Friv Makes Fourteen Environments!

They said it couldn’t be done!

Well, actually, they said it shouldn’t be done. But if I stopped doing things just because I shouldn’t do them, I would be grievously injured far less often, and where’s the fun in that?

In all seriousness, having randomly generated a bunch of heroes and villains for Sentinel Comics, I looked over at the Environments section and thought, “I can do that.” I took a quick look through, and confirmed that every aspect of the Environment Creation process is robustly designed to not in any way be conducive to random generation. The writers of Sentinel Comics could not be more clear that random generation of environments is not a good idea, and probably won’t work.

I’m going to do it anyway. So here’s my system.

First off, I’m constructing environments in very nearly the exact opposite way that is recommended, so I really don’t want anyone to come away thinking that this is the system working as intended. The way you’re supposed to build an environment is to figure out how it fits into the story, design three elements that reflect what’s going on and give them die ratings, figure out something for each of those dice to be doing in each zone (Green, Yellow, and Red), and then figure out what sort of environment twists best represent that idea.

I will be randomly figuring out what the environment is doing in each zone, working backwards to decide what that means the zone is up to, and then building up to a top-level design and three elements.

I’ve gone through the table of possible environment twists, and build my own table that contains 28 Minor Twists and 14 Major Twists for each of the three color zones. This required a lot of doubling up, but I got a series that I liked, and I’m going to use it to create 14 Environments. Here is how I’ll be designing them.

Step 1: Green Zone

I will randomize four Minor Twists and two Major Twists from my current pool of available Twists. I will then pick two Minor Twists and one Major Twist that I think synergize interestingly.

Steps 2 and 3: Yellow and Red Zones

I’m going to do the same thing as above twice more. It’s not really a complicated process.

Step 4: Top-Level Design

Once I have my nine Twists, I’m going to figure out what sort of an environment they represent, and backfill the design and concepts of it. At this point, I’ll also fill in the element dice. I’ve put together fourteen element spreads to use, and I’ll just pick the one that seems best for the current setup.

Step 5: Details

Having finished my top-level work, I’ll write up the Environment with the full description of what its Twists are actually doing and what the area looks like.

So, I have no idea if this is going to work, even more so than usual, but it’s worth a try!

5 Likes

The First Environment

Okay, let’s see what we get!

Step 1: Green Zone

For my random Green Zone choices, I get the following:

  • Minor: Defend All (Min), Boost All (Min), Add a Simple Challenge, Add a Simple Challenge
  • Major: Hinder One (Max), Advance Scene Tracker

Okay! So we’ve got a surprisingly non-aggressive Green Zone, options-wise. I think I’m going to go with something that starts off slow and then pushes our heroes off a cliff. Our Minor Twists are Defend All (Min) and Add a Simple Challenge, and the Major Twist for this Environment Advances the Scene Tracker.

Step 2: Yellow Zone

My random Yellow Zone options are:

  • Minor: Take Action Against One Target (Mid Effect and Min Effect), Boost two targets (Persistent/Exclusive, Min), Add Mid Minions, Add Lieutenant
  • Major: Hinder One Target (Persistent/Exclusive, Mid), Action Two Targets (One Mid, one Min, one of them Persistent/Exclusive)

Since the Green is slowing down the scene, Yellow speeds things up in complicated ways. I’m going to take the two-target persistent-exclusive Boost and add a Lieutenant in Minor, and in Major we’re going to target two people, one of them with a Mid effect and one with a persistent Min effect.

Step 3: Red Zone

I’m getting an idea for what sort of an environment this is, and my Red Zone options are:

  • Minor: All Targets (Mid), One Target (Max) and another action against other targets (Mid), Add (Max) Minion Threats, Fully Heal Lieutenant
  • Major: All Targets (Max), Advance scene tracker

So, for our Minor I’m going to stick with our theme and take the Max effect against one target and Mid effect for everyone else, and also heal up that lieutenant that got created in Yellow. For Major, I’m not a fan of double-advancing the scene tracker so it’s time for an All Targets (Max) effect.

Step 4: Where Are We?

So what is this place?

Welcome to the Terrifying Laboratory of Doctor Malitech! The doctor is not in right now – possibly he is dead, or maybe just in jail, or has fled the country temporarily. This conflict involves one of three things: the heroes entering his lair in order to confiscate all of the things he left behind, the heroes chasing villains to his lair to stop them from stealing the things he left behind, or possibly the heroes showing up in search of clues for the Bad Doctor’s master plan.

The Terrifying Laboratory’s various defensive systems are more meant to prevent the lab experiments from hurting each other than anything else, and it’s going to get in the way by assuming that intruders are just more experiments to be rounded up… at least until things go bad.

The Terrifying Laboratory has the following traits: “Robotic Restraints” d10, “Inhibitor Gas” d8, and “Poorly-Targeted Energy Bursts” d8.

The Terrifying Laboratory of Doctor Malitech

Traits: Robotic Restraints d10, Inhibitor Gas d8, Poorly-Targeted Energy Bursts d8

Green Zone

Minor Twist: Separation Beams. The lab’s defense recognize everyone fighting as lab experiments, and attempts to separate them. Roll the environment’s dice pool and Defend each target in the scene once with the Min die.

Minor Twist: Lab Escape. Taking advantage of the confusion, some of the lab experiments actually break out. The heroes must subdue or calm them with an Overcome before the scene’s Zone changes, or else they escape and will cause trouble in a future scene.

Major Twist: Alert! The lab’s systems recognize that what’s going on is bigger than a few experiments on the loose. Alarms blare. Advance the scene tracker.

Yellow Zone:

Minor Twist: Comingling Ray. The lab’s experimental procedures mis-activate, believing that a battle is just another test, and bathe two combatants in energizing vita-rays, binding their . Target one hero and one villain, and roll the environment’s dice pool. Boost both the hero and the villain with the Min die for as long as they are both active. If either target loses their bonus, the other loses it as well.

Minor Twist: The Caretaker. The Laboratory deploys the robotic Caretaker; a four-legged, human-torsoed device that attempts to subdue whatever the most fractious and active enemy is and drag them back to the cells to be restrained. The Caretaker is a d10 Lieutenant; when it Attacks an enemy with a d10 or d12 Status die, it also Hinders them with its Min die.

Major Twist: Laser Grid. The lab’s laser grid attempts to block off two combatants from one another. Target two characters in close proximity and roll the environment dice. Attack one target using the Mid die, and apply a persistent Hinder to the other with the Min die as the lasers block their movement and try to box them in.

Red Zone:

Minor Twist: Suppression Gas. Numbing gas begins pouring out of every vent, affecting biological and electrical systems alike. Roll the environment’s dice and target everyone in the area. The target closest to the centre of the effect is Attacked with the Max die, and everyone else is Hindered with the Mid die.

Minor Twist: Caretaker Recovery. Rapid-deployment systems replace broken parts and attach fresh weaponry onto the Caretaker as it fights. Restore it to full health.

Major Twist: Immolation Subsystems. The lab’s defenses recognize the situation as unsalvageable and open fire wildly on everything. Attack every target in the lab, using the environment’s Max die.

Aftermath:

I really like the Green and Yellow twists, but I’m not sure about the suppression gas. I feel like I could have put something more interesting together, but nothing sprang to mind.

But overall, not a bad start. Seems like a moderately standard environment, and it could slot in for any mad scientist’s unattended lair without too much trouble. Let’s see where we go from here!

3 Likes

I like the idea that the sign out front of the lab says, “The Terrifying Laboratory of Doctor Malitech.”

But, why make up this new Malitech* guy, and not use one of your existing science-y Villains?

Relatedly, I hope you’ll incorporate some of your existing Heroes and Villains into these environments.

But the question remains: what exactly are these “lab experiments” . . . ?

*Great name, by the way.

1 Like

I was kidding! XD

This is actually going to be really useful for me, because I find making environments the most challenging part of this game so far.

For that Commingling Ray, is the boost essentially persistent? Or is it “you both get a boost until one of you goes next”?

1 Like

Fjur: I will probably try to include some of my villains in these environments, or at least note when they’d be good fits. A lot of the villains I wrote up are the sort to “go out and do a thing”, so there aren’t as many lairs, but this lab would be a good place to run into Sleight or the Expansionist’s forces.

I chose not to use an existing villain because I was just tossing a generic villain name in there; since the premise was that the villain wasn’t around, I didn’t want them to be too important. And I’m sort of imagining the lab experiments are chimeric creatures of some kind, probably enhanced. Should have mentioned that!

TakeWalker: The Co-Mingling Ray provides a persistent, exclusive boost. I added a couple of caveats (both people need to stay active, if one person loses it the other does to) to make it a bit more unique.

2 Likes

Here we go for Environment #2

Step 1: Green Zone

My random Green Zone choices net me the following options:

  • Minor: Attack One (Mid), Attack All (Min), Defend All (Min), Add a Minion
  • Major: All Targets (Min), All Targets (min)

Well, I guess my major twist has been chosen for me! Okay, so let’s go with a simple Attack One and Add a Minion for our minor twists, and then move on to an All Targets (Min) for the Major.

Step 2: Yellow Zone

As things get worse, we end up with the following options:

  • Minor: Attack All (Min), Boost or Defend All (Min), Add Lieutenant, Add multi-step challenge
  • Major: Boost or Hinder (PE) Max, Restore all minions

Okay, so the question is – are we going minion-heavy, or action-heavy? Let’s go with a minion-heavy environment in which things are nasty. Our minor twists are an Attack All (Min) and Add a Lieutenant, and then for our Major twist everyone gets restored.

Ideas are starting to percolate.

Step 3: Red Zone

In desperate times, we end up with…

  • Minor: One Target (Max Action, PE Boost or Hinder), Two Targets (PE Boost or Hinder), Add Max Die Minion Threats, Add Max Die Minion Threats
  • Major: All Targets, 2 Actions using Mid (PE), All Targets (Max)

So, I’m not entirely sure what hitting everyone with two Mid Die actions that are both persistent and exclusive looks like. Is it boosting and hindering everyone in different ways to really mess with them? Dropping two Hinders that don’t stack to make them harder to take off? You know, I could probably work with those, but I have persistent and exclusive effects in the minor, so…

Our minor twists will be a one-target Max-die Persistent-Exclusive Boost, and adding Max Die worth of minions. Our major twist is another big Max-die all-target effect.

Step 4: Where Are We?

Welcome to the Crypt of the Runespear!

This is the resting place of one of the four sacred weapons used to seal away a particularly nasty hell-dimension centuries ago. Villains have entered the crypt in search of the powerful weapon, unaware (or possible desirous) of the fact that their incursion is damaging the weapon’s mystic wards and letting demonic forces into the world!

The crypt presents challenges in the form of both infernal energies pulsing loose, demons pulling themselves out of cracks in reality, and good old-fashioned ancient architecture in danger of collapse. If things go too wrong, it could crack open like an egg, unleashing a small demonic horde on the region!

The Crypt has the dice Mystical Wards d10, Infernal Energies d10, Demonic Imps d6.

Step 5: Using the Environment

This is a new step that I’ve decided to add!

This environment would serve as the primary location for History’s Mysteries to confront Landgrave and Juliet as they try to bring all four runic weapons together for what Landgrave believes to be his destiny, and Juliet knows to be her master’s wishes. In that case, the scene’s fourth element would likely be a timed challenge to oppose Juliet’s ritual and prevent a terrible force from emerging.

Alternately, it could be used for any kind of ancient tomb filled with terrible monsters, possibly with alternate elemental strengths and weaknesses.

The Crypt of the Runespear

Traits: Mystical Wards d10, Infernal Energies d10, Demonic Imps d6

Green Zone

Minor Twist: Ward Eruption. One of the crypt’s wards, overloaded by dark power, explodes. Roll the environment’s dice, and Attack one target with the Mid die.

Minor Twist: Demon Escape. A demonic imp slips through the gaps in the wards. This imp is a d8 Minion with the following trait:

Infernal Nature. This minion saves automatically against Infernal damage. When it takes Radiant damage, degrade its die before rolling to save, instead of after.

Major Twist: Infernal Blast. Infernal energies crackle through the tomb, hitting anyone who isn’t in a sheltered or distant area. Roll the environment’s dice, and Attack all targets with the Min die, dealing Infernal damage.

Yellow Zone:

Minor Twist: Collapsing Rubble. Part of the crypt gives way, collapsing onto the battlefield. Roll the environment’s dice, targeting everyone in a particular part of the crypt. Attack them with the Min die, dealing physical damage.

Minor Twist: Demon Knight. A demonic knight coalesces out of the infernal fog leaking into the crypt. This is a d10 Lieutenant with the following trait:

Infernal Body. If the Demon Knight would take Infernal damage, prevent that damage and Boost it by the result. If the Demon Knight takes Radiant damage, reduce its save by -2.

Major Twist: Infernal Mist. A terrible mist fills the area, casting everything into purplish hues and filling the heroes with an uncanny dread. Restore every Demon Imp and Knight in play to their maximum die size.

Red Zone:

Minor Twist: Blessings Of The Dark Patriarch: The power of the Infernal gates is growing too strong for the wards to contain, and they pour into their minions. Roll the environment’s dice, and target the most powerful demon currently on the field. Boost it with the Max die. This bonus is persistent and exclusive.

Minor Twist: Shattered Wards. A mystical ward shatters, and demons pour through. Roll the environment’s die, and create a number of Demon Imps equal to the Max die.

Major Twist: Final Eruption. As the wards fail one by one, they give off an overwhelming burst of holy energy. Roll the environment’s dice, and Attack all targets everywhere in the crypt with Radiant damage, using the Max die.

Aftermath:

Demonic nonsense and the power of a crypt trying to hold it back? And I got to reference one of my villain sets? I am calling this one a hell of a win. Pun intended.

If you want to make this a Hostile environment, rather than a standard one, change all of the damaging attacks to be Infernal; this will make the Demon Knight a truly nasty threat, and keep the imps in play longer. Otherwise, the radiant bursts and collapsing architecture can weaken demons and keep things on a bit more of an even footing.

3 Likes

With two pretty solid choices under my belt, it’s time to try Choice #3

Step 1: Green Zone

Our Green Twist options are:

  • Minor: Overcome (Mid), Attack All (Min), Boost All (Min), and Create a Simple Challenge.
  • Major: Hinder One (Max), All Target Action (Min)

This immediately gives me an idea, so I’m going to go with Create a Simple Challenge and Overcome. You can see where this is going, probably – the environment will create challenges, and then if the players don’t resolve them, the environment will do it and it’ll be bad.

For our Major Twist, I’m going to take an All Target Hinder (Min); the environment makes everything worse for a bit.

Step 2: Yellow Zone

In Yellow, we’re looking at the following options:

  • Minor: Attack One (Max), Defend One (Max), Attack All (Min), Add Mid Minions
  • Major: Persistent Exclusive All-Target Action (Min), Add Lieutenant

So the question becomes, is this a minion-based environment? I think I have a shape that makes the answer no, so let’s take an Attack One (Max) or Attack All (Min) for our Minor Twists, and then an All-Target Hinder for our Major.

Step 3: Red Zone

So, our Green Zone set things up and our Yellow Zone mostly attacks and Hinders. What’s going on in Red?

  • Minor: Action One (Max + Min), Two Actions Vs One (One Max, One Mid Boost), 2 Actions Mid (both PE), Add stronger lieutenant
  • Major: All Targets (Two Actions with Mid die, both P/E), heal all minions/lieutenants

So, we’ll take one big Action (Max + Min) and one two-target persistent-exclusive for our Minor Twists, and the big confusing one for our Major. I’ll have to decide what that looks like, I guess.

Step 4: Where Are We?

Welcome to the Kincaid Oil Rig! This rig is a major operation located in the Pacific Ocean – that is, until The Recycler (or another villain in need of oil) attacks the platform in search of resources. Now the rig is in danger of exploding, and the heroes have to navigate that problem while also dealing with whatever villain has caused the disaster!

The oil rig has the three traits “Oil Fires d10, Damaged Superstructure d8, Panicking Crew d6”.

Step 5: What Do We Do?

The rig goes through three phases as things get worse. In Green, it has a simple approach – each turn, it creates a simple challenge as the oil reserves and machinery threaten to explode. If the heroes resolve the challenge, the Oil Fire die decreases, and if they don’t resolve it, the environment’s next action is to Overcome the challenge and increase the Oil Fires die. Then, the entire superstructure shudders and buckles, Hindering everyone who isn’t flying.

In Yellow, fires start to spread out of control. Exploding pipes can target single heroes, or flaming oil can splash over a large area. At one point, panicking workers get in everyone’s way (also a good target for a minor twist – civilians in danger!) If the heroes have reduced the power of the oil fires this probably isn’t too bad, but if they let them get out of control these will be some nasty attacks!

Finally, in Red, there’s still blasts of flame, oil splashing over individual people and making their lives difficult, and the whole structure starting to come down in a way that becomes persistent unless someone can find a way to stabilize it. Better wrap things up before the whole platform sinks in the sea and sets it on fire!

The Kincaid Oil Rig

Traits: Oil Fires d10, Damaged Superstructure d8, Panicking Crew d6

Green Zone

Minor Twist: Pressure Vales. The oil rig’s safety features are trying to hold back cascading problems, but it’s going poorly. Create a simple challenge; if the heroes resolve it, decrease the size of Oil Fires. (If Oil Fires is at a d6, don’t create this Twist.)

Minor Twist: Spreading Flame. The situation gets worse! Roll the environment’s pool, and Overcome the Pressure Valves challenge with the Mid die. The Overcome will fail rather than take a Major Twist; if it succeeds with a Minor Twist, Hinder the Environment’s next action with the Max die; the burst of pressure actually calms things down for a minute. (If there are no Pressure Valves in play, don’t create this Twist.)

Major Twist: Buckling Superstructure. The rig bucks as one of the support pillars buckles. Roll the environment’s die pool and Hinder everyone on the Rig with the Min die.

Yellow Zone:

Minor Twist: Exploding Panels. An electrical panel overheats and explodes. Roll the environment’s die pool, and Attack one target with the Max die.

Minor Twist: Burst of Flame. A pool of flaming oil spreads across an area. Choose a section of the rig and roll the environment’s die pool, Attacking every target in the area with the Min die.

Major Twist: Failed Evacuation. The rig’s crew attempt to reach the lifeboats, but wander into the line of fire! Roll the environment’s pool, and Hinder every target in the area with the Mid die as the crew get in the way of the fight.

Red Zone:

Minor Twist: Gouts of Flame. Terrible, roaring fires are raging. Roll the Environment’s pool, and Attack one target with the Max + Mid dice.

Minor Twist: Superstructure Collapse. A section of the rig falls on top of a character. Roll the environment’s die pool, and Hinder a target twice with the Mid die. Both Hinders are Persistent and Exclusive; they won’t stack, but have to be dealt with separately.

Major Twist: The Rig Fails. An entire support structure collapses, and the rig begins to fall into the sea. Roll the Environment’s die pool, and Hinder all targets twice. Both Hinders are Persistent and Exclusive; if a Hinder is removed by dealing with the underlying problem, it is removed for everyone.

Aftermath:

I think I can call this one a success!

I still find the “take two actions against one person and they’re both persistent and exclusive” to be a very odd option, but I think I see how it can work. It makes it a lot harder to shake it off, without actually being much worse until then.

3 Likes

An oil rig is definitely a nifty dynamic environment that doesn’t see much use. Good job!

2 Likes

Three down, three more or less successful! After a short delay in which I tried to figure some things out before kind of just giving up and using the system as written for the time being, we’re back in action.

Specifically, I’ve noticed that the sample environments past the starter set don’t seem to follow the Environment Twist guidelines for minions. In general, all of the example Green Zones are producing minions at a rate equal to what the suggestion is for Yellow, and all of the example Yellow Zones are producing minions at a rate equal to what the suggestion is for Red. There’s also a probable misprint, where one of the Red Minor Twists is a lot stronger than the others, and might be supposed to be a Major Twist. But I’m sticking with RAW for the time being. (There’s a thread about it elsewhere, so I’ll let people wander over there for more info.)

I’m going to start tracking which of my environments are Standard, which are Hostile, and which could be either. I’m aiming for 3-4 Hostile environments, and probably another 3-4 that could be both, but with most of them standard. Right now, the first environment was Standard, the second was Standard or Hostile, and the third was also Standard.

Step 1: Green Zone

Our Green Twist options are:

  • Minor: Attack One (Mid), Defend One (Mid), Boost One (Mid), Create a Simple Challenge
  • Major: Two Actions (Mid + Min), Add Minion + Effect

Okay, there’s a broad array here. I’m going to go with Attack One (Mid) and Boost One (Mid) as our minors, while the Major adds a Minion and a secondary effect.

Step 2: Yellow Zone

In Yellow, I somehow rolled 3, 4, 5, and 6 on the minor twist randomizer, so my options are pretty similar looking! I’ve got:

  • Minor: Defend One (Max), Hinder All (Min), Defend All (Min), Boost All (Min)
  • Major: Action One (Mid + Min), Add Lieutenant + Effect

Let’s take Hinder All and Defend All as our alternating minors, and then add a Lieutenant with a bonus effect.

Step 3: Red Zone

On to Red! Let’s see what I have to play with – I have an idea about the shape of this, but it’ll be based on the following:

  • Minor: Action (Max+Min), Two Targets Two Actions (Mid & Min), All Targets (Max one Mid Others), Add Multi-Step Challenge
  • Major: All Targets Mid+effect, Heal All Minions/Lieutenants

Ah, complexity. For our Minor I’ll take a two-target action and a multi-step challenge, and for Max let’s go with a major Mid + effect against everyone.

Step 4: Where Are We?

Welcome to the CRUCIBLE Base of Operations!

A repurposed FILTER base on the outskirts of a major city, this is one of the handful of operations centers that CRUCIBLE uses as part of their way against aliens, magical beings, and anyone else who doesn’t fit the mold. From here, CRUCIBLE sends out strike teams and infiltrators to fight their enemies. Fighting in the heart of their territory is extremely dangerous, and not recommended for heroes who aren’t ready for a nasty challenge.

The Base of Operations has the traits “CRUCIBLE Agents d10”, “Hidden Defenses” d8, and “Repurposed Alien Technology” d8. It is definitely a Hostile Environment, although if the heroes are fighting villains who are also enemies of CRUCIBLE it could become Standard as agents try to take down both sides.

Step 5: What Do We Do?

In Green, the heroes are moving fast or otherwise haven’t set off a lot of alarms yet. Those agents that have figured out what’s going on are taking potshots and calling in backup. Minor twists include having an agent pop out and Attack one hero, or someone deploying their armory and Boosting a CRUCIBLE agent or other villainous ally. As a major twist, a CRUCIBLE infiltrator responds to the alarm, immediately coming into play with a free Defend from their cover.

In Yellow, the base’s forces start to respond in force. Graviton rays attempt to slow and collapse the heroes, Hindering everyone, and defensive emplacements drop down to Defend all of the CRUCIBLE forces in play. A major CRUCIBLE Officer also deploys alongside a minion Agent who defends her from harm.

Finally, in Red, the base is on full alert and everything is being turned against the heroes. Lockdown Procedures separate heroes from each other and prevent them from escaping, and skilled agents deploy more powerful weapons to Attack and Hinder multiple heroes at a time. At the height, a major experimental weapon is deployed that Attacks all heroes and also weakens their Powers.

CRUCIBLE Base of Operations

Traits: “CRUCIBLE Agents d10”, “Hidden Defenses” d8, “Repurposed Alien Technology” d8

Green Zone

Minor Twist: Agent Attack. A CRUCIBLE agent spots the situation and opens fire before retreating. Attack one hero with the Mid die.

Minor Twist: Armory Deployment. A hidden compartment deploys a specialized weapon or toll into an agent’s hands. Boost one environment or villain target with the Mid die.

Major Twist: Squad Deployment. A CRUCIBLE infiltrator responds to the challenge and enters play. Treat them as a d8 Minion. The first time that they are attacked, roll the “CRUCIBLE Agents” die and Defend them with the result.

Yellow Zone:

Minor Twist: Graviton Rays. The base’s automated defenses come online, working to capture the intruders and pin them to the ground. The increased gravity Hinders all heroes with the Min die.

Minor Twist: Rapid-Deployment Barricades. Repurposed technology deploys sudden barricades to block attacks against CRUCIBLE forces. Roll a Defend, and apply the Min die against all attacks against environment and villain targets until the start of the next environment turn.

Major Twist: Agent Assault. A CRUCIBLE officer and his assistants deploy to fight. Treat the officer as a d10 Lieutenant with three d4 minions that do not take actions. When the officer is attacked, if one or these minions is still present, remove it instead of making a save.

Red Zone:

Minor Twist: Lockdown Procedures. The entire facility goes into lockdown! Until the Challenge below is resolved, the heroes are unable to move between zones of the facility (unless they have a way to move that bypasses both physical and energy barriers.) CRUCIBLE agents can use their credentials to pass through freely.

[ ][ ] Override the Security Procedures

Minor Twist: CRUCIBLE Squad. A squad of CRUCIBLE agents opens fire on the heroes with everything they’ve got, unleashing energy beams and electrical shocks. Target up to two heroes near each other. Attack them with the Mid die, and Hinder them with the Min die.

Major Twist: Alien Bioweapon. A CRUCIBLE officer activates a repurposed weapon designed to tear a person’s DNA apart! Attack every hero in the facility with the Mid die, and reduce all non-technological Power dice to d6 for the duration of the scene. Heroes can make Overcomes against the bioweapon to restore one person’s abilities.

Aftermath:

This is a place that you do not want to be, and it’s definitely a place that you do not want to get to the nastier Red zone tricks. I think there’s an even chance that a fight inside CRUCIBLE headquarters ends with a lot of captured heroes, but they might make it out alive!

3 Likes

Been a busy week, and more to come, but I’m still dedicated to finishing this thing. Let’s see how Environment #5 shapes up.

Step 1: Green Zone

Our Green Twist options are:

  • Minor: Boost One (Mid), Add a Minion, Add a Minion, Create a Simple Challenge
  • Major: Any Action One (Max), Any Action All Targets (Min)

Oh, I think I have an idea. I’m going to go with Boost One (Mid) and Create a Simple Challenge for my Greens, and “Any Action – All (Min)” for my Major.

Step 2: Yellow Zone

In Yellow, I’ve got the following options to play with:

  • Minor: Boost One Max, Boost One PE (Mid), Add Mid Minions, Add Mid Minions
  • Major: Target Two (Mid Die), Action All (Mid Die)

So… that’s a lot of overlapping choices. I think I can make it work with a Boost One (Mid) Persistent-Exclusive, and adding Mid Minions. The major twist targets everyone with the mid die.

Step 3: Red Zone

Moving into Red, we’re looking at the following options:

  • Minor: Two Targets, P-E Boost (Mid), Add Max Minions, Add Max Minions, Add Boosted Lieutenant
  • Major: All Targets Mid + Effect, Advance Scene Tracker

Okay, hm. If I’m going with “these are just the same effect but getting bigger each time”, I should take the two-target Persistent-Exclusive Boost, and then add Max die Minions. Our Major effect can be an all-target action with a secondary effect.

Step 4: Where Are We?

Okay, this one is going to be a little big specific, but I think it will work.

Welcome to Freedom-Con, the world’s first and only convention for fans of the Freedom Five and their exploits! Freedom-Con is held in various cities on a rotating basis, with panels about superheroism, special guests made up of people the Freedom Five saved, former Freedom Tower employees, mementoes from various battles for sale alongside collectibles and costumes, and every once in a while a Legacy stops by to say to hello.

At this year’s Freedom-Con, a panelist has brought a memento for auction, not knowing that it’s a powerful and dangerous doomsday device! Sleight has been hired to retrieve the device, and has infiltrated the convention – can the heroes find him and stop him before chaos reigns, or alternately find and recover the device?

(This environment could be used for any team of supervillains infiltrating a convention to steal a suspiciously powerful object, or alternately to assassinate a guest of honour.)

Freedom-Con has the traits Crowded Pathways d8, Hordes of Fans d8, and Loads of Collectibles d10.

Step 5: What Do We Do?

In the Green Zone, no one is really aware that anything is wrong, and early attempts to make that clear are likely to be misinterpreted as a show put on for the crowd. Cheering fans can provide inspirational boosts to showy heroes (or villains!), and crowds of gawkers and photo-takers get in the way until cleared to safety. As a major twist, a fan parade runs right through the action, hindering anyone who isn’t willing to just shoot through them.

In Yellow, excitement is replaced by panic as everyone realizes that this isn’t just a show. Con security deploy, over-armed for the situation because of previous supervillain incidents, and not actually sure who they should be fighting. A piece of valuable equipment is available to steal. The sprinklers turn on and make everything slick and confusing.

Finally, in Red, full panic has set in. Every con security officer is rushing to the area. The vendor tables are completely open and available for people to seize useful tech. And crowds of panicking people get in everyone’s way, slowing them down and doing a little bit of damage as they stampede to safety.

Freedom-Con!

Traits: Crowded Pathways d8, Hordes of Fans d8, Loads of Collectibles d10

Green Zone

Minor Twist: What A Show. A group of fans cheer on someone flashy and offer advice. Boost whichever character acted last with the Mid die.

Minor Twist: Photo Alley. A group of fans swarm around an area, cutting off a hero from support. They act as a simple challenge, Hindering that hero until cleared away (or until someone Attacks them and badly hurts a lot of civilians!)

Major Twist: The 501st Blade Battalion. A massive group of cosplayers in Blade Battalion outfits is parading through the area as the battle breaks out. Hinder every hero with the Min die as they have to work around these guys. Cunning villains might dress as them for extra effect.

Yellow Zone:

Minor Twist: Con Security. A team of security guards deploys to deal with the disturbance. Create (Mid die) d6 Security minions. They will Attack anyone throwing lethal damage around and Hinder anyone who refuses to disperse, including heroes. Attacking them may have social consequences later.

Minor Twist: Grappling Hook. Someone had a table with gadgets used by the Wraith (with certificates of authenticity.) Most of it is garbage, but there’s a grappling hook available! Boost whoever spots it and grabs it with the Mid die. This boost is persistent and exclusive.

Major Twist: Sprinkler System. Someone pulls the fire alarm. The blaring alarms and sprinklers create chaos and slippery conditions until the heroes are used to them. Hinder everyone in the scene with the Mid die.

Red Zone:

Minor Twist: Tech Display. A fight crashes through a display of a Bunker suit, complete with weapons and armor. Choose two people in close combat with each other, and Boost each of them with the Mid die. This boost is persistent and exclusive. Each person can choose what they’re able to grab.

Minor Twist: Full Security Response. Security is responding in force, with no real idea of who the threat is. Add (Max die) d6 Security Guard minions, who will more or less randomly Attack and Hinder anyone they spot not running away.

Major Twist: Stampede! The crowd stampedes through the narrow pathways. Attack everyone on the ground with the Mid die. Anyone who takes damage is also Hindered with the Min die.

Aftermath:

I love this environment. No further questions.

2 Likes

Cue bored Booth Body Double: “By the Staff of Ra, what a savings…”

5 Likes

It’s my birthday, and my present to me is another environment. So let’s go ahead with…

Step 1: Green Zone

Our Green Twist options are:

  • Minor: Defend One (Mid), Attack All (Min), Add a Minion, Create a Simple Challenge
  • Major: Two Actions (Mid and Min), Add (Min) minions

I know exactly what I want to do already, and this lines up, so we’re going to take Attack All (Min) and Create a Simple Challenge for our minor twists, and Add (Min) minions for our major.

Step 2: Yellow Zone

In Yellow, our options are now:

  • Minor: Hinder One (Max), Boost All (Min), One Target (Mid + Min), Hinder One (PE, Min)
  • Major: Two Actions All (Max one one, Min on the Other), Advance Scene Tracker

We’re going to take a Mid+Min action alongside a wide-area Boost, and for our major we’re hitting everyone with two actions!

Step 3: Red Zone

We’re looking at:

  • Minor: Two Actions One (Max, Hinder PE), Two Actions One (Max and Mid, Hinder PE), Two Actions One (Mid, both PE), All Targets Mid
  • Major: All Targets (Max), All Targets 2 Actions Mid (PE)

I’m going to cheat. It’s my birthday, I can do that. Specifically, I’m creating an entirely new Major Twist: Reduce Scene Tracker.

But for our Minors, I guess we’re hitting someone with two actions! Let’s go ahead and take Two Actions One (Mid, both PE), and All Targets Mid.

Step 4: Where Are We?

Welcome to Wager Master’s birthday party!

balloons, streamers, wild applause

How did your heroes get here? What are they after? Who are they up against? That’s all up to you! Maybe they’ve been hired as entertainment (well, stolen, but you know) or maybe they scored an invite to try and recover something, or maybe they’re trying to deal with a supervillain who got an invite and is trying to gather cosmic energy from the cosmic prankster. Whatever the reason, things are about to get… chancy.

pause for applause

crickets

Okay, fine, whatever. Wager Master’s Birthday Party has the traits “Partygoers” d8, “Impossible Physics” d10, and “Wager Master” d12.

Step 5: What Do We Do?

Just have a good time!

Hahah, no, that’s not it. Actually, in Green, you’re going to be looking at Wager Master setting off confetti cannons that blast everyone in the eyes with glitter, attacking the whole area, and the sudden appearance of party games that make everything difficult until someone wins them. Partygoing Wagelings come out of nowhere to cause intense chaos. Everyone’s having fun!

In Yellow, the party really pops off. People get pulled into dance chains, applying massive but temporary Hinders to them. Wild music roars, invigorating tired partygoers with a rush of power. Wager Master tosses gifts everywhere, giving people boosts but also hitting them in the face (he’ll only do that once, he’s not made of gifts. Yet.)

Finally, in Red, everything is getting out of control. Right at the top, Wager Master declares that the PARTY NEVER ENDS and dials the scene back to Yellow. Once it hits red for real, he starts zapping people with drunkenness beams, both invigorating and hindering them, and drunken partygoers start stepping on toes and dancing even more wildly.

Wager Master’s Birthday Party

Traits:

Green Zone

Minor Twist: Confetti Cannons. The party’s confetti cannons are pointed right at you! Attack every target at the party with the Min die.

Minor Twist: Party Games! Wager Master declares the start of a party game. Treat this as a simple challenge. While it is in play, all Overcomes take a -2 penalty. Whoever successfully resolves it gains a +2 bonus to their next action.

Major Twist: Wageling Party! A group of wagelings joins the fun! Add (Min die) d8 Wagelings with the following ability:

Random Chance: Whenever a Wageling rolls a 4 or less, apply an extra -1 penalty. Whenever it rolls a 5 or higher, apply an extra +1 bonus.

Yellow Zone:

Minor Twist: Dance Chain. A random hero gets grabbed by party-goers and forcibly added to a dance chain for a few minutes. Hinder that hero with the Mid + Min dice.

Minor Twist: Rock and Roll: Music swells and fills everyone with dancing energy that they can’t ignore. Boost everyone with the Min die; they need to be appropriately active and energetic to claim their bonus.

Major Twist: Present time. Wager Master grabs presents and starts throwing them into the crowd. Attack everyone with the Min die, and then Boost everyone with the Max die as they grab a one-time party gift, popper, or fun mallet that they can use to their advantage.

Red Zone:

Minor Twist: Drunkenness Ray. Wager Master picks the target who seems to be having the least fun and blasts them with cosmic drunken energy. Boost and Hinder that target with the Max die. Both the bonus and penalty are persistent and exclusive.

Minor Twist: Party Stampede. Wagelings start a massive rush for the snack table. Attack everyone with the Max die.

Major Twist: THE PARTY NEVER STOPS! As soon as the scene tracker hits Red, Wager Master refuses to allow it. Reverse the scene tracker by one step.

Aftermath:

It’s my birthday, I can do what I want to.

In all seriousness, I think I love this chaotic mess of an environment. I might need to write a full story for it.

5 Likes

Cue Hellfyre in the background, offering everything they can think of to the heroes to end this party, they’ve already done this $#!* already, c’mon!

2 Likes

Oh, this is great, I love it. :smiley:

1 Like

blows the dust off The thread continues to sort of slowly shamble onwards, with the addition of our seventh environment…

Step 1: Green Zone

Our Green Twist options are:

  • Minor: Hinder One (Mid), Hinder One (Mid), Hinder All (Min), Boost All (Min)
  • Major: Two Targets/Two Actions (Mid then Min), Increase Existing Challenge Difficulty

… huh. Well, there’s gonna be a Hinder. Let’s take a Hinder One (Mid) and Boost All (Min) for our minors, and for the majors… let me see if I can do anything with increasing an existing challenge’s difficulty. That’s going to be an odd one, because it means there has to be a challenge attached to this environment.

Step 2: Yellow Zone

In Yellow, we end up with:

  • Minor: Hinder One (PE, Mid), Mid and Min against one, 2 Actions using Mid against two, Hinder All (Min)
  • Major: Action One (Mid+Min), Add simple challenge + effect

… let’s be challenge-focused! For our two minors, I’m going to go with hitting one person with a Mid effect and a Min effect, and hitting two people with two Mid effects. For our major, an extra simple challenge and effect!

Step 3: Red Zone

For Red we have…

  • Minor: Two Targets (two actions Mid & Min), Two Targets (two actions using Min, PE), add stronger lieutenant, fully heal lieutenant
  • Major: Heal all minions/lieutenants, advance scene tracker

So, uh… hadn’t really noticed this, but there’s a red minor twist which is weaker than a yellow minor twist. I think the yellow version is meant to hit each person with a different one of two actions, while the red hits both with both, but there’s no actual indication of this.

Oh well.

For our minor, I’ll just go with two different ways to hit two people, because it’s late for a minion, especially since I want to advance the scene tracker on a major! This red zone doesn’t last long…

Step 4: Where Are We?

Welcome to the Proving Grounds!

This ancient facility was once, long ago, home to a reclusive sect of mage-warriors, and served as their final challenge before accepting their sigils and taking their place among the ranks of their fellows. The sect was wiped out centuries ago, but the magic of the Proving Grounds lingers, centered on the ancient crystal at its heart.

Curator Varras is seeking that crystal, attempting to solve the Proving Ground’s challenges and claim the prize. He knows that simply blasting through the challenges will cause the crystal to overload as it tries to defend the location; only passing the trials will defuse it safely. The heroes can pursue him, trying to take him down, or work to resolve the Proving Grounds before he can.

The Proving Grounds generally have a series of simple challenges that must be resolved to advance. The heroes can resolve their challenges as a group; Varras and whatever lieutenants or minions he has brought can do the same.

The Proving Grounds are potent but unpredictable, with the traits Mystical Wards d12, Ancient Traps d8, and Baffling Puzzles d6.

Step 5: What Do We Do?

Getting through the Proving Grounds is simple, but not easy.

In the Green Zone, the Grounds deploy mystical barriers to slow down anyone that’s breaking the rules by starting fights with other competitors, applying Hinders to their actions. If everyone is playing along, the wards actually empower both sides, providing a minor Boost through physical empowerment to encourage them to get a move on. Of course, that only gets you through the first challenge. If you clear it while the scene is still Green, the Grounds compensate by making the second challenge more difficult, speeding up traps or adding layers of puzzle.

In Yellow, the Proving Grounds begin to actively oppose the challengers, unleashing radiant energies against random targets. If someone is insistent on cheating, the Grounds will attack them with Infernal power and use that power to Boost their target. At some point, a new ward rises up out of the ground, spraying forth a poison fog until it is disarmed.

If the Grounds haven’t been resolved by the time the situation goes Red, they’re unlikely to be. Sections of the trial begin to collapse onto unwitting heroes, and mystical energies begin draining rapidly. If someone messes up a challenge badly enough, it can advance the scene tracker immediately, likely resulting in a summary loss for all parties and the permanent destruction of the crystal that powers the location!

The Proving Grounds

Traits: Mystical Wards d12, Ancient Traps d8, Baffling Puzzles d6.

Green Zone

Minor Twist: Enforcement Spell. The Proving Grounds target someone who is cheating by attacking competitors or bypassing traps. Hinder that target with the Mid die.

Minor Twist: Fair Play. The Proving Grounds enact their early power, giving all competitors a chance to start moving. Boost all participants with the Min die.

Major Twist: Layers Upon Layers. The heroes have moved too quickly. The Proving Grounds adds an extra challenge box to a single challenge in play. Do not use this Major Twist against the first challenge of the Proving Grounds; they won’t respond that early.

Yellow Zone:

Minor Twist: Radiant Burst. It’s critical to keep an eye out for enemies. The Proving Grounds attacks a random target. Use the Mid + Min dice to total the damage of the Attack.

Minor Twist: Enforced Opposition. The Proving Grounds target a participant who is intent on cheating. Attack that participant with the Mid die, and then Boost whoever they were attacking or undermining with the Min die.

Major Twist: Poison Fog. Black wards spark to life along every passageway, and purple mist begins to leak out. Attack every participant for 2 irreducible toxic damage. Each environment turn, increase the damage of this effect by 2 and then attack again. Succeeding at an Overcome to disable the wards stops this effect.

Red Zone:

Minor Twist: Maze Collapse. Sections of the Proving Grounds flare, sending rocks collapsing down onto unsuspecting participants. Choose two nearby participants. Attack each one with the Mid die, and then Hinder them with the Min die.

Minor Twist: Mystical Devastation. The mystical energies of the Proving Grounds lash out, draining unsuspecting targets even as they bind them. Hinder two participants twice using the Min die – once from the physical bonds slowing them, and once from the magical energies tiring them. Both penalties are persistent and exclusive.

Major Twist: Aggressive Failure. While trying to resolve a threat, someone makes a terrible mistake. Advance the Scene Tracker immediately. If this ends the scene, one more character may take an action before the trials are failed. This twist should only be used in response to an Overcome against one of the Proving Ground’s trials.

Aftermath:

Okay, I wasn’t sure where I was going with this at first, but I think I got there. The Proving Grounds want to test people, and they’re willing to mess with them to do it.

You don’t need Curator Varras for this one, obviously. Any villain who is sufficiently beefy should do the trick. You definitely do need a sufficient multi-step challenge to be part of the action scene, though, or else the Proving Grounds won’t make a lot of sense.

2 Likes

Hi, everyone! This project is still going. We got a kitten recently, and if you’ve ever gotten a kitten you’ll know that they take up a heck of a lot of time that you might otherwise intend to use for things like good-natured writing. Between that and a project that I’m vaguely hoping will see the light of day some time next year, but only if I finish editing it, it’s been busy!

But I am committed to getting our last seven environments finished up. With half of our environments complete, I have a vague idea of something that I want to try, but let’s see if I’m able to get there…

Step 1: Green Zone

Our Green Twist options are:

  • Minor: Hinder One (Mid), Hinder One (Mid), Defend One (Mid), Attack All (Min)
  • Major: Attack One (Max), Add Lieutenant

Okay. Definitely going to take a Hinder One and a Defend One for our minors, and then go with Add Lieutenant for major. I think this weird idea might be doable…

Step 2: Yellow Zone

In Yellow, we’re looking at the following options:

  • Minor: Hinder One (Max), Mid + Min One, Action All (Min), Add Multi-Step Challenge
  • Major: Action (Max) + Mid Effect, Advance Scene Tracker

Okay… hm… let’s take an area-effect Attack and a multi-step challenge for our minor twists, and for our major we’re just going to advance the scene tracker. This area doesn’t stay in yellow for long.

Step 3: Red Zone

Well, yellow and green are taken. What about Red?

  • Minor: Action One (Max+Min), Two Actions One (Max and Mid, one Boost PE), Two Actions One (Max and Mid, Hinder PE), Add multi-step challenge.
  • Major: Heal all minions, activate Doomsday Device

Well.

Okay, then. New plan. We’re going with one powerful action (Max + Min) and two actions against one target (Max and a Mid Hinder), and then activating a Doomsday Device because I need to do it eventually and there aren’t many minions and lieutenants to heal. Which means changing my plans, but not that much, because….

Step 4: Where Are We?

We are in The Hurricane Generator!

Doctor Tarralok designed his Hurricane Generator to clear a coastline of human habitation in preparation for larger-scale terraforming. He’s set up a massive device that will create the largest hurricane in human history, and it has already begun to work. Can the heroes disable the device in time, or will the region be devastated by the storm of the century?

The Hurricane Generator has the traits “Gale-Force Winds” d8, “Deadly Shrapnel” d10, and “Alien Machinery” d10.

Step 5: What Do We Do?

In the Green Zone, as the Hurricane Generator begins to spin up, gale-force winds kick up around the area, either knocking people over (and thus Hindering them) or swirling around them (and Defending them.) The Generator also deploys a basic defender – an aerial robot that uses the winds to its advantage to attack anyone trying to turn the Generator off.

In the Yellow Zone, the Generator’s winds kick up in force and begin rising upwards. They buffett everyone in the facility for minor damage, and the locked-in controls become much more difficult to shut down. The Yellow Zone is shorter than usual, which is… dangerous.

Finally, in the Red Zone, the wind begins to expand beyond the facility. With only a few actions until a devastating hurricane attacks the surrounding area, overwhelming winds knock heroes head-over-heels, sometimes slamming them into walls with terrible force and sometimes just making it impossible for them to move. At the worst possible moment, the Hurricane Generator deploys its power, destroying the facility and sending the hurricane to wreck the region.

This is a fast-paced and nasty environment. There’s a good chance that any villains trapped inside are either sacrificing themselves to keep it running, or have gotten stuck inside and are desperately trying to escape. Heroes should be working to shut the Doomsday Device down and prevent the hurricane from being properly generated.

Doctor Tarralok’s Terrible Hurricane Generator

Traits: “Gale-Force Winds” d8, “Deadly Shrapnel” d10, “Alien Machinery” d10

Green Zone

Minor Twist: Blast of wind. An early gust of wind from the heart of the generator knocks someone sprawling. Hinder a target with the Mid die.

Minor Twist: Hurricane Shield. Winds swirl around a target, shielding them from incoming attacks. Defend one target with the Mid die.

Major Twist: Aerial Custodian. Drawn by the chaos, the generator’s Aerial Custodian deploys to the fight. This robot is a d10 Lieutenant with the following traits:

  • Reduce penalties from Wind or Weather by 2.
  • +2 to damage saves against Wind or Weather.

The Custodian primarily targets anyone directly interfering with the Hurricane Generator, secondarily targets anyone attacking it, and goes after general trespassers if no one else is a key target.

Yellow Zone:

Minor Twist: Pulse of Wind. A blast of wind rises from the central gyroscopes, knocking everyone over. Attack all targets in the generator with the Min die.

Minor Twist: Locked In. The Generator completes its calculations and begins deployment. Create a two-step Challenge called “Locked In Systems”. Until this challenge is solved, the Doomsday Device cannot be targeted with Overcomes.

Major Twist: Firing Sequence Underway. Lights flash purple and the Generator’s platform begins to rise. Advance the Scene Tracker.

Red Zone:

Minor Twist: Pinning Winds. Winds from the platform press down on an unlucky target. Hinder one target with the Max + Min dice.

Minor Twist: Deadly Debris. The generator picks up debris and scrap that has been lying around and throws it into someone with terrible force. Attack one target with the Max die, and Hinder them with the Mid die. If they take damage from the attack, this Hinder is Persistent and Exclusive as the debris sticks them to the wall or floor.

Major Twist: Hurricane Season. The Hurricane Generator activates, unleashing a full-force hurricane against the region. If the generator is shut down before the end of the scene, heroes can limit the damage to a moderately catastrophic hurricane covering a fifty-mile radius around the generator. If the generator is not shut down by the end of the scene, the hurricane will be an overwhelming and self-sustaining disaster a hundred miles across that will travel hundreds of miles and do untold damage.

Aftermath:

My doomsday device is complete!

Do not mess with a hurricane generator, y’all. You will be blown away. Ahah.

My original idea was to just have a fight during a massive downtown storm, with wind and rain and whatnot, but the doomsday device shot that to heck. So I merged my ideas into the Hurricane Generator, and I think it turned out okay.

3 Likes

These are really slowing down, huh? Sorry about that. But I only have six more to do, so I’m going to see if I can do a heroic push and get everything out and be exciting!

Step 1: Green Zone

Our Green Twist options are:

  • Minor: Attack One (Mid), Attack All (min), Hinder All (Min), Add a Minion
  • Major: Attack One (Max), Two Targets 2 Actions (Mid + Min)

I have a lot of “Add a Minion” options left on my board – three out of twelve. So I’m using one here, plus an Attack All (Min). For our Major, I’m going to take Two Targets 2 Actions (Mid + Min) which is at three out of six choices, so you’ll be seeing it a lot going forward.

Step 2: Yellow Zone

In Yellow, we’re looking at a shrinking array, but it’s mostly all unique options. This time around, I get:

  • Minor: Boost One (Max), Defend One (Max), Two Mid (two targets), Hinder All (Min)
  • Major: Target Two (Mid), Add Stronger Lieutenant

In the interests of not keeping things the same from phase to phase, I’m going to go with a Defend One (Max) and a Two Mid (two targets) for my minor actions, and Add a Strong Lieutenant for my Major. Things are a bit spicy here!

Step 3: Red Zone

As things get nasty, let’s see what the big finale actions are likely to be.

  • Minor: 2 Actions vs One (Max, Hinder PE), Two targets Hinder PE (Mid), Two Targets (two actions, PE, Min), All Targets (Mid)
  • Major: All Targets 2 Actions (PE, Mid), Add Stronger Lieutenant and effect

I’m trying to lean into choices that I have multiple times on the board still, so I’m going to take an All Targets (Mid) effect, and I’ll add the Two Targets, two actions, PE, Min complicated one. For our Major, I’m adding a second Stronger Lieutenant with a secondary effect.

Step 4: Where Are We?

Let’s take a minute to visit The Wretched Hive, the (in)famous bar in Rook City! The bartender is safe behind three inches of bulletproof glass, the tables are designed for ease of shattering, and things are… not great.

This is not a good place for heroes to be, and as soon as the local patrons realize what’s up, they are going to flip out. Unfortunately, some of them are flipping out at the heroes, some are flipping out at each other, some are just running for the doors and things are a mess.

The Wretched Hive has the following traits: Assembled Goons d10, Breakable Furniture d8, and Lots of Weapons d8.

Step 5: What Do We Do?

In Green, a brawl breaks out and things get chaotic. The shifting crowd catches heroes and villains alike off-guard, thugs break away from their own fights to get involved with the heroes, and fires start to break out.

In Yellow, some goons assemble to protect the guy that’s paying them, more punches are thrown, and a minor supervillain emerges from the mess to try and make a name for himself by bagging a hero or overthrowing a villain.

Finally, in Red, the damage starts to cave in the ceiling, punches are flying in all directions, and a more serious supervillain emerges to try and get rid of the fight so that he can go back to drinking in the corner.

The Wretched Hive

Traits: Assembled Goons d10, Breakable Furniture d8, Lots of Weapons d8

Green Zone:

Minor Twist: The Brawl. Fights break out everywhere, and it’s almost impossible to avoid the blows. Attack all targets present with the Min die.

Minor Twist: Dance Partners. A couple of grunts break away from the party to focus on the heroes. Create a pair of d6 minions who will primarily target heroic characters, trying to grab or punch them.

Major Twist: Automatic Fire. Someone with a machine gun stands up, and gets a spray off before someone else pulls them down and takes their gun away. Target two characters. One takes an Attack with the Mid die as the bullets richochet around them, and the other is Hindered with the Min die as patrons dive for cover into them.

Yellow Zone:

Minor Twist: Paid Protectors. A team of goons throws chairs and tables in the path of an attack, helping out a friend. Defend one Minion or Lieutenant present with the Max die.

Minor Twist: Stabby stabby! A group of goons pile on the more aggressive fighters, and slow them down. Choose two heroes or villains. Attack and Hinder them with the Mid die.

Major Twist: Bravo. A man in a cloak, with a pair of shimmering energy blades and a wide-brimmed hat, kicks over a table and charges at the most dangerous opponent in the room, laughing cheerfully. Bravo is a d10 Lieutenant whose powers allow him to charge at enemies unheeded. He deals physical or energy damage, and any attempt to Hinder him physically has the final penalty reduced by 1.

Red Zone:

Minor Twist: Sprinkler System. The bartender triggers the sprinkler system, and a mild but foul-smelling acid sprays out over a particularly active area of the bar. Target two people in a busy part of the bar. Attack and Hinder them with the Min die; the Hinder is persistent and exclusive until the acid is neutralized.

Minor Twist: Vicious Fighting. The brawl is only intensifying as the weaker members flee or fall. Attack all targets in the bar with the Mid die.

Major Twist: Afterburn. The door to the bathroom is kicked off its hinges, as the villain known as Afterburn emerges into the fight, hands wreathed in wispy ghost-flame that burns without consuming. He targets whichever character is doing the most damage to the bar itself. Afterburn is a d10 Lieutenant with the following trait:

Ghost Flames [R]: Whenever someone in the room uses an Elemental Power, Afterburn may give himself a +2 bonus to his next action.

Aftermath:

So, reasonably it would probably be easier to stat up The Wretched Hive by just adding a set of minions to the battle to represent brawlers, but this is more fun, and it gives me the chance to create a three-way fight. I quite like messing around with minor supervillains, and I enjoy how this turned out.

And, of course, if you aren’t in Rook City but there is a potential supervillain or supermercenary bar where you are, it’s easy to move.

3 Likes

Late’s better than never.

Of course The Wretched Hive has an acid sprinkler system!

“Bravo?” “Afterburn?” Who are these guys? I suppose they could merely be random mini-villains you just thought up, but I feel like there’s a story here.

1 Like

If they feel like there’s a bigger story, I have done my job!

In all seriousness, there is not. I grabbed a couple of names off a list I drew up for a campaign a long time ago for if I needed a hero or villain in a hurry, gave them some flashy descriptions and a role at the bar, and that was that. But they could have bigger parts to play, especially if players take a shine to one of them!

1 Like

Wow, this one is definitely gold, I love the idea of having a superhero bar brawl. I’m currently writing a SCRPG campaign to run after my current D&D campaign, and I’ve already “appropriated” a couple of your environments to stick in my notes (the oil rig environment and the mad scientist lab). This environment definitely makes me want to put a bar brawl in my story somewhere.

2 Likes