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What would you change in DCA builds?

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What would you change in DCA builds?

Postby Foreshadow » Tue Oct 16, 2012 8:02 pm

If you were doing up DC comic characters, how would you alter or change a particular aspect. The goal is not to devalue the official but rather to see people's opinions as to how they might go about it. You don't need to post an entire build, but if you have an alternate set of Advantages, different ways you'd do the base abilities or just one ability, key saves, etc. Whatever you want really can be posted.

I think it might be value to have a place to collect people's opinions. Do you like that a character is the official PL? If not what would you set it at?

Do not get into arguments about stats, nor make negative comments about some change someone might make. This is merely a place to voice your opinion and should be done so safely. I will abstain from posting other than I might ask clarifying questions about your comments, or what your train of thought was. I am personally interested in your thoughts or train of thought, advice, and methods you used to arrive at your changes.

I guess if you have a lot of alternative builds on Roll Call you can post comments, but you can also link to your builds as of course we can see your work. Perhaps you want to add thoughts or commentary about how and why you did it that way? What were your goals?

Any key sources you used? specific comics?

The purpose is to help the game grow and in 2e the builds in general and in official products grew over time. Adding your thoughts, and dare I say, Feedback about official builds might be useful for a variety of reasons.

thus I make a call for Feedback on the Heroes and Villains vol 1 and 2.

If you actually played with a character (s) and have an opinion on if they played like you imagined they might or did the experience result in a difference you enjoyed or felt the need to tweak something. If so let us know about the resulting experience and any tweaks or non-need for a tweak based on your experience.
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Re: What would you change in DCA builds?

Postby Earth-Two_Kenn » Tue Oct 16, 2012 8:42 pm

I'd give Superman, and probably all of the Kryptonians, an alternate effect on their Heat Vision where the beam is Subtle, and probably one where it is Close, Area Cone and Subtle.

I'd give Aquaman's gold scale mail shirt a few ranks of Protection and/or Impervious Toughness.

I'd lower Starfire's strength to a 5 or 6. Marv Wolfman stated that she had the strength of eight men. The only time I ever saw Kory as stronger than Vic was on the animated program.

I'd lower the lifting strength on the early "trapped in a power armour" version of Blue Devil.

I would have tried to make the Dan Garrett Blue Beetle resemble the character in the Charlton "Blue Beetle" comics that Dan Garrett starred in.

I'd have included a version of Green Arrow where his more fantastic trick arrows were represented, as devices.

I'd have put in a copy of the "multiple Superman" caveat they put in into Batman's entry as well.

I'd remember that as someone born on Earth, Adam Strange wouldn't have "Rannian Eyes".

I'd simplify Rita Farr's entry. And Ray Palmer's entry would have been considerably altered to better represent his abilities.

I'd include an entry for Dan Didio as a PL X character. With the red trim.

I'd have given proper write-ups to the classic Freedom Fighters, and not just their modern imitators.
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Re: What would you change in DCA builds?

Postby Arthur Eld » Wed Oct 17, 2012 1:13 pm

Earth-Two_Kenn wrote:I'd remember that as someone born on Earth, Adam Strange wouldn't have "Rannian Eyes".


And you'd remember properly, but selectively.

Adam Strange has Rannian (cloned and implanted into him) eyes after losing his original eyes in a Zeta Beam accident. Granted, this is a recent addition to the character (it happened during 52), but its not a mistake.
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Re: What would you change in DCA builds?

Postby Earth-Two_Kenn » Wed Oct 17, 2012 4:22 pm

I'd forgotten he'd had eyes grown for him, as I barely recall "52".

I'd still wouldn't include it.

1) I don't know if they said explicitly that having cloned eyes gave him the ability to see heat patterns and the ability to see better in the dark.
2) If I was going to grow a pair of eyes for someone, I'd use the individual's own genetic code. Especially if he's from another planet.
3) The people of Rann developed under, effectively, binary star system (Proxima Centauri is far enough away from Alpha Centauri A & B to be negligible). Having a need to see in poorer light seems like a very weird thing to have evolved in the Rannian race.
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Re: What would you change in DCA builds?

Postby Monolith » Thu Oct 18, 2012 7:37 am

I think the issue with the dc builds is that they're not really set to any one era of the character's existence. The Starfire's strength comment, for example, might have been true 20 years ago but the characters have changed since then. It's the same with the eyes: some versions of the character had it, some didn't. You need to take the builds for what they are: homogenized designs for characters who have changed countless times in over 7 decades of being published.
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Re: What would you change in DCA builds?

Postby Earth-Two_Kenn » Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:14 am

What Foreshadow asked for is what we would do differently. That's what I gave: what I would do differently. I would be truer to, say, the first 48 years of a characters existence rather than the most recent 6 years. To me "homogenised" and "iconic" aren't synonymous with "most recent".
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Re: What would you change in DCA builds?

Postby saint_matthew » Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:28 am

Earth-Two_Kenn wrote:3) The people of Rann developed under, effectively, binary star system (Proxima Centauri is far enough away from Alpha Centauri A & B to be negligible). Having a need to see in poorer light seems like a very weird thing to have evolved in the Rannian race.


Not nearly as silly as human beings having evolved with a now superflous vestigal organ that occassionally explodes, killing the host... An yet we all have Appendixes.

Earth-Two_Kenn wrote:"I'd give Superman, and probably all of the Kryptonians, an alternate effect on their Heat Vision where the beam is Subtle, and probably one where it is Close, Area Cone and Subtle.


I wouldn't, thats kind of what power stunts are for: Powers that get used rarely, if ever.
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Re: What would you change in DCA builds?

Postby Earth-Two_Kenn » Thu Oct 18, 2012 10:07 am

That's an excellent point about power stunting, St. Matt. Okay, I'd make Heat Vision close, area cone, selective, subtle. I'd leave any variation from that for power stunts.

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Re: What would you change in DCA builds?

Postby HustlerOne » Thu Oct 18, 2012 12:02 pm

I would change the Parasite's build a little. His build is fine except he has a very low variable rank to steal other people's powers. Why doe he have only 60 points to simulate powers that he stole? That's not enough to copy Superman's powerset unless parasite only uses one power at a time. I just don't see him being a
threat to the man of steel except for making people completely powerless.
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Re: What would you change in DCA builds?

Postby Zaran » Thu Oct 18, 2012 1:40 pm

I'd switch Superman's and Shazam's Toughness.
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Re: What would you change in DCA builds?

Postby Severance » Thu Oct 18, 2012 2:14 pm

Honestly, I'd switch Batman and Wonder Woman's overall attack scores. Wonder Woman is supposedly a notch above even ol' Bruce, plus it would make some of his more martial adept villains more in line with his regular non-Batgod showings (for example Bronze Tiger and Lady Shiva)
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Re: What would you change in DCA builds?

Postby Foreshadow » Thu Oct 18, 2012 6:20 pm

Thank you for the response Earth-Two_Kenn that is exactly what I was looking for and your reasons are valid.

Question:
How about Batman? I'm trying to understand why he has a 14 defense. Is there a combo I don't see like Aquaman has where Batman gains a bonus in certain circumstances? He can have a 16 and I was just curious why it is set that way or is it to say Batman defensively is PL 11 but offensively is PL 12. I suppose he could be built with a 16 Fighting and would simply have less ranks of Close Attack to end up with the same overall attack bonuses. Anyone not like such a change, or would you have been comfortable with that type of change had it been in the official build? *i.e. Batman had either a 16 defense (same Fighting and Close Attack ranks) OR he simply had 16 Fighting and 4 ranks of Close Attack? Would you have accepted it as iconic Batman either way? Meaning are all these choices equally valid in this one aspect of Batman or are there specific reasons why one might choose another over the others?

Would anyone have altered Bruce Wayne's Intellect score? if so what would you set it at?

Oracle has an 8 Intellect? Does anyone know about Oracle? Why was she given that score. Tell me about the character background/comic side that goes into that number assigned? I know her individual skills aren't equal to Batman. Also if you look at Joker and Harley I was surprised by Harley's Intellect too? Anyone have comments about why you think she was placed at that level. I wasn't shocked by the Joker's Intellect. He is clearly smart but the characterization I see (at least from the Animated version) doesn't strike me as her listed Intellect. I did read she was a psychiatrist and of course by its very nature would imply a high IQ and one assumes Intellect. But still it did strike me as odd so please chime in with some insight on that whole issue?

I'm not saying any of this is wrong but rather wanting to see the reasons or reasoning behind it (and I lack the sheer Know: DC Lore skill (I can only roll a DC 25 on a roll of 20 with my really high +5 skill bonus, though my Know: Marvel skill is much higher at +15).

Overall, these DCA official builds help me learn more about these characters, and part of that is trying to understand why they were made like they were (ie what is the reasoning behind, evidence, etc)

Hence, why it is valuable to hear your opinions and how might you do it differently. If you have a specific variant of the character, since they are suppose to be iconic, add that too.

In a perfect world we would have had the time/resources to see a DCA where we get an entire couple pages listing the variations over the years but as GR stated there simply was not time or space for such an approach. That is one thing I liked about the last Marvel rpg (MURPG) where we find an entire little section on Spider-Man and all his variants and same with the Hulk and his variations. Of course, we only see that for those two main characters where there does seem to be a lot of variation over the years. I would think for characters like Captain America its all mostly costume changes and a couple shield change options.

That might be useful to see posted some Variant options, sort of like we see the water hand listed for Aquaman so if we want that option we can use it. If someone wants to work on that who really knows has a high Know: DC skill rank I'm sure many of us would welcome that. I would thank you for it.

For example, Batman would have variant Batsuit options which I see why he does not have for the iconic version but especially in his more modern and movie/animated/video game versions he has a few key options not listed in the iconic version like the standard Flight (Gliding) we see in the Dark Knight movies.
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Re: What would you change in DCA builds?

Postby Quistar » Thu Oct 18, 2012 10:48 pm

What would I change...well, I'd have to start by classifying two major types of "changes"...Omissions and Corrections.

Omissions are for things that should have been listed but weren't for some reason. For example, all of the different Lantern Corps provide Benefit 1: Instant Costume change into the Corps uniform. If the ring loses power, the uniform reverts back to whatever the ring wielder was wearing at the time of the change. So if Hal Jordan hops out of a shower, grabs his ring, and flies off to deal with a threat, he'd better hope he has juice left in his ring by the time he gets home or he'll be sharing a lot more than usual! :twisted:

It's a minor thing to just give each Lantern this Feature, but it annoys me that it was consistently left out of the stats.

Another ring-based omission or two, since that's on my mind...
* Star Sapphire ring constructs, if destroyed, trigger an Affliction effect (I like to call it "Seeing Stars") from sparkly stuff created as the construct dissipates. Basically dazes the opponent.
* Blue Lanterns can create targeted illusions/hallucinations based on the subject's greatest hopes.

Corrections are tweaks for what's already listed, like ranks, extras and drawbacks, etc. I'll go back over the games I've run in the last two years another time, but one thing that comes to mind is that villains with non-damage-based attack effects usually are too weak to keep up in combat compared to ones that rely on damage effects. Psimon and Gorilla Grodd come to mind, and I've used Grodd twice. I had to have Grodd power stunt a mind control effect to make him competitive with the heroes. And his "Make You a Gorilla" ray gun needs a higher DC; even average-level Fortitude defense is usually enough to make the save from what I saw (I could be wrong).

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Re: What would you change in DCA builds?

Postby Superguy » Fri Oct 19, 2012 5:00 am

saint_matthew wrote:Not nearly as silly as human beings having evolved with a now superflous vestigal organ that occassionally explodes, killing the host... An yet we all have Appendixes.


My apologies for pulling the thread off topic for a second, but I believe current research suggests that the appendix does have a function. It seems that it holds a reservoir of beneficial bacteria to repopulate the digestive tract after an illness.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled thread.
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Re: What would you change in DCA builds?

Postby Goldar » Fri Oct 19, 2012 12:04 pm

Earth-Two_Kenn wrote:
I'd give Aquaman's gold scale mail shirt a few ranks of Protection and/or Impervious Toughness.

I'd lower Starfire's strength to a 5 or 6. Marv Wolfman stated that she had the strength of eight men. The only time I ever saw Kory as stronger than Vic was on the animated program.

I'd simplify Rita Farr's entry.

I'd have given proper write-ups to the classic Freedom Fighters, and not just their modern imitators.


The 4 points above were also on my list. In addition:

--List alternate versions of the same character with their alternate power stats:
Here are just 2 Examples:
Mary Marvel as Black Mary : her strength alone should be quite a bit higher, in addition to a few other abilities, perhaps making her the strongest female in the DCU? Her mentality was also changed, but we need the stats to know how it would/could affect the game.

Captain Marvel when he had the white hair and white costume

--Give all entries a pic, even a tiny 1" X 1" pic

--Any character mentioned in the writings should get a profile. If they were important enough to mention at all, let alone by name, then they should be important enough to get an entry, even a tiny one!
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