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Aberrant: Defense and Quantum Deflection?

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  • Shepherdboi
    replied
    If your Quantum Aura does wind up being able to affect your environment, you don't have to worry only about your held possessions, you also have to worry about where you're standing. Depending on the type and intensity of your aura, you could wind up damaging or even destroying the floor beneath your feet. In that case, I suspect taking the time to perform a Power Stunt would be appropriate to remove the effect from your lower legs, at the cost of giving opponents a safe target to attack.

    If Quantum Aura is able to enhance attacks, maybe the apparent lack of Scale is on purpose, to keep characters with multiple dots in the Power from using it as a more useful alternative to Quantum Attack. If buying 5 levels of Quantum Aura gave you all the benefits of a close ranged level 5 Quantum Attack, plus the ability to damage anyone who enters melee with you, all with a Maintained duration and half the Quantum Point cost, a lot of people wouldn't bother to buy Quantum Attack. They wouldn't even need to buy it as a Technique, since performing a Power Stunt doesn't require them to spend 12 xp.

    I'd consider allowing a character with Quantum Aura to take something like the Might Tag from Quantum Anima, which grants might Scale when using the power to move objects. So additional levels of Quantum Aura would default to doing greater amounts of Scale 1 damage, with each purchase of the Tag upping the Scale. Between that and the issue of potentially damaging objects you didn't mean to damage, it becomes less of a must buy option.

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  • Florin
    replied
    Originally posted by Eternl Knight View Post
    Disagree. They are straight up stated as being for when powers don't cover something the character wants to do but is not covered by powers as written (i.e. it is the rule to cover holes in powers) AND power stunts don't just duplicate power dots. They can be used for "minor" to "major" effects, with what that means being left completely up to the SG. The very example given to describe power stunt use outlines where no power / power dots are duplicated and the number of successes to accomplish the task is set by SG without reference to anything but their own feelings on the matter (i.e. "SG fiat").

    At this point, I'm feeling like the argument is coming from a point of semantics.
    No, it literally says "If it succeeds, apply successes towards the desired Stunt. In general, successes can duplicate dots in another power or effect — one dot per success..." (Bolding mine.) I'm not talking semantics. One of the things you can do with successes from a power stunt is duplicate dots in another power or effect. In the case of melting through a vault door with your flaming body, duplicating QAttack seems like a perfectly reasonable way to do that.

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  • Dataweaver
    replied
    As I understand it, Quantum Aura is supposed to represent things like the Human Torch's “flame on”, but generalized to allow for other kinds of damaging effects besides fire. Use that as a guide: touching the Human Torch will result in getting burned. Likewise, touching someone using Quantum Aura inflicts the appropriate damage to whoever touches it. This works both ways: if you grab the Human Torch's arm, you get burned. If he grabs your arm, you get burned.

    It helps to keep in mind what a given Quantum Power is supposed to represent, and not get too bogged down in the precise wording of the rules — though it's a good thing when they align. But when they don't? I'd go with the former rather than the latter. I've had my fill of rules-lawyering systems that try to pin every little detail down.

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  • Eternl Knight
    replied
    Originally posted by econclark View Post
    I both agree and disagree with you. My point is that regardless who initiates the touching, the touching happens, therefore RAW it would impact a touchee.
    Think you're right here. Indirect Contact Damage doesn't specify how the touch is initiated, it merely states that the person taking damage is "touching the object (source of the damage) without wearing protective gloves".

    This is most likely because the rules for Indirect Damage are in the Core rules and the source of sentient Indirect Contact Damage in rules is in the Aberrant rules (i.e. users of the Quantum Aura power).

    Simply put, the RAW only indicate the state of touching, not the reason for touching, which means RAW - QAura should apply during melee because it doesn't state otherwise. Or adds a house rule that narrows it's applicability. And yes, I think this is a loophole/oversight like you do. RAI they probably wouldn't want QAura 5 to be able to stack five Injury Conditions, ignoring Armor, if a punch lands (i.e. overcomes Defence); but they didn't think about it or encounter it in testing.

    Storypath is quite flexible and, as they've stated in the Ask A Dev thread, it's the first edition of their new rules. They accept mistakes were made, we just patch over them. Not unusual for super-hero games given the flexibility they entail.

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  • Eternl Knight
    replied
    Originally posted by Florin View Post
    They aren't, though.
    Disagree. They are straight up stated as being for when powers don't cover something the character wants to do but is not covered by powers as written (i.e. it is the rule to cover holes in powers) AND power stunts don't just duplicate power dots. They can be used for "minor" to "major" effects, with what that means being left completely up to the SG. The very example given to describe power stunt use outlines where no power / power dots are duplicated and the number of successes to accomplish the task is set by SG without reference to anything but their own feelings on the matter (i.e. "SG fiat").

    At this point, I'm feeling like the argument is coming from a point of semantics.

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  • econclark
    replied
    However, the opponent still does get to resist. As Mateus was saying it seems like for indirect damage the damage rating is effectively the scale. It is more Quantum point efficient than Quantum Attack, but you could also make Quantum attack a Maintenance power with 2 Duration tags.

    1. you do have to beat the defense
    2. it is then resisted by a Stamina + Resolve roll
    3. Appropriate protective gear automatically decreases effectiveness by 4! There is also some potential debate as to the effectiveness of the Environmental (1) tag or Adaptation, but Environmental (2) certainly works
    4. As you said, it has no scale, and thus no enhancements from it. This generally speaking can make it much more difficult to overcome defense unless the character also has high attribute/skill and/or some other source of scale that would allow defense to be overcome.
    5. Yes, it hurts if someone punches back, but even for Mega-Tough novas, how many would punch the aforementioned Lava-man unless they were also exceptionally resistant to heat/fire
    6. As far as I can tell, even a melee weapon would prevent touching of the aura (although the weapon may be destroyed). Also, this provides no defense or deterrence against ranged attacks.

    Personally, I think that it is appropriate as a touch attack. I am still going back and forth on the stacking issue...Think of Mega-Might, the impact is there, the contact is there, both "Should" apply, However, this may be a very destructive combination and it may be better to limit it to when the nova is maxing out or something like that.

    Anyone that knows they will be facing a nova with this or the environmental anima (damaging) power would plan ahead and bring appropriate protective gear (if possible). Ranged attacks are also a successful counter. Finally, there are several powers that are flexible enough to protect an unprepared nova (Transformation, Molecular Chameleon, Quantum Disruption, potentially Density with the non-living tag, etc.) There are many ways around it, but simple Environmental (2) will (Usually) completely negate damage with no recourse.

    I don't see it as being WAY more powerful, it would have benefits and drawbacks like any other power. I guess it can be powerful for sure, but I don't see it as being better than Density (although it costs less). Perhaps the cost should be adjusted to match that of Density if it is working as an "offensive" and somewhat defensive power, but unless there is stacking, it seems underpowered by comparison.

    Finally, now I am thinking of having a nova that has the "Impose" tag on their Quantum Aura, and uses it to put the Aura around objects that can then be thrown or put as obstacles (Make a door flaming to throw-off pursuit. Impose, unlike Bestow does not impose conditions on what it is applied to (just a target).

    I started out not liking the power at all, thinking it was next to useless, but throughout this discussion I have come to appreciate it.

    By the way, I like the idea of an Environmental Anima with the Vampiric (4) tag. If it has a wide enough radius, you can effectively completely restore health, quantum and rid yourself of status effects while dispatching mooks or even simply animals etc. from the environment. At this level overloading on Quantum is not an issue because you can always choose one of the other options

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  • Florin
    replied
    It is WAY more powerful, even without other powers. You could just inflict injury conditions directly. You don't need to worry about doing more than beating Defense, and you can inflict more than 2 injury conditions in an attack without Scale or spending more successes. It's also a maintained power, which means it's more quantum point efficient than QAttack. And it hurts anyone who punches you back.

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  • econclark
    replied
    I would not say that it is way more powerful, I would say it may be on par if that. It only becomes way more powerful if you are successfully stacking that and a high powered/scale attack (here's looking at you Mega-Might/Quantum Attack)

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  • Florin
    replied
    I don't think it's an oversight. I think they intentionally did not apply it to close combat attacks. Otherwise, it's way more powerful than most close combat offensive powers.

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  • econclark
    replied
    I both agree and disagree with you. My point is that regardless who initiates the touching, the touching happens, therefore RAW it would impact a touchee.

    I agree that if it was supposed to add to melee attacks it should have been stated. I think that this is a loophole/oversight, but as far as I can tell they do (although it could easily be argued that if they are using a weapon, it does not apply as only the weapon would make contact. So this would limit it to the specific case of unarmed/powered/natural weapons (claws)/grapples, not all melee attacks.

    It is also important to note that as a downside a nova with Quantum Aura has a very difficult time with equipment. The total amount that can be attuned (even with it maxed is very limited) and Quantum Aura would likely destroy any unattuned items pretty quickly.

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  • Florin
    replied
    Contact: Anyone touching the object without wearing protective gloves suffers the damage.

    Contact poisons, small fires, liquid nitrogen, and various toxic chemicals are examples of contact threats.
    As I said, RAW, contact damage hurts the toucher. RAI? I don't know.

    I feel like if Quantum Aura was supposed to add to your close combat attacks, it would have said something in the power. Especially since it usually applies to your whole body. It's written like a power which is only supposed to damage someone when they attack you, not when you attack them.

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  • econclark
    replied
    I get that the Iron Fist is potentially better captured by a Quantum attack, but from my understanding his "Fist" is not instantaneous. Which is why I suggested this as an alternative. Ideally, I think it would probably be a Quantum Attack with the Duration (concentration) tag (Pay Quantum point cost once and use as long as you are concentrating, the effect of the attack is still instantaneous).

    As for Florin's point, I have to disagree. Quantum Attack is stated as Indirect Contact Damage (I read this to mean 2 things 1. it is not an environmental effect and 2. the "toucher" doesn't matter, only that contact is made.) Effectively, it doesn't matter if the hot stove touches you or you touch the hot stove.

    Since the initiator of the contact doesn't matter, and a melee attack (without a weapon) initiates contact, the Quantum Aura should apply.

    Also, this would potentially make Quantum Aura a very powerful addition to a grappler, it would be applied each round to the other grappler and also applied to anyone attempting to help/interfere.


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  • Mateus Luz
    replied
    Originally posted by econclark View Post
    It is also possible to take it one step further and Apply the Restricted (-3) tag to Quantum Aura making it only cover your hands (This may be a good way to represent someone like the Iron Fist).
    Agree with you about the idea, but not specifically for Iron Fist.
    The idea of a nova that can set fire on a part of the body, like a hand is interesting, but if I was the GM I would point the character to Quantum Attack with incendiary tag.

    Iron Fist specifically would be a Quantum Attack but instead of incendiary tag it would be something like Piercing, Brutal and Aggravated.

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  • Florin
    replied
    Quantum Aura does Contact damage, which is supposed to be if someone else touches it, like touching the burning on a stove. So, if you took the Restricted tag, it would only hurt someone if they touch your fists, not if your fists touch them, RAW. If I was your SG, I'd probably tell you to use Technique to buy an offensive damage power if you wanted to do that and also have a Quantum Aura.

    If I was doing Iron Fist, I'd just use Quantum Attack and not buy the Ranged tag. That gives you power Scale and tags to play with. Also, the quantum point cost gives you the narrative of powering up your fist.

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  • econclark
    replied
    Now I have another question on Quantum Aura. Is it effectively a supercharging of melee attacks? This is quite interesting and could be super devastating. I like to look at the more extreme cases for my examples so imagine this. A nova with Quantum 5, Quantum Aura 5 and Quantum Attack (Melee Attack) 5. If they use their Quantum Attack (which has scale and interacts with Armor), it seems that the target would also be impacted by the Quantum Aura (5 indirect damage)! That seems like a combination that can flatten all but the most resilient foes in short order.

    It is also possible to take it one step further and Apply the Restricted (-3) tag to Quantum Aura making it only cover your hands (This may be a good way to represent someone like the Iron Fist).


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