Showing posts with label supers. Show all posts
Showing posts with label supers. Show all posts

Friday, June 28, 2019

Kickstart Your Weekend: Friendship is Magic Edition

Couple of Kickstarters are ending in the next four days from some friends of mine and I wanted to share.  Both are great and I want to see them both do well.

First up is the sequel to Eric Bloat's wonderful Vigilante City supers game.

SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City RPG 2 Book Quickstarter


https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/ericfrombloatgames/survive-this-vigilante-city-rpg-2-book-quickstarter?ref=theotherside

Vigilante City is such a great game and I feel bad I have not done more with it. If you are familiar with Dark Places & Demogorgons then you know this system.   This time we get books 3 & 4:  SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Superhero Team-Up! and Into The Sewers.

From the Kickstarter:
SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City Book 3: Superhero Team up! Comes with the inclusion of many new classes, goes through the steps of team building while greatly adding to the equipment and vehicles. It shows how to build new superhero headquarters and stock it full of the valuable tech and tools every team needs to be successful. There will be new combat rules to include Team Moves and so much more!

SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City Book 4: Into The Sewers takes you underground to maze of tunnels that travelunderthe Metropolitan of Victory City, into the world of subcultures, gangs, Mutants & Anthropomorphs. Into The Sewers will feel like a new setting and greatly expands upon the already robust Mutant and Anthropomorph classes and powers.
It looks like it will be great!
Did I mention there is an all-star team working on this too?  Well, there is!  Check it out.

Next is Jason Vey's Amazing Adventures.

Amazing Adventures 5E RPG


https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/676918054/amazing-adventures-5e-rpg?ref=theotherside

I featured Amazing Adventures 5e a while back.  It is also in its last 4 days, so time to get moving.

The book is done, save for the art and layout and I have played it.  It's so much fun.
Since my first post there have been a lot of stretch goals met and more added, and met. The next one is about to be unlocked.

Both games are a lot of fun and worthy of space on your game table.

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Batwoman: New Trailer and Vigilante City

Super busy at work today, but something cool came up on my feed. The new First Look trailer is out for the CW's Batwoman.


I have been a solid fan of the character since the 52 mini-series and her own series.  I still consider Batwoman: Elegy one of the best comics ever written.

Given the grittier street feel of the CW Arrowverse, Vigilante City is a great choice to stat her up.
Since the series has not appeared yet, let's try her out at Level 1.

Batwoman
True ID: Katherine "Kate" Kane

Class: Dark Avenger
Level: 1
Alignment: Law

STR: 17
INT: 16
WIS: 15
DEX:18
CON: 17
CHA: 16
SUR: 19

Courage: 16
Critical: 14
Death: 10
Magic: 10
Mental: 14
Poison: 12

HP: 9
AC: 5 (Batsuit)
Initiative Bonus: +3
Attack Bonuses.  Melee: +2  Ranged: +3

Move: 12
Vigilante Points: 1
Kits: Batsuit and gear, utility belt

Skills
Combat, Fighting (Martial Arts), Interrogation (+2 bonus), Intimidation (+1 bonus), Steet Smarts, Computer Skills 1, Parkour 1

Height: 5'7"
Weight: 135 lbs
Age: 26
Hair: Black / Red
Eyes: Light Green
Sex: F

Will alter some details this Fall!

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Mail Call: Bloat Games

Quick one today.  Yesterday I got a nice package in the mail.






Vigilante City is here! 
These books are much larger than I expected and I rather like them.
The print versions look fantastic and I can't wait to play around with them some more.

As soon as I can I'll need to devote a week or so to this game. Reviews, characters, and some ideas.
Printing a bunch of sheets now.


Tuesday, April 2, 2019

The Refrigerator for Prowlers & Paragons Ultimate Edition

Still playing around with Prowlers & Paragons Ultimate Edition, so this time I decided to bring back a villain to challenge Justice.

A while back I introduced you all to Dr. Andreas Gelé, aka The Refrigerator. He is a socially stunted misanthrope with mommy issues and the intellect to act out in the worst ways possible.
This guy came, literally, out of a nightmare.  Around 1982 or so (I was 12) I was hit with a double shot of women being frozen alive, the movies were "In Like Flint" and "Kiss the Girls and Make Them Die". It really bugged the hell out of me and gave me nightmares for a long time.  Still kind of bugs me.  Of course, later I learned there is a whole creepy fetish thing related to this.  I think my issue is far more elemental.  I hate being cold and think being frozen is quite possibly the worst thing ever.

What solidified this character for me was a cover from the pulp magazine "Horror Stories" from 1937.


The cover is by John Newton Howett and typical pulp tradition it was reused for the first issue of Startling Mystery. That picture deserves a villain.  I have not found the issue yet so I can't say if there is a story that goes with that cover. But I have enough of my own nightmare fuel.

His name, The Refrigerator, has a nice pulpy sound to it, but that is not its origin.  He was named for the comics trope, Women in Refrigerators.   I figure I will have superheroes in my games fight this trope in a quite literal way.

History of The Refrigerator
Dr. Andreas Gelé was born to wealth and privilege but never to love.  His father was a rich industrialist who made his money on the work of others and his mother was a noted and beautiful stage actress.  From his father, he gained his intellect and from his mother, he learned lessons in cruelty.

As his mother aged she became more distant and crueler.  In his mind's eye, he still saw her as beautiful. This was reinforced by all the pictures of her on the wall of their estates where she was young, beautiful and happy. Frozen in time.  Gelé began to work on a process to forever keep the beautiful women young.  He was drawn to beautiful women, and his prestige later as a doctor and his wealth made that easy.  But he never could talk to or relate to them having grown up socially stunted.  So Gelé embarked on a plan so he could have his desires met.


His first experiments in cryonics were failures. Animals would not return to life when frozen and even when he perfected the process they still had damage.  Finally through a combination of fluids and gases at supercooled temperatures.  He tested it first on his hated father. He died soon after he was free of the ice, but Gelé expected that since the old man's heart was now weak.  He froze his mother next. He was overjoyed that the ice preserved her remaining beauty.


All his research though has left his fortunes depleted so he robs banks to keep himself funded for more research and to keep his "beauties" on ice.

The Refrigerator Today
The Refrigerator is very much a pulp style villain.  I always pictured his mother as a silent film star and his father cut from the same cloth as the business men of the early 20th century.  So how is he still around today?  Or more to the point how is he still around in the world of 2040 where Justice is from?  Well, that is easy really.  Sometime after his last defeat, he escapes the authorities once again and freezes himself to be awakened at a future date.  The plot point here is that the future date is much later than Dr. Gelé planned on and now it is the 21st Century.  Still, undeterred he goes about rebuilding his "collection".

Dr. Andreas Gelé, "The Refrigerator"

Archetype: Gadgeteer / Scientist
Major Villian

Edge 10
Health 3
Class Major
Group None

ABILITIES
Agility 1d
Intellect 7d
Might 1d
Perception 3d
Toughness 3d
Willpower 3d

TALENTS
Academics 6d
Charm 1d
Command 3d
Covert 3d
Investigation 3d
Medicine 7d
Professional 4d
Science 7d
Streetwise 2d
Survival 4d
Technology 5d
Vehicles 2d

POWERS
Omni Power (Gadget, Cold Protection Suit)
- Armor 10 Points, 5 toughness
- Healing (self only) 10 points
- Hibernation
- Immunity (cold, ice)
- Super Senses (thermal vision)

Omni Power (Gadget, Freeze Ray gun) (Item)
- Blast (freeze ray)
- Elemental Control (ice)
- Hibernation ray (Affect Others)
- Charges (Con) 3 times per scene
- Signature (ice residue)

Expertise (Cryonics)

PERKS
Headquarters (lab)
Resources
Great Wealth (has built it back up over the years)

FLAWS
Quirk (arrogant)
Compulsion (seek out beautiful women)
Insane (misanthrope)

GEAR
Cold Protection outfit
Freeze ray gun

DESCRIPTION
Age: 99 (appears to be in his late 30s)
Sex: Male
Hair: Gray
Eyes: Ice Blue

MOTIVATION
Power (over others, over the ravages of time)

CONNECTIONS
Iron Maiden (sometimes aids him in shared goals)

Horrible bit of work isn't he.  But I wanted a villain that people really hate.   He is after Justice because all he can see her as is a beautiful prize to add to his collection.  He would say it is because of her strength and unique heritage, but he is much more shallow than that.  All he sees is a 6'2" supermodel.   In his own sense of superiority, he can't even see Justice as equal, even though she is his superior in every aspect.

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Justice for Prowlers & Paragons Ultimate Edition

Since I started reading over Prowlers & Paragons Ultimate Edition I have wanted to come back to one of my favorite characters, Astra Kal-El, aka Justice.
I introduced Justice waaay back in 2011 as the daughter of Superman and Wonder Woman. She was inspired by my favorite comic Kingdom Come where Superman and Wonder Woman eventually have children after the death of Lois.

Astra was raised by the Amazons but sent to be fostered by Bruce Wayne where she learns to be the superhero Justice.

Justice by Jacob Blackmon
Justice

HERO
Edge 10
Health 9
Resolve 4
Hero Points 125

ABILITIES
Agility 6d
Intellect 4d
Might 9d
Perception 4d
Toughness 9d
Willpower 3d

TALENTS
Academics 4d (Law, Political Science)
Charm 3d
Command 3d
Covert 4d
Investigation 4d
Medicine 2d
Professional 3d
Science 4d
Streetwise 5d
Survival 4d
Technology 3d
Vehicles 2d

POWERS
Heat Vision (Blast 3)
Blind Fighting (3)
Flight (9)
Hyper-breath (3)
Resistance (6 ranks)
Super-Senses (Analytic Vision, Enhanced Vision, Telescopic Vision, Thermal Visions)

PERKS
Contacts 2
Patron (Bruce Wayne)
Resources 2
Wealth

FLAWS
Alter Ego (Astra Kent, Justice Studies graduate student at Gotham University)
Code Conduct (will not use her heat vision anymore)
Enemy (Iron Maiden, The Refrigerator)

GEAR
Superhero outfit

DESCRIPTION
Age: 24
Sex: Female
Hair: Black
Eyes: Blue

MOTIVATION
Justice

CONNECTIONS
Bruce Wayne, Foster father
Diana Prince, Wonder Woman, Mother
Barbara Gordon, Mentor

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Zatannurday: Prowlers & Paragons Ultimate Edition

Let's try my hand at doing some stats for Prowlers & Paragons Ultimate Edition.  I can think of no one better than Zatanna.

Zatanna Zatara

Concept: Daughter of stage magician John "Giovanni" Zatara.  Both father and daughter can use real magic.

Joanie Brosas as Zatanna. This weekend at C2E2 Booth #1553
HERO
Edge 11
Health 6
Resolve 4
Hero Points 125

ABILITIES
Agility 3d
Intellect 5d
Might 3d
Perception 4d
Toughness 3d
Willpower 9d

TALENTS
Academics 6d (mostly related to magic and the occult)
Charm 5d
Command 4d
Covert 2d
Investigation 3d
Medicine 2d
Professional 4d (professional stage magician)
Science 3d
Streetwise 2d
Survival 2d
Technology 3d
Vehicles 1d

POWERS
Sorcery, Omni-Power (Sorcery, Broad) 14d (Area)
Cons: Concentration, Situational: Must say spells backwards

PERKS
Contacts (Justice League)
Fame
Wealth

FLAWS
Public Identity (not in the book, but going to try it)

GEAR
Stage magician's garb, top hat, and magic wand (the wand is only a prop).

DESCRIPTION
Age: Early 30s
Sex: Female
Hair: Black
Eyes: Blue (varies on artists)

MOTIVATION
Responsibility (and Adventure)

CONNECTIONS
Dr. Fate: Fellow mage
Batman: Old friend
John Constantine: Ex-boyfriend, constant pain in her ass.
Madame Xanadu: Friendly Rival
June Moon / Sorceress: Frenemy, Less friendly rival?  Depends on June's attitude and sanity.

Ok, that took only about 20 mins.  I bet future characters builds will be much faster.
Most of her points are being dumped into her Sorcery Omni-Power.  She can replicate any other power in the book (within reason) but she must say the spell backward and she can generally only concentrate on one effect at a time.  I might not have gotten everything 100% by the book, but I will try some other builds in the next week or so.

Make sure you check out the Prowlers & Paragons Ultimate Edition Kickstarter.
I am going to try some more over the next week.

Friday, March 22, 2019

Kickstart Your Weekend: Prowlers & Paragons Ultimate Edition

I LOVE Superhero Games.  I don't get to play them as much as I would like, but I love them all the same.   This one from Evil Beagle Games looks great.

Prowlers & Paragons Ultimate Edition


https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1977703373/prowlers-and-paragons-ultimate-edition?ref=theotherside

This is the second edition of the Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules game released in 2013.
You can grab the Ultimate Edition Quick Start for free.

The changes from the first edition to the ultimate edition seem to be fairly comprehensive.   It just has a really cool vibe that I really like.

I am quite excited about this. I am going to spend some time with this one.

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

New Releases Tuesday: Vigilante City

It's Tuesday and that usually means new releases.  Today we have a great one.

Eric Bloat of Bloat Games has been a favorite here for a while.  I have gone on and on about how much I love Dark Places & Demogorgons.  Today he has released what is destined to be my new favorite game, SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City.

Vigilante City current features two new books.

SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Core Rules and SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Villain's Guide


The rules are a version of the same Survive This!! we see in Dark Places & Demogorgons and Survive This Zombies! so compatibility is a nice feature. Especially if you want to use The Cryptid Manual.

The one thing I did not expect was the inclusion of a Compatibility License and Logo.  That honestly SCREAMED at me when I started downloading.

I am going to read these rules over and get up a review and some characters sometime soon.
But you can all now expect a Mystic's Handbook to be coming from me soon! (name might change)

Can't wait to get into this game.

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Zatannurday: New DC Super Hero Girls Series

WHAT? A Zatannurday post??
Yes, it is and there is something cool coming.

Years ago we used to get an animated short, Super Best Friends Forever featuring Supergirl, Batgirl, and Wondergirl in crazy little adventures.  It was created by Lauren Faust, the same creative genius behind PowerPuff Girls and Foster's Home for Imaginary Creatures.

A little bit later a new multimedia merchandising line came out, DC Super Hero Girls. It featured books, toys and some animated shorts as well featuring a lot of DC's most famous superhero women, such as Supergirl, Batgirl, Wonder Woman, as well as Poison Ivy, Killer Frost, and Harley Quinn.

Well now DC has combined the two and Lauren Faust is once again in charge.
So premiering next month is the New DC Super Hero Girls Series.
The visual cues are DC Super Hero Girls, but the execution is Super Best Friends Forever.

Why am I posting this here, now and bringing Zatannurday out of retirement?  Well, take a guess.



Like I mentioned, the style is a nice mix of SBBF and Super Hero Girls.





You can get more information here:



Friday, February 15, 2019

Kickstart Your Weekend: Gods, Monsters and Superheroes

A couple of good ones today.

First up is a tactical miniatures game with some fantastic looking minis.

Theosis: Godslayer


https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/dreamcraftgames/theosis-godslayer?ref=theotherside

This one has some really awesome looking minis.  I know nothing about the game itself, but that is fine.  It looks cool.


Yes. That is a 120 mm base.






It looks fantastic and ending soon.

Also ending soon is a new supers game and I do love Supers games.

Sentinel Comics: The Roleplaying Game


https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/gtgames/sentinel-comics-the-roleplaying-game

This one looks really fun and I like the art. The game play looks pretty easy to pick up as well.

Want to see how it plays?  Grab the Sentinel Comics: The Roleplaying Game Starter Kit on RPGNow/DrivThruRPG.

Friday, October 19, 2018

Kickstart Your Weekend: Heart & Souls 2nd Ed

So sorry this is late.

Today's Kickstarter is one I just found out about and it looks like it could be a lot of fun.

Hearts & Souls 2e



https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1041295240/hearts-and-souls-2nd-edition-tabletop-role-playing?ref=theotherside

I have the first edition of the game and it is fun.  It's a different system from other Supers games, but still one that I enjoy.

According to author Tim Kirk this game will be cleaned up and some example made more clear.  Also new art.

Please give this one a check! It should be a lot of fun.

If I get the chance maybe I'll stat up some characters using the 1st Ed version.

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Fear of a Black Superman

Very, very few characters reach out and touch people in a profound way.  Life-changing or life-affirming when we get one of those characters then we tend to be fairly protective of them.

So in way, I understand the...well lack of a better word...anger surrounding the rumor (and that is all it is at the moment, rumor) that Michael B. Jordan would be cast as the next Superman. 

Frankly, I would love to see DC/Warner be so bold as to do this.  Plus if you have seen Creed you know that MBJ is a talented actor and he could pull this off.  He has the physique for it to be sure at 6'1" and only 31 years old. 


That is all fine.  Until you get online.  Then the so-called fans begin their bitching, whining an complaining.  Yes, it is overwhelmingly white and male that are doing the loudest wailing.

Superman/Kal-el/Clark Kent was created by two Jewish immigrants who wanted to tell the tale of another immigrant and how he could hold up the ideals of Truth, Justice and the American way.

So why then does he have to be white?

Well originally I am sure it never occurred to them he could be anything else.  And there is the practical reasons that a black superhero would have never sold comics back then.  Plus I am sure they wanted to see themselves in the comic.  We all do.

But to hear the "fans" you think this was a travesty, a crime worthy of a mob rule.
Or in other words, the masses being a bunch of dicks again.  More to the point a bunch of dicks who have never read a Superman comic before.

I mean we have had Val-Zod.


Calvin Ellis,


Steel,


And President Obama,


Ok. Maybe he doesn't really count here.


There are plenty of precedents (not just Presidents like Ellis and Obama) for a black Superman.

It's time for the fandom to grow up.  We as geeks are accepted like never before in mainstream society. It is time now for us to show mainstream society that we are still not a bunch of basement dwelling adolescents.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

DC in the News

So I remain, despite a box-office trouncing, a devoted DC fan.

Few things are cooking in the DC Universe that will make me happy this fall.  Lets start with a big one and move on to EVEN BIGGER ONES!


We already knew that Kate Kane, AKA Batwoman will be featured in the Fall sweeps 4-Episode Arrowverse crossover (I guess that also means no tying in Black Lightning just yet).

Now it seems they want to use that as a backdoor pilot for a Batwoman series for 2019-20.
They are currently looking for an out lesbian/queer actress of any ethnicity to play Batwoman.

I commend them on this.

There is nothing about Batwoman's background that says she has to be white, or black, or Asian, or Algonquin, or Hispanic.  There are three things though that immutable about the character.

1. Kate is a Soldier. She lives to serve. Just now she wears the uniform of the Bat.
2. Kate is a Lesbian. Even in her earliest interactions, this is something she knows about herself and we know about her.
3. Kate is Jewish.  This informs how she sees life, how she approaches everything she does. The colors of her uniform.

In Comics Dark seems to be the new Black.

The Witching Hour will be a 5-comic arc featuring Wonder Woman, JL Dark and the plot revolves around Hecate and Witches!


I mean read this:
Part one, WONDER WOMAN AND JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK: THE WITCHING HOUR #1, with art by Jesus Merino, sets the tone for the Wonder Woman-centered event. In this 48-page debut one-shot, Hecate, the witch-goddess of magic, always knew a day would come when the monsters she stole her magic from would return. Now she must activate the Witchmarked, humans within whom she secreted vast stores of power. This hits Justice League Dark especially hard: one of the most powerful of the Witchmarked turns out to be Wonder Woman! WONDER WOMAN AND JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK: THE WITCHING HOUR #1 is on sale October 3.
Those aren't tears in my eyes.  No. Not at all....Shut up, you're crying.

And just when my poor heart couldn't take anymore.



Holy Shit!  Robin just said "Fuck Batman" and that Raven!  That is the Raven I have been waiting nearly 38 years to see on my screens.  Even Dove and Gar look great.

So yeah.  You can have your Infinity Wars and your snappy Thanos (who is a rip-off of Darkseid anyway). I know where my action is going to be this fall.

Right?


That's so Raven!

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Mighty Protectors: Converting* Villains & Vigilantes

Mighty Protectors is billed as Villains & Vigilantes 3.0. For the most part, I am completely fine with that.  The game feels the same and mostly plays the same.  There are differences though.  The differences feel about the same as those say between AD&D 1st Ed and D&D 3.0.
The numbers don't always line up in terms of CPs or BCs, but close enough that you can do what I call "concept-driven conversion".


Concept Driven conversion (for me) is a matter of reading over the character (monster, spell, adventure) and re-casting it in the new rules.  This is different than what I call Numerical Conversion where I can lump the numbers into an Excel sheet and get the proper conversion.

I tried both ways on characters I had been using for Villains & Vigilantes 2.x; Justice and Tarot.
I do want to point out that neither of these characters can be considered "mine".
Justice is derived directly from Superman and Wonder Woman, both owned by DC comics.
Tarot is owned by Jim Balent and Holly Golightly and she is very near and dear to them.

Justice (aka "Justice is Blind Issue 8: Mighty Protectors")
In the case of Justice I went with concept driven conversion since I knew I wanted to recraft her from the ground up as a 200 CP character.
To recap, Justice is also known as Astra Kal'El or Astra Kent.  She is the daughter of Superman and Wonder Woman in the future.  I have toyed with the idea of having her go back in time to stop the death of Lois Lane but that would also erase her conception..so problems there, but none that I can't solve really.  I like the idea of a young Kryptonian/Amazon.  True, I get a lot of my Justice fill lately from the Supergirl TV series, but this is still a fun character.


This Mighty Protectors version of her is not as powerful as the Villains & Vigilantes version I made a few years back, but I am much happier with it. She is powerful but still just starting out.

Tarot, Witch of the Black Rose
For Tarot, I wanted to do a more numerical conversion.  She was one of the last characters I stated up for V&V 2.1 and thought she would make a good first character for Mighty Protectors.
Trouble is I didn't like the conversion I came up with.  So I smoothed out some of the edges with some concept-driven ideas and good old-fashioned number juggling.  Comparatively the MP and V&V 2.1 versions are much closer aligned. Well...in truth the paper sheet I have is much closer. The Excel sheet shows more of the "smoothing".


From a 13th level character to a 200 point build.  Again I am pretty satisfied with this one but the 2.1 version is just as good to me.  Besides.  Tarot is way too fun NOT to have in a game.

Friday, December 1, 2017

Victorious Villains & Vigilantes: Maxima

Last year I did a deep exploration of the Victorious RPG.  It is a really, really fun supers game set in the Victorian era.  I could have done a Plays Well With Others with this.  There is a lot in both games that the other can use. 


Mighty Protectors and Villains & Vigilantes both have an absolute ton of Powers that Victorious players can adapt. 
Victorious has skills and a ton of information on supers in the Victorian era.

Both have great advice on playing supers and are generally "Supers as the good guys" games. Not dark anti-heroes or modern-age supers.

One of the features of the Victorious game is that many of the supers in Victorian age are from the 21st Century, having traveled back in time.   Sounds just like our superhero Maxima from Villains & Vigilantes and Mighty Protectors. 

Maxima is one of the more popular of Jeff Dee's and Jack Herman's characters.  Afterall she is a seven-foot tall blonde amazon powerhouse.  She will be appearing in a future Mighty Protectors product where more of her history and future will be detailed. 

In Victorious let's say that Maxima went back in time, but instead of New Mexico in 1986 she ends up in London in 1886.  Maxima belongs to Jeff Dee, Jack Herman, and Monkey House Games.  I am just playing with her for a bit.

Maxima
Proper Name: Maxima

Strength: 36 (+12)
Dexterity: 38 (+14)
Constitution: 31 (+11)
Intelligence: 22 (+5)
Wisdom: 20 (+4)
Charisma: 20 (+4)
INIT: +12 (Intuition, Lightning Speed)
Actions: 1 per round
AC: 29
Defensive:
Hit Points: 380 (d12 HD)
Level: 20
Alignment: Good
Victory Points: 5
Skills: Melee
Languages: English
Supernatural Powers: see Packages and Powers

Packages:
Future Science Creation (theme)
- Attribute Increase: Strength
- Attribute Increase: Constitution
- Invulnerability (Temporal & Knockdown)
- Lightning Speed
- Might
- Robust

Powers: Robust 2, Might 4,  Attribute Increase (Strength)

Shortcomings: Enemy 2 (various villains), Obligation, Odd Appearance (7' 6" blond powerhouse woman) 2, Watched (British Home Office).

Maxima is very much out-of-time here.  She remembers enough of her mission and her life before to know she is in the past. She has also found other, similar heroes to help her.
She would be a great character to play in Victorious.  HEY! A time travel epic where the heroes of Mighty Protectors meet up the heroes of Victorious! 

Thursday, November 30, 2017

This Old Dragon Issue #111

It's the summer of 1986.  My regular DM has graduated from High School and is getting ready to go to the Air Force. We are gearing up for an epic world-changing round of adventures we call the Dragon Wars. Essentially this is our World War I. I can't recall if this cover played into that at all, but I would like to think it did.  It' July 1986 and this is issue #111 of This Old Dragon.

This is also one of my top 10 favorite colors.  The white and black dragons in a "ying yang" theme has been done before, but not quite like this. It is another winner from Denis Beauvais.  While meant to invoke the struggle of good vs. evil D&D players will look at it and proclaim "they are both evil!"  Sheesh...not appreciation for art.

Speaking of art. The Letters section covers the disparity between male and female figures on the cover of Dragon.  The all too common complaint is that females tend to be nearly naked and men wear sensible armor.   We are still having this conversation.

Our first article is by John M. Maxstadt, Good stuff, for a spell. Magic focusing: a new dimension for possessions. This deals with a common problem, what sort of magic item does a mid-level magic-user need?  The solution is a Spell Focusing item.  Now off the bt I have an issue with the term.  What is being described in this article is not spell focusing but rather spell storage.  The MU casts a spell into an item to be used later.  Essentially these are variations on the Ring of Spell storing only in wands and other items.  I don't want it to sound like I am dismissing this article. On the contrary, I rather like it and the author brings up a number of points I still see in my games.  For me a Spell Focus should make casting a spell easier or harder to avoid.  I have also allowed some spell focuses to change the die in which they use.  A wand of fireball focus would change the die from a d6 to a d8 for example.

Ah. Now here is one I remember. Welcome to Malachi: Visit a city where magic reigns supreme by Becky Helfenstein is about a city of magic. We are still a year out from the Forgotten Realms and their Waterdeep and Suzail cities.  This is also the time my DM and I had started to put together our own "Urban Survival Guide" for playing in cities.  This article is "class" focused. So what do clerics do, where do thieves go, what about fighters? and so on.  Not a bad way to set it up, but also leaves some gaps.  Ok it's only an article in Dragon, size alone will mean there are gaps.  I think a series of articles on Malachi would have been great.   Maybe I should do a series myself on The Urban Survival Guide.  I don't all the original docs (that was 30 years ago) but it might be fun to pull various resources together to discuss this.  Dragon and White Dwarf, the tables in the old DMG, the newest books on DriveThru.  Could be fun. A lot of fun really.

Roger E. Moore is up telling us everything we need to know about how to submit articles to the newest TSR Publication Dungeon Adventures.  Back in the day I had worked on a couple of adventures with the intent to submit them to Dungeon.  Never did, I could not get them to work out the way I wanted.  But it was great practice really.

No campaign ever fails: What to do if your game gets out of control by Joel E. Roosa deals with a common problem that I still see today.  It deals with a game/campaign where the characters get quickly overloaded with magic items.  I made this mistake in my first 5e campaign. Fresh off of a magic-saturated 4e game, 5e doesn't like a ton of magic items.  My son is seeing this now with his 5e game he is running.  In AD&D I always put a cap on the magic.  In my game there was something like 4 or 5 +6 weapons TOTAL in the entier universe.  The most powerful you could hope for was +5 or +3/+6 where the +3 was normal attacks and +6 was against a very specific creature type.  In D&D 5 this cap is +3.  I wish I had reread this article before I started my Come Endless Darkness game.

Big ad for GURPS.


Kent Colbath gives us a microscopic bestiary with Microscopic monsters: When they get bigger, they get a lot tougher.  So paramecium, dinoflagellates and the like made huge.  An interesting idea, but one I'd only use in special occasions; never as a random monster.  Actually, they would make for interesting encounters in the Astral Plane.

Lots of ads...

The centerpiece of this issue is an adventure, Death of an Arch-Mage, by Michael D. Selinker.  It is a tournament-style murder mystery adventure for AD&D.  No levels are given (that I was able to find) but that makes sense.  This is a thinking adventure, not a combat one. The NPCs range from 0-level humans to 18th level. The adventure itself is really kind of awesome.  I love a good murder mystery and I have often wanted to do a Sherlock Holmes/Agatha Christie-style adventure.  I bet this one would work fantastically with other versions of D&D.  This one is worth trying.  The adventure is long, becasue there are a lot of details the DM needs.
Anyone ever do a murder mystery?

Kevin Marzahl has some details on grenades for the Top Secret game in Pull the pin and throw.

We get too our Ares Section now and on tape we have a few of the most powerful Super-powered Heroines in different universes.    Ok, confession time.  I was looking over three different Dragons for this week.  I opted for this one since it had Maxima and Super-girl in it.

Roger E. Moore is up with arguably the most powerful person in the Marvel Super Heroes Game; Phoenix.  If you grew up in the 80s and read comics you knew Phoenix.  I played a little MSH and enve I know there are not many Class 1000 anythings out there.  Phoenix is a Class 1000 Psychic.  The article, which is long for a Marvel-Phile, especially one dedicated to just one character, gives Phoenix her due.  I will admit I used aspects of the Phoenix cycle in my own Buffy the Vampire Slayer games just like I use (and still use) aspects of Crisis on Infinite Earths in my D&D games.

Jack Herman is up with his (or is it Jeff Dee's, I never really knew) character Maxima. Back from the future in VILLAINS & VIGILANTES gaming.  Maxima is one of the most powerful characters in the V&V line.  She is a scientist from the far future sent back to Earth of 1986 to stop the Apocalypse that destroys mankind, sadly the trip damaged her and she has forgotten much of what she knew of her time and why she is here.  In the new Mighty Protectors game we still see Maxima, so glad to know she is still doing her thing.  I think it would be great to see a new Mighty Protectors version of Maxima.

Greg Gordon, not to be outdone, has a write up for Super Girl for the DC Heroes game.  He make the argument that she is (was, this is just post Crisis) the most powerful heroine of the DC Universe.  He makes a compelling argument really.  Supergirl has had boost in popularity with the great CW show and performances by Mellissa Benoist.  I am going to say, and have said, that future generations of fan will look on Mellissa Benoist as Kara the same way we look on Lynda Carter as Wonder Woman.



Jeff Grub is next with the Marvel Phile on Longshot.  How did this guy get mixed in with all these super powerful superwomen? Luck I guess.

Not to be forgotten, George Mac Donald discusses super-super powers in Champions in Quantum.
We are introduced to the heroine of the same name.  I guess I should put up her pic too!

Small ads.
Snarf. Con Calendar and Wormy round out this issue.

So some great supers articles.  I am DYING to put all four of these superwomen into the murder mystery above.  I know! They are here to investigate the murder of Longshot!

Fun issue, with one of my favorite covers and some great articles.
You know who else had a good issue at this time? White Dwarf.  Pop on over and see what I was saying about July 1986 on White Dwarf Wednesday #79.  Great issue, ridiculous cover.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

PWWO: Mighty Protectors

Time again for another edition of "Plays Well With Others"!

Mighty Protectors is a new game, but it has a long history and some solid Old-School DNA.  Because of this, there is a lot of ways to tinker with the game.

It is no secret that there is D&D DNA in Villains & Vigilantes.  That DNA carries over to V&Vs offspring, Mighty Protectors.  While there are still plenty differences in these games, there are enough similarities to build on.

Mighty Protectors and Villains & Vigilantes 2.1


Total cheat really. These games are less "Mix and Match" as they are "ideas to be shared". They are basically two slightly different expressions of the same world.  Now V&V 2.1 has better, or at least, more explicit rules for magic and psionics. Plus converting between MP and V&V 2.1 is easy; there is a section in the MP book on converting V&V 2.1 over.  Using this V&V 2.1 becomes a Rosetta Stone of sorts for d20 based games.

This conversion key is really helpful for me for the next two games.

Mighty Protectors & d20 Silver Age Sentinels / BESM d20


Alas, Guardians of Order.  You were a not a well-run company, in the end, but you did have some fun games.  Two of GoO's games are of particular interest to me.  Big Eyes Small Mouth d20 (BESM d20) and Silver Age Sentinels d20 (SAS d20).  Both had great breakdowns of the d20 system (circa 2002) into Level-Based Point buy systems.  Using our V&V translation you can now have a translation of BESM/SAS d20 to V&V and MP.  In particular, the book Advanced d20 Magic for BESM d20 is a great resource for point-buy spells.   I have not worked out the mathematical translations or crunched the numbers just yet, but there are there.  My initial guess is that 1 CP (MP) = 2 Points for SAS/BESM. 
This would give me a great point-buy spell system with some well-defined familiar spells.

Another great thing about SAS (Tri-Stat or d20 versions) is the excellent history of comics and the superhero in modern culture. The Silver Age sensibility of the "how to play" sections fit Mighty Protectors to a tee.

Mighty Protectors and Mutants & Masterminds 2.0


One can't talk super-hero games and not mention Muntants and Masterminds.  While now in the third edition, it is the second edition that concerns us here and now.  M&M2 shares a lot in common with MP. I could detail it here, but this link, Converting Mutants & Masterminds 2.0 to Mighty Protectors, does a far better job.   I have gone over the list of Powers and Abilities for both games to see what one has that the other doesn't, But I can say that between these two nearly every power likely is covered.

Plus Green Ronin has an absolute ton of material for M&M.  Personally, I like to put the supers of each game into their own cities and if you go to that city that's where you will find them.

For my next round of characters, I am going to take some notes from these other games to get the characters I am really looking for.  It should be a blast.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Mighty Protectors: We Can Be Heroes

There are two central features of Villains & Vigilantes and Mighty Protectors that I have always enjoyed.  First, the conceit that you play yourself with superpowers in the game. And secondly, that characters of all sorts of power level can play next to each other in the same adventure.


Back in the day though that is not exactly what we did.

In the early 80s I went over to my buddy Jon Cook's house to play some Basic-era D&D.  We stopped by one of other friends, Dave, who was younger but had been playing longer than I had.  He had, at the advanced age of 10-11, already moved on from D&D and was playing V&V.  It had only been out for a while but he loved it.  I really wanted to play some D&D though, so we compromised.  I used my D&D character.  Dave did all the behind the scenes rolls and math, or he just made stuff up I don't really know or cared at the time.  But back then this was something you could do with D&D and V&V pretty easy.  I took a healing power and the ability to turn undead; one of the reasons I was playing a cleric in the first place. And we had a great time.  I know while I was doing it I was struggling with the rules, but I had fun.

So when I got my nice new copy of Mighty Protectors one of the first things I did was try to convert some "D&D" style characters.   I wanted to do this for nostalgia reasons but also to try out some different levels of play that correspond to Standard (150 CP), High (200 CP), and Low (100 CP).

For my choices, I went with my iconic witch Larina ("Witch Queen"), an amalgam of many of the clerics, paladins and cavaliers I have played ("Paladin"), and a new character that has seen play in Pathfinder, D&D 5, M&M, Superbabes and Marvel Super Heroes ("Teen Witch").

For these, and most of the characters I'll be posting, I did all the character generation by hand and checked that against the Excel Character sheet pack.  Click on images for full res PDFs.

Paladin
Standard 150 CP Build

Paladin is based on a number of paladins, clerics, and cavaliers I have played over the years. He is also based on the first character I played in D&D and then took over to V&V.  I used the standard array of BCs and picked powers as they worked with an eye to keep my number right around 150 CPs.


I like it. I gave him the ability to turn undead with the repulsion blast.  My thought is that he goes out to hunt undead and demons with the magical sword Demonbane.  Given the tenor of most of my supers games he will have a lot of work to do!

Teen Witch
Low 100 CP Build

Teen Witch, aka Taryn Nichols is the daughter of my iconic witch Larina.  In D&D she is half-elf but I say she is more half faerie since her birth was during a time my witch was in the D&D 3.5 Feywild.  She was a Pathfinder witch and a D&D 4 Warlock.  I played a game of Marvel Super Heroes with her powers were manifested while she was in school. Here first power was flight.


The goal here was to keep her under 100 CPs and I did...with some weaknesses.  But that is fine really, they are also part of her backstory.  Basically, Larina was pregnant and trapped in the world of the Faerie.  In order to leave she had to give up her daughter.  Long story short, she found a way to keep Taryn and leave, but Taryn is indebted to her Elven father.  I did not put that on yet since this is starting Taryn. That drama comes up later! ;)


Witch Queen
High 200 CP

Witch Queen is, of course, my iconic witch Larina. I have played this character in nearly every game I have ever played. So I know her well.  Which was the point of all of this really, to take characters I know well and convert them easily.  Larina is also always my experimental character.  Here I am experimenting with the Arsenal Ability (think Batman's utility belt or Green Arrow's arrows) to build a spell book.  I REALLY like it worked out.   I also used the Inventing Ability to simulate Ritual Spells. Ones that take longer but have a bigger effect.  I will explore this concept some more in other builds.


There she is. My girl.  Now there are hundreds of ways I could do magic powers and spells, but this is an experiment.  So I can move numbers around later.

I like how all of these worked out to be honest.

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