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(SPC2) Minions and switchable

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  • (SPC2) Minions and switchable

    I scoured the archive and someone mentioned a previous ruling on switchable for sidekicks or minions. http://www.archive.pegforum.com/viewtopic.php?t=52086
    Unfortunately, it was not restated and I have no idea what that ruling was. I have a few questions.

    1. Are minions from the Minions power wild cards? It is stated they are sidekicks and they are wildcards.
    2. What happens to current minions or sidekicks if used with switchable and you change to another power set? Do they turn on you, disappear, etc? Could you re-trap them and say they are manifestations that disappear and then reappear when you switch back? Would they keep their advances?

    Thanks in advance.

  • #2
    Since the SWADE companions aren't out yet, I'm moving this to General Chat. I'll let PEGClint take this one.

    1. Yes.
    2. Disappear. But they wouldn't keep their advances.

    Comment


    • #3
      I would answer...

      1. No, they're not Wild Cards. The term sidekick there doesn't read as a reference to the Sidekick power to me - it's just used as the term is normally defined, not a game term. The Minions power is for faceless thugs, like The Monarch's Butterfly Goons or Joker's endless thugs that he has recruited on standby. It's not for major allies like Harley Quinn or Robin - that's what the Sidekick power is for. Besides, the "Typical Minion" sidebar makes no mention of them being WCs, unlike the Sidekick power description. Minions is the SPC2 equivalent of Summon Ally or the Followers Legendary Edge, rather than the Sidekick Legendary Edge or the Sidekick Power.

      2. That entirely depends on their trappings. If the Minions are normal people in the setting, I wouldn't be too inclined to allow Minions to be part of a Switchable set. The powers have to make narrative sense, after all, and Switchable is designed to be round-by-round, which doesn't really jive with "real" people that work for the super. If, on the other hand, the Minions are something like magical summoned creatures or something, it could work. A Switchable Minion with the Summonable modifier could be a magical tattoo, a bound spirit, or a bunch of other options that make sense. With appropriate story logic, I would say that Minions would keep their advances when summoned and dismissed via Summonable or Switchable unless they were killed.

      I could also see graduating a particularly favored Minion to Sidekick status via the Sidekick Legendary Edge. #23 from The Venture Brothers would be a good example of that.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by PEGRon View Post
        Since the SWADE companions aren't out yet, I'm moving this to General Chat. I'll let PEGClint take this one.

        1. Yes.
        2. Disappear. But they wouldn't keep their advances.
        Thank you. I look forward to Mr. Clints determination as well.

        Comment


        • #5
          My answer here would be Trappings. Even if they are not summoned, Minions could theorically be Switchable.

          Let's say I play an Elementalist. I have 8 elemental minions, 2 for each classical elements (with appropriate powers). I have switchable on them, because they can turn into pure elements and enhance my own performance. Air minions turn into Intense Winds (Deflection), Earth minions turn into Stone Armor (armor), Fire minions turn into a Flamethrower (Attack, Ranged) and Water minions turn into ice skates (Speed).

          The minions are still there (and can reform into human forms each round), but change depending on the needs of the battlefield.

          God now I want to play that character...

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by DarkerSavant View Post
            1. Are minions from the Minions power wild cards? It is stated they are sidekicks and they are wildcards.
            Not for only 2 points per level! The Sidekick power grants a single Wild Card ally follower.
            Originally posted by Minions
            Each level in minions provides one loyal sidekick under the player’s control. Unlike normal allies gained through roleplaying, minions are replaced if lost (with any earned advances) after 1d6 days. The replacement may be hired, built, summoned, or the original might be returned to life depending on specific trappings and events.
            That language is consistent with Edges and abilities that provide loyal ally Extras (notably Beast Master and Followers). I presume that the word sidekick (both lower case and normal font, so clearly not being used as rules term) was chosen for genre appropriateness.
            Further, the "Typical Minion" sidebar does not include any Wild Card symbols nor indicators of Wild Card status.
            Thematically, Wild Card minions wouldn't be underlings. They'd be partners, or maybe even your boss if your character is particularly incompetent.
            They're Extras. Not even Clint Black, primary author of the book, will convince me otherwise.

            Originally posted by DarkerSavant View Post
            2. What happens to current minions or sidekicks if used with switchable and you change to another power set? Do they turn on you, disappear, etc? Could you re-trap them and say they are manifestations that disappear and then reappear when you switch back? Would they keep their advances?
            Varies by the trappings, but they stop being available.
            Summoned demons might return to the hells from which they came, or go on a murderous rampage for which your character will be blamed.
            Zombies and other undead probably turn to dust. They might go on murderous rampages, for which your character will be blamed.
            Hired mercenaries stop being loyal since their contracts are over. They might steal your stuff as they leave, they might just lounge around your base, they might seduce your romantic interest, they might become rival Wild Card opponents, they may retire to that cabin by the lake, they may go on murderous rampages for which you are blamed, or maybe they go get contracts with someone else.

            When you use Switchable to change powers, the deactivated powers are not available. For minions and sidekick, that means your minions and sidekicks are not available. If you do this during the middle of a fight then they suddenly stop working for you (as fits the trappings).
            Last edited by ValhallaGH; 01-16-2020, 02:10 PM.
            I hope you find the above post useful. And not insulting, because I was trying to be helpful, not insulting; being a pedantic jerk, that isn't always clear.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by ValhallaGH View Post
              or go on a murderous rampage for which your character will be blamed.
              While entertaining, such a drawback shouldn't be considered the default effect. Under normal circumstances, switching a power doesn't have any other ill effects than not having that power anymore. You don't burst into flames when you switch your fire control into flight, for example. Having to deal with rampaging demons is still possible, bt should be compensated somehow.

              Comment


              • ValhallaGH
                ValhallaGH commented
                Editing a comment
                If your uncontrolled minions go on a murderous rampage then you will be blamed for it.
                Uncontrolled minions going on a murderous rampage can be a fitting match for most trappings of minions. Especially if they're peeved by the trapping of Switchable.
                If it's a recurring or persistent problem then the character should have, or be given, a fitting Hindrance and rewarded with bennies as appropriate.

                But as an interesting plot point, especially against a mind controlling villain, it should come up at least once for anyone with Switchable on minion or sidekick.

            • #8
              Originally posted by dentris View Post

              While entertaining, such a drawback shouldn't be considered the default effect. Under normal circumstances, switching a power doesn't have any other ill effects than not having that power anymore. You don't burst into flames when you switch your fire control into flight, for example. Having to deal with rampaging demons is still possible, bt should be compensated somehow.
              While uncontrolled minions running amok is a likely result for Switching out permanent allies, I agree it should have some compensation. Seems like a good place to use a Limitation.

              I'm interested in hearing which Trappings can fit Switching-out "permanent" minions though. Here's a couple I can think of:
              • Mind Control, where the character's 'slaves' scamper around confused, refusing to obey commands until the super Switches back and regains control.
              • Fear (the power is part of the same set as Minions), where when Switched-out the minions are no longer terrified into subservience.
              Any others?

              Comment


              • Deskepticon
                Deskepticon commented
                Editing a comment
                ValhallaGH Sure, but how will that look in game, from round-to-round (which arguably is how Switchable is going to be used most often)? Is it just assumed the super has a queue of guys on retainer, just waiting around until their contract is activated? Summonable would be an obvious necessity, but by RAW that still requires the contractees are nearby enough to respond in 1d4+1 rounds.

                I think the trouble stems from the implication of 'contracted mooks' versus loyal (or ideologically driven) fanatics. It's easier to handwave guys "coming out of the woodwork" if their purpose goes deeper than "I gots ta git paid."

                Using the same group of Extras is even more managable, I think. In a campy setting (something like the Tick universe) the Trapping for Switchable Minions could be them getting distracted and goofing off until the boss Switches back and yells at them. That could also work for Joker's band of opportunistic nihilists, where they revel in anarchy until the Clown Prince gives them a direct order.

              • Deskepticon
                Deskepticon commented
                Editing a comment
                dentris Nice!!
                Although I need to question whether Mr. Monopoly would actually agree to work with partners... seems like he'd try to take charge of the the entire operation himself.

              • ValhallaGH
                ValhallaGH commented
                Editing a comment
                Monopolies are born from oligarchies.

                I do agree that the trappings for loyal hirings that are Switchable are strange. Fortunately, explaining them is a problem for the player that gave the Minions power the Switchable modifier.

            • #9
              Originally posted by DarkerSavant View Post
              1. Are minions from the Minions power wild cards? It is stated they are sidekicks and they are wildcards.
              It does mention them as a "sidekick" but that does not reference the Sidekick power (power references are always italicized as sidekick for instance).

              So no, they are definitely Extras otherwise the power itself would specify them as Wild Cards.

              Sorry for the confusion there.

              Originally posted by DarkerSavant View Post
              2. What happens to current minions or sidekicks if used with switchable and you change to another power set? Do they turn on you, disappear, etc? Could you re-trap them and say they are manifestations that disappear and then reappear when you switch back? Would they keep their advances?
              Depends on the trappings of course, but essentially, they cease to exist and are replaced by the new power. So perhaps a bunch of robot minions combine into a super-gun. The real tricky part is as per the original post linked to, if any of the Minions were killed or lost, then the character also loses access to the Switchable power (or if the GM is kind, perhaps loses 2 PPs in that power per Minion lost).

              The key with Switchable is the points used are "an alternate use of the same points." So losing points in one power loses the same points in all powers Switchable to it.

              So making Minions a Switchable power is definitely a gamble.

              Hope that helps.

              Clint Black
              Forum Admin & Rules Answer Guy
              Savage Worlds Brand Manager

              Comment


              • #10
                Originally posted by PEGClint View Post

                It does mention them as a "sidekick" but that does not reference the Sidekick power (power references are always italicized as sidekick for instance).

                So no, they are definitely Extras otherwise the power itself would specify them as Wild Cards.

                Sorry for the confusion there.



                Depends on the trappings of course, but essentially, they cease to exist and are replaced by the new power. So perhaps a bunch of robot minions combine into a super-gun. The real tricky part is as per the original post linked to, if any of the Minions were killed or lost, then the character also loses access to the Switchable power (or if the GM is kind, perhaps loses 2 PPs in that power per Minion lost).

                The key with Switchable is the points used are "an alternate use of the same points." So losing points in one power loses the same points in all powers Switchable to it.

                So making Minions a Switchable power is definitely a gamble.

                Hope that helps.
                Thank you. That is helpful.

                So for clarity something like this? Minions are tied to staff and called forth. The staff's crystal turns into minions controlled via the staff still in hand. Super Sorcery is unusable until it is recalled to the staff. Once that is done then super sorcery usage can now be done. In both cases, if the staff is disarmed he is out of his powers and control of the minions until he recovers them. Does that seem to work?

                Device (staff)
                Minions 10 levels 20 PP (device -2; Switching +2)
                Super Sorcery 10 levels 20 PP (device -2; Switching +2)



                Now for when the player is building the minions, what is the number of traits and edges you recommend they have? The Minion's callout box shows a template but it is different than the Soldier example in Swade. Would you recommend say 5 Attributes, and 12 Skills+the 5 base skills and 1 edge similar to the Soldier in Swade and from there let the player customize within those guidelines parameters?

                Comment

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