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[Aberrant] Toughs, Quickies, Cyborgs & Powered Armored Foes

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  • [Aberrant] Toughs, Quickies, Cyborgs & Powered Armored Foes

    I think this is my first time creating a new post so - ahem - is this thing on?

    Digging through the antagonist chapter - I'm not necessarily confused as the easiest way to represent the "enhanced baselines" is through the same mechanics dictating nova abilities - how do we literally treat those non-Nova foes with quantum ratings?

    It doesn't seem to necessarily fit the fluff that a Quantum Leech/Imprinteur could steal powers or quantum pool from a robot/power armor dude/cyborg. I could see a Mite Bruiser or Speed Junkie being particular versions of Superiors with had some artificial power and most reasonably treated as such both mechanically and contextually. However, it seems that cyber-soldier and exo-suit don't quite fit the bill. I'd guess they've Nova Tech unless power armor and cybernetics only work with people with some mild penchant for quantum manipulation - though that seems to run counter to setting.

    Full disclosure, I'm writing up a campaign for a Proteus Team - dark stars, Talents, normies (a little bit of a Batman Incorporated vibe) - and would love to be able to equip the baselines with some upgrades/call in favors to even the playing field and panzer suits and bionic upgrades fit the genre. Seems like nova genius inventors could for sure build first gen hardtech VARGs and/or mini-VARGs.

    There's not really a question other than, how would you build out off-the-shelf super hero adjacent tech without pummeling the setting?

  • #2
    My advice on making low powered/non-powered characters more effective without breaking the setting is to focus on communications, stealth, and mobility tech.

    Your group should always have good, secure comms, and ideally have tapped into the opposition's comms. When your players know where the enemy are and what they're planning, they can run rings around the opposition through superior info rather than overwhelming force. That makes them feel clever and invested instead of getting bored mowing down yet another squad of mooks.

    Stealth lets them get into position, and may even help them exfiltrate when the job is complete, if they can break contact with any opposing forces. Let them (usually) engage on their own terms so they feel like they're in control, but throw in an occasional monkey wrench to keep them on their toes.

    Mobility enhancers let them quickly move from zone to zone, often far faster than their opponents, who likely don't carry such gear on a regular basis. After all, even elite guards probably aren't packing wing suits, grapple lines, or SCUBA gear in their uniforms.

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    • #3
      Giving Nova tech to baselines would not break the setting, they are not as powerful or versatile as Novas, so it would not break the setting not even a bit.

      Cybernetics and Power Armors can be built as Nova Tech, but they would be limited to rank 5. Not a big issue, it still can do some crazy things, like lifting a building, punching holes in battlecruisers, resisting shots from cannons, etc. My suggestion is to build a set of parts instead of building a single piece of armor, make the armor one piece, the cannons another, the flight system another, etc, same for cybernetics.

      For size 2+ VARGs, create them as vehicles, just easier, and add nova tech to it (increase all the scales to start counting at the vehicle size).


      House Rules - The Basics - House Rules for Trinity Continuum
      Fists of Flux - Inspired and Powered Martial Arts for Talents
      Tomes of Inspiration - Rituals and Dark Magic in Fists of Flux

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Queen Anne Country View Post
        I think this is my first time creating a new post so - ahem - is this thing on?

        Digging through the antagonist chapter - I'm not necessarily confused as the easiest way to represent the "enhanced baselines" is through the same mechanics dictating nova abilities - how do we literally treat those non-Nova foes with quantum ratings?
        I think it's best to assume that they don't actually have quantum, and thus can't be subjected to power copying and the like. In particular, novas can't use psiad powers so the psiads wouldn't be copyable, even though the game uses nova rules to simulate psionics.

        It doesn't seem to necessarily fit the fluff that a Quantum Leech/Imprinteur could steal powers or quantum pool from a robot/power armor dude/cyborg. I could see a Mite Bruiser or Speed Junkie being particular versions of Superiors with had some artificial power and most reasonably treated as such both mechanically and contextually. However, it seems that cyber-soldier and exo-suit don't quite fit the bill. I'd guess they've Nova Tech unless power armor and cybernetics only work with people with some mild penchant for quantum manipulation - though that seems to run counter to setting.
        I'd say they're all almost certainly just people with nova tech. I think mite itself is listed as a type of nova tech, even.

        Full disclosure, I'm writing up a campaign for a Proteus Team - dark stars, Talents, normies (a little bit of a Batman Incorporated vibe) - and would love to be able to equip the baselines with some upgrades/call in favors to even the playing field and panzer suits and bionic upgrades fit the genre. Seems like nova genius inventors could for sure build first gen hardtech VARGs and/or mini-VARGs.

        There's not really a question other than, how would you build out off-the-shelf super hero adjacent tech without pummeling the setting?
        In one of my games, a baseline character started out with a suit of advanced alien armor that appeared on Earth through a flux-related incident, and then built some equipment based on it. Having technology that's not easily reproducible even by novas would definitely not mess up the setting.

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        • #5
          For my own campaign setting, I am using the following for some Talent level supers.

          FluxFiber Smartwear (••• to ••••• Artifact)
          A synthetic material created/discovered by Sunstreak Labs, which can be altered easily and adapt to a certain environment, allowing them to be incredibly resilient to drastic changes in heat, cold, pressure, density, dirt, etc. making them ideal for use as superhero costumes. FluxFiber is a configuration of unknown atomic nuclei and electrons that exist on the Angstrom edge between matter and energy and can interchange between either. These can be bonded to "Anchor" molecules and transfer any change in environment they experience to these anchor molecules. They will revert to normal when the environment does so. In Game terms, FluxFiber is Inspired Technology that when made into “super-suits” and worn by Inspired persons (thus “anchoring” the molecules), the results are impressive.
          Basic Super Suit (•••): The basic “Super Suit” of FluxFiber Smartwear is a form fitting costume that acts as a second skin, covering the characters entire body, leaving only their head uncovered. This garment provides two points both hard and soft armor and is Bulletproof, Impact, & Slash Resistant. Additional features (with their point cost) are as follows;
          Chameleon Coloration (••): This feature transforms the Basic Super Suit into the ultimate disguise for agents and antiheroes who want to be undetected. This feature changes color to resemble whatever background it is seen against. This color matching is neither perfect nor instantaneous. If the user moves faster than a slow walk, the suit’s color matching worsens. While standing still or moving slowly the suit provides 3 Enhancement to remain unseen, but this is reduced to 2 Enhancement if the user is moving more rapidly. Also, even a chameleon suit does not allow the user to hide in an empty, well-lit corridor.
          Cowl (•): This mask fits snuggly over the characters head, obscuring their features. When paired with the Basic Super Suit a Cowl completely protects characters from inhaled toxins.
          Electrostatic Grippers (•): This feature are gloves/boots that allow the hero to cling to walls and ceilings using electrostatic force in a manner similar to a gecko. By moving carefully, all grippers allow users to climb any wall or ceiling strong enough to bear their weight. With a little practice, users can climb on walls or ceilings as fast as a human can crawl.
          Invulnerability (••): Choose a source of damage, such as toxins, fire, electricity, or concussive damage. The wearer of the suit does not take any damage from this source of damage.
          Jump Boots (••): Your character can leap up to Short range horizontally and up to five meters vertically without rolling dice.
          Reflex Boosters (••): Synthetic nerve fibers whose conductive abilities are vastly superior to nerve cells are threaded through the suit. Add +1 to the character's Defense each time this power is chosen.


          “Humpty had always sat on walls, it was his way.”
          Jasper Fforde, The Big Over Easy

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          • #6
            Thanks, y'all. Love the answers. I may dial up a port over of some Aeon-era hardtech as NovaTech for some Proteus/Directive door kickers.

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