Sunday, October 31, 2010

Linked Traits

A Linked Trait is one that allows a character to add a value to another Trait.
This allows "lesser-powered" characters to level the playing field with "higher-powered" characters.

A Linked Traits value that is added is dependent on the Tier of the Trait, and I have found that for weapons carrying characters adding in a Situational Bonus (when Linked with Nunchuks) allows a character to Link Traits to great effect.

The "downside" of Linked Traits is that each Trait activates a Usage, but the flip side of this coin is that combats can be fast and fun, as characters, players and non-player characters alike, Link Traits to get high values.

Does a character need to purchase Linked Traits? No. But I think most folks will like the effect.

One of the ideas behind this was allowing Hawkeye to stand alongside Thor. Thor would have some very powerful Traits, while Hawkeye would have a larger number of Traits, and could thus Link one of more to the Primary Trait to get a high-powered effect.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Setback Tokens

No Hit Points?
Setback Tokens?
and everyone has the same amount?
Yes (well, all the PCs).

So, essentially each character can take only 4 hits?
Setback Tokens are not just hits like a punch or eyeblast or judo chop. Setback Tokens represent all the fatigues of a combat and a non-combat encounter.
Hulk is not unstoppable, he frequently leaves battles, more out of frustration, anger and boredom.
A wiseacre like Spiderman might be able to infuriate and frustrate the Hulk enough that he just leaps away. Spiderman did not "beat" the Hulk in the traditional sense, but did happen to deliver 4 Setback Tokens to him.
Out of combat, in Extended Scenes, Setback Tokens might represent fatigue, exhaustion of resources, dead-ends...
An overly sexy costume might be enough to make a male character's jaw drop, this is also a Setback Token.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Shared Traits

A shared Trait is one that several characters put points into, and is accessible by all of them. It could be something as simple as being a member of The Big Team grants access to the HQ and supercomputer, it could be a Voltronic suit. If a player doesn't wish to contribute, they do not have access to it, if a player contributes and is not present, the Trait is not as powerful. Shared Traits are built like any other Trait, just that their point total is split evenly amongst everyone participating, and multiple levels of the Trait must be calculated ("Uh-Oh, two of the members are not here, so our supercomputer is not as powerful").

They might Power-Up, Diminish, Link, etc, etc.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Traits vs Non-Traits

So, Robin has a motorcycle. Does this mean that the player of Robin needs to buy a Motorcycle Trait? No. Unless the character sees it something that might be used in a scene, the player can be assumed to have it (again, that trust between Editor and Players) and if the player wanted to use it, it is a Trait with a Rank of 0.

Traits- in the game I am running, two characters wanted to be regenerators, and two wanted to be teleporters. In many systems, this would likely mean the stepping on of toes and overlapping powersets. However, in this case, it meant that they all had different Traits, how their Traits worked and what they did. One teleporter was unreliable, meaning it didn't always work (the character actually wholly denied being able to teleport, instead just kind of shrugging and usually ending up where he/she wanted to be), the regenerators- one was a classic wolverine style regenerator, one was more of a I'm too clueless to notice how hurt I am, and I get better.

Instead of having to craft characters who had overlaps, it was alot of fun to think about why their powers, on paper in many systems, were the same, but how they were different, and not just in the Ranks they had in the Traits.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Versatile Traits

Some Traits do exactly what they are supposed to do, an Atlantean has all the Traits Atlantean has, a Kryptonian has ice breath, heat vision, x-ray vision… But what about Traits that need to be made on the fly? Gadgets and interchangeable suits of armor are two of the best examples of a Versatile Trait. A Versatile Trait is one that has one or more qualities always assigned to it, for a suit of armor, it might be Ionic Blast or Damage Neutralizing Material, but also has one or more qualities that is determined each Issue. A character with a warehouse of power armors might have Aquatic Armor, Night Ops Armor, Outer-Space Armor, and so on. Each Issue, the character can define the undefined Traits. In scene one the character might define one aspect as Aquatic Adaptability for the underwater scene, the second scene might require some deep space exploration, thus defining HyperSpace Thrusters. Once the undefined quality (ies) is defined, it is defined for the rest of the Issue.

What about Magic? Magic is an example of a Trait that could be Versatile, or a Trait that could be understood by both player and Editor to be catchall. The same goes for Armor.

From a genre standpoint, Versatile Traits were designed to emulate those Traits that always do some things, and sometimes do other things. Even a Kryptonian physiology with all the associated various powers could be considered Versatile. Superman does not fly around with X-Ray vision each and every panel of each and every issue.

If a Trait is being used for drastically different tasks, it might just be Versatile.