How do you gain an attack bonus ?

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Postby farik » Thu Jul 15, 2004 12:34 pm

Marshal Law wrote:
farik wrote:
But that character with the high BDB is still hard to hit even if Green Arrow bought up his BAB to an equal level. Isn't it safe to assume Green Arrow should almost always be able to hit an unsuspecting target (not just have an average chance)?


Against somebody whose defence is equal to your attack score, you think it unfair that you only hit them 50% of the time?

If somebody has spent as much time and effort getting hard to hit as GA has at being able to hit things, why should he "almost always" be able to hit them?


2 reasons
1) from that neutral point the defensive character can accumulate a higher defense than the attacker can gain a chance to hit so in a straight out "arms race" defense wins by a hefty margin (keep in mind defense is cheaper than offense to boot).

2) Defensive powers have more versatility since you can customize your wisdom, dexterity, willpower save, reflex save, or damage/fortitude save to represent the style of "defender" you are. An accurate character is more pidgeon holed requiring an all or nothing BAB. SUre he can customize his damage or power effect but his accuracy is all or nothing.

The thing I like about the accuracy power is that it is customizable to a specific concept and can fill in the gap that BAB leaves in character creation.
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Postby Kwikdraw » Thu Jul 15, 2004 12:39 pm

farik wrote:What does that have to do with the price of tea in Bangkok? I'm not saying a person has to be maxed on defense I'm saying that if a person purchases BDB it doesn't get stripped off by being flat footed. I don't think most people buy up their BDB this high but they could. Now that character is really hard to hit unless someone buys BAB.



Kwikdraw wrote:The same thing would happen with two characters who are maxed out. +15 Attack Bonus Boy has only a 5% chance to hit 35 Defense Girl, unless he successfully Taunts or Bluffs her. Then, all of a sudden, 35 Defense Girl becomes 20 Defense Girl (since 15 points of her Defense come from a dodge bonus, which is lost once one is flat-footed) which means +15 Attack Bonus Boy now has a 75% chance to hit her.


As you can see, a 20 BDB character is quite easy to hit for someone who's designed to be accurate. 75% is better than average, and with a HP expenditure it's a guaranteed hit.

Farik wrote:Fine don't use the "Accuracy" power then. All I can say is that we use it and we have not had any problems with defense inflation. For us it lets us make what we consider to be more refined characters instead of Green Arrow having amazing ability to strike with mental powers, hand to hand, and ranged attacks instead he can specialize in ranged, have a little help in the hand to hand dept. and leave his mental attacks accuracy untouched.

Maxed BAB just doesn't fit all concepts for the accurate character.


Farik, I have to ask if you allow the Accuracy power to add in on top of the BAB?

In other words, can a PL 10 character buy their BAB up to +10, buy their Accuracy up to +10, and buy their attributes up to 20 giving them a base +25 to hit with a specific attack? Or do Accuracy and BAB stack for purposes of determining the BAB, meaning one can't get more than a total of +10 (assuming a PL 10 character) when BAB and Accuracy are added together?

If they stack, then I think Accuracy is a good idea — essentially Accuracy is BAB with the flaw "only for specified attack" and works just fine. However, if they don't stack then, in my opinion, Accuracy is broken.

Look at Avengers #5 (Busiek and Perez, not Lee and Kirby) — Hawkeye, the Marvel Universe's greatest archer bar none, could not hit the Whizzer (essentially the Flash, only a lot slower) with a straight-on shot no matter how hard he tried. Hawkeye had to use a trick boomerang arrow to hit him… in game terms, he used a trick shot to negate the Whizzer's Dodge Bonus.

So the PL 10 Hawkeye (with his +16 to hit with a bow, due to Attack Focus (bow), BAB and/or Accuracy, and Dex mod) normally only has a 10% chance (meaning rolling a natural 19 or 20) of hitting the PL 10, 35 Defense Whizzer . However, by using a trick shot, Hawkeye negated the Whizzer's Dodge bonus, knocking the speedster's defense down to a 20. Now Hawkeye suddenly has an 80% chance to hit the Whizzer. If Hawkeye misses on the first roll and spends a HP to re-roll, the hit is guaranteed because the minimum result will be a 10 before Hawkeye's bonuses are added in.

Now, let's take the same fight, but assume Hawkeye has Accuracy that doesn't stack with BAB for the purposes of calculating the maximum level. The +26 to hit Hawkeye has a flat 55% chance of hitting the Whizzer. This is The Whizzer, who should be one of the hardest people in the Marvel Universe to hit when he's prepared. Unless Hawkeye was having a really bad roll day, he'd hit the Whizzer sooner or later with no need for a surprise tactic or trick shot. Frankly, if he spent a HP his shot would be guaranteed. So much for having to use tactics like in the comic books, eh? :)

The point is, to have any sort of balance or tension in the game, the PCs *should* have to spend a HP or resort to clever tactics to hit the super-agile badguy or make the nigh-impossible trick shot that no one else in the world would have a hope in hell of making. Otherwise you might as well just throw out the dice completely and describe how your character easily succeeds at every shot he attempts.

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Postby farik » Thu Jul 15, 2004 1:10 pm

Kwikdraw wrote:
farik wrote:What does that have to do with the price of tea in Bangkok? I'm not saying a person has to be maxed on defense I'm saying that if a person purchases BDB it doesn't get stripped off by being flat footed. I don't think most people buy up their BDB this high but they could. Now that character is really hard to hit unless someone buys BAB.


Kwikdraw wrote:The same thing would happen with two characters who are maxed out. +15 Attack Bonus Boy has only a 5% chance to hit 35 Defense Girl, unless he successfully Taunts or Bluffs her. Then, all of a sudden, 35 Defense Girl becomes 20 Defense Girl (since 15 points of her Defense come from a dodge bonus, which is lost once one is flat-footed) which means +15 Attack Bonus Boy now has a 75% chance to hit her.


As you can see, a 20 BDB character is quite easy to hit for someone who's designed to be accurate. 75% is better than average, and with a HP expenditure it's a guaranteed hit.


sure if attacker taunts or bluffs his odds drastically improve. So how many points are spent on taunt to increase his ability to hit?

Kwikdraw wrote:
Farik wrote:Fine don't use the "Accuracy" power then. All I can say is that we use it and we have not had any problems with defense inflation. For us it lets us make what we consider to be more refined characters instead of Green Arrow having amazing ability to strike with mental powers, hand to hand, and ranged attacks instead he can specialize in ranged, have a little help in the hand to hand dept. and leave his mental attacks accuracy untouched.

Maxed BAB just doesn't fit all concepts for the accurate character.


Farik, I have to ask if you allow the Accuracy power to add in on top of the BAB, or if it can be added on separately?

In other words, can a PL 10 character buy their BAB up to +10, buy their Accuracy up to +10, and buy their attributes up to 20 giving them a base +25 to hit with a specific attack?



Yes, but that would be like buying maxed Protection, regeneration, and a maxed saving throw attribute.

Kwikdraw wrote:Or do Accuracy and BAB stack for purposes of determining the BAB, meaning one can't get more than a total of +10 (assuming a PL 10 character) when BAB and Accuracy are added together?


nope. It's entirely up to the GM to monitor for abuse.

Kwikdraw wrote:If they stack, then I think Accuracy is a good idea — essentially Accuracy is BAB with the flaw "only for specified attack" and works just fine. However, if they don't stack then, in my opinion, Accuracy is broken.


we just have to disagree then but a compromise would be to make them stack. Our group may be exceptional but people who take accuracy don't normally boost it or their BAB to either maximum. The same is true of our defensive characters.

Kwikdraw wrote:Look at Avengers #5 (Busiek and Perez, not Lee and Kirby) — Hawkeye, the Marvel Universe's greatest archer bar none, could not hit the Whizzer (essentially the Flash, only a lot slower) with a straight-on shot no matter how hard he tried. Hawkeye had to use a trick boomerang arrow to hit him… in game terms, he used a trick shot to negate the Whizzer's Dodge Bonus.


or he kept making bad rolls until he spent a hero point, or the whizzer was built on more points, or the story wouldn't have had any suspense if Hawkeye hit him right off the bat

Kwikdraw wrote:So the PL 10 Hawkeye (with his +16 to hit with a bow, due to Attack Focus (bow), BAB and/or Accuracy, and Dex mod) normally only has a 10% chance (meaning rolling a natural 19 or 20) of hitting the PL 10, 35 Defense Whizzer . However, by using a trick shot, Hawkeye negated the Whizzer's Dodge bonus, knocking the speedster's defense down to a 20. Now Hawkeye suddenly has an 80% chance to hit the Whizzer. If Hawkeye misses on the first roll and spends a HP to re-roll, the hit is guaranteed because the minimum result will be a 10 before Hawkeye's bonuses are added in.

Now, let's take the same fight, but assume Hawkeye has Accuracy that doesn't stack with BAB for the purposes of calculating the maximum level. The +26 to hit Hawkeye has a flat 55% chance of hitting the Whizzer. This is The Whizzer, who should be one of the hardest people in the Marvel Universe to hit when he's prepared. Unless he was having a really bad roll day, he'd hit the Whizzer sooner or later with no need for a surprise tactic or trick shot. Frankly, if he spent a HP his shot would be guaranteed. So much for having to use tactics like in the comic books, eh? :)


I understand the point of your example but it's not like the writers played out the scene they simply wrote it. Maybe we just spend fewer Hero Points in our group but when one is spent it's often described as miraculous.

Kwikdraw wrote:
The point is, to have any sort of balance or tension in the game, the PCs *should* have to spend a HP or resort to clever tactics to hit the super-agile badguy or make the nigh-impossible trick shot that no one else in the world would have a hope in hell of making. Otherwise you might as well just throw out the dice completely and describe how your character easily succeeds at every shot he attempts.


Your arguement sounds extremely alarmist to me. What about the tension of not being hit by the super accurate character. Even Daredevil fears Bullseye. And didn't Longshot never miss? Green Arrow shoots at targets while blindfolded, what kind of feat is he activating?

Can the Accuracy power be abused? Heck yeah!

Can any power be abused? Heck yeah!

Is Accuracy more unbalanced than other powers? Not in my experience.

Has anybody had a problem with the Accuracy power after incorporating it in a game (not a mock combat but an actual game)?
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Oh, and by the way, I don't use drawbacks in my game, just complications.

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Postby Kwikdraw » Thu Jul 15, 2004 1:46 pm

Farik wrote:
Kwikdraw wrote:Farik, I have to ask if you allow the Accuracy power to add in on top of the BAB, or if it can be added on separately?

In other words, can a PL 10 character buy their BAB up to +10, buy their Accuracy up to +10, and buy their attributes up to 20 giving them a base +25 to hit with a specific attack?


Yes, but that would be like buying maxed Protection, regeneration, and a maxed saving throw attribute.


Not quite, because there are ways to easily get around them with the right powers and/or feats. Super-tough regenerators can be immobilized, for example. With a guy with an incredibly high to hit roll, all you can do is hope he decides not to shoot you, or hide.

we just have to disagree then but a compromise would be to make them stack. Our group may be exceptional but people who take accuracy don't normally boost it or their BAB to either maximum. The same is true of our defensive characters.


That makes sense, and it's the only way I'd allow something like Accuracy in my game. I'll agree to disagree on that.

Farik wrote:
Kwikdraw wrote:Look at Avengers #5 (Busiek and Perez, not Lee and Kirby) — Hawkeye, the Marvel Universe's greatest archer bar none, could not hit the Whizzer (essentially the Flash, only a lot slower) with a straight-on shot no matter how hard he tried. Hawkeye had to use a trick boomerang arrow to hit him… in game terms, he used a trick shot to negate the Whizzer's Dodge Bonus.


or he kept making bad rolls until he spent a hero point, or the whizzer was built on more points, or the story wouldn't have had any suspense if Hawkeye hit him right off the bat


So to have any interesting combat challenge with suspense the defender has to be of a higher PL? That sounds very odd. :)

I understand the point of your example but it's not like the writers played out the scene they simply wrote it. Maybe we just spend fewer Hero Points in our group but when one is spent it's often described as miraculous.


True, but since this is a game that's trying to simulate comics, it might be prudent to use an example from the comics which shows how the current unmodified mechanics work. In this case, with a scene that has tension and uncertainty and presented a challenge to the protagonist, they work quite well.

Farik wrote:Your arguement sounds extremely alarmist to me. What about the tension of not being hit by the super accurate character. Even Daredevil fears Bullseye. And didn't Longshot never miss? Green Arrow shoots at targets while blindfolded, what kind of feat is he activating?


1. Perhaps Bullseye is maxed out whereas Daredevil isn't, or Bullseye is at a higher PL than Daredevil. Daredevil's agile, but he isn't acknowledged as the Marvel Universe's greatest dodge machine, whereas Bullseye is the greatest with ranged attacks.

2. Longshot has the Luck power, which can add to the attack roll. Of course, having Luck at 5 pp/rank means he's lacking in a number of other areas which a straight-up Accuracy character wouldn't. Also, if Longshot's Luck power fizzles out or backfires, he'll miss just as much as anyone else. If you really want a character that will never miss, throw out the dice.

3. Blind Sight if anything. Otherwise it won't matter how high his to hit bonus is, because a blind character has a 50% miss chance regardless of their 'to hit' roll. Even if they roll a natural 20.
Last edited by Kwikdraw on Thu Jul 15, 2004 2:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby farik » Thu Jul 15, 2004 2:09 pm

Kwikdraw wrote:Not quite, because there are ways to easily get around them with the right powers and/or feats. Super-tough regenerators can be immobilized, for example. With a guy with an incredibly high to hit roll, all you can do is hope he decides not to shoot you, or hide.


or you could resist their damage. Just becuase they are accurate doesn't mean they have maxed damage.

Kwikdraw wrote:So to have any interesting combat challenge with suspense the defender has to be of a higher PL? That sounds very odd. :)


No but there is more than one explanation for dynamic tension

Kwikdraw wrote:
I understand the point of your example but it's not like the writers played out the scene they simply wrote it. Maybe we just spend fewer Hero Points in our group but when one is spent it's often described as miraculous.


True, but since this is a game that's trying to simulate comics, it might be prudent to use an example from the comics which shows how the current unmodified mechanics work. In this case, with a scene that has tension and uncertainty and presented a challenge to the protagonist, they work quite well.


So why can't the protagonist experience the tension of being a target? What if Whizzer was the PC and Hawkeye was the NPC?


1. Perhaps Bullseye is maxed out whereas Daredevil isn't, or Bullseye is at a higher PL than Daredevil. Daredevil's agile, but he isn't acknowledged as the Marvel Universe's greatest dodge machine, whereas Bullseye is the greatest with ranged attacks.


So what if you want to play Bullseye?

2. Longshot has the Luck power, which can add to the attack roll. If his luck fizzles out or backfires, he'll miss just as much as anyone else. If you really want a character that will never miss, throw out the dice.


so why can't you greatly reduce the odds of missing. This isn't an all or nothing power you could take a few levels or take alot just like the application of the Protection power.

3. Blind Sight if anything. Otherwise it won't matter how high his to hit bonus is, because a blind character has a 50% miss chance regardless of their 'to hit' roll. Even if they roll a natural 20.


good point. I thought being blinded incurred a penalty to hit. :roll:
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Postby Kwikdraw » Thu Jul 15, 2004 2:27 pm

farik wrote:
Kwikdraw wrote:Not quite, because there are ways to easily get around them with the right powers and/or feats. Super-tough regenerators can be immobilized, for example. With a guy with an incredibly high to hit roll, all you can do is hope he decides not to shoot you, or hide.


or you could resist their damage. Just becuase they are accurate doesn't mean they have maxed damage.


And with the odds as they are and how the MnM system currently works, suddenly having Protection and/or a high Damage Save is far more useful than being a dodge monkey. The Thing becomes a better character than Spiderman, just like he was in the old TSR Marvel Super Heroes system. I like Defense being a valid way to avoid damage on its own, with enough options for characters to be clever in negating it.

farik wrote:
Kwikdraw wrote:
I understand the point of your example but it's not like the writers played out the scene they simply wrote it. Maybe we just spend fewer Hero Points in our group but when one is spent it's often described as miraculous.


True, but since this is a game that's trying to simulate comics, it might be prudent to use an example from the comics which shows how the current unmodified mechanics work. In this case, with a scene that has tension and uncertainty and presented a challenge to the protagonist, they work quite well.


So why can't the protagonist experience the tension of being a target? What if Whizzer was the PC and Hawkeye was the NPC?


NPCs can use clever tactics (bluff, taunt, trick arrows) just like the PCs. If you want a Hawkeye who's just more accurate without having to be clever, make him a higher PL.


1. Perhaps Bullseye is maxed out whereas Daredevil isn't, or Bullseye is at a higher PL than Daredevil. Daredevil's agile, but he isn't acknowledged as the Marvel Universe's greatest dodge machine, whereas Bullseye is the greatest with ranged attacks.


So what if you want to play Bullseye?


Then by all means max out your BAB and/or accuracy stacking limits. Against most foes who aren't maxed out, you'll hit them a lot. Just be prepared to face the fact that, every once in a while, you're going to face someone who's maxed out in their defense that you can't hit, so you'll have to be clever when going up against them (just like in the comics) and go outside of the normal "point and shoot" tactic. If you don't want a challenge, chase after mooks and characters of a lower PL.

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Postby farik » Thu Jul 15, 2004 6:03 pm

Kwikdraw wrote:
Then by all means max out your BAB and/or accuracy stacking limits. Against most foes who aren't maxed out, you'll hit them a lot. Just be prepared to face the fact that, every once in a while, you're going to face someone who's maxed out in their defense that you can't hit, so you'll have to be clever when going up against them (just like in the comics) and go outside of the normal "point and shoot" tactic. If you don't want a challenge, chase after mooks and characters of a lower PL.


I'm sorry you don't see how playing an extremely accurate character would be fun. With a limited damage capacity you have every bit of tension you have playing a clumsy brick. The extremely accurate character is a great role to play and they have to use tactics to get past toughness instead of using tactics to get past avoidance. It's like vanilla and chocolate. I love it when Green Arrow gets the crap beat out of him because no matter how well he hits the monster the monster just shrugs off his attacks. That moment of tension is every bit as cathartic as Spiderman dodging Bullseye. Only in a setting of extremes are all characters maxed out into a single combat oriented niche.
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Postby d4 » Thu Jul 15, 2004 9:17 pm

farik wrote:I'm sorry you don't see how playing an extremely accurate character would be fun.

i think playing an extremely accurate character would be lots of fun. but i'd build him with (at most) BAB +10, and then add in several feats like Attack Focus, Point Blank Shot, Ricochet Attack, Startle, Surprise Strike, and skills like Intimidate and Taunt. i don't think an Accuracy power is needed to represent the archetype.

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Postby farik » Thu Jul 15, 2004 9:23 pm

d4 wrote:
farik wrote:I'm sorry you don't see how playing an extremely accurate character would be fun.

i think playing an extremely accurate character would be lots of fun. but i'd build him with (at most) BAB +10, and then add in several feats like Attack Focus, Point Blank Shot, Ricochet Attack, Startle, Surprise Strike, and skills like Intimidate and Taunt. i don't think an Accuracy power is needed to represent the archetype.


The trouble I have with that construct is the fact that in addition to being an excellent ranged attacker they are also amazingly accurate at hand to hand and mental attacks.
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Postby d4 » Thu Jul 15, 2004 9:28 pm

farik wrote:The trouble I have with that construct is the fact that in addition to being an excellent ranged attacker they are also amazingly accurate at hand to hand and mental attacks.

then put a flaw on their BAB, or use the Combat Skills option from the sidebar on page 28.

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Postby farik » Thu Jul 15, 2004 9:29 pm

d4 wrote:
farik wrote:The trouble I have with that construct is the fact that in addition to being an excellent ranged attacker they are also amazingly accurate at hand to hand and mental attacks.

then put a flaw on their BAB, or use the Combat Skills option from the sidebar on page 28.


And how is that better than making a new power?
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Postby d4 » Thu Jul 15, 2004 9:31 pm

farik wrote:And how is that better than making a new power?

1. it's already in the book and doesn't require a new write-up.

2. it doesn't allow your total BAB to exceed your PL.

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Postby farik » Thu Jul 15, 2004 9:37 pm

d4 wrote:
farik wrote:And how is that better than making a new power?

1. it's already in the book and doesn't require a new write-up.

2. it doesn't allow your total BAB to exceed your PL.


Where in the book does it discuss applying flaws to BAB? Maybe I missed it.

As far as using it as a skill you get each attack type for one point as a skill.

As the power is writeen the bonus costs 2PP/rank.

If you don't like new powers then don't use them. Just note that your problem seems more rooted in a personal disagreement with new power construction versus any experience with the power being any more abusive than any other power. Unless you have experience with the Accuracy power disrupting a game in which case I'd like to hear about it as I'm sure anyone else who uses the power would.
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Postby d4 » Thu Jul 15, 2004 9:48 pm

farik wrote:Where in the book does it discuss applying flaws to BAB? Maybe I missed it.

the sidebar on page 92.

farik wrote:If you don't like new powers then don't use them. Just note that your problem seems more rooted in a personal disagreement with new power construction versus any experience with the power being any more abusive than any other power. Unless you have experience with the Accuracy power disrupting a game in which case I'd like to hear about it as I'm sure anyone else who uses the power would.

oh i admit i haven't used an Accuracy power in-game. that's because i just don't see the need for one.

Attack and Defense are already balanced, in my opinion. the defender starts with a base 10 Defense, and the attacker rolls a d20, which averages 10.5. both can apply a stat modifier, up to +5. still balanced. both can buy BAB/BDB up to +10. still balanced.

the defender can then buy other things that boost his Defense score (Dodge feat, Super-Dex, Super-Speed) but they are all dodge bonuses. that's important, because there are several things the attacker can buy (Taunt, Startle + Intimidate, Ricochet Attack) that negate dodge bonuses -- putting them back on even footing.

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Postby farik » Thu Jul 15, 2004 10:04 pm

d4 wrote:
farik wrote:Where in the book does it discuss applying flaws to BAB? Maybe I missed it.

the sidebar on page 92.

farik wrote:If you don't like new powers then don't use them. Just note that your problem seems more rooted in a personal disagreement with new power construction versus any experience with the power being any more abusive than any other power. Unless you have experience with the Accuracy power disrupting a game in which case I'd like to hear about it as I'm sure anyone else who uses the power would.

oh i admit i haven't used an Accuracy power in-game. that's because i just don't see the need for one.

Attack and Defense are already balanced, in my opinion. the defender starts with a base 10 Defense, and the attacker rolls a d20, which averages 10.5. both can apply a stat modifier, up to +5. still balanced. both can buy BAB/BDB up to +10. still balanced.

the defender can then buy other things that boost his Defense score (Dodge feat, Super-Dex, Super-Speed) but they are all dodge bonuses. that's important, because there are several things the attacker can buy (Taunt, Startle + Intimidate, Ricochet Attack) that negate dodge bonuses -- putting them back on even footing.


So is it so wrong for a group to use the Accuracy power if they aren't satisified with the options for an "accurate" character?

Just because you're satisfied with the odds to hit and the ways to get around high defenses doesn't mean everyone will be equally satisfied.

Way back when this thread started the original poster was looking for a simple way to bring the odds of hitting more in sync with the odss of avoiding being hit. We've had pages of discussion about the to hit odds and the what ultimately boils down to a consensus that power limits are important but GM judgement must riegn supreme. All that's left to disagree about are whether specific character concepts can be made using a variety of methods. If you brought your accurate character to a game I was running I'd probably approve it if another person built a similar character with the accuracy power instead of purchasing the taunt and bluff skills I'd probably approve it as well. When I made the opposition I'd design them based on the overall abilities of the party taking advantage of any weaknesses and allowing for "star" time with their special powers.

Mathematically we have nothing to disagree about since the odds we favor are going to be personal preference. So all we can really do is discuss the effects of using are different methods.

I've played sessions without the accuracy power and seen the effects of trying to be "accurate" using the basic rules. I wasn't satisfied.

I've also seen the Accuracy power in action and saw it made much more refined characters.

Once again I ask has anyone experienced a disruptive effect caused by application of the Accuracy power in an actual game?
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Oh, and by the way, I don't use drawbacks in my game, just complications.


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