[20:22] <+StevePerrin> Got it. My name is Steve Perrin. I wrote RuneQuest and am helping with the new one. Right n ow, thojugh, I am involved with the rules and
[20:23] <+StevePerrin> character creations for Superhero 2044, 3rd Edition. It is a Superhero game based to some extent on the original superhero RPG, but with a lot of differences.
[20:25] <+StevePerrin> We are intending to supply over 350 characters for immediate play, and are providing a fairly robust character bjuilding system as well
[20:27] <+StevePerrin> Many of the characters provided are public domain characters from the 40s and 50s. Many more are classics like Dracula and Moriarity, and some are new and original characters
[20:27] <+StevePerrin> Done
[20:28] <~Dan> Thanks, StevePerrin! The floor is open to questions!
[20:28] <~Dan> I’m unfamiliar with the original game’s premise. Does it actually take place in 2044?
[20:29] <+SirGene> I always want to see the character record sheet.
[20:30] <+StevePerrin> Yes. The world had undergone a couple of atomic wars (which helped explain the coming of superheroes to that world) and most of civilization was on islands, like the fictional island of Injuria off the American West Coast. done
[20:30] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, Guest26!)
[20:31] <+StevePerrin> I could send along a character sheet if there is a way of doing that.
[20:31] <~Dan> If you have one posted, you can just post the link to it.
[20:31] <+StevePerrin> done
[20:32] <+StevePerrin> Good point, but I don’t. Tell you what, I will post one to my Facebook writers page so you can see it in a day or so.
[20:33] <~Dan> Okay, sounds good.
[20:33] <~Dan> How advanced has the world become by 2044?
[20:33] <~Dan> Can you give us some technological highlights?
[20:35] <+StevePerrin> Still no flyinjg cars, except in the hands of some supers. Lots of new tech weapons and such, and lots of alien contact. A robust near space – operation, sort of like Cowboy BeBop
[20:35] <~Dan> How did the alien contact come about?
[20:36] <+StevePerrin> The main thing is that the world of Injuria is just one of a large multiverse.
[20:37] <+StevePerrin> The aliens contacted the world. Nothing regular, but there are lots of aliens living on planet. Also there is a large colony of one race that are refugees from their sun going nova.
[20:37] <~Dan> How common is multi-dimensional travel?
[20:38] <+StevePerrin> The aliens contacted the world. Nothing regular, but there are lots of aliens living on planet. Also there is a large colony of one race that are refugees from their sun going nova.
[20:39] <+StevePerrin> Okay, that was weird. I must have hit the wrong button somehow. Anyway, multi–dimensional travel happens, but there are no tour groups going through, that is known of..
[20:40] <+Will> (sorry, got dragged away for dinner stuff)
[20:40] <~Dan> Are characters like Dracula and Moriarty from another dimension?
[20:41] <+StevePerrin> One whole category of supers are those who know they are in a comic book.. There is one world that is essentially our world, except there are many people who know that
[20:41] <+StevePerrin> they are actually looking at other worlds by reading comic books. Besides the ones who just sit back and watch the show, there are 3 groups.
[20:42] <+StevePerrin> One group consists of people who choose comic book characters to be and they just dive in, esseentially becoming the character,.
[20:43] <+StevePerrin> Another group goes in as themselves and uses various tropes, like ordering stuff from the backs of comic books, to get super powers.
[20:44] <+StevePerrin> The third group enters the world or takes over someone in the world and uses power directly to do things like manipulate time, listen in on important meetings, etc.
[20:45] <+StevePerrin> To answer Dan’s question that I ignored earlier, they are part of the main line, but of course are in many other wrlds as well.
[20:45] <~Dan> How is Moriarty still around, then?
[20:46] <+StevePerrin> \Moriarity found the secret of eternal life and offered it to Holmes, who turned him down.; But he continues on, the Napoleon of Crime.
[20:46] <~Dan> Ah, cool.
[20:46] <+StevePerrin> His ain enemy these days is Arsene Lupin
[20:47] <~Dan> (Howdy, Viktyr!)
[20:47] <~Dan> Who is Arsene Lupin?
[20:48] <+StevePerrin> Dracula was never killed. You may recall that he was stabbed through the heart with a Bowie knife, which is not made of wood. He continues on
[20:49] <+StevePerrin> Arsene Lupin is a major media hero of France, sort of like the Saint but not as bloody minded. A Robin Hood type who puts together elaborate scams.
[20:50] <+StevePerrin> Oh, and in one of his adventures, Arsene Lupin discovered the Fountain of Youth,, so he keeps pace with Moriarityu..
[20:51] <+StevePerrin> Done. AAny other questions?
[20:51] <~Dan> What are some of the public domain characters that you’re using, and are they from the 40s and 50s in the setting?
[20:52] <+StevePerrin> In the general setting, many are from the 40s and 50s, and others went through some kind of transference or hibernation. For instance, Silver Streak got his
[20:53] <+StevePerrin> powers from a swami. Apparently they included immortality. Black Terror’s herbal formula apparently included logevity. Valkyrie was put under a spell.
[20:54] <~Dan> Oooo… The Black Terror, you say? 😀
[20:54] <+StevePerrin> No one knows why the Arrow has lived as long as he has, but he’s still here. Man O’War is a series of clones of the original who get decanted when he is killed.
[20:55] <+StevePerrin> The Black Terror, I say. Tim, too.
[20:55] <~Dan> Awesome. 😀
[20:55] <~Dan> What about the Green Lama?
[20:56] <+StevePerrin> Apparently he is not so public domain. My publisher thinks Dynamite was in error including him in that series a few years ago.
[20:56] <~Dan> Really? Huh… That’s interesting.
[20:57] <+StevePerrin> We also haqve various godlings, including Thor, Hercules, Isis, and Circe. Apparently someone called the Blue Scarab conquered the God Lands, and they are refugees that showed up in the sixties
[20:57] <~Dan> Nice…
[20:57] <~Dan> You said 350 characters?
[20:59] <+StevePerrin> That’s the plan. We have about 80 statted out now and that’s pretty much going to be my life for the next few months.
[20:59] <~Dan> Jeez…. How big is this book going to be?
[21:00] <~Dan> (wb, Drew-2!)
[21:01] <+StevePerrin> It’s 500 pages right now, but not all of the characters are going into the main book – some will be put out in followup PDFs and full color softcover sourcebooks
[21:01] <~Dan> Ah, I see.
[21:02] <~Dan> Who are some of the noteworthy original heroes in the setting?
[21:02] <+StevePerrin> You cannot maintain a line of games with just one game book.
[21:03] <+StevePerrin> Two noteworthy characters are Astonishing Girl and Sir Justin. They come from two entirely different places.
[21:04] <+StevePerrin> Sir Justin is the Ambassador from the Microverse, who gained sufficient size to be noticed and happily helps out various hero groups when someone really small
[21:06] <+Will> Man, that’s a lot of stuff. What’s the system?
[21:06] <+StevePerrin> is needed. Astonishing Girl is the “Ambassador from the Macroverse,” She shrank down to see what was going on in the part of her body (she is actually the entire universe) that is Earth.
[21:06] <~Dan> Yup, that’s pretty noteworthy.
[21:07] <+StevePerrin> She operates as a giant, frequently, and if she is killed her macroversal consciousness realizes the probe is no longer responding and sends down another with all
[21:08] <+StevePerrin> of the knowledge the previous one had up to the moment she discorporated. Thus she is immortal
[21:09] <+StevePerrin> The system is my own. Essentially I call it the saving throw system because
[21:09] <+StevePerrin> the defender is the only entity to roll the 2d10. Everything else is fixed, except for considerations of maneuvering and luck points.
[21:10] <~Dan> How do you handle tasks outside of combat?
[21:12] <+StevePerrin> By assigning difficulty numbers to be met by Skill value plus 2d10. Occasionally, two players roll off against each other, but that is rare.
[21:12] <~Dan> Is this an attribute + skill system?
[21:15] <+StevePerrin> Attributes are figured into the Skill. “attackers” add 11 to their skill. Defenders roll 2d10. A lot of things add into combat, so the combat values are key there
[21:16] <~Dan> What are the attributes?
[21:17] <+StevePerrin> A character has AVs (attack values) in melee, ranged, psychic, and transformation, and DVs likewise. Those are the important numbers for combat.
[21:18] <+StevePerrin> Atgtributes are the same ones in the original game, but with slightly different functions. Strength (instead of Stamina) Dexterity, Vigor (hit pts), Ego, Charisma, Mentality.
[21:18] <+StevePerrin> Endurance is a quantity that is derived from Strength and Ego.
[21:19] <~Dan> What is the scale for a normal human?
[21:20] <~Dan> (Howdy, KJ!)
[21:21] <+StevePerrin> Man-on-the-street is a 2 in most things. Some are exceptional up to around 6. Absolute top basic human is 8.
[21:21] <~Dan> 8 = Captain America/Doc Savage?
[21:21] <+StevePerrin> Range of game goes to 20.
[21:22] <~Dan> Is 20 a hard universal cap? Can the game handle cosmic entities like Galactus?
[21:22] <+StevePerrin> If you assume that Cap and Doc are just highly trained, that’s right
[21:23] <~Dan> (brb)
[21:24] <+StevePerrin> Hey, we have Stardust the Super Wizard, of course we can handle cosmic. Numbers above 20 happen with the cosmic crew.
[21:25] <~Dan> (back)
[21:26] <~Dan> Oh, good! I’m a firm believer that superhero RPGs shouldn’t have hard universal stat caps. There’s ALWAYS somebody better than you.
[21:26] <+StevePerrin> For the nostalgia buffs, we also have Charmer, abouty the only charac ter from the original game still with us.
[21:28] <+StevePerrin> Exactly
[21:28] <~Dan> Speaking of which, what aspects of the original game have you brought along?
[21:30] <+StevePerrin> Not much. I think I’ve mentioned most of them. Endurance and Vigor are the damage stats, but with a different way of dealing with them] We have over 140 powers delimited
[21:31] <~Dan> Is it mostly the setting that’s the same?
[21:32] <+StevePerrin> The setting is still there, but a much reduced part of it, though I am holding out for an expansion of the original material.
[21:33] <~Dan> You mentioned the powers… What sort of powers system do you use? Is it effects-based, for example? Or a “cafeteria” style? Something else?
[21:36] <+StevePerrin> I think the best answer to thisw is “Yes.”
[21:37] <~Dan> Well, let’s see if we can clear this up a bit with this question: Do you have a “Weather Control” power?
[21:39] <+StevePerrin> Sorry, I meant to go on and got distracted by an email that suddenly popped up.
[21:40] <~Dan> No worries! Take your time.
[21:41] <+StevePerrin> We have energy Control, which is a sort of omni power with some examples like Geo Manipulation and AtmosKinesis, which is kind of Weather Contol. I just got done adding
[21:41] <+StevePerrin> Environment Control.
[21:42] <~Dan> Okay, so that definitely doesn’t sound like effects-based. Do you purchase powers as-is, possibly with the ability to tweak them?
[21:43] <~Dan> Or is Geo Manipulation the same for everyone?
[21:43] <+StevePerrin> We have Blast, not Lightning. We have some detailed weapon stuff. Our powers are in categories like Enhancement, Energy, Quantum, Transformational, Tech Powers
[21:43] <+StevePerrin> You get points to buy powers with.
[21:43] * ~Dan nods
[21:45] <+StevePerrin> Geo Man ipulation, to take one, is a certain number of points that tells you how powerful your effects can be. Then you have a pool of points to mainipulate powersd to fit
[21:45] <+StevePerrin> inside that framework. The number of points in the pool tell you how many effects you can have going at once.
[21:47] <~Dan> I see… So purchasing Geo Manipulation would involve buying the power level and the associated powers?
[21:48] <+StevePerrin> Right. Just which poswers yhou are using depends on how many points you have. And you don’t have to specify the powers ahead of time.
[21:48] <~Dan> Really? Now that’s interesting… Is that to allow for power “stunts”?
[21:49] <+StevePerrin> Also, simpler powers like Blast can be manipulated to give Armor Piercing, or area effect, or autofire by reducing the power to pay for the manipulation.
[21:50] <~Dan> That’s handy.
[21:50] <+StevePerrin> One of my objectives is to return to the days when RPGs were praised for teaching math and planning…
[21:51] <~Dan> Do starting characters have a default power level, and if so, how would you compare that level to well-known superheroes?
[21:52] <+StevePerrin> I start characters with 100 points. With that many points you can build characters to match godlings like Hercules and Thor.
[21:53] <~Dan> Wow! So the PCs are movers and shakers right out of the gate, sounds like.
[21:54] <+StevePerrin> The original concept of the game was for players to be playing characters like Thor and Hercules and Silver Streak and there was no personal characters built.
[21:55] <+StevePerrin> I created the original building system just to give myself a method of leveling characters. Then the plan changed and so everyone has access to what I had.
[21:56] <+StevePerrin> So I have been scrambling like mad o make sure everything is balanced.
[21:56] * ~Dan chuckles
[21:56] <~Dan> I forget — what are Silver Streak’s powers?
[21:57] <+StevePerrin> Speed, with flight, and a measure of super strength. His big thing is the ability to hit several people at once.
[21:59] <+StevePerrin> In the forties he gifted a boy and a hawk with his powers by blood transfusion. I’ve specified that those powers do not include his longevity.
[22:00] <~Dan> Going back to the core mechanic for a moment, does degree of success matter?
[22:02] <+StevePerrin> The more success, the more damage. Damage is done to Endurance, Vigor and Mentality are the damageable attributes. Lose them and you are either dead or a drooling idiot;
[22:02] <+StevePerrin> Oh, and losing so much END means you lose Vigor or Mentality, depending on the attack.
[22:03] <~Dan> Cool. I always like degree of success to affect damage.
[22:03] <~Dan> How is damage rated, by the way?
[22:04] <~Dan> (As in a flat score, a dice range, etc.)
[22:04] <+StevePerrin> Well, everything is in one roll. We started out rolling for success, then adding success to damage and rolling against defenses, but one of my playtesters
[22:05] <+StevePerrin> pointed out that it was really one roll. So that’s what we do. It have the nice effect that the ability to avoid damage is at least as important, if not more so, than the ability
[22:05] <+StevePerrin> to absorb damage.
[22:06] * ~Dan nods
[22:07] <~Dan> Do you include a bestiary in the core rules?
[22:08] <+StevePerrin> So if The Rook, master assassin, shoots his Crossbow of Doom at G-8, it’s Rook’s 44 AV against G-8’s Ranged DV of 14.
[22:10] <+StevePerrin> G-8’s player rolls 2d10 and gets 11 (an average roll). this means he takes 19 points of damage. He also takes 3 our of his 6 vigor. G-8 doesn’t have 19 END
[22:11] <+StevePerrin> so he would normally be out of the fight. Howeverk he makes use of the cheat clause that every modern game has and reduces his damage to 7. He is still up, but
[22:13] <+StevePerrin> barely. So he directs three of his battle drones to attack Rock. Because of the drones’ autofire blasters and the fact there are 3 of them, the attack’s RAV
[22:16] <+StevePerrin> is 40. The Rook has a RDV (Ranged Defense Value) of 24. Rolling high average, He kicks that up to 38. Rook takes 2 END out of his 16.
[22:16] <+StevePerrin> G-8 has still got problems.
[22:18] <~Dan> I notice you’re using the straight success level for damage. Does the weapon not matter?
[22:18] <+StevePerrin> The weapon damage is part of the AV, just as the defensive armor is part of the DV.
[22:19] <~Dan> So weapon damage increases your chance to hit?
[22:20] <+StevePerrin> Essentially, yes. As I said, originally it was a separate roll, but the numbers were essentially the same and I found that rolling and figuring each attack
[22:21] <~Dan> Gotcha.
[22:21] <+StevePerrin> separately just got too cumbersome. Originally, both sides rolled, but that gave such a wide divergence that we decided to keep one side static.
[22:21] <~Dan> Do you have a means to simulate powerful-but-inaccurate attacks?
[22:22] <+StevePerrin> And I decided to make the defender the dice roller because it would hopefully keep the defending player’s mind in the game.
[22:23] <+StevePerrin> The only way to simulate is in the numbers. Effective RAV including damage will do a lot of damage. RAV reduced because of lack of attack skill does less damage.
[22:25] <~Dan> I see.
[22:25] <~Dan> Did you see the bestiary question?
[22:26] <+StevePerrin> I missed the Bestiary question
[22:26] <~Dan> Do you feature one in the core rules?
[22:27] <+StevePerrin> Some very strange beasts get mentioned, but not as such as yet. Critters are easy. Just specifiy the AVs and DVs you think are right and stick them out there.
[22:29] * ~Dan nods
[22:30] <~Dan> In the time remaining, is there anything we haven’t covered that you’d like to bring up?
[22:30] <+StevePerrin> I think I’m going to have to close down. This started at 6:30 my time and I haven’t had dinner. Hope folks got a good idea of the game. Look for us at GenCon – I don’t think we are on the program
[22:31] <+StevePerrin> but we will be tere
[22:31] <~Dan> Okay, Steve! I’ll get the log posted and link you!
[22:31] <~Dan> Thanks so much for joining us!