Champions: : Daedalus Wept
This is a Hero System Champions campaign designed around a world similar to The Boys and Aberrant, where the allure and fantasy of superheroes have taken a recent variation on Earth. The variation is less gritty and violent as The Boys, and less pervasive as the world found in Aberrant. Elements of other superhero genres, such as Marvel and DC can be seen in places. The world being portrayed is one where Earth is coming to terms with a new technology and while in its adolescent, has had to learn some hard lessons quickly about how technologies can be misused.
The game focuses on Quasars, which is a term given to individuals who can channel quantum energies into fantastic powers and abilities. Quasars, as a whole, have one limitation not seen in other superhero games, in that the superheroes only maintain their powers when they operate in proximity of one another (the exact range being dependent on the power of the team members). Outside of this range, Quasars lose their powers almost immediately and become little more than humans with potential. While some Aces exist, who can maintain their powers without any other superhero team members nearby, these individuals are the exception and not the rule.
The world is coming to grips with Quasars and their super-powered abilities, and while the number of Quasars is still within the hundreds, their impact, both socially and physically, is undeniable and will not fade as time goes on.
The World and Its Background
The Daedalus Foundation
Characters are built using the Champions 5th Edition 5ER rules system, with the following guidelines:
If you're not sure how to build the powers, just think about what they can do and discuss it with the Game Master. Working together, it is always possible to build at least some version of powers that will be both interesting and fun to play.
- All characters will be kept on paper/PDF with copies available to the GM.
- Try to come up with a concept, and image, and visualization before trying to define the actual points in a power. The question the GM will ask about any power or ability is "How?" "How do you fly? Do you use jets of air, anti-gravity, or telekinesis?" "How does your energy blast project?" "How is your body resistant to deadly forces? Does it reform immediately after being damaged? Is it hardened? Do you have some innate armor?" These questions will help design the character in such a way that the powers are optimized to the character concept and the points can be optimized to make the character effective. And remember, there's more than one way to do something in Champions: Super speed can come from Flight, Running, or high Speed. The ability to make shapes out of earth can be Telekinesis or Environmental Change. Energy blasts can be anything from fire beams that come from your eyes to throw knives.
- The player characters are built with 200 points Base, and an additional 150 available through Disadvantages. The maximum active points of any given power cannot exceed 75 Active Character Points. Talents, Powers, and other options marked with an Exclamation Point must be approved by the GM. Anything with a Stop sign is restricted without very good offsetting features or justification.
- Every PC hero will have at least 50 points in Disadvantages (counting the ones provided), with no single Disadvantage being over 30 points.
- All powers must conform to the general outline and origin of the game. Every character is a Quasar, they have superpowers, and their origin derives from the process of Apotheosis, where the Quasar resonance field was tuned between the starting players.
- All players will be effectively aces, and unlike many other Quasars, you will not have volunteered for experimentation to get your powers. They happened to you spontaneously (see the PC's Origins link.
- In the team, it is recommended that at least one player fulfills the role of Brick (high strength/toughness), two or more Energy Projectors (usually flies and has ranged attacks), one Mentalist or Close-Combat Specialist, one Speedster (high speed/movement), one Utility characters (characters whose abilities are useful in and out of combat, which includes a modified Brick or an Energy Project with unique attributes). The exact mix on these is not an absolute -- this is just a recommendation for a good, balanced team.
- Avoid high-lethality powers (such as high dice killing attacks, or penetrating, NND damage fields or area effects). You were chosen to be on the team because it is assumed you will not be a hazard to the public. The United Nations Council on Superhumans (UNCOS) actually had to approve the membership of the team *and* the team is being watched by AEGIS. Lethal anti-heroes and destructive loose cannons are a no-go.
- The GM will have final approval on all characters, and it will be rare that a first-draft of a character will go untouched. The characters are designed in a campaign where they are a generally benevolent superhero team.
- All players will get a special advantage that will be added for no cost to all of their powers. It will be revealed in game.
- To clarify, there will be no Batman-style, powerless PC's, nor any mystically, demonically, divinely, or otherwise non-Quasar origin powers among the PC's. Characters can have thematic elements of these different milieu, but in the end, their powers all function in the physical plane the same way from the same power sources (through a Quantum field array). The points for it will be offset by experience points and will not count against initial draft totals.
- You will have a superhero name, identity, and image. If you insist on a poor or tasteless choice, it will be allowed but will eventually impose social difficulties in the game. In this world, electronic media exists and it can be as cruel as real-life social media.
- Everyone gets the following Disdavantages as part of their build (which means yes, you get the points):
- +15 Pts -- Hunted: AEGIS 8- (More Powerful), NCI, (+5 Pts if PC has a Public ID or is otherwise very easy to find) Watching
- +15 Pts -- Hunted: US Government 8- (More Powerful), NCI, (+5 Pts if PC has a Public ID or is otherwise very easy to find) Watching
You will also get these offsetting Perk and Disadvantage (They will not be counted towards your total)
- +5 Pts -- Hunted: Daedalus Foundation 8- (Less Pow; NCI; PC has a Public ID or is otherwise very easy to find; Watching)
- 5 Pts -- Team Daedalus Benefits: Fringe Benefit: Federal/National Police Powers, Security Clearance
- General Recommendations:
- At least one attack power. NOTE: Your primary attack power should not be a Killing Attack -- this is slightly based on The Boys, not a re-enactment. The advantage to superhero stories is that normals must rely on deadly force to coerce enemies into compliance. Superheroes are often required to use their powers to face groups of enemies and foes. When your primary offense is a Killing Attack it means that you be using Killing Attacks on thugs and lower criminals as well as on enemy Quasars, and some of them will most definitely end up dead in the most graphic ways. The Daedalus Foundation would not have approached possible heroes if they only had the ability to kill and maim their enemies.
- At least one movement power. It becomes a major drag when you get knocked back 12 combat inches and have to take two phases just to get back up to your enemy.
- At least some form of resistant defense, even if it is just a reinforce armored costume that provides some defense against knives and small guns (resistant 3 PD / 3 ED minimum).
- Speed Range should be at least 5 and no higher than 7. Lower than 5 and you just can't keep up with even trained normals, and higher than 7 and you run out of steam too quickly.
- Instant Change Powers (One of the few exceptions to purchasing Transform):
- 7 Pts - Instant Change: Cosmetic Transform 2d6 (10 Active Points); Limited Target ([Limited]; -1/2)
- 8 Pts - Instant Change (Any Clothes): Cosmetic Transform 2d6, Improved Results Group (+1/4) (12 Active Points); Limited Target ([Limited]; -1/2)
- Free Language Skill:
- (Skill for Native Language) 0 Pts - (Native Language): Language: (Native Language) (idiomatic; literate) (5 Active Points)
If your native language is not English, you need to purchase English as a skill (see below):
- (Skill for Non-Native English Speakers) 4 Pts - English: Language: (Native Language) (fluent; literate) (4 Active Points)
Pre-defined Disadvantages and Perks
Again, the characters are built using the Champions (Hero System 5E), with the following guides:
- Hero System 5ER Basic Handbook
- UNTIL Powers Database
- UNTIL Powers Database Revised
- Hero Character Creator (Java-based)
- Daedalus PC Template (For Use With Hero Character Creator (Java-based)
- Daedalus PC Campaign Rules (For Use With Hero Character Creator (Java-based)
More useful links if you want to get more out of the HERO System
- Basic Power Building Described
- Hero System Glossary
- Killer Shrike's HERO Primer (Very Rules-Oriented)
- Aaron der Schaedel's YouTube on Power Frameworks
- Narrated Sample Fight (Wordy but Detailed Explanations)