species of instinctively-harmonious, spontaneously-helpful, extremely mobile, rather high powered, and incredibly productive creatures that exercise an astounding level of control over it’s environment. It’s rather gently ruled and guided by a very powerful, prophetic, several-thousand-years experienced, and incredibly tolerant and kind, near-immortal. Equestria doesn’t really NEED efficiency, large-scale organization, or to iron out the wrinkles in their government. The country works just fine as a collection of geographically-organized city-states that just let the magic of harmony manage their public affairs.

After all, if Harmony can organize dozens of ponies, and the local wildlife, and weather, into spontaneous, intricately choreographed, musical numbers… organizing a gathering, or traffic patterns, or a rescue operation, is no great task.

Thus every local system – and silly title that ponies have used to try and impress each other over the last couple of millennia (not counting the confused length of time spent in the Age of Discord) – has continued through the centuries because there’s no reason to change the traditions.

And so we have Blueblood the 42’nd, Prince of Canterlot and Environs (and thus City Administrator and Gala Organizer, as if either of those jobs actually calls for him to do anything), Commander of the Canterlot Guard (all eighty-odd of them; ponies aren’t big standing armies so they mostly function as city staff), distant relative of Celestia and Luna (inevitably, after several millennia, sharing that honor with most of the rest of the country – although his bloodline is close enough to show some minor enhancements), Duke of Burgandneigh, Keeper of the Sapphire Keys, Supreme Mugwump, and a half a dozen other meaningless titles. He’s a competent mage (in a city hosting dozens of brilliant mages, Celestia’s School for Gifted Unicorns, and the Royal Sisters themselves), a decent tactician and military commander (in a society that generally has no wars or even border disputes), a fair diplomat (although any important ambassador deals with Celestia and Luna directly), a magical scout and pathfinder (in the center of civilization in a well-explored and thoroughly pegasi-mapped world), a reasonably good manager (in a world that needs no management) – and generally entirely useless. He can’t even organize fire services (pegasi make rain to do that) or the rescue of cats from trees (any unicorn can do that). About his only real “task” is pointing the occasional stray kid back to where they’re supposed to be, playing crossing guard (which means a lot less in a world where most deliveries are by air, there are no riding animals to act up, and there are no powered vehicles), soothing the occasional upset or drunk pony, and tossing pies at the Flim-Flam brothers until they go away.

Blueblood spent a lot of time stewing in his own juices, getting drunk, indulging his vanity, and making fools of pests (Sadly, he automatically assumed that Rarity was a status-seeking pest) for his own amusement. Why is he a arrogant, entitled, snob? What else is his job FOR? His only ACTUAL function is to be annoying and thus ensure that everypony will be thankful that Equestria is run by Celestia and Luna instead of the traditional nobility. Utopia doesn’t NEED governmental competence. It just needs enough petty annoyances to maintain a proper emotional balance.

Then, during yet another pointless day, he sensed a NEW Path. A crack in the barriers for him alone, a way… from imagination into reality.

And Blueblood walked that path – and on Apex he found a realm where there was finally a USE for his talents. A world where people actually NEEDED guidance, and organization, and rescue, and negotiations, and patrons. A realm where he was a powerful mage with rare abilities, where his wealth genuinely meant something – and where he could antagonize people simply by existing.

In fact, his ability to find any desired route soon made him a valuable pilot for Cronus, A.K.A. “The Doctor”, since he can usually get the TARDIS to where they actually want to go.

He’s still a douche though.

Bluebloods talents include being a wealthy aristocrat (for him that’s actually a power – a basic part of his portfolio as a Titan; he has wealth, fine houses, local contacts, and contacts with various magical forces everywhere he goes), a selection of minor abilities that go with being a Titan and a Cartoon, and his Unicorn Magic – Telekinesis, the ability to enhance himself that goes with his strong Alicorn Bloodline, Pathfinding, and a selection of cartoon magic spells capable of causing many silly effects.

Blueblood is pretty powerful for the setting; he’s using a bunch of cheap “aid” powers to squeeze in a bunch of perks, his cartoon spells, and some attribute boosts without paying much for them. On the other hand, he’s got a fair number of points sunk into things like High Society, “”Bureaucratics, Immunity to Hair Damage, Always Looking Good, Background Music and Sound Effects, exotic languages to snub people in, being resistant to attempts to get rid of him, and so on. He’s an adventurous socialite, not a combat specialist.

Princeps Augustus Blueblood II

Value Characteristic Points
18/30 STR 8
14/18 DEX 12
18/24 CON 16
8/14 BODY -4
8/20 INT -2
8/14 EGO -4
18/30 PRE 8
8/32 COM -1
6/12 PD 0
4/10 ED 0
3/4 SPD 6
10/16 REC 0
24/48 END -6
32/44 STUN 0
Total 33

 

Points Powers END
0 Minor Titan Racial Package
(20) Physical Limitation: Shaped By Belief. Titans may be powerful in their fields, but they are limited to a single, and invariably fairly straightforward, domain. A Spirit of Invention makes gadgets and – possibly – provides grants and teaches. Similarly, the spirit of Memorial Day is a formidable soldier, has lots of weapons, and can operate military vehicles – but that’s about it . (Frequently, Fully)
(20) Mental Characteristic Maxima of 15 (-20 Points). People never really think that their “gods” are really much smarter, or more perceptive, or whatever, than they are – no matter what their theme is. The God of Knowledge may have a lot of knowledge skills, but he or she normally won’t actually be much smarter than the average person. If there’s any one thing that the Titans find annoying about their relationship with mortals… this may be it. (All the Time, Greatly)
(20) Psychological Limitation: Themed. Titans aren’t even CAPABLE of getting seriously off-theme. A war god won’t be negotiating, the healing goddess won’t be building gadgets, and the god of justice won’t be letting criminals go, no matter how necessary it may be (Common, Total)
(12) Regeneration (1 BODY/week); Regenerate: From Death, +20
(3) Immune to Aging
15 Domain: 15 Points worth of abilities appropriate to their domain.
(10) Money (Wealthy)
(5) Member of Aristocracy
7 Elemental Control: Cartoon Powers (15-pt reserve); Generic Limitation (Cartoon Pony Powers Only): -½; Always On: -½
a-10 Armor (12 PD/12 ED)
b-7 Regeneration (1 BODY/Turn); Regenerate: From Death, +20

Note that – with two DIFFERENT forms of regeneration from death – it’s almost impossible to make Blueblood STAY dead.

c-4 Images: Background music and sound effects (Hearing, 16″ radius); Range: 150; Observer PER Penalty: 0, +0; Reduced END: Zero & Persistent, +1; No Conscious Control: -2 0
d-7 Life Support (total)
e-7 Power Defense (30 pts)
f-7 Cartoon Immunities
(1) Looking Good: Immunity to being messed up for more than a few seconds; Frequency: Fairly Common
(1) What Gravity? Immunity to Falling until lack of support is brought to his attention; Frequency: Fairly Common
(1) In My Pocket, Why? Immunity to having to have pockets to carry stuff in.; Frequency: Common
(1) Sure I’m Perfectly Normal (Immunity to Species Prejudice)l: Gets treated as just another human in most non-comedic ways; Frequency: Common
(1) Clothing? Immunity to being considered insufficiently dressed; Frequency: Fairly Common
(1) Rated G: Immunity to Indecent Exposure; Frequency: Fairly Common
(1) The Sounds of Harmony: Immunity to the need to compose or practice topical songs; Frequency: Fairly Common
(1) I Can Handle That: Immunity to not having normal hands; Frequency: Common
(0) All Devouring: Immunity to reasonable limits on how much they can swallow at one time.; Frequency: Rare
(0) There’s A Hole: Immunity to solid matter provided that it LOOKS like there is a hole in it and the user is not responsible for that.; Frequency: Rare
(1) Yes, It’s Suitable: Immunity to having to wear appropriate clothing to stay warm, dry, etc.; Frequency: Fairly Common
(0) It’s a permanent: Immunity to hair damage save by bladed weapons; Frequency: Rare
(1) Immunity to Over-Indulgence, Hangovers, and Similar Consequences; Frequency: Fairly Common
(1) Immunity to Communications Problems (Can be understood in any language provided he speaks slowly, gestures, etc) ; Frequency: Common
(1) Immunity to Paradox; Frequency: Fairly Common

Often a necessity when traveling with Cronus.

(1) Immunity to Not Getting His Messages; Frequency: Common

Blueblood gets his mail. texts, and email wherever and whenever he goes!

(1) Immunity to not having tickets; Frequency: Fairly Common

Blueblood can always get into nightclubs, shows, concerts, and theater performances.

g-5 2d6 Aid to Equipment Allowance (Fade/week, Max. 30); Range: 0; Extra Time: 1 hour, -2½; Generic Limitation (Only to pay for role-appropriate, provided, or generally available gear): -1; Activation: 11-, -1; Affects: Single Power of Special Effect, +¼; Generic Limitation (Only GM-Approved Equipment): -1 3
25 Multipower: Cartoon Unicorn Magic (50-pt reserve); Generic Limitation (Unicorn Pony Magic Only): -½; Generic Limitation (Easily disrupted by a blow to the horn, horn restraints, or similar): -½
Basic Telekinesis
u-2 Telekinesis (STR 15); Range: 240; Manipulation: Fine, +10; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 0
u-2 8d6 Energy Blast: Telekinetic Blast; Range: 250; Versus: PD; Reduced END: Half, +¼ 2
u-2 Force Field Dome (8 PD/8 ED); Area Effect (Radius): 3″ radius, +1; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Uncontrolled: +½ 0
u-2 Hand-to-Hand Attack (12d6, Total 18d6); Range: 0; Reduced END: Half, +¼ 2
Arcane Aristocrat
u-1 2d6 Important Personage: Aid to Local Contacts, Favors, Followers, and Privileges (Fade/week, Max. 24); Range: 0; Active Points: 48; Reduced END: Half, +¼; Affects: Single Power of Special Effect, +¼; Extra Time: 1 min., -1½ 1
u-1 2d6 One Of The Best People: Aid to Local Perks, Vehicles, Languages, Local Knowledges, and Bases (Fade/week, Max. 24); Range: 0; Active Points: 48; Reduced END: Half, +¼; Affects: Single Power of Special Effect, +¼; Extra Time: 1 min., -1½ 1
u-1 Detect Social Events and Appropriate Behaviors (+12 to PER); Time Required: Instant, +2; Range: Ranged, +5
u-2 2d6 Royal Lineage: Aid to All Attributes (Fade/hour, Max. 12); Range: 0; Affects: All Powers of Special Effect, +2; Reduced END: Half, +¼ 2
Pathfinder
u-1 Detect Route (+6 to PER); Variable Special Effects: Certain Group, +¼; Time Required: Half Phase, +0; Range: Ranged, +5, Based on EGO Combat Value: vs. ECV, +1
u-1 Detect Distance and Direction to desired item (+3 to PER); Time Required: Half Phase, +0; Range: Ranged, +5; Based on EGO Combat Value: vs. ECV, +1
u-2 Change Environment: Manipulate Direction and Distance (16″ rad.); Champions Advantage (Limited Variable Effect): +¼; No Range: -½; Trigger: Set, +¼; Reduced END: Half, +¼

While employing his signature spell Prince Blueblood may, once per segment, gratuitously either expand or reduce the distance between two things within his area of effect by up to 8″. For example, he could decree that a character was 8″ further from the center of that fireball that had just gone off, or that the evasive martial artist was 6″ closer (and thus effectively adjacent) to his friend the brick, or that someone was off to the side of that attack that would have otherwise hit them.

2
u-2 10″ Teleportation (Long Range 160″); Increased Range: ×16, +20; Long Range: 160″; Long Range (miles): 0.20; Mass Multiplier: ×4, +10; Fixed Locations: 0; Floating Locations: 0 2
Advanced Arcana
u-1 Atherium Lens; Detect Magic (+5 to PER); Time Required: Instant, +2; Range: Ranged, +5; Addition (Discriminatory): +5
u-2 13d6 Dispel Magic; Range: 245; Affects: Any Single Power of Special Effect, +¼ 5
u-2 6d6 Suppress Magic; Range: 225; Affect: Single Power of Special Effect, +¼; Reduced END: Half 2
u-2 2d6 Student of Magic: Aid to Multipower Slots (Fade/week, Max. 24); Range: 0; Reduced END: Half, +¼; Affects: Single Power of Special Effect, +¼ 1
Common Cartoon Magics:
u-1 +45 Hammerspace Mallet: PRE; Generic Limitation (Only for Presence Attacks): -½; Charges: 12, -¼

As a rule, the “mallet” provides +3d6 for Exhibiting a Power and Extremely Violent Action, but only works on small groups. He can also try to induce a song-and-dance number, but this often takes negative modifiers even after he gets a couple of bonus dice for his personal background music and special effects.

u-1 Portable Hole: Extra-Dimensional Movement; Dimensions: One, +0; Time Travel: None, +0; Mass Multiplier: ×1, +0; Carrying Mass: None; Area Effect (One-hex): 1 hex(es), +½; Continuous: +1; Side Effects (Opens both ways; things can climb out of the hole just as easily as they go in.): 60/All, -1; Generic Limitation (Side effects cannot be avoided.

Yes, this is classic, inconsistent, cartoon; things go in, sometimes they come back out at full speed with no time passing when the hole is put down again, other times you can hide. It mostly depends on what’s funniest at the moment.

5
u-1 Picture Travel: Extra-Dimensional Movement; Dimensions: One, +0; Time Travel: None, +0; Mass Multiplier: ×1, +0; Carrying Mass: None; Area Effect (One-hex): 1 hex(es), +½; Continuous: +1; Side Effects (Opens both ways; things can climb out of the hole just as easily as they go in.): 60/All, -1; Generic Limitation (Side effects cannot be avoided.): -½

Yes, this spell allows the user to run into paintings, television programs, and similar artistic creations.

5
u-1 Pocket Palace: Extra-Dimensional Movement (Wonderland); Dimensions: One, +0; Time Travel: None, +0; Mass Multiplier: ×1, +0; Carrying Mass: None; Area Effect (One-hex): 1 hex(es), +½; Continuous: +1; Side Effects (Opens both ways; things can climb out of the hole just as easily as they go in.): 60/All, -1; Generic Limitation (Side effects cannot be avoided.): -½

Well, you wouldn’t expect him to travel without a comfortable bed and a place to keep his stuff would you?

5
u-1 I’ll Hide In Here: Shrinking-5 (DCV +10, Height 4.125 cm/1.62″); Mass: 0.0022583 kg/0.00 lbs; Knockback Increase: 15; PER Bonus: -10; Charges: +6, +0; Continuing Charges: 1 Minute, -3 lev; Generic Limitation (Only allows the user to hide in absurdly silly ways – putting on a lampshade and pretending to be a lamp, ducking behind small trees or into boxes, or even just draping a tarp over themselves. It has no other effects. ): -2

This is “The Life Of Brian” hiding. The mechanical effect is becoming tiny and ducking behind a chair leg or some such. The Special Effect is more “hang a lampshade over his horn, strike a pose, and pretend to be a lamp” – whereupon everyone overlooks him.

0
u-1 Emigrate To Equestria: Extra-Dimensional Movement; Dimensions: One, +0; Time Travel: None, +0; Mass Multiplier: ×1, +0; Carrying Mass: None; Area Effect (Radius): 8″ radius, +1; Increased Area: ×4, +½; Generic Limitation (Only works on living creatures): -1; Concentrate: 0 DCV, -½

The “Defense” is not wanting to get out. This is very good for rescue work and such though. Two hundred kids trapped in a burning nightclub? Spend +10 endurance to push this to a 64 meter radius and everyone who doesn’t want to burn winds up in a happy cartoon utopia until brought back to safety.

5
u-1 Making Camp: Change Environment / Comfortable Habitable, Power On, Etc (8″ rad.); Effect: Fixed, +0; Reduced END: Zero & Persistent, +1; Extra Time: 1 turn, -1 0
u-1 2d6 Pie In The Face / Flash (Normal Sight); Range: 200; No Normal Defense (Versus vision able to see through pie): +1; Charges: 6, -¾ 0
u-1 1d6 Toonification Transform (Cosmetic, Limited Class); Range: 250; Cumulative: +½; Area Effect (Radius): 8000000″ radius, +1; Increased Area: ×4000000, +5½; Reduced END: Zero, +1; Autofire: 10 shots, ¾; Extra Time: 1 turn, -1; Concentrate: 0 DCV, -½

This transform gives things a cartoonish aspect. People often become funny animal people, buildings get silly floor plans, and EVERYTHING looks like a cartoon. This is basically appearances-only, and has a big “based on personality” factor, but it can transfer up to 5 points to a relevant ability – either set by the user or by the nature of the transformation. Thus if someone becomes a raven-person, they may trade around a few points to pick up 5 points worth of Gliding.

This is also often used to “adopt a pony”…

0
u-1 10d6 Described Reality / Mental Illusions; Visible (Mental Illusions can be seen by others): -¼; Charges: +12, -¼; Generic Limitation (Illusions must be described verbally, and will not work on targets outside the range for such or who are unable to hear.): -¾; Generic Limitation (Requires a Persuasion skill check at it’s base rank.): -¼

This is a classic “modify reality around the target” effect – imposing a bit of the malleability of a cartoon on reality. Unfortunately, the effect is very fragile; a strong will can easily overcome it.

0
u-1 1d6 High Speed Work; Transform (to finished project) (Major, Limited Class); Range: 0; Cumulative: +½; Autofire: 5 shots, ½; No Range: -½; Charges: 120, +¾; Extra Time: full phase, -½

This, of course, allows him to build small projects, board up windows, rebuild car engines, and so on at incredible speeds.

0
u-1 Summon Balloon Animal (1 50-point creatures); Range: 0; Summon: Limited Group, +¼; Charges: 12, -¼; Concentrate: 0 DCV, -½; Extra Time: full phase, -½; Visible (Loud Squeaky Noises): -¼

This basically covers any kind of normal animal, even if they are cartoonish and summoned by making balloon animals at high speed.

0
u-1 1d6 Raiding The Thought Bubble / Transform Thought-Images to Supplies (Major, Limited Class); Range: 0; Cumulative: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +1; Autofire: 5 shots, ½; No Range: -½; Gestures: Instant Power, -¼; Incantation: Instant Power, -¼; Activation: 14-, -½

Someone envisions what they need – and Blueblood reaches into their thought bubble and pulls it into reality.

0
u-1 On Every Channel: High Range Radio Hearing; Based on EGO Combat Value: vs. ECV, +1; Armor Piercing: 4, +2; Focus (Lapel Microphone): Obvious Inaccessible, -½; Charges: +4, +¼; Continuing Charges: 1 Hour, -5 lev, Concentrate: ½ DCV, -¼

Yes, this allows him to get on every display and speaker within a nigh-unlimited radius that isn’t quadruple-hardened against interference or behind a force wall that blocks mental effects.

u-2 Change Environment: Genre (16″ rad.); Effect: Fixed, +0; Charges: 6, +¼; Continuing Charges: 5 Minutes, -4 lev; Champions Advantage (Those who do behave in accordance with the new genre suffer a -2 to their rolls and DCV): +½; Champions Advantage (Limited Range of Variations): +¼

Yes, it can become a musical, and everyone must sing and engage in spontaneous choreographed dances, or you can make it a western, or various other genres.

0
u-2 5d6 Unluck / Murphy’s Law of Commentary; Ranged: +½; Area Effect (One-hex): 1 hex(es), +½; Charges: +16, +0

“Oh yeah, like THAT’S going to work…” – and then, of course, things go terribly wrong.

0
u-2 11″ Umbrella Transport / Flight (NC: 88″); Non-Combat Multiplier: ×8, +10; Non-Combat (MPH): 131; Charges: 8, +½; Continuing Charges: 5 Minutes, -4 lev; OAF (Umbrella (Produced with each casting, but must be held to fly)): -1

You unfurl an umbrella, grasp it firmly, blow into it – and are carried off into the heavens. periodic further puffing is expected.

0
u-2 10d6 Unicorn Healing 5
u-2 Cartoon Violence / Tactile Images (Normal Sight, Unusual Senses, 1″ radius); Range: 250; Observer PER Penalty: 10, +30; Charges: 6, +0; Continuing Charges: 1 Minute, -3 lev

This produces an illusory energy attack and makes the target thereof FEEL like they’ve been horribly injured or maimed. That goes away a few minutes later. The usual effects are things like being run over by a truck, having a huge rock fall on you, or being exploded.

0
13 Running (+4″, 10″, NC: 40″); Non-Combat Multiplier: ×4, +5; Non-Combat (MPH): 24

Well, he IS an equine.

2
118 Total Powers  

 

Points Skills, Talents, Perks Roll
10 +2 level w/With Multipower
3 High Society 15-
3 Conversation 15-
3 Bureaucratics 15-
3 Persuasion 15-
3 Seduction 15-
3 Tactics 13-
3 Bump of Direction
1 Singing 8-
1 Dancing 8-
1 Time Machines
0 English (Imitate Dialects); Literacy: Standard, 0
24 Common Important Personage Perks
(0) Followers: Assorted Minor Staff (1, 0 pts, 0 Disad.); Number: 1, +0
(3) Well-Connected
Primary Contacts
(3) Chronus; Usefulness: Extremely, +2 11-
(2) Purity; Usefulness: Normal, +0; Champions Advantage (Organizational or Conceptual Contact): +1; Charges: 7, +0; Recoverable Charges (Must do return favors): -2 lev 11-
(2) Healing; Usefulness: Normal, +0; Champions Advantage (Organizational or Conceptual Contact): +1; Charges: 7, +0; Recoverable Charges (Must do return favors): -2 lev 11-
(2) The Arts; Usefulness: Normal, +0; Champions Advantage (Organizational or Conceptual Contact): +1; Charges: 7, +0; Recoverable Charges (Must do return favors): -2 lev 11-
(2) Wealth; Usefulness: Normal, +0; Champions Advantage (Organizational or Conceptual Contact): +1; Charges: 7, +0; Recoverable Charges (Must do return favors): -2 lev 11-
(2) Construction; Usefulness: Very, +1 11-
Secondary Contacts
(2) (The) Authorities; Usefulness: Very, +1; Champions Advantage (Organizational or Conceptual Contact): +1; Charges: 3, -¾; Recoverable Charges (Must do return favors): -2 lev 11-
(1) Occultists; Usefulness: Normal, +0; Champions Advantage (Organizational or Conceptual Contact): +1; Charges: 3, -¾; Recoverable Charges (Must do return favors): -2 lev 11-
(1) (His) Cult; Usefulness: Normal, +0; Champions Advantage (Organizational or Conceptual Contact): +1; Charges: 3, -¾; Recoverable Charges (Must do return favors): -2 lev 11-
(1) Corporate (Investor); Usefulness: Normal, +0; Champions Advantage (Organizational or Conceptual Contact): +1; Charges: 3, -¾; Recoverable Charges (Must do return favors): -2 lev 11-
(1) Business Community; Usefulness: Normal, +0; Champions Advantage (Organizational or Conceptual Contact): +1; Charges: 3, -¾; Recoverable Charges (Must do return favors): -2 lev 11-
(1) (The) Upper Crust; Usefulness: Normal, +0; Champions Advantage (Organizational or Conceptual Contact): +1; Charges: 3, -¾; Recoverable Charges (Must do return favors): -2 lev 11-
(1) Celebrity; Usefulness: Normal, +0; Champions Advantage (Organizational or Conceptual Contact): +1; Charges: 3, -¾; Recoverable Charges (Must do return favors): -2 lev 11-
24 Common One Of The Best People Perks
(5) Diplomatic Immunity / Considered A Minor Divinity
(5) Splendid Mansion: 25
(3) Impressive Mode of Transport

Depending on the current era, this may be a fine carriage, a splendid yacht, a chauffeured limousine, or any of a dozen other conveyances. There’s always at least a minibar though.

(2) Private Investigator License
(1) Press Pass
(3) Linguist
(1) French (Fluent Conv.); Literacy: Standard, 0
(1) German (Fluent Conv.); Literacy: Standard, 0
(1) Japanese (Fluent Conv.); Literacy: Standard, 0
(1) Spanish (Fluent Conv.); Literacy: Standard, 0
(1) Mandarin (Fluent Conv.); Literacy: Standard, 0
34 Total Skills, Talents, Perks  

 

Cost Equipment
18 Lucky Charms (Luck) (10d6); OAF (Assorted Good Luck Charms): -1; Fragile Focus: -¼; Linked (With Unicorn Magic): -½
2 Telescopic Sense (Sight, +2 to PER) ; Focus (Monocle): Obvious Inaccessible, -½
2 Elemental Control: Enchanted Royal Armor (5-pt reserve); OIF (Symbolic Barding): -½; Visible (Magic Armor): -¼; Generic Limitation (Passive Protective Effects Only): -½
a-2 Armor (4 PD/3 ED)
b-2 Mental Defense (13 pts) ; Add to Total
c-2 Flash Defense (Sight, 10 pts)
1 High-End Smartphone (0kg)
29 Total Equipment

 

100+ Disadvantages
5 1d6 Unluck
5 2d6 Unluck (Only for being spotted by children and dogs); Generic Limitation (Only to be noted by children, dogs, etc.): -1
15 Overconfidence (Very Common, Moderate)
15 Vain Snob (Common, Strong)
20 Code Against Killing (Common, Total)
10 Distinctive Features: Cartoon Character; Concealability: Concealable, 10; Reaction: Noticed and Recognizable, +0
18 Half Value Due To Temporal Restrictions; Generic Limitation (Only applies in some time periods): -1
(8) Considered a walking blasphemy against most of the worlds major religions. (Common, Strong); Situation: Common, +10; Intensity: Strong, +5; Generic Limitation (Only applies in some time periods): -1
(5) Public Identity; Generic Limitation (Only applies in some time periods): -1
(5) Hunted: Fans who dislike him (8-); Capabilities: Less Powerful, 5; Non-combat Influence: Extensive, +5; Geographical Area: Unlimited, -0; Actions: Hunting, ×1; Punishment: Harsh, 0; Generic Limitation (Only applies in some time periods): -1
88 Total Disadvantages

 

COSTS: Char. Powers Total Total Disadv. Base
33 + 152 = 185 188 = 88 + 100

 

OCV DCV ECV Mental Def. PD/rPD ED/rED Phases
6 6 / 16 5 13 28/16 25/15 3, 6, 9, 12

It is a law of nature, known since ancient times. There can be but one Titan to one Concept. Myths and tales may speak of a hundred different Thunder Gods, but all of them are aspects of the Storm Titan. There may be some subordinate entities – the Spirit of the Alps may maintain it’s independence of Towering Stone, the Titan of Mountains, for the moment – but it is local, lesser, and all too likely to be soon absorbed. Once a role is filled… there is no space for another to enter in.

Thus the others could not come. Sun, Moon, Love, Scholarship, Magic, Honesty, Strength, Loyalty, Speed, Kindness, Mercy, Generosity, Art, The Trickster, even Greed, Darkness, Jealousy, Illusion, Nightmare, Chaos, Ambition, and even Jealousy… all those roles are long since claimed. There are no openings for them to use, no cracks for them to use to pour themselves out of the realms of the imagination and into reality. Such roles… are merely taken up by the existing Titans.

And thus I have surpassed the others at last.

Until now there has never been a Titan of Arrogant, Entitled, Wealthy, Assholes. No sizeable group of people has ever found it necessary to join together to imagine a magical embodiment of such folk – perhaps because blatant examples are all too common in reality. Even today, many of them appear in tales, books, radio broadcasts, movies, and television programs, but most of those reach limited audiences – or have a real actor playing them to bar the way for any would-be taker of the role.

But now that I am here… as a Unicorn I have more associations than just arrogance, wealth, and a touch of Noblesse Oblige. I am a Guardian of the Innocent, an Avatar of Purity and Healing, and a Channel for the Magic of Light – and Cartoons.

Regardless of how annoying I am… You Shall Not Harm Them.

Princeps Augustus Blueblood upsets quite a lot of people. While more than a few “My Litttle Pony” fans are pretty upset that, of all the characters from the show, HE is the only one who has managed to manifest – and that that situation is all too likely to continue.

Far more fundamentally however… most of Apex’s major religions revolve around the worship of various Titans – and Bluebloods mere EXISTENCE says some pretty blasphemous things about where Apex’s gods have come from, how they have developed, and the sources of their power. While Blueblood may not actually be at fault for dragging all that into the open, there’s still a good bit of “shoot the messenger and forget the message” going on.

Height: 132cm (4’4″), Weight: 74kg (163 lbs), Sex: Male, Race: G4 Unicorn Pony

Appearance: Blueblood normally – and not at all surprisingly – looks a LOT like the stock images of Prince Blueblood from My LIttle Pony because that’s who he is. He has, however, added a monocle, just to be contrary.

 

Champions – Junior Lt. Ulrich “Firestorm” Grant

Junior Lt. Grant is a bit of an odd case; he’s very talented with personal boosting “C’hi Powers”, deadly accurate, as fast as greased lightning, able to manage a flight harness, and can handle a more-than-maximum equipment loadout – but he’s got a woeful tendency to follow his own judgement, jumps into situations, and the usual special forces powers and training are beyond him. He simply doesn’t fit into most of the usual Afrikans military slots.

On the other hand, being assigned as a glorified babysitter to weird idiots seems a bit beneath him – not that he’ll open his mouth about THAT.

Lt. Grant is a splendid example of “I have things that go BANG” as a character concept – a fairly normal, if well-trained and fairly high end special forces, human with a plentiful supply of military gear. He’s built as a starting character for the Apex setting, and thus at the peak end of what you can expect any normal organization to field. He doesn’t do much except combat of course, but – for his job – he doesn’t really need to. He’d be right at home in a lot of action movies. He’ll usually be running at OCV and DCV 9, with three levels to switch between them in ranged combat. Of course, since he wears a flight harness, he can usually avoid hand to hand quite readily. 

Junior Lt. Ulrich “Firestorm” Grant

Value Characteristic Points
18/38 STR 8
18 DEX 24
13 CON 6
10 BODY 0
10 INT 0
11 EGO 2
15 PRE 5
12 COM 1
6 PD 2
6 ED 3
4 SPD 12
7 REC 0
16 END -5
26 STUN 0
Total 58

 

Points Powers END
0 Afrikans Racial Package
(20) Physical Limitation: Elemental Powers Only. Afrikans can create and maintain advanced “conventional” technologies (which do indeed require a bit of magic to keep working in the face of supernatural resistance) and can manipulate the various elements, the states of matter, and the elemental forces of life and death (Frequently, Fully)
20 Normal Characteristic Maxima
(20) Psychological Limitation: Pyramidal Psychology. Afrikans form large organizations easily, but have difficulties handling internal feedback within those organizations and with understanding systems involving it. Dominant leaders thus tend to hear only what they want to – and so less-dominant subgroups resort to factional infighting to advance their ideas. Groups of Afrikans have been known to obey obviously stupid orders simply because they came from the top – and may select very poor leaders and then follow them blindly. (Very Common, Strong)
(15) +3 level w/Ranged Combat
(15) 30-Point Equipment Allowance; An equipment allowance is spent on more-or-less conventional gear; each point invested in the equipment allowance allows the purchase of two points worth of equipment, bases, or vehicles – up to a normal maximum of 15 points invested. Beyond that, you can use an Aid effect to boost your equipment allowance and Afrikans characters get a racial boost.

Atlantean characters with an equipment allowance normally have at least half of it invested in weird magical stuff, but the effects are much the same.

Titans and Demi-titans normally cannot buy an equipment allowance.

18 Advanced Afrikans Warrior Multipower (40-pt reserve); Variable Limitations: -1½, -¾; Generic Limitation (All powers must be 0 End Cost and work on Charges): -½
u-1 2d6 Packing A Full Kit: Aid to Equipment Allowance (Fade/week, Max. 24); Range: 0; Affects: Single Power, +0; Extra Time: 1 min., -1½; Charges: 12, -¼ 0
u-1 2d6 Second Wind: Aid to All Damaged Attributes (Fade/turn, Max. 12); Range: 0; Affects: All Powers of Special Effect, +2; Restore Only Lost Characteristics and Powers: -½; Charges: +8, -½; Trigger (4 Body or less): Set, +¼; Trigger (Unconscious): Set, +¼; Generic Limitation (Only works for the user, not others): -½ 0
u-1 Lightning Reflexes: +4 Speed; Only for taking extra movement in each phase, -1.5.; Charges: 6, +0; Continuing Charges: 1 Minute, -3 lev; Gestures: Instant Power, -¼; Activation: 15-, -¼
u-1 Forced March: +4 Speed; Only for making an extra attack each phase, -1.5. The Special Effect is usually a weapon in each hand; Charges: 6, +0; Continuing Charges: 1 Minute, -3 lev; Activation: 15-, -¼; Gestures: Instant Power, -¼
u-2 Adrenaline Rush; Charges: 6, +0; Must allow at least an hour to pass between uses.: -½; Continuing Charges: 1 Minute, -3 lev
(8) +20 STR; Doesn’t Affect Figured: -½; Generic Limitation (Only for combat purposes; cannot life massive weights, rip apart entangles, etc.): -½ 0
(13) Force Field (5 PD/5 ED); Invisible (Sight and Hearing. Detectable by Medical and Mystical Senses): Two Sense Groups, +¾; Hardened: ×1, ¼ 0
15 Equipment Allowance (30 + 24 Boost +30 Race = 84)
9 Hard Training: Modified Characteristic: STR; Reduced END: Half, +¼
6 Marathon Running (+2″, 8″, NC: 16″); Non-Combat Multiplier: ×2, +0; Non-Combat (MPH): 6; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 0
9 Enhanced Perception (all) (+3 to PER)
63 Total Powers  

 

Points Skills, Talents, Perks Roll
15 +3 level w/Equipment Multipower
9 +3 level w/Flight Harness
1 French (Basic Conv.); Literacy: Standard, 0
1 German (Basic Conv.); Literacy: Standard, 0
3 Combat Driving 13-
2 Professional Skill: Military 11-
5 Stealth 14-
3 Professional Skill: Bodyguard 12-
5 Tactics 12-
1 Active Duty Military ]Passport
3 Basic Strike (OCV +1, DCV +0, 9½d6)
4 Martial Block (OCV +2, DCV +2)
4 Martial Dodge (OCV –, DCV +5)
3 Martial Grab (OCV -1, DCV -1, STR 48)
59 Total Skills, Talents, Perks  

 

Cost Equipment
15 Equipment Multipower (45-pt reserve); Variable Limitations (Various Obvious Accessible Foci): -1, -½; Conventional Equipment Only: -1; Full Power Only: -¼; Gestures (Must be able to use gear): Instant Power, -¼
Heavy Pistols
u-1 9d6 Physical Energy Blast (Rubber Bullets) 0; Range: 225; Versus: PD; Charges: +8, +0; Clips: 4
u-1 4d6 NND Energy Blast (Gas Pellets) 0; Range: 200; Versus: ED; No Normal Defense (Vrs Need Not Breathe): +1; Charges: +8, +0; Clips: 4
u-1 4d6 Entangle (Glue Pellets) (DEF 4) 0; Range: 200; Charges: +8, +0; Clips: 4
u-1 3d6 Killing Attack (RKA) (Depleted Uranium Slugs) 0; Range: 225; Charges: +8, +0; Clips: 4
Grenades
u-1 6d6 Incendiary Grenades: Fire Energy Blast 0; Range: 225; Versus: ED; Explosion (Extended Area +0″/DC): +½; Charges: +16, +0
u-1 Smoke Grenades: Darkness (Radar, Sight, 1″ radius) 0; Range: 225; Area Effect (Radius): 4″ radius, +1; Increased Area: ×2, +¼; Charges: +6, +0; Continuing Charges: 1 Minute, -3 lev
u-1 2d6 Fragmentation Grenades: Killing Attack (RKA) 0; Range: 225; Explosion (Extended Area +0″/DC): +½; Charges: +16, +0
Flare Pistols
u-1 Fired into Air: Change Environment/Light (2″ rad.) 0; Effect: Fixed, +0; Area Effect (Radius): 250″ radius, +1; Increased Area: ×250, +2; Charges: +6, +0; Continuing Charges: 1 Minute, -3 lev
u-1 9d6 Fired Into Something: Flame Energy Blast 0; Range: 225; Versus: ED; Charges: +8, +0; Clips: 4
u-1 3d6 Fired into a Hex: Visual Flash (Normal Sight) 0; Range: 225; Area Effect (One-hex): 1 hex(es), +½; Charges: +8, +0; Clips: 4
Other Devices
u-1 Extending Staff: Hand-to-Hand Attack (5d6, Total 12½d6) 0; Range: 0; Reduced END: Zero, +½
u-1 1d6+1 Combat Knife: Killing Attack (HTH) (Total 2½d6) 0; Range: 0; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Armor Piercing: 1, +½;
u-1 Bugs/Tracers: Radio Listen and Transmit ; Ranged: +½; Usable Against Others: ×1 mass, 1; Charges: +8, +1½; Continuing Charges: 1 week, -8 lev; Transmits Only: -1
u-1 Binoculars: Telescopic Sense (Sight, +7 to PER) ; Extra Time: 1 turn, -1; Extra Time Required: Only At Startup, ½
u-1 Demolitions Kit 19-
u-1 Survival Pack (Survival Skill) 17-; Charges: 1, +¼; Continuing Charges: 1 week, -8 lev
u-1 Lockpicking Kit: Lockpicking 19-
u-1 Security Systems Kit 19-
u-1 Breaching Charges: Tunneling (2″ through DEF 12) 0; Charges: +8, -½; Tunnels: Left Behind, +0
u-1 4d6 Thermite Pencils: Energy Blast/Fire 0; Range: 200; Versus: ED; Explosion: +½; Time Delay: +¼; Trigger (Radio Signal): Set, +¼; Charges: +8, -½
u-1 2d6 Knockout Drugs: Energy Blast 0; Range: 200; Versus: ED; No Normal Defense (vrs not ingesting or being injected with it, alien metabolism.): +1; Continuous: +1; Charges: +12, +1; Continuing Charges: 1 Hour, -5 lev; Extra Time: full phase, -½
u-1 Wrist Grapnel and LIne: Swinging (+23″, NC: 46″) 2; Non-Combat Multiplier: ×2, +0; Non-Combat (MPH): 68; Reduced END: Half, +¼; Reduced END: Zero, +½
8 Flight Harness Multipower (30-pt reserve); OIF (Flight Harness): -½; Requires a minute or so to strap the thing on: -¼; Limited Fuel Reserve: 2-3 hours straight flight, half that much dogfighting. No long-range flights.: -¼; Restrainable: Must have room to extend the wings: -½; Will not work underwater, in vacuum, etc.: -¼; Flight powers only: -1
u-1 12″ Flight (NC: 24″) 1; Non-Combat Multiplier: ×2, +0; Non-Combat (MPH): 36; Reduced END: Half, +¼
u-1 5″ Flight (NC: 160″) 1; Non-Combat Multiplier: ×32, +20; Non-Combat (MPH): 238
2 Elemental Control: Advanced Uniform (5-pt reserve); Focus: Obvious Inaccessible, -½; Conventional Technology Only: -1
a-8 Armor (8 PD/8 ED) ; Hardened: ×1, ¼; Always On: -½
6 Sensory Enhancements
(5) Infrared Vision
(5) Ultraviolet Vision
(5) Radio Listen and Transmit
4 Shielded Senses
(5) Flash Defense (Sight, 5 pts)
(5) Flash Defense (Hearing, 5 pts)
67 Total Equipment

 

100+ Disadvantages
10 No Code Versus Killing (Common, Moderate)
15 Always Obeys Orders of Superiors (Very Common, Moderate)
20 Honorable (Common, Total)
10 Public Identity
10 Reputation: Special Forces Soldier (11-)
15 Watched: Superiors (14-); Capabilities: More Powerful, 15; Non-combat Influence: Extensive, +5; Geographical Area: Unlimited, -0; Only Watching: ×½; Punishment: Harsh, 0
15 Active Service Duties (Common, Strong); Situation: Common, +10; Intensity: Strong, +5
10 Phys. Lim. Terrible Liar (+5 bonus to anyone trying to spot it) (Frequently, Slightly)
15 Phys. Lim. Only good at personal boosting magic, nothing else. (Infrequently, Fully)
120 Total Disadvantages

 

COSTS: Char. Powers Total Total Disadv. Base
58 + 122 = 180 220 = 120 + 100

 

OCV DCV ECV Mental Def. PD/rPD ED/rED Phases
6 6 4 0 19/13 19/13 3, 6, 9, 12

Height: 179cm (5’10”), Weight: 64kg (141 lbs), Sex: Male, Age: 22, Race: Afrikans

 

Champions – Professor Moriarty

Creator of Americas Unlimited, Engineer of a dozen freeware secure peer-to-peer encrypted communications networks, Enabler of Social Protest, Father of Spam, Inventor of the Pop-Up Ad, Patron of LOLCats, Financier of TVTropes, Designer of Denial Of Service Attacks, Data Harvester, Hacker Extraordinaire, Trans-humanist…

The charge was Computer Hacking. Many people thought that it should have been an awards ceremony instead. Others felt that the charge should have been Crimes Against Humanity.

But when they came to take him to trial, Professor Moriarty was dead in his cell – smoke rising from where some sort of implant in his skull had turned itself into a piece of slag.

Despite the ever-multiplying rumors of murder, and coverups, and thefts of the Professor’s secret technologies… the death was ruled a suicide, and most of Moriarty’s secrets apparently died with him.

But within the digital seas, Professor Moriarty’s uploaded consciousness swam, riding the datastreams around the world.

Special orders were placed. Backups were created. Automated systems hummed to life – and soon enough the Professor had a new “body” – and opened his now-digital eyes upon the physical world once again.

Professor Moriarty’s Digital Wizardry is no stronger than it ever was – but now he can make all of it work in the physical world and he possesses the flashing speed of a computer to back his skills. His spells may be weak, but he can unleash five of them every phase – and can take an extra phase to cast defensive spells up to twice a turn whenever he needs it. If some massive attack is coming in… well, five layered Force Walls can often take a lot of the sting out of it. Personally, he’s hard to hit anyway, since a lot of attacks will go right through his holographic “body” (if the +6 DCV for “shrinking” would cause them to miss) without causing him any trouble at all.

Professor Moriarty is seriously stretching the rules in a number of places. As far as the setting goes, his Digital Wizardry might fall under “technology” – but it might be necessary to consider him a “priest” of a rather strange Titan. Similarly, he’s really pushing the limits of what fits into an Equipment Allowance; those are supposed to be for more-or-less “normal” equipment – and his Holoemitter is pretty obviously not very conventional. Duplication is not supposed to be set up to completely cover it’s own cost,  allowing an endless stream of duplicates. Finally, of course, putting “autofire” on a multipower so as to use a bunch of extra effects each phase – and buying triggered extra phases to use with it – is a pretty weird build.

On the other hand, his spells are fairly weak and ARE explainable. The setting – where even stone knives are partially products of magic, gadgets quit working in the hands of people who haven’t got a large enough “equipment pool” to empower them, and major weapons and systems are limited by their operators abilities – hasn’t really got a good definition of what “normal” equipment is. He’s only using the “duplication” to build the classic computer-character “if you don’t get all my backups, I’ll be back!” ability – which is not only very classic (just ask Ultron/Mechannon) but is also fairly useless since comic book characters rarely die or stay dead anyway. The triggered actions is to build another classic comic wizard bit – throwing up a shield before the big attack hits, even if it was by surprise (writers let them do this because otherwise comic book magicians tend to be normal humans – so if a big surprise attack actually hits, they’ll be a smear on the wall and the story will be over) – and if it’s good enough for Dr Strange, Dr Fate, and Zatana, it’s good enough for Moriarty. Finally, the autofire multipower… The effect makes sense, but the only other way I can think to build it is to buy an enormous boost to speed (well above what the game allows) and throw all kinds of limitations on it – creating a convoluted mess.

Overall, I think he’d be fun – which is, of course, the entire point of playing, and so what’s really important.

 

Professor Moriarty

Value Characteristic Points
13 STR 3
18 DEX 24
13/25 CON 6
10 BODY 0
18 INT 8
14 EGO 8
15 PRE 5
13 COM 1
3 PD 0
5 ED 0
4 SPD 12
8 REC 0
16 END -17
30 STUN 0
Total 50

 

Points Powers END
0 Afrikans Racial Package
(20) Physical Limitation: Elemental Powers Only. Afrikans can create and maintain advanced “conventional” technologies (which do indeed require a bit of magic to keep working in the face of supernatural resistance) and can manipulate the various elements, the states of matter, and the elemental forces of life and death (Frequently, Fully)
20 Normal Characteristic Maxima
(20) Psychological Limitation: Pyramidal Psychology. Afrikans form large organizations easily, but have difficulties handling internal feedback within those organizations and with understanding systems involving it. Dominant leaders thus tend to hear only what they want to – and so less-dominant subgroups resort to factional infighting to advance their ideas. Groups of Afrikans have been known to obey obviously stupid orders simply because they came from the top – and may select very poor leaders and then follow them blindly. (Very Common, Strong)
(15) +3 level w/Ranged Combat
(15) 30-Point Equipment Allowance; An equipment allowance is spent on more-or-less conventional gear; each point invested in the equipment allowance allows the purchase of two points worth of equipment, bases, or vehicles – up to a normal maximum of 15 points invested. Beyond that, you can use an Aid effect to boost your equipment allowance and Afrikans characters get a racial boost.

Atlantean characters with an equipment allowance normally have at least half of it invested in weird magical stuff, but the effects are much the same.

Titans and Demi-titans normally cannot buy an equipment allowance. Not being material beings to start with, they have problems with material gadgets.

101 Digital Wizardry
(13) Multipower (30-pt reserve); Variable Limitations: -½, -¼; Requires Skill Roll: -½; Side Effects (Usually a 3d6 Stun Drain, but all sorts of weird things can happen.): 30/Half, -½
u-1 1d6 TVTropes / Transform Air to Steel (Major, Limited Class); Range: 130; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 0
u-1 2d6 Dazzling Graphics / Energy Blast; Range: 150; Versus: ED; No Normal Defense (Flash Defense 6+, Blindness): +1; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Area Effect (One-hex): 1 hex(es), +½ 0
u-1 2d6 Pop-Up Ad / Flash (Normal Sight); Range: 150; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 0
u-1 Firewall / Force Wall (2 PD/2 ED); Range: 150; Width: 6″, +0; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Variable Special Effects (PD, ED, MD, PD, FD): Certain Group, +¼; Uncontrolled: +½; Hardened: ×3, ¾ 0
u-1 3d6 Restore Function / Standard Healing; Ranged: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 0
u-1 2d6 Lolcats / Entangle (DEF 2); Range: 150; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 0
u-1 Antivirus / Force Field (6 PD/6 ED); Usable By Others: Power Lost, +¼; Hardened: ×1, ¼; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Uncontrolled: +½ 0
u-1 Computer Graphics / Images versus Sight (Normal Sight, 1″ radius); Range: 150; Observer PER Penalty: 0, +0; Usable Against Others: ×1 mass, 1; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Uncontrolled: +½ 0
u-1 Denial Of Service / Superleap (+5″, versus clinging, not being mobile); Non-Combat Multiplier: ×4, +5; Non-Combat (MPH): 30; Usable Against Others: ×1 mass, 1; Ranged: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 0
u-1 10″ IP Masking / Teleportation (Long Range 10″); Mass Multiplier: ×1, +0; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 0
u-1 Virtual Reality / Images versus Physical Sensations (Detect, 1″ radius); Range: 150; Observer PER Penalty: 0, +0; Usable Against Others: ×1 mass, 1; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Uncontrolled: +½ 0
u-1 Images: The Primary Target (Mental Awareness, 1″ radius); Range: 150; Observer PER Penalty: 0, +0; Usable Against Others: ×1 mass, 1; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Uncontrolled: +½ 0
u-1 IP Tunneling (3″ through DEF 3); Ranged: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Tunnels: Left Behind, +0

This makes instant pits. Sadly, it only works where the ground is reasonably soft.

0
u-1 1d6 Echo Chamber / Transform: Air to Whipped Cream (Minor, Single Object); Range: 150; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Area Effect (Radius): 4″ radius, +1; Increased Area: ×4, +½ 0
u-1 ½d6 Script Kiddie / Transfer: Body to End Battery (Returns 5/turn, Maximum: 3); Range: 150; Affects: Single Power, +0; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Ranged: +½; Penetrating: +½; Armor Piercing: 1, +½
u-1 1d6 Wyrm / Transform (Modify Behaviors / Programming, Minor, Limited Class); Range: 110; Cumulative: +½; Active Points: 22; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 0
u-1 Virtual Machine / Need Not Breathe; Area Effect (One-hex): 1 hex(es), +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Uncontrolled: +½; Ranged: +½
u-1 Bot Flood / Darkness (Normal Sight, 1″ radius); Range: 150; Usable Against Others: ×1 mass, 1; Uncontrolled: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½

This can effectively put a sphere of darkness around someone’s head and eyes.

0
u-1 2d6 Encryption / Suppress Language; Range: 150; Affect: Single Power of Special Effect, +¼; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Uncontrolled: +½; Invisible (To Hearing and Sight): Two Sense Groups, +¾

Yes, this changes it so that everything the target tries to say or write is gibberish, but at the same time fixes it so that no one can see or hear this. They will say apparently-reasonable things, but those things will have nothing to do with what they intended to say. Don’t think about that too hard.

0
u-1 2d6 Spam / Ego Attack; Reduced END: Zero, +½

Only Moriarty can defeat his foes with ads for cheap viagra, penis enlargement, and Nigerean Princes…

0
u-1 2d6 CPU Hog / Aid to All Physical Attributes (Fade/turn, Max. 12); Range: 0; Affects: All Powers of Special Effect, +2 3
u-1 2d6 Ebay / Aid to Equipment Allowance (+36 net Points) (Fade/day, Max. 18); Range: 0; Affects: Single Power, +0; Charges: +16, +0 0
u-1 Computer Programming; Ranged: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 19-
u-1 Demolitions; Ranged: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 17-
u-1 Google Maps / Combat Driving; Ranged: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½

It is really annoying to have Moriarty take control of your vehicle during a high-speed chase.

19-
u-1 Autopilot / Combat Piloting; Ranged: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 19-
u-1 Cryptography; Ranged: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 19-
u-1 Electronics; Ranged: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 17-
u-1 Forgery (Digital); Ranged: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½

Want to swamp Youtube with forged videos of your enemy doing something reprehensible? Here’s how!

17-
u-1 Gambling (Online); Ranged: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½

The “Good” Professor is quite capable of bringing internet gambling directly to you! Complete with the horrendous house odds and ability to charge your credit card directly.

17-
u-1 Professional Skill: Internet Research; Ranged: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 24-
u-1 Security Systems; Ranged: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 19-
u-1 Systems Operation; Ranged: +½; Reduced END: Zero, +½ 19-
(10) Autofire on Multipower; Variable Limitations: -½, -¼; Requires Skill Roll: -½; Side Effects: 30/Half, -½
(8) +2 Computer Reflexes / SPD; Trigger (Only to respond to an attack): Set, +¼; Generic Limitation (Only to use Multipower): -1; Generic Limitation (Only for defensive applications): -1

Twice per turn, Moriarty can interrupt an incoming attack to cast five defensive spells – most often Force Walls, but sometimes life support, or force fields which will persist for a while to boost him and his allies, will be a better choice.

(12) +8 level w/Multipower Attacks; Generic Limitation (Only to allow each multipower use in an autofire burst to be rolled independently, without penalty.): -1
(7) Duplication: Reloading From Backup (1 180-point forms); Generic Limitation (Only one duplicate actually exists at a time): -4; Extra Time: 1 week, -4; No Conscious Control: -2
(5) Mind Link (The Internet); Minds: One Specific Mind, +5; Number of Minds: 1, +0; Distance: Single Planet, +0; Dimension: Current, +0; Link with: Anyone, +0
(13) Digital Wizardry (Control Skill). In general, each slot requires a check at -3 – although his focusing crystal generally makes up for that. 18-
101 Total Powers  

 

Points Skills, Talents, Perks Roll
10 +2 level w/Multipower
10 Money (Wealthy)
6 +2 level w/Flight
3 Conversation 12-
29 Total Skills, Talents, Perks  

 

Cost Equipment
6 Elemental Control: Holoemittter (12-pt reserve); Always On: -½; Focus: Inobvious Accessible, -½

The Emitter is usually concealed within Moriarty’s “body”.

a-25 Shrinking-3 (DCV +6, Height 19¼ cm/8″) 0; Mass: 0.1210938 kg/0.27 lbs; Knockback Increase: 9; PER Bonus: -6; Reduced END: Zero & Persistent, +1; Invisible (Sight): One Sense Group, +½; Generic Limitation (Does not modify perception checks).

The holoemitter is fairly small. The quasi-physical “body” it creates is not. This leads to many apparent hits on him going right through with no effect.

b-6 Buy off “No Physical Body” Limitation
c-6 Armor (8 PD/8 ED). It’s a tough little gadget.
d-12 12″ Flight (NC: 24″) 0; Non-Combat Multiplier: ×2, +0; Non-Combat (MPH): 36; Reduced END: Zero, +½
e-6 +12 CON
5 +3 level w/Focusing Crystal: Digital Wizardry; Focus: Inobvious Inaccessible, -¼
66 Total Equipment

 

100+ Disadvantages
25 Phys. Lim. No Physical Body (All the Time, Fully)
10 Public Identity
10 Reputation (11-)
15 Distinctive Features: Hologram Traits; Concealability: Not Concealable, 15; Reaction: Noticed and Recognizable, +0
15 Overconfidence (Very Common, Moderate)
10 Prankster (Common, Moderate)
85 Total Disadvantages

 

COSTS: Char. Powers Total Total Disadv. Base
50 + 130 = 180 185 = 85 + 100

 

OCV DCV ECV Mental Def. PD/rPD ED/rED Phases
6 6 / 12 5 0 11/8 13/8 3, 6, 9, 12

Original Attributes: Height: 154 cm (5’1″), Weight: 62 kg (136 lbs), Sex: Male, Age: 42, Race: Afrikans

All right; Professor Moriarty here wasn’t at all what I was intending to post – but for some reason I just couldn’t get him out of my head until I put him online. Maybe he’s a bit more “real” than I originally intended…