Modular: Form-Changer Madness

Has anyone ever built a Hero whose Archetype is Modular: Form-Changer? Is that even legal? How crazy and mind-melting do you think it would be to play? How do you think Forms and Modes would interact with each-other and your Power dice?

To answer your questions in order.

It is legal. Because of how Modular works, a Modular: Form-Changer character will never acquire any abilities or Forms from Form-Changer; They’ll pick out powers and qualities before returning to Modular as normal. To quote the relevant text:

Modular heroes have multiple modes that are defined during this process. First, you must choose another archetype. Either choose another option from the dice you rolled for your archetype, or reroll those dice and choose your base archetype, which then becomes “modularized.” Assign powers and qualities as listed in that archetype, but skip gaining any abilities from that archetype, and instead come back to this entry to continue. If you have fewer than four powers, add one or two powers of your choice until you have four powers.

This is not to say that it is impossible to create a character with both Modes and Forms. It is in fact a legal option to play a Modular: Divided (Form Changer), though I think your GM-equivalent would pull out a bottle of strong alcohol before, while, and after trying to understand how your sheet works. Depending on the choices made, it might not be that bad to play. One of the biggest conceits you’d have to make is either writing up the Powers individually for each Form/Mode combination, or having your Forms keep the same core of up to four Powers between them. If you are doing the former, I’d recommend making a spreadsheet for the job. If you are doing the latter, then your Auxillary sheet will hopefully make sense.

When selecting your special Forms and Modes, the latter should influence which of the former you select. Since your special Modes lock out certain actions, try to pick out Forms that offer abilities that function in at least one of your Modes. This will ensure that you can at least take action regardless of which combination of Form and Mode you end up in during the action.

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Right, duh, I should’ve seen that.

True, true. But oi, would that be a headache.

I don’t think you could be Modular: Divided, actually. Modular says you don’t get any Abilities of your other Archetype, and Divided uses Abilities in order to set up and switch between your forms. You would still only get to the “pick Powers” step.

You could be a Divided Form-Changer, presumably locking a lot of your shapes behind multiple forms. I kind of want to try that now.

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Muerto is in fact a Divided Form-Changer. They fudged his “unpowered” form slightly, though, either for flavor or to make him easier to manage.

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So Modular: Divided and Modular: Form-Changer are legal but aren’t anything special. I suppose one could have a Divided: Modular: [Atchetype] Hero, although that would be of questionable utility, as Modular can already give you an unpowered form.

How so?

I went to try and build that, and it’s also not rules-legal, unfortunately. Divided says to pick an Archetype other than Divided or Modular as your secondary.

Normally, a Divided/Form-Changer character using object possession would work as follows:

  • Use [Archetype Quality] to merge with an item as an action, taking an Overcome and then taking a basic action with your min die. There’s no specific rules for how to turn back into a civilian, but presumably you just do it.
  • Use [Self Control Power] to take a Basic Action and then switch between your Form-Changer Forms, or use one of your special Green Abilities to take a particular sort of action and then switch between your Form-Changer Forms. Technically, if you have one or both Powers in both your merged and unmerged Divided forms, you can do this in either of your base forms. Also technically, you can’t do both at once; you would need to take an action to swap between heroic and civilian, and then take a second action to swap between Form-Changer forms.

The result is that a “proper” Divided Form-Changer has two axes of forms - their heroic/civilian split and their normal/Green 1/Green 2/Yellow split. Each of those activates on their own, requiring their own actions and powers.

Muerto cheats shamelessly (and necessarily) by merging all of that down. He uses his Form-Changer power to switch to his “civilian” (ghost) form, and uses his Divided power to switch to one of his three Form-Changer forms. He can then either use his Divided power or his second Form-Changer power to swap between forms.

It’s not 100% clear here - a strict read of Polterheist would suggest that he can just use it as a ghost to enter technology easily, or to swap from technology back to ghost form. I’m not sure that’s the intent, but it might be.

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