Sunday, March 25, 2018


I am working on big-picture edits. I have gone through and removed all references to level modifier, using level (scaled at 1-6) for the default modifier for AC, Feats, Attacks, and modifiers to various power ratings. That cleaned things up nicely.

Now, I'm on to checks. I went back and forth (and back... and forth... and back again) about how checks would work when I wrote the original rules. I decided (and the rules currently represent) that there are only two check ratings: 20 for standard actions and 30 for super actions. Everything else becomes a modifier to the check. Your target is always 20 or 30, but you can add or subtract several things to modify the roll to see if you hit that target.

I like it, but I don't like it. The alternative is that there are variable targets for checks, based on the situation. It really is an issue of semantics (the math works out the same either way) but - now that I'm reading the book a bit more holistically and not in the granular way of a later edit - this just feels heavier than it needs to be. To say that something is target 27 to accomplish is cleaner than saying that it is target 30, but you get a +3 modifier to the roll. Also, this doesn't align with the basic way combat works: all targets in combat are variable; each foe you face has a different Armor Class. It's not like there's one armor class rating for everyone, and you take a modifier to your attack, which is further modified by the foe's AC adjustment.

The problem is further complicated by the idea that the range of -4 to +4 to a check leaves a weird little spot between high end standard actions (which are target 24) and low-end super actions (which are target 26). This means that, mechanically, the difference between lifting a dirt bike and an armored car is 2 points... hrm.

What about this as a scale? (with an example weights, and for the Hulk's chances with STR 24)

16 - Simple Standard Check (lifting 50 lbs; succeeds unless a 1 is rolled)
20 - Standard Check (lifting 200 lbs; succeeds unless a 1 is rolled)
24 - Complex Standard Check (lifting 1,000 lbs; succeeds unless a 1 is rolled)
28 - Simple Super Check (lifting 10 tons; needs 4 or better on the die)
32 - Standard Super Check (lifting 50 tons; needs 8 or better on the die)
36 - Complex Standard Check (lifting 200 tons; needs 12 or better on the die)

This moves the center target for a super check up a little, but streamlines the whole thing and gets rid of that annoying bump in the middle. This also allows for a more complex table of targets (if desired) that scales the whole thing out. I think that the GM section has both... a table that spells out each of the 20 points along the continuum, with the recommended benchmarks (for most situations) highlighted. In effect, some GMs can say "well, that car weighs 2 to 3 tons, so it's a 27 target" while in another game, the GM says "it's a car: simple super check, target 28". This requires a considerable language edit, but I think it is worth it for clarity. It's a relatively small difference, but it can either help you make your game more granular or a bit simpler, depending on how you want to run things. 26 becomes the magic number. If something is target 26 or higher, only a character with a rating of 14 or better can attempt it, since it requires superhuman ability (although a Resolve point would allow you to bypass that rule... I was thinking about Captain America holding a helicopter in place in Civil War... no way does a character with STR 13 do that, but Cap is burning through Resolve like it's the end of his world... because, you know... it kind of is.).

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