[19:03] <+darrenwatts> Hey all! I’m Darren Watts, former President/Owner of both Hero Games (Champions, etc.) and Indie Press Revolution! I’m out of the owning things business these days, and am freelancing for several game lines including Doctor Who, Masks and Era.
[19:04] <+darrenwatts> I am late in the Kickstarter for another new project, Golden Age Champions. It’s the rpg of punching Hitler in the face, which I think everybody can agree is the funnest thing you can do at the table.
[19:05] <+darrenwatts> It closes Thursday, and I hope you’ll check it out and support us! I can answer any questions you have about it, or pretty much anything else I’ve worked on or will be working on.
[19:06] <+darrenwatts> (done)
[19:06] <~Dan> Thanks, darrenwatts!
[19:06] <~Dan> The floor is open to questions!
[19:06] <~Dan> Is this a self-contained game, or does it require Champions?
[19:07] <+darrenwatts> I ran GAC at U-Con this weekend, where instead of punching Hitler they dropped a UFO on him, so that works too.
[19:07] <~Dan> Heh. 🙂
[19:07] <+darrenwatts> It does require Champions, or Savage Worlds or M&M (character sheets are provided in all three systems.) Not a stand-alone.
[19:08] <~Dan> Interesting. How difficult was it to write for three very different systems?
[19:08] <+darrenwatts> Champions is my first love, and the text includes system-specific discussion of genre material for it. The translations were done with help from others after the fact.
[19:09] <+darrenwatts> I know SW reasonable well, but this is my first time messing around with M&M. In both cases we brought in experts.
[19:09] * ~Dan nods
[19:10] <~Dan> Did you create any new rules for any of them?
[19:11] <+darrenwatts> No, but in grand tradition I talk extensively about changing the “settings” of Hero to reflect the genre. I changed the Super Archetypes to fit the Golden Age, for example.
[19:11] <~Dan> Can you give some examples?
[19:11] <+darrenwatts> The rules can accommodate the genre tropes just fine, once you’ve established what they actually are.
[19:13] <+darrenwatts> Well, some are period specific. There’s no powered armor heroes, because that’s a fictional trope you kind of need Heinlein for. Martial Artists are recast into Mystery Men, because western pop culture didn’t really “get” Asian martial arts in any sort of accurate sense.
[19:14] <+darrenwatts> Mentalists exist, but they’re almost always villains or the sort of “scary hero” like the Shadow or the Spectre. The Professor X/Saturn Girl model of psychic isn’t a trope yet.
[19:14] <+darrenwatts> And we add new archetypes, like the Boy In Charge or the Anachronistic Lawman.
[19:14] <+darrenwatts> (done)
[19:15] <~Dan> What are they?
[19:15] <~Dan> re: the new archetypes
[19:16] <+darrenwatts> The Boy In Charge is the kid who himself has no powers, but controls something really cool, like Johnny Thunder’s Thunderbolt, or the Boy King’s giant statue. They’re fun design problems.
[19:17] <~Dan> (Howdy, StevePerrin!)
[19:17] <+darrenwatts> The Anachronistic Lawman uses the tropes and tools of a previous era. The Vigilante is an old west cowboy, or the Shining Knight from Arthur’s court. (done)]
[19:17] <+darrenwatts> Hi Steve!
[19:17] <+StevePerrin> Hello I have a Champions character that was a genie in a lamp.
[19:17] <+darrenwatts> There are like two dozen more.
[19:18] <+StevePerrin> So have you retained anything from the previous two versions of this book?
[19:18] <+darrenwatts> Nope. I loved Chris’ work, used his book for years myself, but this is all new material.
[19:19] <+darrenwatts> I actually met Ross for the first time this weekend at U-Con. He came to my panels and introduced himself afterwards. Showed me a bunch of Chris’ art from the apazine they had.
[19:19] <+StevePerrin> Cool. So it’s tied directly into the “official” Champions universe?
[19:20] <+darrenwatts> Yes. When I did the 5th Ed update of the canon universe, I already had a lot of this stuff in mind. So some GA characters have descendents in the modern day, literal or figurative.
[19:21] <+StevePerrin> Sorry, I seem to have interrupted another conversation. All I have in front of me is what has been said since I joined.
[19:22] <~Dan> No, you’re good!
[19:22] <~Dan> Questions from all quarters are welcome. 🙂
[19:22] <~Dan> What were some of the other challenges for capturing the Golden Age?
[19:22] <+StevePerrin> Just didn’t want someone not to get a full response.
[19:22] <+darrenwatts> Long answer coming!
[19:23] <~Dan> StevePerrin: I appreciate that. No worries, though!
[19:24] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, James!)
[19:25] <+darrenwatts> Trying to do anything that’s period-accurate for the Golden Age is fraught. Obviously, you have the fact that quite a few of the original stories are racist or sexist, and modern players naturally reject that. You always have to be aware of player sensibilities. The good news is it’s superheroes we’re talking about, and idealizing them and their own morals..
[19:25] <+darrenwatts> to the modern day isn’t hard to do. You can talk about the racism that existed historically while still assuming the good guys aren’t racists.
[19:26] <+darrenwatts> But at the same time you have to note that storytelling styles were different.
[19:26] <+StevePerrin> I often find it is difficult to wrangle certain players into playing heroes of any era.
[19:26] <+Catseye> I’ll start with something basic. I own quite a bit of other sourcebooks based on the Golden Age. Both prior versions of Golden Age Champions, and Golden Age for M&M 2nd edition. What makes this book really stand out? What makes it a unique take?
[19:27] <+darrenwatts> With almost no exceptions, GA team stories begin with like a two-page framing story that establishes a villain, and who has several individual plans or henchmen going. The team then splits up to deal with each problem individually, and meet up again at the end for the last page or two to settle the main guy’s hash.
[19:27] <+darrenwatts> This is obviously unplayable at the table. But it’s how every issue of the Justice Society, Seven Soldiers, All-Winners, etc. played out.
[19:28] <+darrenwatts> So you have to modernize the superheroic storytelling style. Match it up more with All-Star Squadron, or the Invaders, or more modern takes on the period. (done)
[19:28] <+StevePerrin> Actually, I find the phase and segment style of Champions almost ideal for running several different fights…
[19:29] <+StevePerrin> Getting every sub team into a fight at the same time does involve some hand-waving, though, particularly if some are solving a mystery and others are just getting ambushed
[19:30] <~Dan> Can you offer your thoughts on power level? I find that some people (mistakenly, IMO) believe that Golden Age heroes were weaker across the board.
[19:30] <+darrenwatts> Unique? I’d say, apart from the level of detail about both the period and the comics that I personally can provide (and with Jess’s Encyclopedia, also available at higher support levels, the hundreds of public domain supers for inspiration), I’d say the extensive support and advice I give on running games historically in the war. Either long-term campaigns…
[19:30] <+darrenwatts> spanning years (of play in game and in the real world), or short -term drop-ins throughout the war.
[19:30] <+Lin_Chong> Is Fantomah in there?
[19:31] <+darrenwatts> Power Level: Generally slightly below Champions average is easiest, but you can play GAC at Galactic level power levels if you want.
[19:31] <+darrenwatts> Fantomah is in the Encyclopedia, not in the GAC core book.
[19:32] <+StevePerrin> Fantomah is in my upcoming Superhero 2044 remake, but that’s another story.
[19:32] <+darrenwatts> heh
[19:32] <+darrenwatts> Dan: in regard to that, a longer answer coming
[19:32] <~Dan> Well, I’m thinking in terms of characters like Ibis the Invincible or the Spectre, who would do damn near anything.
[19:33] <+darrenwatts> Most people who come to a GAC game are interested in the period, and they kind of want the war to be WWII-shaped. Really powerful characters change the flow of history. Why didn’t Superman, Spectre, and Green Lantern just fly to Tokyo…
[19:33] <+darrenwatts> on December 8th and stomp it flat, and while they were at it take out Berlin on the 9th?
[19:34] <+darrenwatts> Now, you can totally play in the campaign where they did, and if you’re running one call me!
[19:34] <~Dan> Fair point. What was the explanation in comics of the day?
[19:34] <+StevePerrin> I’m actually running a 1930s game and toying with changing the entire timeline…
[19:34] <+darrenwatts> But now you’ve put a lot of weight on the GM to create an alternate timeline, and WWII enthusiasts will be mad they don’t get to see D-Day.
[19:35] <+StevePerrin> GA comics pretty much ignored the possibilities.
[19:35] <+Catseye> Okay. A slightly more difficult question. Is it possible to separate out the focus on the war of that period? Keep the feel but not concentrate so much on the real event?
[19:35] <+darrenwatts> So it’s best to set those kind of expectations about how much the players can affect the flow of history right up front.
[19:35] <+darrenwatts> (done)
[19:36] <+darrenwatts> Catseye: It’s tough to remove the war from anything past 1941, so just keep your campaign in the late 30s.
[19:36] <+darrenwatts> It’s always 1939, and the War In Europe is just a distant shadow. I write about each year of the period and the kinds of stories best set there.
[19:37] <~Dan> To what degree did comics of the day have superheroes fighting in the war?
[19:38] <+StevePerrin> Almost never, though an early All Stars had the entire JSA fighting on several fronts, and at one point Green Lantern took out a Nazi carrier.
[19:38] <+darrenwatts> The JSA joined up right after Pearl Harbor, but it was quickly decided that they were “worth more” protecting the home front. Nobody wanted to write comics where the heroes were outshining the actual soldiers doing the job.
[19:39] <+darrenwatts> Timely was a bit more brazen about sending theirs overseas, as was Quality occasionally.
[19:39] <+Catseye> the reason I ask is: In my fictional and upcoming superhero setting book. We let time advance. But kept the overall view and outlook towards supers. They evolved on a different track from what Marvel and DC did. So I was wondering how much of the book would be harvestable for that sort of purpose.
[19:39] <+StevePerrin> Timely (Marvel) did have some grandiose stories where the Sub-Mariner and Torch stopped a Nazi invasion of Atlantis, but that took the war to an entirely different battleground.
[19:39] <+Catseye> fiction, not fictional. I havce 6 graphic novels out featuring said setting.
[19:40] <+darrenwatts> It’s again part of why the Sidekick/Boy In Charge trope works. So many kids had their fathers or older brothers overseas, that it was quite a fantasy to have an older heroic figure to look up to.
[19:40] <+darrenwatts> I think there would be plenty of material for you to mine.
[19:41] <~Dan> Seems like I read a Wonder Woman story with her fighting Mars, who was supporting the Axis.
[19:41] <+Lin_Chong> Didn’t Superman arrest Hitler and Stalin once?
[19:42] <+StevePerrin> That’s the best way to handle war stories is to find the “secret backers” of the war and have the heroes fight them.
[19:42] <+darrenwatts> Right. That’s the way the war is usually portrayed in the period comics. Some bad guy that clearly only the hero can stop is allied with the Axis. That leaves the actual soldiers to defeat the ordinary guys.
[19:43] <+darrenwatts> Also, keep in mind most GA comics have no continuity whatsoever. The number of times Daredevil killed Hitler outright is pretty comical.
[19:43] <+StevePerrin> Catseye. What graphic novels?
[19:43] <+Catseye> I’ll give you an example of one of our differences. There is no “supers paranoia”. The government long ago decided to take control of the supers phenomenon by offering training to make them special police officers. While giving property damage insurance to those who joined up.
[19:43] <+darrenwatts> (I of course mean the GA Daredevil.)
[19:43] <~Dan> Boomarang-throwing Daredevil, right?
[19:43] <+darrenwatts> Right
[19:43] * ~Dan nods
[19:43] <+Catseye> StevePerrin: (Link: http://www.catseyecomics.com)www.catseyecomics.com
[19:44] <+StevePerrin> At one point the Boy Buddies (MLJ’s sidekicks of the Shield and Wizard) found Hitler just wandering around, captured him and tried to convince anyone at all that they had Hitler
[19:45] <~Dan> That’s hilarious. 🙂
[19:45] <+darrenwatts> Or, early in the war or right before, fictional versions of Hitler/Tojo/Mussolini/Stalin got slammed around. The “dictator nations” were a common trope without being specific of which ones you were referring to, not really from any fear of reprisal or using real names but because they assumed the US audience didn’t keep track of who they were, esp. kids.
[19:45] <+StevePerrin> No one bit, and they ended up dumping him in a garbage can. At about the same time, the Timely young heroes group (name escapes my memory)
[19:46] <+Catseye> Our 6th novel just cqme out and was on sale at the NC Comic Con this weekend. So it’s technically out in the wild right now.
[19:46] <+StevePerrin> found Hitler in a garbage can and could find no one to believe they had him, and ended up leaving him there. I suspect collusion.
[19:48] <~Dan> darrenwatts: Would it be fair to say that you throw a lot of “real” Golden Age tropes out the window? From your promotional art, it looks like you expect PC supers to be slugging it out on the front lines.
[19:48] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, winterhawk!)
[19:48] <+winterhawk> Hey Dan, how goes it?
[19:49] <+Catseye> The main garphic novels are all ages centered. Which means no blood, no sex, and no uncensored profanity. We want them to be fit material for young readers.
[19:49] <~Dan> (Goes well, thanks! Here for the Q&A? 🙂 )
[19:49] <+winterhawk> Yessir
[19:49] <+darrenwatts> The Champions Universe follows those tropes until after D-Day, at which point the gloves are off and wartime craziness ensues. Specifically, the cover is an homage to Captain America #1, so we took a little license.
[19:49] <~Dan> (Great! The floor is open to questions, so fire away!)
[19:50] <+darrenwatts> But yeah, we encourage players to decide for themselves whether and when to use period tropes or what we call “retro” tropes, which are the styles of Roy Thomas comics from the 70s, or Robinson’s Starman/JSA stories, or whatever.
[19:51] * ~Dan nods
[19:51] <+darrenwatts> The Twelve, Project Superpowers, other modernizations of GA characters.
[19:51] <~Dan> Project Superpowers was great. I wish they’d pick that back up again.
[19:51] <~Dan> As an aside.
[19:51] <~Dan> The Twelve was pretty great, too.
[19:52] <+darrenwatts> All those plus more are in my bibliography.
[19:52] <+StevePerrin> Did either of those get to the end of the story?
[19:52] <+Lin_Chong> Dan: Eh I found it kind of meandering and lacking a point, personally.
[19:52] <+darrenwatts> The TWelve did.
[19:52] <+Lin_Chong> Twelve had…12 issues?
[19:53] <+darrenwatts> PS kind of famously went awry.
[19:53] <+darrenwatts> I think so, yeah. That sound right.
[19:53] <+winterhawk> PS was a lot of style over substance I thought
[19:53] <+darrenwatts> And that had delays, but at least did make it to the ending.
[19:54] <~Dan> Masks was promising as well. I think that was the name?
[19:54] <+Lin_Chong> *Some* kind of ending.
[19:54] <+Lin_Chong> Oh yes, but Ross only drew one issue.
[19:54] <~Dan> The pulp era Project Superpowers, I mean.
[19:54] <+Lin_Chong> Which is disappointing all around.
[19:54] <+winterhawk> Forgive me if this has already been asked but what’s the feel for the Kickstarter being fully funded?
[19:55] <~Dan> Actually, that brings up a point: To what degree does the Golden Age overlap with the pulp era?
[19:56] <+StevePerrin> If you are running a 1930s game, you really have to acknowledge and use Pulp tropes.
[19:56] <+darrenwatts> As of right now we’re 96% funded with 65 hours to go! Everything we make above the minimum will be plowed directly into art and getting friends of mine like Jason Walters, Steve Long, Bruce Harlick and more to write additional material.
[19:57] <+winterhawk> So pretty confident then, good 🙂
[19:57] <+darrenwatts> Officially for Hero (and this is just for internal use), the pulp era ends in the summer of 1938, and the creation of Superman is the harbinger of the Golden Age.
[19:57] <+darrenwatts> So it’s literally right afterwards, and obviously is very important to understanding it.
[19:58] <+StevePerrin> Many of the tropes transferred over intact.
[19:58] <+darrenwatts> The Golden Age ends in 1950 when All-Star Comics becomes a western and the JSA effectively disappear.
[19:58] <~Dan> Is the Mystery Man archetype a pulp holdover?
[19:58] <+StevePerrin> Pretty much
[19:59] <+darrenwatts> There’s a weird six-year interregnum which I’ll deal with as part of Silver Age when I write that, and then the SA formally begins with Barry Allen as the Flash.
[19:59] <+winterhawk> Correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t the Crimson Avenger considered kind of a crossover Pulp/Golden Ager?
[19:59] <+darrenwatts> Yeah, but there are differences between them.
[19:59] <+StevePerrin> Comics are not as subtle, which is weird talking about the Pulps
[20:00] <+darrenwatts> The Crimson Avenger is a direct ripoff of the Green Hornet, who *is* a pulp character. The CA makes him a superhero, so he’s sort of a crossover blend.
[20:00] <+winterhawk> I see
[20:00] <+darrenwatts> (Actually the Green Hornet was a radio character, but he’s totally a pulp character.)
[20:01] <~Dan> Agreed.
[20:02] <+winterhawk> Are you going to deal with the gap in heroic comics that came in the late 50s in any way?
[20:02] <~Dan> What is GA’s position on supers using lethal force? I know a lot of people seem to think that Golden Age characters were morally pure in that regard, but I’ve seen them do quite a bit of killing.
[20:02] <+darrenwatts> In the next book yes, not in this one. I stop in 1950 here.
[20:02] <+StevePerrin> I’ve done two campaigns set in the interregnum. Both were quite fun.
[20:03] <+winterhawk> I ran a really great one during what I called the Atomic Age, which is why I asked
[20:04] <+darrenwatts> GA characters vary wildly in use of violence and killing. Even Batman doesn’t exactly exert himself to save a criminal falling into an acid bath in his very first story. Some of it is the perceived change in audience because for the first few years some were obviously pulp-inspired while others were intended for kids, a line that got blurred many times.
[20:04] <+StevePerrin> I try to discourage PCs from killing opposition in GA campaigns because otherwise I have to keep inventing villains..
[20:04] <+winterhawk> LOL
[20:04] * ~Dan chuckles
[20:04] <+darrenwatts> By the war, it was obvious to publishers that they had adult readers. Captain Marvel outsold Time and Life at PXs.
[20:06] <+StevePerrin> And of course some publishers went a bit too far for the times
[20:06] <+Catseye> yes. But the soldiers read the comics as escapism from the war. A counter-point to it.
[20:07] <+darrenwatts> Sure. Most of the backlash was against horror and crime comics, not supers, though. Batman and Robin being gay aside. (Wertham managed to leave out almost all the kinkiness in Wonder Woman!)
[20:07] <+StevePerrin> Finding your audience is always tricky
[20:07] <~Dan> Seems like the Germans get most of the attention in retro-GA comics. To what degree do you offer Japanese and Italian antagonists?
[20:08] <+winterhawk> As far as characters, is there going to be an example of the near omniscient type like the Spectre or Dr. Fate?
[20:08] <+StevePerrin> And how about Chinese and Russian heroes?
[20:08] <+darrenwatts> Japanese plenty, Italians a bit. In the comics Italians are almost always sidekicks to the Nazis, and less satisfying. (This applies to Bulgarians, etc. as well.)
[20:08] <+darrenwatts> The Japanese are almost a completely different enemy fictionally, so they get plenty of space.
[20:09] <+darrenwatts> I have several Russians, only one notable Chinese character. The book can only be so big before Jason starts crying…
[20:09] <~Dan> Heh. 🙂
[20:09] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, Guest57! You can set your name with the /nick command.)
[20:10] <+darrenwatts> The default campaign power level of the actual CU sample characters doesn’t go that high, winterhawk. I already wrote Galactic Champions, though, so you can lay the lessons from that over this setting pretty easily if you like.
[20:10] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, Herald!)
[20:10] <+winterhawk> Okay, good point
[20:11] <+darrenwatts> I think the most powerful heroes in the setting are in the 600-700 point range, most are in the 350-500 point.
[20:11] <+darrenwatts> Couple of team-fighting villains are up in the 800-900s.
[20:11] <+Catseye> winterhawk: It can be argued that characters of that power level are actualy plot devices instead of fit to be actual player characters.
[20:11] <~Dan> Do you use public domain characters, or are they all original?
[20:12] <+darrenwatts> Mine are all original. The accompanying Encyclopedia by Jess Nevins gives descriptions and info about many more public domain real world ones.
[20:13] * ~Dan nods
[20:13] <+StevePerrin> If you need more German and Japanese villains, my Against the Axis book for a different game system has several fairly unique ones if you don’t mind doing the translations.
[20:14] <+darrenwatts> I need a thumbs-up emoji for Steve
[20:14] <~Dan> We did a Q&A for that one as well, IIRC. 🙂
[20:14] <+darrenwatts> Hey, what the?
[20:14] <~Dan> (Howdy, Monochrome_Tide!)
[20:14] <~Dan> darrenwatts: Hmm?
[20:15] <+darrenwatts> No, making fun of Steve. I didn’t come pimp my book in his chat! !!!FAKE OUTRAGE!!!
[20:15] * ~Dan chuckles
[20:16] <+StevePerrin> You would have been welcome. FAKE CONTRITION
[20:16] <+darrenwatts> lol
[20:17] <~Dan> Do you cover military equipment, and if so, to what degree?
[20:17] <+darrenwatts> Oh, Steve, unrelated note, I’m going to send you a note/question about rights for some older stuff later.
[20:18] <+StevePerrin> unrelated answer. Sure, any time.
[20:18] <+darrenwatts> I have spreadsheets of writeups for weapons/vehicles/equipment like most Hero setting books. And a big old timeline like Steve Long used to make, too!
[20:19] <+winterhawk> I’m a timeline fan to be honest
[20:19] <+darrenwatts> If we get some stretch goals in, I think Mike Surbrook’s piece is on weird wunderwaffen. I hit a few in the book, but he’s going to expand that chapter.
[20:19] <+StevePerrin> I keep getting a Malware warning about a website called go.padsel.com. Anyone here associated with that?
[20:20] <+winterhawk> Not me
[20:20] <+Catseye> not me. I have no idea what that is from
[20:20] <+darrenwatts> $634 left to cross the first finish line. Come on, everybody, Hitler won’t punch himself!
[20:21] <+winterhawk> On that subject…
[20:21] <+Catseye> personally, I’d prefer to see Godzilla STOMP Hitler
[20:22] <+winterhawk> In the unlikely event that the Kickstarter is underfunded, could you give a hint on what type of game would be offered for a $500 backer
[20:22] <+James> Hitler vs. Godzilla, I’d watch that short.
[20:22] <+StevePerrin> I’ll check, but I think i’ve already invested as much as my budget allows..
[20:22] <+xyphoid> StevePerrin: it’s probably a Mibbit ad
[20:24] <+darrenwatts> We’d do it at Gencon or the alternative show of your choice (one at least I’m going to, of course, so the advantage of Gencon or another big one is the potential guest list). I and several other Hero contributor types wll play with you and any invited friends, and I
[20:24] <+darrenwatts> I’ll write a bespoke adventure specifically for the occasion.
[20:24] <+darrenwatts> Traditionally we also throw in a few assorted freebies when we do these.
[20:25] <+darrenwatts> I guest-played in the one Mike did for Fantasy Hero, for example.
[20:25] <+winterhawk> Conventin style with premade characters or will original characters be allowed?
[20:25] <+winterhawk> Convention even
[20:25] <+darrenwatts> Anything you want is allowed if we can pull it off. So yeah, totally bring your own.
[20:26] <+winterhawk> Understood, thanks
[20:26] <+StevePerrin> Having played in Darren’s Pulp All-Stars game several years ago, trust him to come up with very cool PCs to play
[20:26] <+darrenwatts> Note that one guy already took Gencon 2017, and if you want to do it there as well it’ll take some planning to manage two at the same show.
[20:27] <+StevePerrin> Make it DunDraCon. We’d love to have Darren come back some time…
[20:27] <+winterhawk> I’m just saying if it comes down to $400 to get the book published, I’ll make sure it gets pucblished
[20:27] <+darrenwatts> Not saying we can’t do it, but maybe you’d want to do Origins or something more local to you. Up to you.
[20:27] <+darrenwatts> I appreciate the sentiment. I feel pretty good with only $600 and three days left.
[20:28] <+darrenwatts> And yes, make Dundracon bring me back as a guest. Except make them move the date so I can do Dreamation too.
[20:28] <+darrenwatts> Actually, I don’t even know if they conflict this year. Sometimes they do, sometimes not/
[20:29] <+StevePerrin> Sorryh, President’s day is ours. We have a 46 year claim.
[20:29] <+darrenwatts> heh
[20:29] <~Dan> I know you said that you didn’t handle the Savage Worlds part of the rules, but do you happen to know how well SW was able to handle superheroes? I’ve heard some complaints in that regard.
[20:29] <+darrenwatts> I celebrated many birthdays at that con, going back into the 90s sometime.
[20:30] <+StevePerrin> Savage Worlds definitely needs some tweaking. For one, they do not deal with “game killer” powers like clairvoyance very well at all.
[20:31] <+darrenwatts> Like I said, I brought in experts, and relied on their expertise. I’m not the system wonk, and I’ve never GM’ed SW at all.
[20:31] <~Dan> I’ve heard that SW doesn’t handle upper tier powers very well in particular. Seems like someone recently told me that “cosmic” strength just means you can lift a tank, for example.
[20:31] <+StevePerrin> Actually, I should have said “plot killer” powers.
[20:32] <+darrenwatts> Jason developed a strong relationship with the SW crowd doing things like Strike Force, and they seemed to like that. Ross Watson, Sean Fannon, and others worked on the system stuff there.
[20:32] <+StevePerrin> All good SW people.
[20:32] <+darrenwatts> So I’m afraid I’m unqualified to judge that myself.
[20:32] * ~Dan nods
[20:32] <~Dan> No problem.
[20:33] <+Catseye> StevePerrin: Plot device powers. And I think a lot of games have a big problem with them.
[20:34] <~Dan> Do you cover non-Axis antagonists?
[20:34] <+StevePerrin> Yeah, but SW deals with the problem by ignoring them.
[20:35] <+darrenwatts> Yup! Before and after the war, heroes need somebody to fight. Gangsters, mad scientists, costumed theme villains, and even some more modern-style threats.
[20:35] <+Catseye> Well that’s a good reason for me not to buy SW
[20:36] <+darrenwatts> Plus, we also deal with the rest of the Champions Universe in the GA as well. What’s the Circle of the Scarlet Moon up to, or Demon? Viper is still the Council of the Thirty at this point. How about Atlantis, or Lemuria? All that is also covered.
[20:36] <+winterhawk> Nice
[20:36] <+StevePerrin> SW is a wonderful system for Pulp-style games. I’ve run several different campaigns including a Barsoomian game using it.
[20:36] <+Frankto> StevePerrin, your syntax is invalid. Possible errors: using it.
[20:37] <+darrenwatts> We’ve been pretty good about maintaining continuity in the CU over the last fifteen years. I’m pretty proud of it.
[20:37] <+StevePerrin> Huh?
[20:37] <+Catseye> I’m a huge pulp fan. I mother read Burroughs to me while I was still in the crib.
[20:37] <+Catseye> My, not I
[20:37] <~Dan> StevePerrin: I’m scratching my head on that one, myself.
[20:38] <+winterhawk> Again, forgive me for asking if this has already been asked, but will the book deal with the GA through a realistic lens ie the Mafia aiding the Allies in America’s docks
[20:38] <+winterhawk> I’m guessing Frankto is a bot
[20:38] <~Dan> Nope, Frankto’s not a bot.
[20:39] <+darrenwatts> No more than a couple lines’ worth, probably. Keeping in mind that actually hiring an editor is one of the things the KS is for. It’s incidental color.
[20:40] <+darrenwatts> Again, as Steve Jackson proved, covering the entire war in every aspect is a 20-book job, and that’s if you only make one of them Ken Hite-style weird. The good news is, there has never been a more well-researched era of history, and google exists.
[20:40] <~Dan> Do you cover the Thule Society?
[20:41] <+darrenwatts> The real(ish) one? Again, I think it gets a couple of lines as part of the background of the RSvKg, which is the CU organization of Nazi occultists.
[20:41] * ~Dan nods
[20:42] <+darrenwatts> Ken’s Nazi Occult book for Osprey covers that stuff better than I could, or have room for. It’s in the Ludography.
[20:42] <+StevePerrin> But do you have Vril!
[20:42] <+darrenwatts> I do!
[20:43] <+Catseye> Vril? I don’t get that5 reference
[20:43] <~Dan> Want to tell our viewers/readers what Vril is?
[20:43] <+StevePerrin> Bulwer Lytton
[20:44] <+darrenwatts> I think the absolutely unique thing about my book is the extent of time and page count we spend specifically on superheroes of the period. Other games and resources can go into much more detail on the real war apart from them.
[20:44] <+darrenwatts> The Coming Race, a novel.
[20:44] <+darrenwatts> Some of your crazier Nazis believed it was a secret account of real-world magic.
[20:45] <+StevePerrin> Okay, to be a bit more explanatory. Bulwer Lytton wrote the Coming Race. It featured the Vril-Ya, an underground race that had great powers throug the use of Vril!
[20:45] <+StevePerrin> Apparently lots of Nazis thought it was a fact book.
[20:45] <~Dan> It was make-believe, but they thought it was for Vril?
[20:46] <+StevePerrin> Vrilly
[20:46] <+darrenwatts> Blavatsky said it was real, and she was batshit. But plenty of Nazis believed other things she promoted, like theosophy.
[20:47] <+darrenwatts> So it all kind of blended together, along with (for example) the idea that Earth had had several moons which kept crashing into the Earth and changing history.
[20:47] <+winterhawk> yep batshit
[20:47] <+Catseye> I actually heard of them through the Duke Nukem comic book series that IDW did around the release time of Duke Nukem Forever. I had no prior idea they truly were a thing that had impact in the real world.
[20:48] <+StevePerrin> Oh yeah
[20:48] <+darrenwatts> Not a good group for separating fact from fictional nuttery. Hitler in many ways was one of the saner Nazis, at least on the spectrum of practical beliefs. One of history’s greatest sociopaths, but he didn’t actually believe in magic, unlike many of his top followers.
[20:49] <+winterhawk> Wasn’t Goering one of the ‘true believers’?
[20:49] <~Dan> In the time remaining, is there anything we haven’t covered that you’d like to bring up?
[20:49] <+StevePerrin> Himmler was the major one
[20:50] <+winterhawk> Right, right…have trouble keeping my scumbags straight
[20:50] <+darrenwatts> Yeah. Goering gradually went nuts over the course of the war, though, mostly do to truly epic amounts of drug use. Himmler always believed in nuttiness.
[20:50] <+darrenwatts> No, I think we hit a nice spread here. I’m ready for a lightning round!
[20:51] <+Catseye> I prefer not to look that close to one of the world’s great evils. I really don’t want intimate knowledge of their ania
[20:51] <+StevePerrin> Hyperion?
[20:51] <+Catseye> mania
[20:52] <+darrenwatts> Steve: narrow down? Like the Black Sun stuff, or the ship, or what?
[20:52] <+winterhawk> Any particular characters you’re particularly proud of Darren?
[20:52] <+StevePerrin> Part of Champions history at one point or another was a Greek Hero named Hyperion. Wondering if he made the cut.
[20:53] <+darrenwatts> I love Rex Sterling, the Hound of Tomorrow. And Toy Soldier, who is a little kid commanding a small army of little green soldier men fighting for him. Or Ghost Cabbie, or Bulletproof, or John Bull, or Nightingale. I love ’em all.
[20:54] <+darrenwatts> I didn’t use any of the old stuff unless we’d already formally made it part of the 5th Ed CU.
[20:55] <+darrenwatts> Frankly, some of that stuff was of questionable ownership provenance, though Ross seems pretty sure all of Chris C’s material was formally signed over.
[20:55] <+darrenwatts> I didn’t use it, anyways.
[20:56] <+Catseye> it’s good to have a fresh take
[20:56] <+winterhawk> Okay, looking forward to this, keep up the good work gents, big fan here
[20:57] <+darrenwatts> Thank you, and thanks for the support! Please pass the word along for the next couple days and let’s make this book pretty!
[20:57] <+StevePerrin> Good luck wqith it!
[20:57] <+darrenwatts> Every dollar past the minimum goes towards new material and art!
[20:57] <+StevePerrin> with it
[20:58] <+winterhawk> All my people are already on it…Hermit on the Hero Games boards will have an aneurysm if it doesn’t get published 😛
[20:58] <+darrenwatts> heh
[20:58] <+Catseye> I ask the hard questions because I actually care and will likely buy it.
[20:58] <+darrenwatts> OK, guys, I gotta run. Dan, thanks so much for hosting- I had a great time!
[20:58] <+winterhawk> Best of luck gents, good night
[20:59] <~Dan> darrenwatts: You’re welcome!
[20:59] <+James> Good luck.
[20:59] <~Dan> Got a minute to get the log?
[20:59] <+darrenwatts> Sure. What do I do?
[20:59] <~Dan> Nothing, on your end. Just give me a minute to post the log and get you the link. 🙂
[20:59] <+darrenwatts> Awesome, np
[20:59] <+Catseye> just wait a sec. Dan will have the log posted in a minute.