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  • Repairing Iron Man

    Greetings one and all,

    I was polishing up my character for our M&M game and a thought popped into my head. First of all, let me say that my character is an Iron Man homage.

    In games, the character takes takes damage and gets beat on. This led me to start to wonder if there was any rules for the actual repairing of such gear. It was bought as a Device and usually, it is a hand-wave and <presto> the suit is repaired.

    Any thoughts?
    Check out my builds at * EMERALD FLAME'S 3e BUILDS *

    “There are moments when even to the sober eye of reason, the world of our sad humanity may assume the semblance of Hell. ”

    ― Edgar Allan Poe

    The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.

    -- Martin Luther King, Jr.

  • #2
    Re: Repairing Iron Man

    Probably a good question for the Main MnM forum, but seeing as how we have great building minds here all the time, I'm sure you'll get a good answer.

    Not from me, because I'm not sure, but I look forward to the real answer.
    The Thorpacolypse
    Member of the Guild of Calamitous Intent since 2005
    Co-Chair of the Council of 13
    "Hate you can trust"

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    • #3
      Re: Repairing Iron Man

      I typically add this Complication to all power armor guys to address the damage and repair cycle:

      Power Loss:Failing a damage save by 3 or more degrees will cause a system failure, neutralizing one of the character's weapons or other powers, or leaving him Hindered or Vulnerable due to lost mobility. Advanced repairs (DC 30) are possible. The same may happen on a critical hit (as the usual benefit of the crit); he gets no hero point in that case.

      Fantasy Geographic Society – My Mutants & Masterminds stuff

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      • #4
        Re: Repairing Iron Man

        Jack of Spades.. I like the Complication idea. I was also playing with the idea of having the operator make a repair role for each 2 or 3 "bruises" taken. This could represent the suit taking a beating along with the operator inside.
        Check out my builds at * EMERALD FLAME'S 3e BUILDS *

        “There are moments when even to the sober eye of reason, the world of our sad humanity may assume the semblance of Hell. ”

        ― Edgar Allan Poe

        The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.

        -- Martin Luther King, Jr.

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        • #5
          Re: Repairing Iron Man

          Yeah, I include something like that Complication for anyone who uses Devices- it only seems fair to penalize them a BIT, given they're getting a MASSIVE discount for something that really isn't going to come up every adventure:

          characters get a HUGE discount for something that's unlikely to happen often (how many times does Iron Man REALLY get left without his Armour in the comics? The players would rightly complain if they were constantly de-powered like this, as well). Therefore, I would argue that anyone using a Device should get that discount as always, but have to deal with the occasional Side-Effect of taking damage or other attacks- perhaps roll on a unique Table every time they fail a save by more than 5- roll randomly and maybe Iron Man's Boot Jets are disabled, or his Toughness is permanently lowered (a plate got knocked out of whack), or his Sensors go awry- maybe he even suffers a loss to his Accuracy or Defenses! Stuff like that keeps it interesting (as opposed to "Useless Human Tony"), while also being worth the Flaw.
          Jabroniville at Hotmail dot com
          http://www.echoesofthemultiverse.com/index.php

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          • #6
            Re: Repairing Iron Man

            As regards skill checks for repair, I usually go with the direction of allowing a Craft check as an ersatz Healing check, albeit one which is likely to take much longer. For patches on the field, they're not likely to be able to do much more than remove the worst damage condition, and that patch might fail later. For a less powerful effect, just treat the Craft check as a Medicine check, except regarding the suit. Diagnosis and treatment map pretty nicely. Resuscitation can even work if the system is caught in its death throes and the character is doing emergency patching to prevent it from overloading and going entirely inert.
            [url=http://roninarmy.com/threads/996]My Builds[/url]

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            • #7
              Re: Repairing Iron Man

              You could use the rules for repairing machines on 75 under the Technology skill, although be sure to lower the unreasonable numbers (DC 30 and 4 days to fix a broken PC).

              Originally posted by Jabroniville View Post
              Yeah, I include something like that Complication for anyone who uses Devices- it only seems fair to penalize them a BIT, given they're getting a MASSIVE discount for something that really isn't going to come up every adventure:
              My favorite character is a battlesuit. Given that I had to pay a concept tax of about 30pp on useless traits such as Intellect 10, Wealth, Benefit (CEO) and Benefit (Fame), ranks of Expertise (Business), Life Support, Presence and more, the Removable discount only barely let me break even. Even then, I reminded my GM to remove the suit and I enjoyed playing the vulnerable normal human in the middle of combat when it did get removed.

              Removable only gets problematic when unfair players use it to get point discounts on builds that are already highly point-efficient, betting that the GM won't remove them often enough to matter.

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              • #8
                Re: Repairing Iron Man

                Well, technically speaking, the system doesn't have a concept tax, so that was either self-inflicted or insisted upon by the GM. while some of it makes sense to a degree, most of it is unnecessary. I mean, Batman is Int. 8 and apparently has no problem inventing a battlesuit that will allow him to outpower Green Lantern's ring (if you don't find Scott Snyder's current Batman plotline silly that is). Wealth is only important as a benefit if the GM occasionally insists on Wealth checks to pay for things. Fame is definitely self-inflicted.

                Plus a Battlesuit is not normally easily removeable, so it shouldn't be able to be taken in combat anyway under normal circumstances. Stolen from the characters' workshop, yes. Removed when a character is captured, you bet. Stolen in the middle of combat? Not by rule.

                So yeah, if you wanted to impose a complication focused around a timeframe for repairing the suit between combats IF it gets damaged, that's reasonable. That being said, remember devices aren't subject to incidental damage. In order to damage a device in combat (even a battlesuit), the device has to be specifically targeted. If you subject a device to incidental damage AND make it so the device has to meet certain criteria to be repaired in between conflicts, you may be subjecting that character to an unfair penalty that simply awarding 1 hero point does not balance.

                Be very careful that your quest for additional granularity and "realism" doesn't unfairly handicap a particular character.

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                • #9
                  Re: Repairing Iron Man

                  If you read the section Ysariel points out, Jury-Rigging covers field repair, and for something like power armor it would allow you to repair a single problem as a Standard Action at DC20 Tech check and it only stays together until the end of the scene. It's effectively a skill-based Recover action for machines.
                  My old [URL="http://www.atomicthinktank.com/viewtopic.php?p=743877#p743877"]Atomic Think Tank[/URL] thread
                  My current character thread: [URL="https://roninarmy.com/threads/6194-The-Sound-of-My-Eyebeams-JDRook-s-builds-and-blather?p=233536&viewfull=1#post233536"]The Sound of my Eyebeams[/URL][URL="http://www.atomicthinktank.com/viewtopic.php?p=743877#p743877"]
                  [/URL]
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                  • #10
                    Re: Repairing Iron Man

                    I'm very aware of the jury-rigging and repair rules under the technology skill, and they can add spice to a game, however, it can be pretty easy to go overboard on the number of problems inflicted on device wielding characters and I was just cautioning a degree of restraint.

                    You could even replicate the jury-rigging rules "Expertise: Magic" for magical artifacts if you were so inclined, but once again I would just caution against going overboard unless your intent is to make powers gained by device a less attractive option for your players. In that case it might be a good idea to warn them in advance.

                    Personally I almost always end up GMing more than I play and I rarely play a character whose powers are dependent on devices, but I've seen characters with devices treated both ways. I've been in games where the GM didn't penalize the device using PC at all, because it was a tangent away from the main plot they didn't want to take, but I've also seen circumstances where the device wielding character was constantly struggling against the burden of having powers that weren't biological in nature.

                    Keeping things fair is a balancing act.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Repairing Iron Man

                      Horsenhero is right to a point regarding the concept tax. Even the Battlesuit architype in teh book only has an INT of 5. The pilot does not necessarily have to be the inventor (or even mechanic) of a suit either, especially if playing in a setting where the character works for the government or other powerful organization that actually owns the suit. That of course adds its own set of complications for the character.


                      Still that discount on devices is not just free points:

                      While the books says devices and equipment are only damaged when specifically targetted, a smart opponent will target you gear if that is (or appears to be) the source of your power. Also remember that devices are not magically immune to being caught in area attacks either. This means that area attacks can potentially damage both the character and the device(s) they are using.

                      At least for 2E have to check on 3E, devices can take penalties (until repaired, time to cool, etc) from using extra effort with the device. Focusing crystals crack, electronics short out, things overheat, etc. when you push a device beyond the limits it was designed for.

                      90% of the time a device is also adding the technology descriptor to whatever the power would normally have, making it a little easier to Drain or Nullify.
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                      • #12
                        Re: Repairing Iron Man

                        Well there are repair rules for mecha in the Gadget guide. I believe it takes
                        a minimum of thirty minutes to do so. It can be made faster if quickly jury rigged.
                        I assume that any battlesuit repairs are instant and temporary for a single scene
                        such as a short battle. Sounds like a use of a powerstunt to me.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Repairing Iron Man

                          Don't forget that a battlesuit worth 80 points has a Toughness of 16! That's not a bad resistance check by any means.

                          Personally (and it's probably only me ), I think Removable makes better sense as a Complication.
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                          • #14
                            Re: Repairing Iron Man

                            Originally posted by badpenny View Post
                            Don't forget that a battlesuit worth 80 points has a Toughness of 16! That's not a bad resistance check by any means.

                            Personally (and it's probably only me ), I think Removable makes better sense as a Complication.
                            I've heard you make some good arguments for that in the past Penny. I can definately understand that if the GM doesn't really do much with removable (never has foes smart enough to target the devices, never has something major happen when the character can't reach where their devices are stored, ignores the potential for Area attacks to damage the devices as well as the character, etc.), especially since 3E has shifted from flaws to complications so much anyway.

                            In some ways the extra HPs over the course of a fight as an opponents takes out systems of your armor could be worth more to the player than the points saved with the removable flaw especially since 3E nerfed the Luck advantage as well making extra HPs harder to come by. The flip side of that is if you use the removable flaw to save points at build time, you miss out on the HPs when you go up against an opponent that keeps blowing off parts of your battle suit or are caught without your gear nearby.
                            Classic car restoring, gun owning, martial arts practicing, military, gamer geek, kinky lesbian IT chick (has your brain exploded yet?)
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                            • #15
                              Re: Repairing Iron Man

                              Originally posted by Horsenhero View Post
                              Well, technically speaking, the system doesn't have a concept tax, so that was either self-inflicted or insisted upon by the GM. while some of it makes sense to a degree, most of it is unnecessary. I mean, Batman is Int. 8 and apparently has no problem inventing a battlesuit that will allow him to outpower Green Lantern's ring (if you don't find Scott Snyder's current Batman plotline silly that is). Wealth is only important as a benefit if the GM occasionally insists on Wealth checks to pay for things. Fame is definitely self-inflicted.
                              This system insists on charging for plenty of stuff that's useless or much less useful than the cost suggests. My concept is a hero in powered armor, so I had to pay for Life Support. That's 10 points for an immunity that has never come up in any of the games I've played ever since I started posting on the old forums! I could've played a hero with really tough skin instead and wasted 0 points, not to mention getting a much harder to nullify descriptor. My concept is one of the smartest people alive, so I had to pay for Intellect 10 when all I wanted was Expertise: Science and Technology. That's a 10-pp premium, and yet my Intellect 10 super genius has never been treated any different than all the Intellect 0 people around her. I could have made her the luckiest person alive instead and paid only 5pp (for Luck 5) to guarantee I will never be defeated! This is what I mean by a concept tax: when you get to pay more just for playing a certain concept even though the points paid make no practical difference in play.

                              Sure, you can say it's self-inflicted. After all, you can make a battlesuit who's not a genius, not an inventor, not wealthy, not famous, not an engineer, not a scientist and not a CEO. But that wouldn't be the character whose story I am eager to tell. I choose to put concept first and play a less point-efficient build, I accept the flaws I take for the extra points and even remind my GMs to enforce them. Shouldn't that be encouraged?

                              My point (to Jabroniville) was that Removable doesn't automatically equal huge amounts of free pp. Sometimes the free points only make up for concept stuff (for example, both the 2e and 3e battlesuit examples have all sorts of weird or redundant Senses, like Time Sense). I do agree with the gist of your post: make the flaw count, but don't unfairly handicap the character.

                              Plus a Battlesuit is not normally easily removeable, so it shouldn't be able to be taken in combat anyway under normal circumstances. Stolen from the characters' workshop, yes. Removed when a character is captured, you bet. Stolen in the middle of combat? Not by rule.
                              I suggested that my 3e GM (it wasn't there in 2e, I think) ignore the 'not removable during action time' part of Removable. It's much more dramatic to just suddenly lose the whole suit at the most critical moment than be constantly fiddling around with repairs anyway!

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