Being bulletproof and the Damage Save

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Being bulletproof and the Damage Save

Postby Taladas » Tue Aug 20, 2002 12:49 pm

As far as the damage save goes what happens when a natural one or a twenty is rolled. Does Captain Invunerable take damage when a small child hits him if he rolls an one? Does the spectacular Lemmingman avoid all damage from the incinerator ray if he rolls a natural 20?

And if the above is true how do you create the classic bulletproof character?


Just wanted to say the the game looks real good so far. It is definitely something that I am interested in.
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Re: Being bulletproof and the Damage Save

Postby Steve Kenson » Tue Aug 20, 2002 3:31 pm

Taladas wrote:As far as the damage save goes what happens when a natural one or a twenty is rolled. Does Captain Invunerable take damage when a small child hits him if he rolls an one? Does the spectacular Lemmingman avoid all damage from the incinerator ray if he rolls a natural 20?


Saving throws in Mutants & Masterminds don't automatically fail on a roll of 1 (attack rolls do, but saving throws and other checks don't). So if your save bonus (Damage, Fortitude, or otherwise) is high enough that you can make the save without even rolling, it's recommended that you don't bother.

For example, if Captain Invulnerable has a Damage save of +15 and a normal person (Str 10) punches him. That's a Damage save DC of 15. Even if Cap rolls a 1, he'll make it, so it's easier to just say that attacks with a damage DC of 16 or less can't hurt him.

On the other hand, Damage saving throws of a natural 20 do always succeed... sort of. If a Damage save rolls a natural 20 and still isn't high enough to succeed, the character takes a hit from the attack, but that's all. So there's a slim chance of Lemmingman avoiding [i]most[/] (but not all) of the damage from the incinerator ray, if he rolls a natural 20 on his save. Note that this only applies to major characters (heroes and villains), if a minion can't roll high enough to make a Damage save, he automatically fails (which means he's automatically knocked out or killed by the attack).
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Postby Taladas » Tue Aug 20, 2002 7:29 pm

OK, that's cool. 8)

So to be bulletproof you would simply bump up you damage save up to an appropriate level.

and it avoids triple digit hit points. yeah! :lol:
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Postby Eletarmion » Wed Aug 21, 2002 1:32 pm

Hmm....I wonder if Mutants and Mastermind's damage system works to model characters like Superman (or other comic book tough guys for that matter). I mean, toughness is measured by your damage saving throw, right? So, Captain Titanium, who has a damage save of +15, is normally effectively invulnerable to a punch from Lefty, a common street thug. However, damage saves are whittled down as you fail them, right? So, if Captain Titanium has been battered to near unconciousness (damage save of +1) by Ragnarok (his powerful nemesis), he is then suceptable to being KOed by a strong left hook from Lefty. This doesn't seem right! Does Mutants and Masterminds offer a way of dealing with this sort of situation?

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Postby Tenzhi » Wed Aug 21, 2002 10:23 pm

Eletarmion wrote:Hmm....I wonder if Mutants and Mastermind's damage system works to model characters like Superman (or other comic book tough guys for that matter). I mean, toughness is measured by your damage saving throw, right? So, Captain Titanium, who has a damage save of +15, is normally effectively invulnerable to a punch from Lefty, a common street thug. However, damage saves are whittled down as you fail them, right? So, if Captain Titanium has been battered to near unconciousness (damage save of +1) by Ragnarok (his powerful nemesis), he is then suceptable to being KOed by a strong left hook from Lefty. This doesn't seem right! Does Mutants and Masterminds offer a way of dealing with this sort of situation?


I seem to recall one of the example characters having a power that changed all lethal damage that had a bonus lower than his damage save bonus into non-lethal damage. It's not a far stretch of the imagination to have all damage bonuses lower than the damage save be negated altogether.
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Postby Eletarmion » Thu Aug 22, 2002 6:52 am

I seem to recall one of the example characters having a power that changed all lethal damage that had a bonus lower than his damage save bonus into non-lethal damage. It's not a far stretch of the imagination to have all damage bonuses lower than the damage save be negated altogether.


Hello Tenzhi:

Well, I figured they might use something like that, but I'm still curious to hear more specifics. For instance: does a power like the one you describe above exist? If so, that still doesn't solve the problem of Lefty KOing Captain Titanium; it just means he can't KILL him. Does Captain Titatium get to ignore damage that has no chance of beating his MAXIMUM Damage Save, or does he indeed start becoming more susceptible to weaker attacks as his damage save is whittled away by more powerful attacks? Steve? Somebody else? An official answer? Thanks.

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Postby DK2099 » Thu Aug 22, 2002 7:05 am

Eletarmion came up with a great question! I'm curius too.

The no hit points confused me. So I got a friend to playtest with me last night from the flyer I got at Gencon.
He played the cool magic guy and I was the Superman-like guy.

It works cool but I must have been doing something wrong but, we couldn't knock each other out after a while. So we stopped.

If there are not hit points, how does a Punisher or Wolverine dark hero kill someone? I'm confused if someone could explain that to me. Thanks!

But Eletarmion's question came to mind this morning on the way to work.
I know, I'm a geek but I'm excited about M&M!
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Postby Tenzhi » Thu Aug 22, 2002 8:24 am

Well, the language in the preview seems to state that the penalties from taking hits modifies the saving throw not the Save Bonus. So regardless of how many hits you've taken, your damage save bonus remains constant, and therefore with the ability I suggested, the character would always be immune to low sources of damage (such as Lefty's punch). And if the ability doesn't already exist, I'm sure it can be created with the guidelines given in the book. Which isn't to say that I'm not interested in an official word myself...
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Postby Warchild » Sat Aug 24, 2002 5:39 am

Eletarmion wrote:Hmm....I wonder if Mutants and Mastermind's damage system works to model characters like Superman (or other comic book tough guys for that matter). I mean, toughness is measured by your damage saving throw, right? So, Captain Titanium, who has a damage save of +15, is normally effectively invulnerable to a punch from Lefty, a common street thug. However, damage saves are whittled down as you fail them, right? So, if Captain Titanium has been battered to near unconciousness (damage save of +1) by Ragnarok (his powerful nemesis), he is then suceptable to being KOed by a strong left hook from Lefty. This doesn't seem right! Does Mutants and Masterminds offer a way of dealing with this sort of situation?
Best,
Eletarmion
[/quote]

Well.....its kinda a 6/half dozen type deal. You could pull out examples from comics that support these rules. I've seen an issue or two over the years where Superman will lose a fight because of a big fight he had previously. Heck its virtually a comic staple when two heroes fight each (by accident or mistaken identity of course!). One of them was just in a fight, that that gives the other other character an excuse to win the fight without pissing off the fans of either character. :P
It would be nice to have the alternative rule that you could turn on for your own style of campaigns, though.
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Postby Eletarmion » Sun Aug 25, 2002 7:48 am

Well, I don't know. It makes sense for a character like Superman to be battered to near unconciousness, and then knocked out by a weaker, but still powerful hero - like Captain Atom. In such a case, however, Superman might normally feel (if only just a teensy bit) a punch from Captain Atom.

The example I gave is more akin to Superman being battered to near unconsciousness, only to have Jimmy Olson come over and knock him out with a sucker punch. I don't see this happening, but going by the rules as they've been presented, this seems to be a likely situation in Mutants and Masterminds. Although several board members have presented perfectly reasonable fixes, I'm just curious to know how the official system handles this (if it handles this).

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Postby Warchild » Sun Aug 25, 2002 8:12 am

Well, we can't really know until we get the book. But i imagine that Supes could take quite a beating and still (despite negatives) save against Jimmy's probably minimum damage of 15 DC.
But as you say, a house rule is simple to come up with!
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Postby DK2099 » Sun Aug 25, 2002 8:23 am

But I would imagine Supe's Natural armor (skin like steel) would prevent Jimmy's punches from hurting him even if he got trashed by a super villian. Not sure how Armor works w/ DC in M&M but we'll see soon.
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Postby Warchild » Sun Aug 25, 2002 8:32 am

DK2099 wrote:But I would imagine Supe's Natural armor (skin like steel) would prevent Jimmy's punches from hurting him even if he got trashed by a super villian. Not sure how Armor works w/ DC in M&M but we'll see soon.


If Supes Damage Save is say +25 (whoo hoo!), then he could take negatives of up to -11 and still automatically save against Jimmy's 15 DC (assuming even a 1 roll).
It'll be interesting to see what modern weapons have a for save DCs. A pistol, grenade, rocket launcher, etc. That'll make gauging such things a bit easier.

Hows about a little sample of such items Steve? Pretty please? :D
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Postby Mal Malenkirk » Fri Aug 30, 2002 1:34 am

IMO this problem is unlikely to occur in most campaign.

I see no problem with a battered superhero being finished off by a weaker opponent. It probably won't be Jimmy Olson, though.

I mean come on; So what if Jimmy's punch suddenly have a 10% chance to knock out super dude? Jimmy still has to land a successful attack to start with, using his +1 to attack agains Superdudes high 20s Defense. And Jimmy also has to muster the cohones to get withing punching distance to a guy who can bat him out of the city with a single backhand.

Beside; Just how many of you will run games involving Superman's twin? Do you have any idea how annoying it is for a GM to invent stories challenging for a nearly invulnerable PC? I'll keep the power level down a few notch thank you very much.
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Not the Point

Postby Eletarmion » Fri Aug 30, 2002 4:42 am

Hello again,

Well, your welcome, but that's not really the point. The Superman / Jimmy Olson example was an exaggeration, but it presents a type of situation that is very likely. If you are playing a character who is made of Titanium, and he has been reduced to a +1 or +2 save in a long and drawn out combat, he can feasibly be KOed by a the equivalent of an AIM or Hydra agent. The chance for him to be KOed is not 10%. It's more like 20% or 25%. "Realistically", regardless of how battered Captain Titanium is, punches from normal agents like the one's I just mentioned should bounce of his Titanium hide.

Again, the above example is very feasible. Because of his low DEX, Captain Titanium probably has a modest AC, so the agent's chance of hitting are pretty good. Also, the agent probably has cojones enough to go for it. He is a trained soldier, after all.

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Re: Not the Point

Postby Warchild » Fri Aug 30, 2002 5:52 am

Eletarmion wrote:Hello again,
Well, your welcome, but that's not really the point. The Superman / Jimmy Olson example was an exaggeration, but it presents a type of situation that is very likely. If you are playing a character who is made of Titanium, and he has been reduced to a +1 or +2 save in a long and drawn out combat, he can feasibly be KOed by a the equivalent of an AIM or Hydra agent. The chance for him to be KOed is not 10%. It's more like 20% or 25%. "Realistically", regardless of how battered Captain Titanium is, punches from normal agents like the one's I just mentioned should bounce of his Titanium hide.

Again, the above example is very feasible. Because of his low DEX, Captain Titanium probably has a modest AC, so the agent's chance of hitting are pretty good. Also, the agent probably has cojones enough to go for it. He is a trained soldier, after all.
Eletarmion


I completely understand what you are getting at, i just don't think its that huge of a problem. Cap'n Titanium's damage save is likely to be so high, that it would be a truly rare thing to see him that low in DS bonus. Even then, i don't think its a bad thing for a small chance to be taken out when your so close to unconsciousness/death/disablement. Thats a comic book staple. Could lead to an interesting adventure arc, even.

However, f you don't like the possibility of such unlikely incidents to even be possible, try the following:

1) Lower the base Damage for attacks to 10+ (instead of 15+). That way the lower bonus characters (agents/regular humans) still have a tough time of it, but the higher bonus characters (the players) are more likely to easily (or automatically) save against the more mundane attacks.

2) You could create some sort of threshold stat, where an attack has to have a damage bonus equal to half the target's original Damage Save bonus to be able to affect them (not their current DS bonus that might have possible injuries negatives). ie if Cap Titanium has a +14, someone would have to have an attack that is +7 or better to affect, or it automatically bounces off. That doesn't cause much more calculation and helps the cause. If that agent has a +7, then he is more than an agent deserves a small shot at taking out the Titanium Wonder! :)

Mind you, this without ever seeing the book, so these "fixes" may turn out to be flawed or even unnecessary. There might be a rule in the book for hurting yourself (like punching a stone wall). If there is you could probably find some way to apply that rule to the situation as well.

Just my 2 cents.
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Re: Not the Point

Postby Tenzhi » Fri Aug 30, 2002 6:58 am

Eletarmion wrote:Hello again,

Well, your welcome, but that's not really the point. The Superman / Jimmy Olson example was an exaggeration, but it presents a type of situation that is very likely. If you are playing a character who is made of Titanium, and he has been reduced to a +1 or +2 save in a long and drawn out combat, he can feasibly be KOed by a the equivalent of an AIM or Hydra agent. The chance for him to be KOed is not 10%. It's more like 20% or 25%. "Realistically", regardless of how battered Captain Titanium is, punches from normal agents like the one's I just mentioned should bounce of his Titanium hide.

Again, the above example is very feasible. Because of his low DEX, Captain Titanium probably has a modest AC, so the agent's chance of hitting are pretty good. Also, the agent probably has cojones enough to go for it. He is a trained soldier, after all.

Eletarmion


I will point out again, that according to the language in the preview, the penalty from hits does not apply to the save bonus, but rather to the die roll itself (ergo, a character with a +12 damage save bonus always has a +12 damage save bonus regardless of the fact that he has a -12 penalty to the die roll from hits). Combine that fact with the power I mentioned previously and Capt. Titanium becomes immune to the punch of a lowly thug. If that power doesn't already exist, given its similarity to a power that DOES exist (one of the preview characters has it, and I believe it's ironically called 'bulletproof') it will likely be easy to create.
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