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[Sell me on] Marvel Heroic Roleplaying

Futurella

Sort of
Validated User
Watcher: The rest of the Avengers follow the Ninth and Final Sleeper as it moves East, heading towards the park. But wait - you can hear someone crying. Could someone be trapped in the rubble?
Black Panther: OK, I'll bite. I'll let everyone else go on, but I'm gonna stop and see if there is someone trapped in the rubble.
Watcher: Yes, there's a little girl. A piece of the shattered building seems to have fallen on her. She's still alive but she cant move.
Black Panther: How big is this piece of rubble? Can I move it? i do have enhanced strength.
Watcher: It's an awfully big piece of wreckage. And, you know, the Doom Pool is pretty high after that last encounter with the Sleeper.
Black Panther: Well, I can use my Chosen of the Panther God SFX to step up my Strength die...
Watcher: So you're going to try and dig down deep and get a lot stronger?
Black Panther: Hmm, my distinctions dont love that idea - Try this. I'll roll my team d8. my King of Wakanda d8, my enhanced strength d8, and I'll activate my Chosen of the Panther God SFX to step up my strength to d10, and Ill pay 1 PP for a stunt called "The people of New York" and I'll use my Kingly voice to call out the people who are hiding in these buildings. Dont be afraid! I'll call, this girl needs all of us! We'll all work together to try to shift this stone, with me leading them on and lending my great strength...
Watcher: Ok then. Roll those dice!
 

Jack

Wave Man
Validated User
I can't stress this enough...but your weakness FUEL your character. You are going to need Plot Points to matter when something is very important to you. Save the hostage, defend your friends, get your revenge. Whatever. make sure your character plays into their weaker dice events (such as trading off the d4 for the +1 plot point) or trigger your milestones.

When you build a character, don't think of this a disadvanges. Think of it as plot fuel. It's going to flow into the heroic stuff.
Exactly.

"I'm totally gonna hit those limits and low rolling Distinctions early because at the most dramatically appropriate I am going punt kick that bastard all the way to Asgard." is a fairly common occurence in the game. And it works pretty damn well.

For ex:

Peter Player, the spectacular Spider-PC: Okay so I'm worried about Scorpion getting away and that means I'm taking my With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility at a d4. That's a plot point, right?
Watcher: Yep. And you have 2 from those 1s you rolled earlier.
PP: And if I shut down my Web-slinging that's another?
Watcher: Yep.
PP: So I'm out of web fluid! Cool. Okay so I'm rolling Solo, Great Power, Superhuman Reflexes, and Combat Expert. I can bring in other dice for a plot point right.
Watcher: Yep, and you have 4.
PP: Awesome, I'm going to bring in Superhuman Strength and Acrobatics Master. Going to outmaneuver Scorpy before he can escape, bound off that wall, and paste him! Okay so...got 2d8, a d4, and 3d10. Right?
Watcher: Correct. Plus you can use that d10 stress you already did if you want. So 4d10 actually.
PP: rolls. Cool! Okay so...1, 7, 4, 7, 7, 9, 5. So I take two of these and one for effect, and I can't use the 1?
Watcher: Indeed, and for a plot point...
PP: I can keep another one for the total...let's do that. Twice. So gonna take that d10 that rolled a 5 as an effect. Then those 7s and that 9 for...30. And for every five I get over him his stress goes up one?
Watcher: Yes, and after d12 he's out of it. (Rolls) yeah...that's...well he rolled a 16...that's pretty good if it wasn't 14 under what you rolled. So yeah, you paste him.
 

Mostlyjoe

is plotting your doom.
Validated User
So if the HULK was the example you'd see him exploding in a wild rage screaming "HULK SMASH!" or "BETTY!" and the media would catch it on camera and it would add to his already monsterous repuration, scaring crowds, and generally building on his ANGST as he turns one of the Wrecking Crew into a Asguardian Powered Pretezl.
 

McWolfe

Registered User
Validated User
I'm still not sure whether this belongs in a thread by itself, or something here, but since it's one of those things that made me go "Now THAT'S the way you do it" when I read the pdf.

As most Cortex-games you have various Stress-traits (both physical and mental etc). Thing is, you can use that stress (like if you are angry) to fuel an action if you can motivate it. Only problem is that your stress will increase if you do that.

Now, to me, that's the most elegant way to emulate the Dark Side of the Force I've seen so far. It's simple, elegant and it just is a part of the rest of the system without feeling "tacked on".

/McWolfe
 

Sleeper

Red-eyed dust bunny
Validated User
This thread's kind of selling me off, too. I like games that feel like comic books, but this sounds overly fiddly and hand-wavy. I'll probably pick up a copy eventually because I like supers and Marvel, but it'll be against my better judgment.
 

Mostlyjoe

is plotting your doom.
Validated User
Yes, it would be childishly easy to add a Dark Side track and use it to fuel die actions.

Okay, here is a perfect example of building up Plot Points from the X-men 2 movie.

Remember when Wolverine was fighting off the mooks in the mansion by himself?

Lets start with the fight against the first guy in the kitchen. Wolverine could have used "I'm the best at what I do" for a higher die. But he instead used "...and what I do isn't very nice" at the d4 + 1 plot point. Why? Because he was facing off against a mook and a low doom pool. As the fight continues he's being stealthy leaning more on his claws and skill expertise not spending plot points. Keep in mind the doom pool is building as the ops guys move through the building taking kids. Wolverine is just about to blow his plot point load when Styker shows up....and Bobby Drake steps in and used a PP to put up the ice wall preventing Wolverine from concluding the scene the way he wants to. He triggers a milestone about his past and goes into the next scene with a lot of PP's and exp to play with.
 

Jack

Wave Man
Validated User
I feel like I did my examples in reverse order here, showing how tricky you could get if you want without doing the simpler ones first. Which was probably not ideal.

Honestly, I had a lot of rules-lite loving playtesters and some crunch heavy folks who both enjoyed it. Probably because both the simple and more complex ways for doing things both work fine.
 

Jack

Wave Man
Validated User
This thread's kind of selling me off, too. I like games that feel like comic books, but this sounds overly fiddly and hand-wavy. I'll probably pick up a copy eventually because I like supers and Marvel, but it'll be against my better judgment.
So seriously no offense meant but..I'm not sure what you mean there. How is something fiddly and hand-wavy? I really don't understand how those two work together...
 

APN

Registered User
Validated User
Yes, but... I like to think of it differently. I would say that the question is not "Can Black Panther lift that thing?" because it doesnt matter. That's boring. the real question is "what is black panther trying to accomplish?" and "Does he succeed?" Because the Panther isnt trying to lift that rubble, he is trying to rescue the little girl who is trapped by the rubble. If you make the roll and save the girl - well, then you get to describe the awesome way that Black Panther solves the problem. Maybe he reaches deep down and finds that special something that sets heros apart (cant you hear Stan's prose now?) or maybe he uses his brains and comes up with - well, whatever makes the scene awesome. Cause Black Panther just saved that little girl.

Thanks for trying to explain, but...

That example, to me says Character A (Black Panther) sees a collapsing building (B) with exploding gas lines (C) flames everywhere (D) people screaming and running everywhere (E) debris falling (F) and a little girl trapped on the top floor (or under rubble etc) (G)

Rolling a pile of dice gets you some numbers that says Black Panther (A) moves directly to G (saving the girl). You have no idea about all the other stuff in between. Did it matter? According to the overall task objective, probably not. Black Panther was trying to accomplish the task of saving the girl. Did he succeed? Yes. He did so by skipping from point A to point G and missed everything out in between, because the objective was to save the girl and all the other stuff is ignored/hand waved because of the successful roll. Whether Panther got burnt, blown up, had to save other people on the way, got hit by falling rubble, had to direct people to safety doesn't matter in the sense that he succeeded at saving the girl. The other stuff might as well not be there.

I see now the system is more about storytelling than win/lose action style gaming. In that respect it might play well, fast and easy. You don't have to see if Black Panther made his way into the building (B) covered himself against a billowing flame cloud spitting out from a wall (C) leapt through a sheet of intense fire with sparks flying about (D) directed people to safety, including an inexplicable group of nuns and orphans (E) dodged a pile of falling debris and the resulting hole it makes in the floor (F) smashes through the doorway and into the room where the little girl is, steps to the window, arm around her, fires a grapple and swings in the nick of time as the building comes down behind him in a cloud of dust, with people screaming and crying, only for BP to walk, safe with the girl, from the dust cloud, to the joy of her parents.

That might need a whole pile of rolls, extra hero points, effort, take some damage, persuade some people, dodge some falling debris, smash through a door, swing from a window and do all that before the building comes down. Instead, we roll a bunch of dice once, see that BP saves the girl and describe how he does all that other stuff without seeing if he fails or takes any damage or whatever.

I dunno. As I said, I'll read it. Thanks for the attempt at the sell (remember, this is a 'sell me' thread, so there may be doubters!) and the patience of all you play testers who clearly have spent a fun amount of time with the game. I suspect you might have a busy time in the next few days as people get hold of the game and try to figure it out.
 

Mostlyjoe

is plotting your doom.
Validated User
This thread's kind of selling me off, too. I like games that feel like comic books, but this sounds overly fiddly and hand-wavy. I'll probably pick up a copy eventually because I like supers and Marvel, but it'll be against my better judgment.
Don't get too worried. It's actually a lot easier to visualize. The only die pool that carries over is your stress track (represented by 1 die) and the doom pool (which the Watcher can keep out in the open so everyone can keep an eye on it.). Everything else resets after actions are resolved unless you are spending plot points to hang onto resources of some kind. Like a car the Hulk has 'converted' into boxing mits for the whole scene. NPCs can be represented en-mass as one die pool and it's just pool vs pool. The PC's can aid one another and blast past the various foe pools, except the Doom Pool which always remains 2 d6's. But if you resolve the action (by say stressing it out) or remove a die pool from play (but 'saving' a victim.) the scene is effectively over.
 
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