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Thread: First attempt at making characters (The Silhouette)

  1. #1
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    First attempt at making characters (The Silhouette)

    I have only just started working in this system. I am considering making the insane leap to game-mastering from my hefty experience of one session of Pathfinder. I know. That is insane, but I am in a place where finding a gaming group is not easy. So I am trying to learn how to run this game so that I can try to convince friends and family to give it a try. Surely with boundless enthusiasm, and a bit of preparation, I will be able to convince them to give TTG a try. So I have made three characters in this system (two heroes and one villain). This is them below. I did my best to follow the rules, but am obviously unaware of common pitfalls of character creation. So criticism is welcome.

    Name: Silhouette (Based upon The Shadow)
    Identity: Carmichael Jones
    Gender: Male
    Age: 42
    Height: 5'11"
    Weight: 190
    Eyes: blue
    Hair: brown
    Group Affiliation: NA
    Base of Operations: House
    Power Level: 10
    Power Points Total: 150

    Abilities

    Str: 1
    Agl: 1
    Fgt: 2
    Awa: 7
    Sta: 2
    Dex: 4
    Int: 3
    Pre: 6

    Defense

    Dodge: 10
    Parry: 2
    Fortitude: 3
    Toughness: 2
    Will: 9

    Offense
    Heavy Pistol +11 Ranged Damage 4
    Unarmed +8 Close Damage 1
    Mind Control +12 Ranged Will save Cumulative (dazed, compelled, controlled)


    Powers
    Invisibility 2 ranks
    -Quirk: Only works on humanoids (-1 per rank)
    -innate
    -Sense-Dependent: Targets must be able to see hypnotic gestures

    Mind Control 12 ranks
    -Insidius
    -Subtle 2 ranks
    -Triggered (1 per rank)
    -Distracting (-1 per rank)
    Quirk: only works on humanoids (-1 per rank)
    Sense-Dependent: Must be able to see and hear hypnotic gestures and commands (-1 per rank)


    Advantages
    Defensive Roll X2
    Evasion X2
    Improved Aim
    Improved Initiative
    Quick Draw
    Ranged attack X3
    Precise Attack (Cover, ranged)
    Contacts
    Wealth X2
    Fearless
    Equipment 4


    Complications
    Motivation: Justice
    Sadistic Tendencies: Likes to scare criminals
    Secret Identity
    Reputation: Wanted for excessive use of force (as The Silhouette)


    Equipment
    House
    .45 Magnum Pistol
    Computer
    Cell Phone
    Car


    Skills (total, ability, ranks, other)
    Acrobatics (6,2,4,0)
    Athletics (3,1,2,0)
    Close-Combat (Unarmed) (8,2,6,0)
    Deception (6,6,0,0)
    Expertise (Criminology) (11,3,8,0)
    Insight (13,7,6,0)
    Intimidation (10,6,4,0)
    Investigation (9,3,6,0)
    Perception (11,7,4,0)
    Persuasion (8,6,2,0)
    Ranged Combat (guns) (11,4,4,3)
    Sleight of hand (x,4,0,0)
    Stealth (12, 2, 10,0)
    Technology (9,3,6,0)
    Treatment (x,3,0,0)
    Vehicles (10,4,6,0)


    This is a modern update for the Golden Age character. He still uses hypnosis and his ability to be invisible to great effect. However, he now uses modern technology like cell phones, and computers to augment his ability to find criminals. In the original radio shows, The shadow would sometimes kill his criminals or abandon people on deserted islands with no food until the authorities arrive. This was rare, but common enough that I noticed. The Silhouette similarly enjoys taunting his criminals. However, he now uses his abilities to go further by gas-lighting some of the more heinous criminals. This has lead to the issuance of a search warrant for his arrest. This makes to keeping of his secret identity even more important. If his identity were made known, his life would be torn asunder. He is slow and methodical in his approach. While he cannot hold his own in a battle (basically ranged only unless he has no other choice), he is a good utility character with his mix of skills. Combined with situational hypnosis, he should make a good addition to a super team, or a capable investigator. Assuming he can avoid fighting like the plague that is.

    Comments?

  2. #2
    OPA Belta
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    Re: First attempt at making characters (The Silhouette)

    Quote Originally Posted by nowhereman2 View Post
    I have only just started working in this system. I am considering making the insane leap to game-mastering from my hefty experience of one session of Pathfinder. I know. That is insane, but I am in a place where finding a gaming group is not easy. So I am trying to learn how to run this game so that I can try to convince friends and family to give it a try. Surely with boundless enthusiasm, and a bit of preparation, I will be able to convince them to give TTG a try.
    I'd strongly recommend running a premade module for your first time GMing. Having something to reference and draw from is a great help when you're getting your legs under you. I'd also suggest giving your players premade characters unless they really want to brave chargen, the Archetypes are great for this.
    That aside, all you really need to GM is a plot, basic rules knowledge, and the willingness to improvise things occasionally.

    Quote Originally Posted by nowhereman2 View Post
    This is a modern update for the Golden Age character. He still uses hypnosis and his ability to be invisible to great effect. However, he now uses modern technology like cell phones, and computers to augment his ability to find criminals. In the original radio shows, The shadow would sometimes kill his criminals or abandon people on deserted islands with no food until the authorities arrive. This was rare, but common enough that I noticed. The Silhouette similarly enjoys taunting his criminals. However, he now uses his abilities to go further by gas-lighting some of the more heinous criminals. This has lead to the issuance of a search warrant for his arrest. This makes to keeping of his secret identity even more important. If his identity were made known, his life would be torn asunder. He is slow and methodical in his approach. While he cannot hold his own in a battle (basically ranged only unless he has no other choice), he is a good utility character with his mix of skills. Combined with situational hypnosis, he should make a good addition to a super team, or a capable investigator. Assuming he can avoid fighting like the plague that is.

    Comments?
    The concept is solid, but the character has pretty bad mechanical issues. Combat isn't a maybe in 99% of M&M games, it's a certainty. And The Silhouette is really bad at combat, since he's way below what a PL 10 character should be doing in combat. PL isn't really a maximum so much as it is a target: A PC should be at or slightly below PL in combat or they're going to get steamrolled in most fights.
    I also can't match your PP total, coming only to 145, but I can't say where we're diverging since I don't see intermediate cost tallies. The Mind Control premade power is Perception Range and so is capped to PL in ranks (it always hits, so can't trade-off against accuracy) and you've got 12 ranks on a PL 10 character.
    I also note you're making no use of Alternate Effects, which I'd strongly suggest using. They add a lot of flexibility for a reasonable cos.

  3. #3
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    Re: First attempt at making characters (The Silhouette)

    Quote Originally Posted by Nunya B View Post
    I'd strongly recommend running a premade module for your first time GMing. Having something to reference and draw from is a great help when you're getting your legs under you. I'd also suggest giving your players premade characters unless they really want to brave chargen, the Archetypes are great for this.
    That aside, all you really need to GM is a plot, basic rules knowledge, and the willingness to improvise things occasionally.


    The concept is solid, but the character has pretty bad mechanical issues. Combat isn't a maybe in 99% of M&M games, it's a certainty. And The Silhouette is really bad at combat, since he's way below what a PL 10 character should be doing in combat. PL isn't really a maximum so much as it is a target: A PC should be at or slightly below PL in combat or they're going to get steamrolled in most fights.
    I also can't match your PP total, coming only to 145, but I can't say where we're diverging since I don't see intermediate cost tallies. The Mind Control premade power is Perception Range and so is capped to PL in ranks (it always hits, so can't trade-off against accuracy) and you've got 12 ranks on a PL 10 character.
    I also note you're making no use of Alternate Effects, which I'd strongly suggest using. They add a lot of flexibility for a reasonable cos.
    What should a PL 10 character be doing in a game? Is that +10 damage and accuracy or +20? The book gave me the power caps, but didn't give me a suggested level. While I figured The Silhouette needed to have at least one good combat skill, I figured I could sink one (close) for bonuses in skills, advantages, and a high mind control ability. Thanks for noticing the excessive power of the mind control. Didn't read that rule correctly. Also, I just calculated pp and found that I had 145 too. I had to make a change yesterday and probably didn't calculate something correctly. Looking at your comments, would this character be improved if I put the 5 pp toward Stamina or toughness?

    I also like your suggestion about the premade missions in the handbook. However, they are four player suggested and I may not be able to get that many. How do you adjust missions like this on the fly?

  4. #4
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    Re: First attempt at making characters (The Silhouette)

    Quote Originally Posted by nowhereman2 View Post
    What should a PL 10 character be doing in a game? Is that +10 damage and accuracy or +20? The book gave me the power caps, but didn't give me a suggested level. While I figured The Silhouette needed to have at least one good combat skill, I figured I could sink one (close) for bonuses in skills, advantages, and a high mind control ability. Thanks for noticing the excessive power of the mind control. Didn't read that rule correctly. Also, I just calculated pp and found that I had 145 too. I had to make a change yesterday and probably didn't calculate something correctly. Looking at your comments, would this character be improved if I put the 5 pp toward Stamina or toughness?
    The general checklist is that a PL 10 character should have:
    PL 10 offense: An attack with accuracy and effect rank that sum to 19 or 20, or an attack that requires no to-hit roll with effect rank 8 or better. Ideally multiple such attacks, at least one of which is Toughness resisted Damage and one of which is resisted by Fortitude or Will.
    PL 10 defenses: Dodge and Toughness that sum to 19 or 20. Parry and Toughness that sum to 19 or 20. (If one set sums to 20, it's OK if the other is in the 17-18 range) Fortitude and Will that sum to 19 or 20.
    Don't over-specialize: Dodge, Parry, Toughness, Fortitude, Will all at or above 5. At least one attack with no to-hit roll or accuracy at or above 5. At least one attack with effect rank at or above 5.
    Any skills central to the character concept should be at least +12, ideally at or above +15. +20 is nice, but rarely necessary.
    Basically, the character should be running up against the limits imposed on them by being PL 10.

    For The Silhouette, I'd suggest bringing Parry, Fortitude, and Toughness up to caps, and bringing pistol accuracy up to +16. This would likely require making some cuts elsewhere.

    Quote Originally Posted by nowhereman2 View Post
    I also like your suggestion about the premade missions in the handbook. However, they are four player suggested and I may not be able to get that many. How do you adjust missions like this on the fly?
    Quick and dirty way:
    For minions, cut the quantity. If you'd normally have 12 minions for 4 players, use 6 minions for 2 players or 9 minions for 3 players.
    For villains, decrease their PL by one per missing player. Easy to do by just decreasing their accuracy, attack effect ranks, and defense bonuses by one per PL.

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