[NE] Photographic Reflexes

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DaRealJudas
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[NE] Photographic Reflexes

#1 Postby DaRealJudas » Tue Jan 06, 2009 10:13 am

So I was wondering how to create a villain ala Marvel’s Taskmaster or Monica from Heroes season 2. Y’know a muscle mimic who can imitate the things he or she sees others do.
I used the Copy Cat Power with the following Modifiers:

Extra Duration [+3]
Versatility [+3]
Can only copy physical Skills, Combat Edges and Powers with Physical Training trapping [-4]

So what do you think? I know the character can’t “store” all his powers but at Level 6 or 8 he has a pretty good range of Skill Enhancements and Edges to choose from.
Or am I missing something? Is -4 balanced enough or does it have to be higher or lower?
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#2 Postby Clint » Tue Jan 06, 2009 12:15 pm

Well, the question I would ask is not how the power is defined (the trappings) but how it actually works (the effect). I don't know the second example, but I'm familiar with the first. He doesn't lose his fighting ability; his mimicry is just an explanation for how he got it and why he is hard to hit... unless someone does something he hasn't seen before and isn't expecting.

So effect-wise, it feels more like Super Skill Fighting, Super Edges, and then...

Parry (Catch and Throw) and Deflection with the limitation...

Modifier -2 (does not work if surprised or successfully Tricked)

So the mimicry isn't really the power, but a limitation on some of his powers.
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#3 Postby DaRealJudas » Tue Jan 06, 2009 5:27 pm

Clint wrote: He doesn't lose his fighting ability...

I agree. But that is the reason why I used Extra Duration and Versatility. It’s not perfect but it’s at least true to the concept.

Clint wrote: ...his mimicry is just an explanation for how he got it and why he is hard to hit... unless someone does something he hasn't seen before and isn't expecting.
...
So the mimicry isn't really the power, but a limitation on some of his powers.

I don’t know. Let’s stay with Taskmaster. His power seems more active than “just” Parry and Deflection. (Of course Super Skill: Fighting and Super Edges are still a must with the concept)

From the “pages” of marvel-online:

History
The man who would become the Taskmaster first demonstrated unusual abilities during childhood. After watching a cowboy show on television, he found himself able to duplicate the sophisticated rope tricks he had just watched the cowboy perform.

Abilities
Taskmaster possesses photographic reflexes, which enables him to watch another person’s physical movements and duplicate them without practice, no matter how complex. This ability is only limited by the fact that he does not possess superhuman strength or other superhuman attributes.
[This is the part I’m talking about]
Taskmaster has made extensive use of video tapes and movies to study the movements of superhuman adventurers, as well as athletes, marksmen, stunt performers, and soldiers. Thus he has gained a wide range of combat and acrobatic skills. These skills include, but are not limited to, all present day and many historical martial arts, boxing, wrestling, swordsmanship, archery, marksmanship, gymnastics, aerial acrobatics and sleight of hand.
[This part can indeed be covered with Super Attributes, Super Skill: Fighting and Super Edges]
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#4 Postby Tuesday » Tue Jan 06, 2009 8:38 pm

Sounds like Super-Sorcery with a trapping of "super-skill and super-Edge only".

Call it 2-1 for costs. Make the skill used to activate it be "Notice" - he's seen the use of the skill - and he should probably only have about 6 points of this, with the rest of his powers being Super-Skill and Super-Attribute.

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#5 Postby Clint » Wed Jan 07, 2009 10:09 am

DaRealJudas wrote:Abilities
Taskmaster possesses photographic reflexes, which enables him to watch another person’s physical movements and duplicate them without practice, no matter how complex. This ability is only limited by the fact that he does not possess superhuman strength or other superhuman attributes.
[This is the part I’m talking about]


And what does that do in actual play? Nothing.

Seriously, it's true. That's nothing more than the description (trappings) explaining how his powers work. His physical skills are already jacked up with Super Skill from the experiences listed in his backstory, and he can't really jack them up further in play because all he can do is duplicate a specific action, not the entirity of a skill (if he sees someone use a spin kick he hasn't seen before, then he can perform that spin kick, but that one move doesn't equate to an actual increase in Fighting skill overall).

What actually happens in the comics is that the Taskmaster says, "I've studied your moves; you can't beat me," and the hero proceeds to miss him until he thinks of some original or unexpected way (Trick or surprise) to catch the Taskmaster offguard.

Now, you could have someone powerwise who could duplicate entire skills, but with photographic reflexes and especially Taskmaster, I see it simply as a trapping and a type of limitation really.
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#6 Postby DaRealJudas » Wed Jan 07, 2009 11:37 am

Okay, I admit that seems to be right. I can totally get where you going.
But for me that sounds like perfect for an NPC. How would you propose to spend your (let’s go nuts with Super Karma and Power Points Edge at Novice Rank and say) 20 PP on this concept for a player character? Would you for example go for the Catch and Throw modification for Parry?
And as far as I know Tricks can be used over and over again (lot of sand at the beach for example)? That would cancel the Parry/Deflection bonus every time…





btw I actually having fun with this! :)
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#7 Postby DaRealJudas » Wed Jan 07, 2009 11:48 am

Tuesday wrote:Sounds like Super-Sorcery with a trapping of "super-skill and super-Edge only".

Call it 2-1 for costs. Make the skill used to activate it be "Notice" - he's seen the use of the skill - and he should probably only have about 6 points of this, with the rest of his powers being Super-Skill and Super-Attribute.


Oh and Tuesday: I like your idea. Especially the usage of the Notice skill. Nice touch...
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#8 Postby Clint » Wed Jan 07, 2009 12:48 pm

DaRealJudas wrote:How would you propose to spend your (let’s go nuts with Super Karma and Power Points Edge at Novice Rank and say) 20 PP on this concept for a player character? Would you for example go for the Catch and Throw modification for Parry?


Depends on if I want the Novice character to start with that ability, but I figure they could "learn" if they chose to (spend the PPs from an advancement). TM certainly caught Cap's shield a time or possibly more (but TM is an NPC and pretty experienced).

I figure a Novice may not have trained up their physical abilities to the max yet, so maybe 3 (or 6) PPs bumping the physical Attributes a die type or two.

Deflection 3 with the limitation above for 1 PP.
Parry 3 with the same (1 PP) or 3 PPs to add Catch and Throw.

Maybe 2 Super Edges to represent some specific training viewed for 4 PPs.

1 point in Gifted (actually has photographic reflexes as a trapping)

Then 7 (or 10) PPs in Super Skill to increase all the physical skills (linked to Agility to Strength) beyond a d4 that may have been studied more intently.

As a "normal" Edge, I'd probably pick up some physical Edges that can't be gotten with Super Edge like Acrobat or others of that nature.

Then as the character gains PPs (and level-ups), I'd just expand on those abilities.

DaRealJudas wrote:And as far as I know Tricks can be used over and over again (lot of sand at the beach for example)? That would cancel the Parry/Deflection bonus every time…


Only if successful. It still requires an action and winning an opposed Agility or Smarts roll. Also repeating the same Trick over and over is not too "clever" and definitely grounds for the GM to apply a situational modifier to the roll.
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#9 Postby DaRealJudas » Wed Jan 07, 2009 4:15 pm

Okay, thanks. I think, I can work with this. :-D
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