Author Topic: The Heroes of New Arcadia - RPPR Superheroes campaign - Wild Talents  (Read 285425 times)

Charlie72

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Re: The next big RPPR campaign - what will it be?
« Reply #15 on: December 18, 2010, 09:39:39 PM »
Have you thought about "poser" superhumans? People who use smoke and mirrors to make it look like they have superpowers.

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Re: The next big RPPR campaign - what will it be?
« Reply #16 on: December 18, 2010, 09:42:00 PM »
One of my favorite ideas for a 'secret identity' for a superhero would actually be a stage magician. Everyone knows it's fake, people love sorting out how it works - who would believe that person could really do something crazy?

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Re: The next big RPPR campaign - what will it be?
« Reply #17 on: December 18, 2010, 10:39:41 PM »
what indie/underground movement is complete without poseurs?

I also picture vigilante groups of 'normal' people that hunt down and execute everyone with powers they can find.


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Re: The next big RPPR campaign - what will it be?
« Reply #18 on: December 19, 2010, 12:37:03 AM »
I've a question Ross, I've noticed you don't run many mutants and Mastermind games, and recall a bit of an argument with RJ about it, the only one's i recall were, as you said watchmen inspired, And while i like watchmen, i didn't care as much about those games, plus i think they were at conventions, and my bad hearing couldn't get me through them.

Is there a reason you don't seem to run the straight up super hero games, with a random power generation origin for each character? (I don't even know if that exists but it should, one person gets heat vision the other gets....a third arm growing out of his belly, another person rolls and gets no powers, or ends up being the vessel for a demon, or angel)

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Re: The next big RPPR campaign - what will it be?
« Reply #19 on: December 19, 2010, 02:54:06 AM »
I've a question Ross, I've noticed you don't run many mutants and Mastermind games, and recall a bit of an argument with RJ about it, the only one's i recall were, as you said watchmen inspired, And while i like watchmen, i didn't care as much about those games, plus i think they were at conventions, and my bad hearing couldn't get me through them.

Is there a reason you don't seem to run the straight up super hero games, with a random power generation origin for each character? (I don't even know if that exists but it should, one person gets heat vision the other gets....a third arm growing out of his belly, another person rolls and gets no powers, or ends up being the vessel for a demon, or angel)



What is a 'straight up' super hero game? There are so many superhero subgenres that I don't know what you mean by that.

Random power generation isn't a feature of any popular superhero game out right now. I don't see how you could have a long campaign with random powers.

iceemaker

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Re: The next big RPPR campaign - what will it be?
« Reply #20 on: December 19, 2010, 03:15:07 AM »
Gamma World is really the only system/supplementary set of rules designed around random character generation. It's generally understood, I feel, that superpowers manifest at random - it's just that you, the player, can select what you would like to play - Instead of getting stuck with Shark Boy or Lava Girl or something.

While the premise for this campaign sounds awesome, I'm not too crazy about superhero mythos as a whole. Just personal preference, I suppose. As long as you guys have fun together.
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Re: The next big RPPR campaign - what will it be?
« Reply #21 on: December 19, 2010, 08:40:09 AM »
1. The price of power - superhuman power has an incredible cost - how far will you go? What will you do with this power that justifies the cost?


I hope you're going to explore more than just material costs. After all, you know who'd I'd play if I were in the game. And when the whores and politicians of your game world looked up and shouted "save us," I would still whisper "no."
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Re: The next big RPPR campaign - what will it be?
« Reply #22 on: December 19, 2010, 10:18:16 AM »
1. The price of power - superhuman power has an incredible cost - how far will you go? What will you do with this power that justifies the cost?


I hope you're going to explore more than just material costs. After all, you know who'd I'd play if I were in the game. And when the whores and politicians of your game world looked up and shouted "save us," I would still whisper "no."

My friend took a fiction writing class this past quarter and someone wrote the worst Rorschach rip-off story.  His catch-phrase was "Swift death TO Evil In all it's Forms" (I capitalized random letters since that's what he did).  He also had a handgun (can't recall the type at the moment) but it was a heavy caliber one and had a silencer for it (i.e. made absolutely no sense to have a silencer).  But the two best parts: first he had a custom Smith and Weston .45 caliber revolver with custom special shotgun attache (yes we realized that this made no sense, it made even less sense the way he wrote it); he lamented at one point, "How can I compete with the brainy, and the brawny, and the brainy-brawny?" for the affection of his desired.  If I knew more about intellectual property right and whatnot, I wouldn't be so reluctant to share more.

Oh, the plot was essentially him stalking a couple and wanting to kill them because they reminded him of when he was with the love interest before she was killed by a druggie or something...

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Re: The next big RPPR campaign - what will it be?
« Reply #23 on: December 19, 2010, 10:18:47 AM »
I've a question Ross, I've noticed you don't run many mutants and Mastermind games, and recall a bit of an argument with RJ about it, the only one's i recall were, as you said watchmen inspired, And while i like watchmen, i didn't care as much about those games, plus i think they were at conventions, and my bad hearing couldn't get me through them.

Is there a reason you don't seem to run the straight up super hero games, with a random power generation origin for each character? (I don't even know if that exists but it should, one person gets heat vision the other gets....a third arm growing out of his belly, another person rolls and gets no powers, or ends up being the vessel for a demon, or angel)



What is a 'straight up' super hero game? There are so many superhero subgenres that I don't know what you mean by that.

Random power generation isn't a feature of any popular superhero game out right now. I don't see how you could have a long campaign with random powers.

Yeah, random powers are ass. Hooray for a guy in an iron man suit that can control his own body temperature and change the colors of things in a room. Fucking Rolemaster....

However, I am a big fan of life path generating like in Mechwarrior or the current suite of Warhammer 40k games from Fantasy Flight. I like creating my own character's background but I think that it's also fun to generate their backstory to help you get into the shoes of the character and start the game with some already existing information to motivate the character.
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Re: The next big RPPR campaign - what will it be?
« Reply #24 on: December 19, 2010, 10:50:06 AM »
1. The price of power - superhuman power has an incredible cost - how far will you go? What will you do with this power that justifies the cost?


I hope you're going to explore more than just material costs. After all, you know who'd I'd play if I were in the game. And when the whores and politicians of your game world looked up and shouted "save us," I would still whisper "no."

My friend took a fiction writing class this past quarter and someone wrote the worst Rorschach rip-off story.  His catch-phrase was "Swift death TO Evil In all it's Forms" (I capitalized random letters since that's what he did).  He also had a handgun (can't recall the type at the moment) but it was a heavy caliber one and had a silencer for it (i.e. made absolutely no sense to have a silencer).  But the two best parts: first he had a custom Smith and Weston .45 caliber revolver with custom special shotgun attache (yes we realized that this made no sense, it made even less sense the way he wrote it); he lamented at one point, "How can I compete with the brainy, and the brawny, and the brainy-brawny?" for the affection of his desired.  If I knew more about intellectual property right and whatnot, I wouldn't be so reluctant to share more.

Oh, the plot was essentially him stalking a couple and wanting to kill them because they reminded him of when he was with the love interest before she was killed by a druggie or something...

Convince your friend to let us record the story as part of the fanfic series and I'll voice it.
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Charlie72

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Re: The next big RPPR campaign - what will it be?
« Reply #25 on: December 19, 2010, 11:12:19 AM »
I've a question Ross, I've noticed you don't run many mutants and Mastermind games, and recall a bit of an argument with RJ about it, the only one's i recall were, as you said watchmen inspired, And while i like watchmen, i didn't care as much about those games, plus i think they were at conventions, and my bad hearing couldn't get me through them.

Is there a reason you don't seem to run the straight up super hero games, with a random power generation origin for each character? (I don't even know if that exists but it should, one person gets heat vision the other gets....a third arm growing out of his belly, another person rolls and gets no powers, or ends up being the vessel for a demon, or angel)




What is a 'straight up' super hero game? There are so many superhero subgenres that I don't know what you mean by that.

Random power generation isn't a feature of any popular superhero game out right now. I don't see how you could have a long campaign with random powers.
I think Heroes Unlimited had random powers.

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Re: The next big RPPR campaign - what will it be?
« Reply #26 on: December 19, 2010, 11:20:58 AM »
Hi, forum folk.  This is Caleb from the AP's. I'm learnin' how to use this new-fangled computer thing.

If we go the Wild Talents route, I've already talked some with Ross and Cody.  I think it is important to have some sort of hook that gets the whole party adventuring together.  Otherwise, it'll just be a whole bunch of PC superhero fights without the team-up at the end.  Here's what I've brought up and what I've heard.

1.  "Birds of Prey"
Cody brought up that if we try to localize the game in a single city, there could be an NPC character that brings the characters together ala "the Oracle."  Some generalized cyber clubhouse would become the base of operations, but the agenda could still be decided by the group beforehand (i.e. We must...save the world/fight for justice/revolt/profit/just survive/etc.)  On the plus side, PC's get an instant party agenda with which to progress the story.  On the down side, the "voice in the radio" mechanic could become a bit to linear, railroad-y, and video game-ish.

2.  DIY Transhumanism
The thing I like most about Ross's idea is that even though the superpowers have gone "global," they are still fundamentally garage-band endeavors.  It reminds me of Etsy: let's use the power of global communication so I can make a living by sitting at home and sewing dolls together out of discarded buttons and yarn.  The global explosion of technology is utilized for localized action.  That seems to me the definition of superhero stories; massive, wide-ranging powers limited either by self-interest or the basic shortcomings of humanity.

So my idea was that after everyone roles characters, the PC's role up one last character: the city itself.  Each party member gets a borough or neighborhood as his/her "turf."  They design the feel of each neighborhood: architecture, population, transportation, history, etc.  The city's primary landmarks hover on the borders of each neighborhood, which would encourage the PC's to give the city some sort of overall theme.

This way, each "hero" gets a certain neighborhood to "patrol" that is most directly affected by their actions.  The city as a whole can be affected as well, but everyone will know that Old Town is where "THE PLATYPUS" reigns supreme, or whatever.  The upside of this mechanic is that everyone gets a very personalized origin story, everyone is instantly invested in the story through a individualized setting of their own design, and it still provides a hook for group action in that occasionally characters must ban together to stop larger threats (whilst still serving self-interest).  Also, where did the DM's character go? Oh, there was a bank robbery in __________.  The downside is that this mechanic is VERY traditional superteam stuff, and this much room provided for character individualism could lead to party disunity in extreme cases (i.e. Go ahead and blow up my neighborhood; I wanted to move anyway).

3. Superheroic Tomb Raiding
Ross's hook that new superheroism is derived from the remnants of the old Greats is really intriguing.  The common party interest could eschew localization entirely.  The group's main goal could just be to find and excavate the leftover transhuman weapon caches yet to be pillaged all over the world.  What they did with what was discovered would be up to the PC's.  Do they want to make super-powers open-source and just dump it all on the internet, Wikileaks-style?  In that case, the government is going to be sending Pinioned after them.  Do they want to profit financially, or supplement their own powers?  In that case, there is going to be fierce competition against other groups and a loss of their own humanity.  Do they want to archive these rare items and bits of knowledge for a day humanity might be ready for them?  If so, the same pirate factions will be displeased and the group will have to face its own hypocrisy at some point.  Do they just want to solve the mystery of what happened the night the sky lit up?  To me, this is most interesting goal, as the thread of what happened leading up to the night of the alien invasion is a mystery the whole campaign could center around. 

Upside to this last one would be the opportunity to write two superhero continuum's at once: the events before the blast and the societal aftermath.  There would also be a whole lot more variety, both in locales and type of play (investigative, combat, persuasive, transportive, etc).  But the upsides are also downsides, as that is a lot of world-building to put on the shoulders of the GM and players.  Furthermore, just how do these characters get into this global secret society?  They are, after all, just low-level superhero wannabe's at the start.  And how do they fund their endeavors on a global scale if they have any motivation other that just pure profit?

Anyway, I'm just thinking aloud here.  Interested to hear what y'all have to say.

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Re: The next big RPPR campaign - what will it be?
« Reply #27 on: December 19, 2010, 11:33:35 AM »
I think Heroes Unlimited had random powers.

It also had the super power of "Clock Manipulation".  You could manipulate a clock - not Time, but a clock - with YOUR MIND.

Heroes Unlimited had some silly parts, but the Century Station campaign that went with it kicked plenty of ass. Caleb's comments about superheroes with turfs and "after the bomb" scenarios remind me of Century Station very much.

If you can find a copy somewhere, I highly recommend it, even if all you want are some NPC supers to throw at the party. Even better, you could use Century Station in combination with a legitimate superhero system like Wild Talents or M&M.

EDIT: Sorry to hate on HU so much, but it really is silly sometimes. The last character I played in that system had a submersible monster truck and a bulletproof vest.
« Last Edit: December 19, 2010, 11:37:35 AM by Seejo Crux »

Robot Master

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Re: The next big RPPR campaign - what will it be?
« Reply #28 on: December 19, 2010, 11:37:38 AM »
I don't know exactly how relevant this is to Ross' idea but I'll just throw this out there.

I play a lot of superhero RPGs with my group. We're moving on from M&M 2nd ed to the new DC Heroes game shortly. I've never personally played Wild Talents so I'm not very learned in how their character generation works. In my opinion all superhero games balance or fall out of balance based on determining what the overall scale of the game is going to be. So, Cody, your mention of city scale brought this forward to the front of my mind...

I think for any superhero game to really work you have to determine the scale(or power level) that the players are going to be dealing with. Is it going to be a "street level" game with costumed crimefighters or is it going to be a game where threats against Earth as a whole are thwarted by the heroes? Then you have to determine who the heroes are fighting against and how powerful the villains are going to be. That way you don't end up with Chucky McStew (the skateboarder that knows a lot about investigation) versus Magneto. This is important because it'll make sure your characters know ahead of time just how much "kick" they want their character to have. This'll help determine everything when putting together plots, villains, side missions, and maintaining some degree of difficulty for the players.

Also, super hero gaming SUCKS when everyone makes "Street Level" characters and then one asshole makes a cosmic powered Dr. Manhattan kind of character that can take care of everything while all of the other characters eat bagels and pick their noses.

So my advice is to determine this...and then everything else falls into place.

@Charlie/Seejo - That's what it was, Heroes Unlimited. I remember the last time I played that I was just out of high school and this guy in the group had a flying Humvee that could go into hell, and the driver could control his body temperature. The character and mine got into an argument because I pointed out that if this (controllingbodytemp) was true, then why was the air conditioning on in the car...
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Me: (slowly raise eyebrow) "Destroy the Earth? That would be...illogical"
Vortex: "Yes...that...would be...highly...illogical."
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joecrak

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Re: The next big RPPR campaign - what will it be?
« Reply #29 on: December 19, 2010, 12:04:48 PM »
I've a question Ross, I've noticed you don't run many mutants and Mastermind games, and recall a bit of an argument with RJ about it, the only one's i recall were, as you said watchmen inspired, And while i like watchmen, i didn't care as much about those games, plus i think they were at conventions, and my bad hearing couldn't get me through them.

Is there a reason you don't seem to run the straight up super hero games, with a random power generation origin for each character? (I don't even know if that exists but it should, one person gets heat vision the other gets....a third arm growing out of his belly, another person rolls and gets no powers, or ends up being the vessel for a demon, or angel)



What is a 'straight up' super hero game? There are so many superhero subgenres that I don't know what you mean by that.

Random power generation isn't a feature of any popular superhero game out right now. I don't see how you could have a long campaign with random powers.

I guess when i say 'straight up' I'm thinking about the basic hero teams vs super villain teams, like Justice League vs Legion of doom style, over the top flashy powers type stuff. I agree there are tons of sub-genre's, but the first thing i think of when i hear super-heroes, is the flashy fun fights of comics.

I'm sure this game will be great as it obviously sounds awesome, but I was merely wondering why it seemed to me, you never ran any of what I considered "basic" super-hero games. Obviously, my opinion could be vastly different than anyone's.

I guess i can see the downside of random powers, but part of me just thinks it wou8ld be fun to try, maybe not for a full campaign, but at least for a short story. It appeals to me like the Wild Magic table from 2e, where you could get something really awesome, or you could get the ability to communicate with condiments (i doubt mustard has much to say anyway).  Though there is the obvious BMX Bandit/Angel Summoner threat, with certain characters having the possibility of being utterly useless.  Like the Morlocks from x-men.  It's a tough thing to pull off i guess.
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