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Simlasa

Better Settings for Superworld

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I was reading the thread about using Superworld for 'cosmic' heroes and the sentiment seemed to be that the main issue is with BRP's inherent lethality... and how that lethality doesn't emulate the comics.

Now, it seems like a common gripe with superhero RPGs in general is that they only ever kindasorta manage to emulate the comics anyway. Which makes sense, since comics are written and plotted out to make a good story. Characters only live or die to suit the needs of the story.
Later in that thread, someone suggested that cosmic supers are just high-powered space opera and that E.E. 'Doc' Smith's Lensman setting as being a good (better) fit for Superworld, since those stories featured super psychic characters and a lot of lethality.

Sounds good to me...

So I'm wondering, what other superheroic/superhero-ish settings might better fit the particular flavor that Superworld brings to the table?
I know it works well for early pulp heroes such as The Shadow and The Spider... and it works with the conceits of City of Heroes, but I'm guessing there are more out there that I'm not thinking of.


Any thoughts?

 

Edited by Simlasa

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5 minutes ago, Simlasa said:

So I'm wondering, what other settings might better fit the particular flavor that Superworld brings to the table?

You mean other than the Wildcards anthologies by George R.R. Martin and his Superworld gaming group?

The webcomic GRRL Power has a number of fairly fragile characters, especially in their intelligence branch. Lethality mainly on the side of the villains, so far, though.

While more of a steampunky Mad Scientist setting, the web comic Girl Genius is quite generous with lethality.

There are other webcomics in the Supers genre, at many power levels. Supers are not quite my genre, and quite a few are behind a paywall, but there should be some rich choice out there.

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1 hour ago, Joerg said:

You mean other than the Wildcards anthologies by George R.R. Martin and his Superworld gaming group?

Yeah, that's the famous example.
Something like Godlike/Wild Talents might fit, since those are at the grittier end of the super pool and I'm not confident of the ORE.

I'm generally curious, though for my own tastes something space-opera-ish would be great... but I could see it working for a more focused espionage/intrigue setting like Scanners as well.

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Giant Robo, an anime inspired in part by Johnny Socko and His Giant Robot.  The PCs are “espers” — special law enforcement agents who can do weird things and dish out lots of damage but who can die from a bullet or stab wound like anyone else.  Oh, and both the good guys and the bad guys have an astonishing variety of giant robots.

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It has been a while since I have read Superworld (Or what I am about to reccomend) but you might think about picking a more gritty and less 4 color setting that is a match for Superworld's inherent lethality. I recommend Fainting Goat Games' Extreme Earth: A Dsytopian Superhero Setting. You can get it here -> https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/144378/MM3e-EXTREME-EARTH-A-DYSTOPIAN-SUPERHERO-SETTING?src=hottest_filtered.

What sets Extreme Earth apart is that is is designed to emulate bronze or iron age comics as opposed to silver or gold age comics. So think less of Superman or Wolverine and more of The Shadow, Watchmen and Batman. In these comics getting shot by a machine gun is likely to be lethal something easily modeled by Superworld.

You can find some details about the bronze age of comics here -> https://davescorneroftheuniverse.wordpress.com/2014/11/10/what-is-comics-iron-age/

Woops - I forgot something. The version of Extreme Earth I linked to is designed for Mutants and Masterminds but there are several versions (Alas no Superworld option), you can find them on DriveThruRPG

Edited by rsanford
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3 minutes ago, seneschal said:

Giant Robo, an anime inspired in part by Johnny Socko and His Giant Robot.

I really liked what little bit I've seen of that show... AND... that reminds me that The Big O might be another setting that might fit, being as it's a mash-up of Giant Robo and Batman.

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4 hours ago, Simlasa said:

I was reading the thread about using Superworld for 'cosmic' heroes and the sentiment seemed to be that the main issue is with BRP's inherent lethality... and how that lethality doesn't emulate the comics.

The latter issue probably applies more to other versions of BRP than to Superworld. At least the full boxed set version, which did tone downt he lethality abit.

 

4 hours ago, Simlasa said:

Now, it seems like a common gripe with superhero RPGs in general is that they only ever kindasorta manage to emulate the comics anyway. Which makes sense, since comics are written and plotted out to make a good story. Characters only live or die to suit the needs of the story.

 

Yes, free from vs. scripted is part of it, but I think the main difficulty is that most RPGs are not designed to handle non-lethal combat very well. Most FRPGs have characters and monsters getting wounded and dying from sword, arrow, axe, claw, fist and fang, modern RPGs do the same with firearms, and futuristic RPGs do so with lasers and energy swords. The trappings change but the basic game mechanics are about the same. 

But in the comics, combat is handled much like on a TV fistfight, or on  a professional wrestling match, with characters punching, hitting, throwing, (or blasting, burning, freezing) each other until one combatant is either knocked out, gives up, or runs (flies, teleports) away. Usually with no real lasting signs of the fight except maybe a torn bit of clothing, cut lip, or a having a hat knocked off their head. That is the big disconnect here.

In the comics a character such as Batman or Captain America is not going to die from a gunshot wound, unless it is a specific  decision made by the writers are part of a narrative story arc, and even then it is a result that will probably be reversed somehow in a later story. This is desite the fact that neither character is bullet proof nor are they actually fast enough to be capable of dodging bullets. In the comics they might get hit once in awhile, but they will survive and eventually recover. In most RPGs, the results are much more open. Someone who isn't bulletproof can potential die in a firefight from a gunshot wound. 

The games that "get it right" from a comics standpoint, are ones like Prince Valiant, where combat is about winning or losing the fight, not about the injuries suffered or the results of those injuries. That make sit much easier for the heroes and villains to survive a fight, if desired by the GM, to continue on.

But the problem isn't one of setting but one of mechanics matching the genre being emulated. You can have a vicious and gritty superhero game, but it won't feel like the genre people were probably trying to emulate when they decided to play a superhero RPG. If the want something with superpowers and a more lethal bent, then most superhero RPGs work fine -- except that the wide differences in character capabilities can easily derail a game when the player character come up against a NPC with an ability that they can't defend against. For example someone with mental powers against a group without strong mental defenses. It's almost impossible to cover all the bases, and high lethality makes any gap a potential Achilles heel. 

 

 

 

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23 minutes ago, Atgxtg said:

But the problem isn't one of setting but one of mechanics matching the genre being emulated.

Well, the setting sets the genre, which is why I'm asking for settings OTHER than the standard Marvel/DC setup where heroes of vastly different power join up and work at the speed of plot. So yeah, NOT what most people assume when they hear you're running a 'supers' game... but something that Superworld would run well once we divest of those assumptions.
I might have to sell it to Players using some other term... gritty urban fantasy ala World of Darkness (which I hear some folks played as a supers game).

Edited by Simlasa

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Gatchaman — Science ninjas in colorful theme uniforms clobber gun-toting costumed goons.  Being ninjas, they don’t necessarily have a code against killing, and their opponents certainly don’t.

Edited by seneschal
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3 hours ago, Simlasa said:

Well, the setting sets the genre,

No it doesn't, that's why there can be various takes and ways to handle a given setting. Alien is a story in the Horror genre placed a Science Fiction Setting.

Yes some settings lend themselves to a particular genre, but they do not set the genre. For instance you can have a fantasy or SCi-Fi genre in a modern setting. Likewise you can tell the same story with the same characters in the same genre all adapted to a different setting. Alien could work as a Horroe genre story even if set in modern day or in the ancient world. 

Quote

which is why I'm asking for settings OTHER than the standard Marvel/DC setup where heroes of vastly different power join up and work at the speed of plot. So yeah, NOT what most people assume when they hear you're running a 'supers' game... but something that Superworld would run well once we divest of those assumptions.

So basically you don't really want a superhero genre, but a setting and story where beings with superhero type powers could exist. Well, frankly any setting could work. It just comes down to how far the GM ants to divert from the expected norms. For example the current movie Brightburn is apparently what would happen in Superman had been evil.

A GM could easily turn something like the King Arthur legend into a superhero story, with Knights having superhero powers. In fact, a case could be made for that being the case already. Many of the earliest heroes such as Kay ans Gawain came from Celtic Legends about warrior heroes and deities with superhuman powers. Gawain was a sun god, which is why his STR was tied to the Sun;s position in the sky (very superhero-ish). Lancelot's invincibility, the Green Knights ability to shrug of decapitation , all that fits into the superpower framework. 

So I think you don't really need a special setting for the Superworld RPG to work mechanically. It's more a case of it being another layer than you could add to an existing setting  to spice it up, or to handle aspects of that setting that are difficult to quantify without superpowers. If you look at any of the suggested alternate setting for Sueprworld, they would all work with teh BRP BGB, or for any very of BRP, if you add a power system or some sort to them. 

Quote

I might have to sell it to Players using some other term... gritty urban fantasy ala World of Darkness (which I hear some folks played as a supers game).

Not a bad way to sell it. If you look at WoD it does exactly what I mentioned above. It takes the modern horror genre (long ago expanded to earlier time periods), adds in role reversal (the PCs are the monsters not the victims/hunters) and adds in a power system. A GM could actually adapt Superworld to WoD if he wanted to.

I think what might be a good approach for this would be for you to figure out what sort of setting you would like to run a campaign in, and what sort of powers you would like to add in and how that would work in Superworld mechanics and go from there. For instance, if you wanted to run a Star Wars game you could grab the basic Sci-fi tech from BRP/FutureWord and use Superworld to represent the various Force Powers. So you got a lot of possibilities. 

Edited by Atgxtg

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There's been a spate of supers-ish TV shows, of late; some explicitly supers-ish, some more fantasy-esque.  Heroes springs to mind.  Supernatural, Grimm, Lost Girl.

There's already a Buffy'verse RPG, but they often share the ultra-tough problem.  Dresden Files also has a RPG, but at least mortals are, well, mortal!  Just because a setting already has an "official" game doesn't mean you cannot run that setting at your own table in a BRP version...

As noted, much WoD/CoD can be played as "Supers with Fangs."  Werewolf is arguably "furry eco-supers" by default (granted, there are other defaults possible).  MANY fantasy settings can be read as "supers" and vice versa (Marvel 1602, anyone?)

But you know what /I/ would like to see in this genre?  May's Pliocene Exile / Galactic Milieu setting!!!

Make it so.

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3 hours ago, Atgxtg said:

The latter issue probably applies more to other versions of BRP than to Superworld. At least the full boxed set version, which did tone downt he lethalbity a bit

 

Hey Atgxtg can you give an example about how the games lethal aspects were toned down? Maybe you mean the stun mechanic. Just trying to refresh my memory!

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1 hour ago, Atgxtg said:

No it doesn't, that's why there can be various takes and ways to handle a given setting. Alien is a story in the Horror genre placed a Science Fiction Setting.

I guess I'm thinking 'setting' as what elements are included or left out of the actual story. So having the 'xenomorphs' on stage in Alien made it horror... they're a part of the setting.
But if there are no xenomorphs on stage, or mentioned in the script, then it's a different thing. Like how Outland could very well be in the same universe... but its setting (no xenomorphs) puts it in a different genre.
Not that I mean to argue semantics... just explaining my line of thought.

As an aside, I was just watching the first few episodes of Star Trek TOS and I noticed that both the second and third episode (as broadcast in the U.S.) featured humans who took on godlike powers (and were pretty much monsters because of it)... so there's that approach as well, having the supers be the villains the mundane PCs must confront... which sounds like it might be a variation on CoC.

Edited by Simlasa

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43 minutes ago, rsanford said:

Hey Atgxtg can you give an example about how the games lethal aspects were toned down? Maybe you mean the stun mechanic. Just trying to refresh my memory!

Sure

For starters you have something with the stun mechanic, but it is the fundenmental difference in what hit points represent and how damage works and is recovered that is the big thing.

it has multiple effects. Hit Points in Superworld (Boxed Set, not the WoW version) were the measure of how much damage a character could take before suffering serious injury and requring medical attention. That is very different than most other BRP based RPGs where Hit Points represent the amount of damage a character can take before dying. A ten point wound, through armor in most versions of BRP are either fatal injuries, disabling limbs, or major wounds. 

Then there is the Permanent Damage threshold. That meant that a character could take a bounce back from quite a lot of damage before it "counted" the way it does in other BRP games. If a character takes ten points of Damage in CoC, or RQ, they probably have some serious injuries and will take weeks or months to heal up barring magical healing or some such. In Superworld the character can easily heal that up over the time it takes to drink a cup of coffee. 

Then there is the Unconsciousness rules. Since character reduced to zero hit points are knocked unconscious, they are out of the fight, and so don't need to be attacked again until they take lethal injury. Since in most BRP games the line between incapacitating and lethal attack is a hard one to tight walk this makes Superworld much less lethal, and thus more superheroic.

Overall the effect is that characters can be defeated in combat with a much lower chance of actually killing them or even inflicting a lot of permanent damage. An unarmored character with 12 HP who takes a 14 point shotgun blast in CoC or BRPG BGB is almost certainly dead, baring magic or some such. That same character in Superworld in just knocked out of the fight and will wake up shortly with the wind knocked out of them and be bruised and down 2 hit points for the next week or two. 

 

 

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12 minutes ago, Simlasa said:

I guess I'm thinking 'setting' as what elements are included or left out of the actual story. So having the 'xenomorphs' on stage in Alien made it horror... they're a part of the setting.
But if there are no xenomorphs on stage, or mentioned in the script, then it's a different thing. Like how Outland could very well be in the same universe... but its setting (no xenomorphs) puts it in a different genre.
Not that I mean to argue semantics... just explaining my line of thought.

Okay it does just sound like a difference between how we use the terms setting, genre and such. You see I don't consider the 'xenomorphs'  in Alien to be part of the setting, anymore that I consider Dracula to be part of the setting of Victorian Great Britain. 

Whatever way you define it, the point is that you can take a setting/story/theme/genre/whatever and add elements from another, in this case  superpowers, to it to create a new setting/story/etc. WoD did this a lot with the various supernatural beings by dropping them into historical times and events but in a way that they kept under the radar so as to not overtly change the world from what we normally view it to be like. 

12 minutes ago, Simlasa said:

As an aside, I was just watching the first few episodes of Star Trek TOS and I noticed that both the second and third episode (as broadcast in the U.S.) featured humans who took on godlike powers (and were pretty much monsters because of it)... so there's that approach as well, having the supers be the villains the mundane PCs must confront... which sounds like it might be a variation on CoC.

 I suspect you are referring to "Where No Man Has Gone Before" the second pilot and "Charlie X", the order of episodes for TOS is a bit tricky as the production order and the Broadcast Order were different, both because the original Pilot was (mostly) drooped from the series and because episodes were aired mostly in the order that the special effects were finished. While the effects might not seem that great by todays standards, TOS used special effects to a much greater degree than other TV shows until then, and they had a lot of trouble getting all the effects finished in time. In fact the main reason why the original Pilot, "The Cage" was eventually reworked into the series as the two-part "Menagerie" was to give them a cushion for when the series would eventually miss a deadline due to the delays in finishing the optical ("special) effects.

But, assuming we mean the same episodes then yes, that is the basic approach, at least from a story point of view.. Only in both instances the situation is a bit more complex because the in both cases the antagonists are really villains. Gary Mitchel is mutating into something so powerful and so different from humanity that he no longer cares about humans, combined with all the flaws an insecurities that come from his once having been and still mostly thinking like a human. This is compounded by his power growing faster than he can learn to deal with them. Chalrie Evans is the case of a teenager who is far more powerful that the adults who would normally be able to discipline, teach and help him. 

On the other hand, both characters exhibit powers that are not easily quantifiable in Superworld terms. In both cases they are probably too powerful to use in a game as there is really no way for the PCs to defeat them. Gary, who is somehow capable of absorbing the massive energy output of a phaser is somehow crushed by a (big) rock, which seems a bit unlikely. Charlie is only stopped because his even more powerful Alien guardians show up and "send him to his room". The "Squire of Gothos"" if a fairly similar story, except that it isn't quite as obvious about it.  

But basically you can take any sort of story and introduce superpowers to a certain degree and get something. Look at Highlander.

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50 minutes ago, Atgxtg said:

On the other hand, both characters exhibit powers that are not easily quantifiable in Superworld terms. In both cases they are probably too powerful to use in a game as there is really no way for the PCs to defeat them.

Yeah, I only referred to them for their concept of humans who are turned to monsters by how their powers separate them from humanity... as a possible twist on the usual PCs as supers. Scanners  would/could work in a similar fashion if the PCs (mostly?) were non-Scanners hunting down the psychic renegades.


I'm not so much trying to settle on something for myself, just pondering what alternative sorts of settings might make good use of Superworld.

Edited by Simlasa

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I used SuperWorld for my very short Thatcher's Britain campaign and found it didn't really suit what I was aiming for.

For me, having Characteristics completely ruins a Supers game. If someone has a high POW with mind-affecting powers, they just trash any PCs, unless the PCs have a high POW themselves. Same with STR, someone can be super-strong, which gives them a large Damage Bonus which means they can smash things, that's fine, but if you say "My PC can smash through a concrete wall" then the GM must work out what damage needs to be done, work out a reasonable Damage Bonus and then work out a reasonable STR, which is likely to be very high indeed.

I much prefer something like HeroQuest for Supers, as all those problems go away. You get new problems, but hey-ho!

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2 hours ago, soltakss said:

For me, having Characteristics completely ruins a Supers game. If someone has a high POW with mind-affecting powers, they just trash any PCs, unless the PCs have a high POW themselves.

That is the inherent problem with an extreme variance in ability and scale. It's not really a Characteristic problem though, but one of relative ability and scale. You get the same sort of thing with a wide variance with powers or even skills. Look at Harrak the Berserk in RQ. He abilities are so extreme in RQ terms that normal RQ characters really can't compete with him, and it's not just because of his Characteristics. 

2 hours ago, soltakss said:

 

Same with STR, someone can be super-strong, which gives them a large Damage Bonus which means they can smash things, that's fine, but if you say "My PC can smash through a concrete wall" then the GM must work out what damage needs to be done, work out a reasonable Damage Bonus and then work out a reasonable STR, which is likely to be very high indeed.

I find the ability to rate things using real world data that can be measured and kept consistent to be a blessing, not a bane. For isntace, I find it much easier to be able to determine the Hulk's STR based on how much he can lift and the SIZ table that by just making up some number off the top of my head. Especially if I need to have SR scores for other characters and want them to make sense relative to each other. 

2 hours ago, soltakss said:

I much prefer something like HeroQuest for Supers, as all those problems go away. You get new problems, but hey-ho!

I don't think the do go away, they just shift. For instance you still need to assign relative ability scores, and you can still have situations where one side completely outclasses the other to the point where one side has no chance of success. The difference is mainly that the players and even the GM are limited in how the can usually rate abilities to prevent the values getting beyond the range where they can interact with each other, which, btw, is also much wider than in RQ. For instance in RQ/BRP, a difference of 10 points or more  in a characteristic is essentially unbeatable, while in HQ (back when HQ was HW and had some characteristics), you needed a difference of several masteries for that to happen. With newer version of HQ, where challenges are rated relative to the PC you can't get such a variance so high that the PC has no chance of winning in a contest. 

So the problem is really not one with characteristics but with the relatively small (and probably more realistic) scale that characteristics can oppose each other at in standard BRP games, especially compared to skill scores. A character with a 50% skill fighting someone with a 100% skill stands a much better chance of winning that someone with a 10 Attribute opposing someone with a 20 Attribute.

If you look at most Superhero RPGs, they tend to have very condensed attribute scaling to allow for that. Spiderman has a much better chance against the Hulk in terms of STR in most MArvel Super Heroes RPGs that he would in Superworld because of the scale used to rate STR in Superworld.

I have messed around with a scale that was base10 logarithmic and set the die roll directly off of the characteristic. For example STR 10 would roll 1d20, STR 15 would roll 1D20+1d10, STR 20 would roll 2d20 and so forth. This gave a much wider ranger where an opposed roll was still feasible.

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7 hours ago, Simlasa said:

I'm not so much trying to settle on something for myself, just pondering what alternative sorts of settings might make good use of Superworld.

Well, let's See Higherlander, and Star Wars both come to mind. But I think it depends on just how much of Superworld you want to use. If you want to use all of it, then you probably do wind up with something more like WildCards (no surprise) unless you already have a strong fraework in place to attach it to. 

It's like how all old A&D setting felt and played basically the same, despite the setting (Generic D&D world,Greyhawk, Llankmar, Ancient Rome, Charlemagne's France, etc.) becuase the rules were the same and the logic of the game mechanics tended to support the same style of play. 

So it kinda works out to what style of play do the rules support and/or how can the rules be adapted to a different style of play. I think the former would be much like Wildcards, basically a somewhat more realistic Superhero setting (because Superworld is somewhat more realistic than most other Superhero RPGs), while the latter is literally anything that a clever GM could shoehorn the Superworld mechanics into (or, unfortunately, the reverse).  

 

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Superheroics are very flexible in terms of genre since the comics blended science fiction, fantasy, horror and detective stories and poured the mixture into a colorful costume.  Since the source material incorporates so many elements, it isn’t a big deal for your average hero to battle gangsters one issue, bug-eyed saucer men the next, then hop through time to give King Arthur an assist in Issue No. 3.  And while most supers fight crime and injustice in the modern day (whether that’s the 1930s or the 2020s), it isn’t a stretch to put them in the far future (Space Ghost), the distant past (Mighty Mightor), or the medieval Mid-East (The Arabian Knights).

But in role-playing games, game mechanics matter.  The rules determine what kind of characters a player can create, what abilities that character can have, and what results a player can expect from a fight.  That, in turn, influences the tactics a player will use and the tone of the game.  Hence the the OP’s creation of this thread.

Champions does a good job of modeling superheroic brawls, where characters get knocked all over the place, property damage ensues, but most fights won’t end in death or even serious injury.  Heroes are just tougher than average folks, and it is generally safe ( if not wise) to wade into combat.  Villains & Vigilantes, Heroes Unlimited, and to an extent Superworld present players with a different paradigm.  Characters are essentially normals with powers.  They can do cool stuff but are mostly as fragile as anyone else.  Given these game mechanics, heroes will tend to act more like a SWAT team, sneaking around maneuvering for advantage, seeking to strike first and strike hard.  Both play styles can be fun, neither is wrong, but tactics and tone will be different.  If Larry pokes Curly in the eyes and bops him on the head in a game system with good non-lethal combat mechanics, its comedy.  If he does the same thing in most BRP variants (or in Classic Traveller), he’s just committed murder.

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Yup, that's about it. Although V&V characters, at least in V&V 2E were not that fragile because the game had a rule where a character could "roll with a punch" and take some of the damage to their power points.

It's also why the way Superworld handled damage worked for comics.  If Larry hits Curry enough, Curry gets KO'd for a bit, Larry stops, the story continues on., and the player running Curly doesn't need to roll up Shemp.

 

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13 hours ago, Atgxtg said:

months

 

13 hours ago, Atgxtg said:

Sure

For starters you have something with the stun mechanic, but it is the fundenmental difference in what hit points represent and how damage works and is recovered that is the big thing.

it has multiple effects. Hit Points in Superworld (Boxed Set, not the WoW version) were the measure of how much damage a character could take before suffering serious injury and requring medical attention. That is very different than most other BRP based RPGs where Hit Points represent the amount of damage a character can take before dying. A ten point wound, through armor in most versions of BRP are either fatal injuries, disabling limbs, or major wounds. 

Then there is the Permanent Damage threshold. That meant that a character could take a bounce back from quite a lot of damage before it "counted" the way it does in other BRP games. If a character takes ten points of Damage in CoC, or RQ, they probably have some serious injuries and will take weeks or months to heal up barring magical healing or some such. In Superworld the character can easily heal that up over the time it takes to drink a cup of coffee. 

Then there is the Unconsciousness rules. Since character reduced to zero hit points are knocked unconscious, they are out of the fight, and so don't need to be attacked again until they take lethal injury. Since in most BRP games the line between incapacitating and lethal attack is a hard one to tight walk this makes Superworld much less lethal, and thus more superheroic.

Overall the effect is that characters can be defeated in combat with a much lower chance of actually killing them or even inflicting a lot of permanent damage. An unarmored character with 12 HP who takes a 14 point shotgun blast in CoC or BRPG BGB is almost certainly dead, baring magic or some such. That same character in Superworld in just knocked out of the fight and will wake up shortly with the wind knocked out of them and be bruised and down 2 hit points for the next week or two. 

 

 

Thanks! I think I am going to find my PDF and do some catch up reading.

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Forgive me if it has been mentioned and I missed it, but I would think the MCU might be a place where traditional comics meet lethal results. They are not shy about killing red shirts and rank n file villains as well as several of the bad guys. And some good guys too.  Some kind of Asgardian saga might fit the bill of Space Opera. 

Just a thought.

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1 hour ago, Sean_RDP said:

Forgive me if it has been mentioned and I missed it, but I would think the MCU might be a place where traditional comics meet lethal results. They are not shy about killing red shirts and rank n file villains as well as several of the bad guys. And some good guys too.  Some kind of Asgardian saga might fit the bill of Space Opera. 

Just a thought.

Yup, and you have a point too. That is partly because of the shift in comics to be darker. The MCU has even permanently (so far) killed off major heroes too, although I suspect the latter is more due to the casting issues that come with A list actors and blockbusters. Tony Stark doesn't cost anything, but Robert Downy Jr. does.  

I think Superworld (boxed set) also works for four-color comics Marvel, too, with a few restrictions - mainly that some of the more high powered characters are probably pulling their punches at times to reflect how many times normal or near normal people get hit by very powerful characters and survive. 

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The DC Animated Universe had to be careful with lethality and built that into the characters as well. Superman always managed his actions to never hit anyone at his full strength. The famous "World of Cardboard" quote was from the DCAU.

It is an interesting comment that provides insight into playing Superworld. Characters who don't want to kill anybody, ever (whether out of deep conviction or fear of negative consequences if they do) will have to cautiously assess their moves and keep up their self-control. If a hero like Superman or the Flash doesn't have razor-sharp focus and perfect self-control, the result is death and destruction on a massive scale (Flash should, logically, be killing dozens of people every time he runs at full speed, which suggests he is always toning it down or has found some way to reduce the side-effects in the environment.)

That could be part of the point of the campaign, actually. The superheroes are either super-careful and occasionally forced into situations where they MUST take off the kid gloves, or they don't care and become a threat to everybody they can reach (the plot of The Boys seems to center around this concept, where government-sponsored heroes must be stopped, and possibly even killed off, before their powers destroy the world).

 

Edited by Michael Hopcroft

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