Dynamic Arrays within Arrays

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Dynamic Arrays within Arrays

Post by XLS » Wed Dec 04, 2013 7:31 am

Hi all, I think I have the answer in this "official" answer, but I thought I'd ask here.

Suppose I had the following build:

Battle Armor Array 20 (Dynamic)
-- Versatile Combat Array (Base, Dynamic)
----- Flight X
----- Blast X
----- Enhanced Strength X
-- Heavy Combat Array (Dynamic)
----- Blast X
----- Blast (Area) X
----- Blast (Different Area) X
----- Enhance Strength X
-- Recon Array (Dynamic)
----- Super Senses X
----- Concealment X
----- Blast X

So, so I used X to not mess with the math. But I so far have 3 arrays with one Base and they're all Dynamic, so would I make that cost 5-- 2 for APs and 3 for each being Dynamic. That's fine, but then can I use any power from any array since they're Dynamic?? It seems like being able to access 10 powers (let's pretend that each Blast is different, perhaps with different descriptors (e.g. machine gun, or laser cannon, or whatever)), but I'm not paying for them. At that point, what's the use of even having different arrays if you're able to pick and choose from within each? I tend to read that as you are getting points to use one array or the other or the other only, and within that you get to mess with the settings. But going from Recon to Heavy Combat means you can no longer use any Recon powers at all.

From Steve's answer in the link above, it sounds like there should be a "minimum" setting where all powers in an array have to be activated at some basic level, and then with leftover points you can draw from other arrays? I am unclear, but am trying to figure it out.

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Re: Dynamic Arrays within Arrays

Post by kenseido » Wed Dec 04, 2013 2:23 pm

Okay, this seems overly complicated for an array. It would seem to me that this would be a better build for that.

Array 20 (Dynamic, all AP's Dynamic)
-Blast (Variable Descriptor 2)
-Enhanced STR
-Blast (Area, Variable Descriptor 2)
-Blast (Different Area, Variable Descriptor 2)

Now the cost comes out to 53pp (40pp for the array, 1pp to make it dynamic, and 6AP and 2pp each). I can't really see a whole lot of justification for splitting it into sub-array.

P.S. 'Because it's cheaper' is not a legitimate justification in my mind. Optimizing character cost is one thing; doing end runs around the rules to save points doesn't fly with me. Nested arrays are highly questionable, IMHO.
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Re: Dynamic Arrays within Arrays

Post by FuzzyBoots » Wed Dec 04, 2013 5:03 pm

As a side note, the ORQ you have linked is for a dynamic array of slots with multiple powers in them (a dynamic array of Containers is one way to look at it), not an array of arrays. It is possible to "nest" arrays (I've done it once or twice for someone with an arsenal of weapons, some of which have alternate settings) but it makes the math a bit different. For example, in the array you posted, the base array costs 40 + 1 + 1 + 2 pp with each subarray having 40 pp to work with. But, since the subarrays have their own cost, using any power inside of them makes you immediately have to pay the premium for the dynamic powers. So if you're using any power from the Versatile or Recon array, you take a 5 pp hit. The Heavy combat array would be 7 pp.
So using Flight 3, Versatile Blast 10, Versatile Enhanced Strength 8 would use up 6 + 20 + 8 + 5 = 39 of the pp. Using Flight 2, Heavy Blast Area 8 takes up 4 + 24 + 5 + 7, or 40 of the pp. So yeah... they're more crippled than they might think. I do think that Kenseido's formulation makes more sense.

Personally, I wouldn't allow nested dynamic arrays. Nested containers possibly (using the Core rules which indicate that at least one rank needs to be turned on if any power in the container is turned on) and nested arrays occasionally have a usage. Dynamic arrays inside dynamic arrays is just too complicated.

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Re: Dynamic Arrays within Arrays

Post by digitalangel » Thu Dec 26, 2013 8:49 am

It looks like you are basically trying to have multiple armors that the character has access to. One way to do this would be to use the Variable power. Limit it to Devices and the Slow flaw so that you can only change armors when you are able to return to your base. Then just prebuild a few common armors that you use ahead of time so that you don't drag game play to a halt everytime your character goes back to base to switch suits. Especially if your character is supposed to be the one who invented/built the armors gives leeway to setup other suits in the future as long as your GM is cool with the suit you are putting together, but it would still have the flaw of having to return to base to change suits.

With Limited and slow, variable doesn't really cost you much in point beyond the device cost of the biggest suit anyway, and since this screams normal identity flaw as well helps you reclaim a little more there if you are worried about having enough points to round out the character you have in mind.