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Thread: Jack-Jack, all grown up. How do I do this?

  1. #1
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    Jack-Jack, all grown up. How do I do this?

    I'm going to be running a M&M game for the first time in the near future , I've played some in the distant past, but it has been a while. One of my players is interested in playing a grown up version of Jack-Jack from the Incredibles and I've promised to do some of the heavy lifting on character creation. My two main hurdles here are:

    1 - Part of the character concept is that JJ is now like a burned out child star, too much fame too young, with lots of great expectations heaped upon him. Now he's not quite what he used to be, and has some difficulty reliably accessing his powers. Right now I'm looking at the Check Required Flaw, with an Insight check at normally a 50% chance of success. My problem is the Check Required flaw lets you gain a percentage of the powers, and I want them be an all or nothing thing. Would it be worth -2PP/rank of Check Required required for all or nothing, or is there a more suited flaw?

    2 - What is the best way of modeling his abilities? I think I'm either looking at Variable, or at a pool of power points with a dozen broad AEs tacked onto them. I also want to be able to attach skills and advantages exclusively to different power sets, things like a bonus to intimidation for his fire form, or gaining the Interpose Advantage when he creates duplicates.

  2. #2
    OPA Belta Arthur Eld's Avatar
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    Re: Jack-Jack, all grown up. How do I do this?

    1. You might want to check with your player about this. While 'powers are difficult to activate' is cool from a drama, narrative view, it might not be fun for the player to only have access to their power half as frequently as everyone else.

    The easiest way to do it mechanically might be to slap a Complication on the character like...activating his powers inflicts Fatigued on Jack Jack.

    2. As for the powers themselves, Variable works but it's not for every player-its expensive and requires a lot of thought and creativity to get the most out of it. Otherwise you just end up using the same 10 or so effects which can be done easier with arrays and such.

    One other way you could do it is a variation on the Uncontrolled flaw-if the character succeeds on a roll (maybe a skill check or maybe just a flat 50/50 chance) they get to allocate their Variable however they want. If they don't, the GM determines what powers they get.
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    Re: Jack-Jack, all grown up. How do I do this?

    I can understand the frustration level, but I've built an easy out into the Check Required Flaw with the Beginner's Luck Advantage, so he can burn a Hero Point to bring his chances up from 50% to 75% for a given scene.

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    OPA Belta Arthur Eld's Avatar
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    Re: Jack-Jack, all grown up. How do I do this?

    Sure, that's not bad. I know a lot of characters who would want burning a Hero Point to be a 100% chance of success, but if it works for your player, more power to 'em.
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    OPA Belta JDRook's Avatar
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    Re: Jack-Jack, all grown up. How do I do this?

    The simplest way to make powers 50/50 all-or-nothing is to apply the Unreliable Flaw to them, so that they require an unmodified 11+ roll on a d20 (or just a coin flip, if you like). A Hero Point can be used to guarantee success.

    This might be more in line with what you want. You might also want to set up the PC to hit a lot of Complications to allow them to accumulate HP for more effective power use in pivotal situations.
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    Re: Jack-Jack, all grown up. How do I do this?

    Quote Originally Posted by JDRook View Post
    You might also want to set up the PC to hit a lot of Complications to allow them to accumulate HP for more effective power use in pivotal situations.
    It's worth noting that while this is good advice for any HP-hungry hero, it's also highly volatile. Some GMs will happily throw HP at you as long as you're hitting Complications, some will decide you've gotten enough already and cut you off, some will forget to apply Complications in the first place, some will even get mad at what they perceive to be powergaming. Always talk things over with the GM if you feel you need more Complications and HP than your peers.
    Since the one asking for advice is the GM this is a non-issue this time around, but it bears keeping in mind.

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    Re: Jack-Jack, all grown up. How do I do this?

    Well, I've gone and done it. I'll try and post the build sometime this weekend for refinement/critique. I ended up with a 44 point chunk for powers with a staggering 11 AEs tagged on. He's built needing a standard action to simply make a DC16 Insight check to access one of his power sets. He has a +6 modifier to the check (+2 AWE and +4 Skill) which gives him a 50% chance of success. He also has the Beginner's Luck advantage, so for a Hero Point, he can either auto succeed on a single check, or have a 75% chance of success for a scene. Also, if the situation is calm enough, he can take 10 and auto succeed.

    Also, as a Complication, I've built his demon form, who I've dubbed "Tantrum" who he has to make Insight checks to resist turning into when provoked/ doesn't get his cookie. He'll have to make difficult Insight checks to transform back or remove whatever provoked him in the first place / get his cookie.

    I figure I'm going to have to make 13 separate character sheets. Personally, I would never try to fly this build past a GM, but seeing as I'm the GM, I guess I deserve everything that comes from this. I'm tried to build him so that none of his forms will overshadow any of the other players, so even at his strongest, he's not stronger than out strong guy, as his fastest he's not faster than our speedster, he's not a better fighter than our warrior type, and so on.

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