[SPC2] Keeping things interesting

Information and comments on all Pinnacle original Savage Settings plus our genre-based Companions. Please note the product with an abbreviation in the Subject line (ex. [FC] for Fantasy Companion, [NE] for Necessary Evil, and so on). Note: Deadlands has its own forum below as do licensed settings.

Moderators: PEG Jodi, The Moderators

Message
Author
User avatar
tigerguy786
Veteran
Posts: 771
Joined: Sat Nov 26, 2011 12:37 pm

[SPC2] Keeping things interesting

#1 Postby tigerguy786 » Wed Apr 26, 2017 10:08 am

I'm preparing to run an Superpowers campaign, and based on past experience with the system I know it can be difficult to really challenge a group of PCs just because they're so strong and can do so many things.

So how do you other GMs keep things interesting and challenging?
"Well, you do know what those who underestimate tigers always say right?"
"What?"
"They scream, 'Oh god help me I'm being mauled to death by a tiger.'"

User avatar
dentris
Veteran
Posts: 731
Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2007 6:41 pm

Re: [SPC2] Keeping things interesting

#2 Postby dentris » Wed Apr 26, 2017 10:32 am

Not every problem can be solved with combat. Bomb disposal, civilian rescue, detective work, obstructive bureaucrats and annoying journalists can all be challenging in their own right without resorting to violence.

A good fight is always fun, but shouldn't be the only oppositiont your heroes will face.
But the Voice consoles me and it says: "Keep your dreams;
Wise men do not have such beautiful ones as fools!"
--Baudelaire, Les Fleurs du Mal, 1857, Translated by William Aggeler, 1954

ValhallaGH
Legendary
Posts: 8293
Joined: Sun Apr 25, 2010 9:15 pm

Re: [SPC2] Keeping things interesting

#3 Postby ValhallaGH » Wed Apr 26, 2017 10:50 am

Creativity.
When I consider using a foe, I think about how that foe can use his powers, resources, and allies to handle a combat against the player characters. Sometimes, that means using a hostage to buy time, or a restraining order against the "masked abuser". :)
Usually, it means figuring out how to use this combination of brain power, resources, knowledge, and powers effectively against the Team. If the team is known and a likely encounter, I'll give the guy some support - maybe he recruits another villain or two, maybe he prepares specific countermeasures for the known associates (the same way Batman does ... for everyone), or maybe he has a van full of muscle with big guns parked nearby as a contingency (or supers, or supers with big guns) - the backup gets paid regardless, but they're ready to leap into action when called for.

If I can't come up with a plan the bad guy would use then I either consider a different villain or chalk this up as an "easy win" for the team. Because having a few easy victories keeps things interesting and unpredictable. 8)

Good luck!
"Got a problem? I've got the solution: Rocket Launcher."
"Not against a Servitor."
"... We're all gonna die."

User avatar
tigerguy786
Veteran
Posts: 771
Joined: Sat Nov 26, 2011 12:37 pm

Re: [SPC2] Keeping things interesting

#4 Postby tigerguy786 » Wed Apr 26, 2017 11:20 am

ValhallaGH wrote:Creativity.
When I consider using a foe, I think about how that foe can use his powers, resources, and allies to handle a combat against the player characters. Sometimes, that means using a hostage to buy time, or a restraining order against the "masked abuser". :)
Usually, it means figuring out how to use this combination of brain power, resources, knowledge, and powers effectively against the Team. If the team is known and a likely encounter, I'll give the guy some support - maybe he recruits another villain or two, maybe he prepares specific countermeasures for the known associates (the same way Batman does ... for everyone), or maybe he has a van full of muscle with big guns parked nearby as a contingency (or supers, or supers with big guns) - the backup gets paid regardless, but they're ready to leap into action when called for.

If I can't come up with a plan the bad guy would use then I either consider a different villain or chalk this up as an "easy win" for the team. Because having a few easy victories keeps things interesting and unpredictable. 8)

Good luck!


Good advice.

Any suggestions for some ways of dealing with Super Sorcery? That's the only one that I can't think of a simple counter for.
"Well, you do know what those who underestimate tigers always say right?"

"What?"

"They scream, 'Oh god help me I'm being mauled to death by a tiger.'"

Brickulos
Veteran
Posts: 659
Joined: Wed Jun 29, 2016 2:12 pm

Re: [SPC2] Keeping things interesting

#5 Postby Brickulos » Wed Apr 26, 2017 11:26 am

tigerguy786 wrote:
ValhallaGH wrote:Creativity.
When I consider using a foe, I think about how that foe can use his powers, resources, and allies to handle a combat against the player characters. Sometimes, that means using a hostage to buy time, or a restraining order against the "masked abuser". :)
Usually, it means figuring out how to use this combination of brain power, resources, knowledge, and powers effectively against the Team. If the team is known and a likely encounter, I'll give the guy some support - maybe he recruits another villain or two, maybe he prepares specific countermeasures for the known associates (the same way Batman does ... for everyone), or maybe he has a van full of muscle with big guns parked nearby as a contingency (or supers, or supers with big guns) - the backup gets paid regardless, but they're ready to leap into action when called for.

If I can't come up with a plan the bad guy would use then I either consider a different villain or chalk this up as an "easy win" for the team. Because having a few easy victories keeps things interesting and unpredictable. 8)

Good luck!


Good advice.

Any suggestions for some ways of dealing with Super Sorcery? That's the only one that I can't think of a simple counter for.


Nullification?

ValhallaGH
Legendary
Posts: 8293
Joined: Sun Apr 25, 2010 9:15 pm

Re: [SPC2] Keeping things interesting

#6 Postby ValhallaGH » Wed Apr 26, 2017 12:03 pm

Activating a spell is an action and requires a Spellcasting roll at –2. The sorcerer must be able to move both hands and speak to work her magic.

Various binding effects, suffocation, pulling air away from the sorcerer, removing one or two hands, choking gas grenades, and so forth.
Then you get to specific countering powers: Nullification, Super Sorcery, Sound Control, Ensnare, Possession, Mind Control, everything that inflicts Fatigue, and probably others.

Super Sorcery is really flexible, but like Invent + On the Fly, it takes some resources and abilities that can be countered by a guy with zero powers. 8)

Also, remember to enforce the Spellcasting penalties. That's one of the reasons Fatigue is so useful; Spellcasting at -4 drops success rates from 87.5% (d12, no penalties) to 55.6% (d12 - 4).
"Got a problem? I've got the solution: Rocket Launcher."
"Not against a Servitor."
"... We're all gonna die."

Freemage
Veteran
Posts: 946
Joined: Sat Jun 25, 2016 10:18 pm

Re: [SPC2] Keeping things interesting

#7 Postby Freemage » Wed Apr 26, 2017 12:09 pm

Brickulos wrote:
tigerguy786 wrote:
ValhallaGH wrote:Creativity.
When I consider using a foe, I think about how that foe can use his powers, resources, and allies to handle a combat against the player characters. Sometimes, that means using a hostage to buy time, or a restraining order against the "masked abuser". :)
Usually, it means figuring out how to use this combination of brain power, resources, knowledge, and powers effectively against the Team. If the team is known and a likely encounter, I'll give the guy some support - maybe he recruits another villain or two, maybe he prepares specific countermeasures for the known associates (the same way Batman does ... for everyone), or maybe he has a van full of muscle with big guns parked nearby as a contingency (or supers, or supers with big guns) - the backup gets paid regardless, but they're ready to leap into action when called for.

If I can't come up with a plan the bad guy would use then I either consider a different villain or chalk this up as an "easy win" for the team. Because having a few easy victories keeps things interesting and unpredictable. 8)

Good luck!


Good advice.

Any suggestions for some ways of dealing with Super Sorcery? That's the only one that I can't think of a simple counter for.


Nullification?



Various flavors of Negation are, indeed, useful here (target the hero's Spellcasting Skill, or take Leach and target the Sorcery Power directly). Copycat with Magician works pretty decently. If your villain can get the drop on the Sorcerer, of course, Strong Paralysis can really ruin a spellcaster's day. Of course, as usual, the best counter to a Sorcerer is another Sorcerer; there's a reason Stephen Strange's most common opponents are other spell-chuckers. An On The Fly Inventor can almost match the Sorcerer for flexibility, and sets up a nice "technology vs. magic" dichotomy. Since a failed Sorcery roll makes the caster Shaken, I'd say that Improved Jinx is a viable option--even if they get the spell off on the Wild Die, the caster might end up being stunned into inaction.

User avatar
tigerguy786
Veteran
Posts: 771
Joined: Sat Nov 26, 2011 12:37 pm

Re: [SPC2] Keeping things interesting

#8 Postby tigerguy786 » Wed Apr 26, 2017 2:37 pm

dentris wrote:Not every problem can be solved with combat. Bomb disposal, civilian rescue, detective work, obstructive bureaucrats and annoying journalists can all be challenging in their own right without resorting to violence.

A good fight is always fun, but shouldn't be the only oppositiont your heroes will face.


I missed your reply earlier, but this is also something I'm working on. It's one of the things I'm working really hard on coming up with interesting scenarios that aren't just punching.

ValhallaGH wrote:
Activating a spell is an action and requires a Spellcasting roll at –2. The sorcerer must be able to move both hands and speak to work her magic.

Various binding effects, suffocation, pulling air away from the sorcerer, removing one or two hands, choking gas grenades, and so forth.
Then you get to specific countering powers: Nullification, Super Sorcery, Sound Control, Ensnare, Possession, Mind Control, everything that inflicts Fatigue, and probably others.

Super Sorcery is really flexible, but like Invent + On the Fly, it takes some resources and abilities that can be countered by a guy with zero powers. 8)

Also, remember to enforce the Spellcasting penalties. That's one of the reasons Fatigue is so useful; Spellcasting at -4 drops success rates from 87.5% (d12, no penalties) to 55.6% (d12 - 4).


I hadn't thought about Sound Control. That's a simple one that would work great.

Freemage wrote:Various flavors of Negation are, indeed, useful here (target the hero's Spellcasting Skill, or take Leach and target the Sorcery Power directly). Copycat with Magician works pretty decently. If your villain can get the drop on the Sorcerer, of course, Strong Paralysis can really ruin a spellcaster's day. Of course, as usual, the best counter to a Sorcerer is another Sorcerer; there's a reason Stephen Strange's most common opponents are other spell-chuckers. An On The Fly Inventor can almost match the Sorcerer for flexibility, and sets up a nice "technology vs. magic" dichotomy. Since a failed Sorcery roll makes the caster Shaken, I'd say that Improved Jinx is a viable option--even if they get the spell off on the Wild Die, the caster might end up being stunned into inaction.


Improved Jinx, that's a good one.

I like the invent vs Magic option
"Well, you do know what those who underestimate tigers always say right?"

"What?"

"They scream, 'Oh god help me I'm being mauled to death by a tiger.'"


Return to “SW Pinnacle Original Settings & Companions”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest