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I've started tinkering with a concept to fill my PL7 spot and would very much like to make a shapeshifter. Rather than go whole full Beast Boy mode, though, the aesthetics would be somewhere between Darwin and Super-Skrull, cherry picking parts to "evolve" to suit the situation at hand. With that in mind, here's what I have mechanically:

Power Level: 7 (105/105PP)

Trade-Offs: -1 Defense/+1 Toughness

Abilities: 4 + 4 + 4 + 0 + 4 + 0 = 16PP

Strength: 14 (+2)

Dexterity: 14 (+2)

Constitution: 14 (+2)

Intelligence: 10 (+0)

Wisdom: 14 (+2)

Charisma: 10 (+0)

Combat: 6 + 6 = 12PP

Initiative: +2

Attack: +7 Melee, +3 Ranged

Grapple: +5

Defense: +6 (+3 Base, +3 Dodge Focus), +3 Flat-Footed

Knockback: -0

Saving Throws: 2 + 2 + 3 = 7PP

Toughness: +2 (+2 Con)

Fortitude: +4 (+2 Con, +2)

Reflex: +4 (+2 Dex, +2)

Will: +5 (+2 Wis, +3)

Skills: 20R = 5PP

Handle Animal 4 (+4)

Intimidate 6 (+6)

Notice 4 (+6)

Sense Motive 6 (+8)

Feats: 9PP

Attack Focus (Melee) 4

Attractive 2

Dodge Focus 3

Powers: 55 = 55PP

Animal Mimicry 7 (Desc: Mutant, Bio, Partial Animals; Flaws: Action [Move]) [56/56pp]

Default Form (Owldogfly) -> 8 floating pp

Enhanced Constitution 4 [4pp]

Enhanced Dexterity 6 [6pp]

Enhanced Strength 4 [4pp]

Flight 1 [2pp]

Speed 1 [1pp]

Super-Senses 4 (scent, track, ultra-hearing, danger sense) [4pp]

Notice +8 [2pp]

Stealth +8 [2pp]

Improved Initiative [1pp]

Seize Initiative [1pp]


Combat Form (Owlodile)

Enhanced Constitution 8 [8pp]

Enhanced Dexterity 6 [6pp]

Enhanced Strength 16 [16pp]

Flight 1 [2pp]

Protection 3 [3pp]


DC Block

ATTACK                RANGE     SAVE                        EFFECT

Unarmed               Touch     DC17 Toughness (Staged)     Damage (Physical) 

Unarmed (powers)      Touch     DC25 Toughness (Staged)     Damage (Physical)

Totals: Abilities (16) + Combat (12) + Saving Throws (7) + Skills (5) + Feats (9) + Powers (56) - Drawbacks (0) = 105/105 Power Points

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It is generally not a good idea for a character to be undercapped defensively, especially a PL 7. You are going to find that the character is taken out of combat very, very easily by the vast majority of opponents. I would rebuild the Shapeshifting array so that the character always hits their defensive caps.

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The most obvious comment to make here is - how is this character going to be challenged (in non combat capacity - which is important) when he can shapeshift to any power / skill / feat that suits? i.e. are there any limitations to the variable power?

Aside from its legality (bothe technically and the board), both you and people that GM for you (and indeed other players) may well find skeleton key "do anything" character's not fun to play.

Variable powers are there to fill a gap that can't be filled in any other way. Ideally they should have some limitation on how they work. We have a couple of shape shifter characters on the site (myself included), but most if not all have some built in limitation so they can't pick and choose any power in the book. For instance, Synth can only grow human DNA. That seems to be what you are going for here, but then a couple of worrying examples get thrown in like immunity (Immunity in a variable power starts to smell very cheesy, as you just get immune to whatever you need at the time), or arbitrary super senses, or concealment....

I just throw in the heads up here! Variable Powers are scrutinized more carefully than practically anything else in terms of powers.

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Between these replies and some discussion in chat, the following changes have been made:

a) Shapeshift has been switched for Animal Mimicry. While it's still functioning the same, I've decided to stick with more clear cut examples of animal traits as put forth by UP and the other books. This should keep the variability less, well, variable. This has removed iffy things like Drain Con and enhanced social skills, though I find it curious that neither the spider nor snake power listings have Drain Dex (Poison/Grapple Only) or a Paralyze effect.

B) Skills and feats shuffled a bit. I've dropped any pretense of being able to use normal interaction skills well (a side effect of his powers maybe?), but he 'gets' animals a little more and with Attractive can fake it with some people via magnetism.

c) All defensive caps (except Will) hit the trade-off'd caps in combat mode. The current default form hits defense/Reflex and sits at Toughness +4/Fort+6, but also has more than enough floating points to bring both up to the caps.

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Note: Much of the mechanics of this character have been adjusted from trollthumper's Explosion Girl build. I've primarily tweaked it to be PL7, a cat, and largely device-based.

Player Name: Russoboo

Character Name: Grenadier

Power Level: 7 (105/105PP)

Trade-Offs: None

Unspent Power Points: 0

Progress To Bronze Status: 0/30

In Brief: Other dimensional sentient cat wielding a magic artifact.

Alternate Identity: Barnaby Smalls

Identity: Secret

Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, EWA2

Occupation: Therapy Cat

Affiliations: (People and/or groups you work with)



Age: 24 (DoB: December 2nd, 1988)

Apparent Age: 4 (compared to Earth-Prime cat)

Gender: Male

Ethnicity: Bombay

Height: 8†to shoulder

Weight: 12 lbs

Eyes: Yellow

Coat: Black

(Describe what they look like!)

Power Descriptions:

Grenadier's powers come from the Stone of Perses, a mystical artifact. When dormant, the Stone appears to be a cloudy red gem set in an otherwise unadorned copper bangle. When worn, the Stone becomes lustrous and glows. The destructive magics it creates appear as flashing balls of light which wink into existence before detonating into clouds of heat and force.


Personality & Motivation:

Powers & Tactics:


Technobabble: Native to a world where magic has largely superseded science, Grenadier often finds modern technology to be simply beyond him. That most Earth-Prime tech also isn't designed to be operated by non-humans hasn't helped him overcome his ignorance, either.

Abilities: 0 + 6 + 4 + 0 + 4 + 2 = 16PP

Strength: 2 (-4) (Tiny)

Dexterity: 16 (+3)

Constitution: 14 (+2)

Intelligence: 10 (+0)

Wisdom: 14 (+2)

Charisma: 12 (+1)

Combat: 6 + 6 = 12PP

Initiative: +3

Attack: +5 (+3 Base, +2 Tiny) / +7 Destruction

Grapple: -12

Defense: +7 (+3 Base, +2 Tiny, +2 Dodge Focus), +5 Flat-Footed

Knockback: -0

Saving Throws: 5 + 4 + 5 = 14PP

Toughness: +7 (+2 Con, +5 Force Field)

Fortitude: +7 (+2 Con, +5)

Reflex: +7 (+3 Dex, +4)

Will: +7 (+2 Wis, +5)

Skills: 52R = 13PP

Bluff 8 (+9)

Escape Artist 6 (+9)

Gather Info 6 (+7)

Handle Animal 6 (+7)

Intimidate 0 (-3)

Know (Arcane Lore) 8 (+8)

Know (Cosmology) 6 (+6/+10 EWA2)

Notice 6 (+8)

Sense Motive 6 (+8)

Stealth 0 (+11)

Feats: 11PP

All-Out Attack

Benefit (Native of EWA2)

Challenge (Fast Feint)

Dodge Focus 2

Evasion 1

Luck 1

Move-By Action

Power Attack

Precise Shot

Uncanny Dodge (Audio)

Powers: 7 + 1 + 4 = 0PP

Shrinking 8 (Flaws: Permanent; PFs: Innate, Normal Movement, Normal Toughness) [7pp]

Super-Senses 1 (Low-light Vision) [1pp]

Comprehend 2 (Speak/Understand Animals) [4pp]

Device 7 (Stone of Perses; 35PP Container; Flaws: Hard-To-Lose) [28pp]

Force Field 5 (Mage Armor; magic, force) [5pp]

Destruction Array 7 (PFs: Accurate 1, Alternate Power 4) [29pp]

Base Power: Blast 7 (Cataclysm; magic, fire, force; Extras: Area [Explosion]; PFs: Improved Critical, Indirect, Trigger [Time])

Alternate Power: Blast 7 (Bombardment; magic, fire, force; Extras: Area [burst], Selective Attack; Flaws: Action [Full]; PFs: Improved Crit, Indirect, Trigger [Time])

Alternate Power: Dazzle (Vis/Aud) 5 (Flashbang; magic, light, sonic; Extras: Area [burst]; PFs: Improved Crit 2, Indirect, Slow Fade 1 [5 rounds])

Alternate Power: Stun 7 (Shellshock; magic, force; Extras: Range [Ranged]; PFs: Improved Crit, Indirect, Trigger [Time])

Immunity 1 (Perses' Blessing; magic; this device's powers) [1pp]

Drawbacks: 0PP


DC Block

ATTACK      RANGE     SAVE                        EFFECT

Unarmed     Touch     DC11 Toughness (Staged)     Damage (Physical)

Blasts      Ranged    DC22 Toughness (Staged)     Damage (Physical)

Dazzle      Ranged    DC20 Reflex                 Vis/Audio Dazzle

Stun        Ranged    DC22 Fortitude (Staged)     Dazed/Stunned/Unconscious

Totals: Abilities (16) + Combat (12) + Saving Throws (14) + Skills (13) + Feats (11) + Powers (39) - Drawbacks (0) = 105/105 Power Points

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Player Name: Russoboo

Character Name: Barghest

Power Level: 7 / (105/105)

Trade-Offs: +3 Toughness / -3 Defense

Unspent Power Points: 0

Progress To Bronze Status: 0/30

In Brief: Born werewolf becomes a street hero.

Alternate Identity: St John Varens

Identity: Secret

Birthplace: Manchester, New Hampshire

Occupation: Mechanic

Affiliations: -

Family: Thomas and Claire Varens (parents), Emily Varens (aunt), the Varens pack


Age: 24 (DoB: Jan 4, 1989)

Apparent Age: 24

Gender: Male

Ethnicity: Caucasian

Height: 6'0â€

Weight: 195 lbs

Eyes: Green

Hair: Brown

St John hardly seems real. He's tall, with broad shoulders and a solid frame. Every inch of him is muscle, so built and toned that he could pass for airbrushed. His jaw is strong, his nose is aquiline, and his brows are thick. There is a certain obviously unnatural air about him; he always fills the room and every little movement is precise. St John's dark hair is short and meticulously styled, as is the stubble covering his jaw and chin.

He plays the bad boy image a little too much to not be intentional. St John owns several leather jackets, which he often pairs with simple t-shirts, cheap enough that their inevitable destruction isn't a disaster. His closet is full of dark jeans and motorcycle pants.

Power Descriptions:

St John lacks flashy super powers, though his regeneration is certainly noticeable. When he taps further into his lycanthropy, St John's face warps to become more bestial: his ears grow points, his eyes go yellow, his teeth sharpen, and he gets hairy in a hurry. Unlike classic werewolves, though, he retains a mostly human face and form.


St John Varens isn't human.

Of course, at first, even he didn't know he was different. He was born into a rather mundane New England family with his father the office worker and his mother the homemaker. St John was a remarkably healthy baby, strong and hardy. He developed normally, played normally, and lived normally. By the time he was old enough for school, he had tricked everyone around him into thinking he was exactly as normal as them.

And then he died.

It was an accident, of course. He was so much stronger and faster than his classmates and there were a lot of kids on the playground that day. St John scaled the play-set before anyone could stop him. He perched on top of it, taunted his friends below, and lost his balance. Killed on impact, they said. Broke his neck when he hit the ground. A complete freak accident. When he woke up screaming in the morgue two days later, any pretense of being normal fell apart.

Less than twenty four hours later, his aunt, Emily Varens, a woman he'd never met, arrived and came to 'collect' him. Everything happened so quickly and no one wanted to sit down and explain any of it to him. His parents could hardly look at him – his mother burst into tears and his father just glowered. After hours of driving west in Aunt Emily's car, all of St John's things in the backseat, Emily took a breath and told him the truth. “You're a loup'garou. A werewolf.â€

He moved in with his extended family, the lyncathropic part, way out in Colorado. They taught him what it meant to be a werewolf, trained him to deal with his ever-sharpening senses and his steadily improving regeneration. How to control the beast inside that called to him when he got angry or when the moon was full. He learned how to keep it all secret from the humans he was supposed to keep at the fringe. But above everything, St John learned to be part of the pack, to feel safety only in numbers, to serve his betters, to always put his family (his real family) first.

St John survived. He got through middle school without doing more than send a boy to the hospital after a poorly thought out attempt to play football. By high school, he was a master of drawing the minimum amount of attention to himself as possible. He graduated and went to trade school for auto-mechanics with every intention of working for one of his uncles for the rest of his life, when he deigned to call it as much. And after awhile, it just wasn't enough.

So he ran. St John arrived in Freedom City knowing only that it was, relatively speaking, a safe haven for non-humans. He became a hero by accident, first by defending a woman from assault late one night. Then he did it again, stopping a mugger before he'd even finished delivering the first threat. And it felt good to help, to protect people who didn't seem to care what he was, genetically, when he saved them. St John Varens became Barghest, superhero.

Personality & Motivation:

It takes more muscles to frown than to smile, but that's how he got so ripped.

Powers & Tactics:

St John pretends to be in touch with his inner beast, but he doesn't rely on pack tactics. While he does prefer to stalk and strike from the shadows, he is a focused brawler. He trusts his regeneration to back him up in any close-quarters fight and prefers to wear down one target at a time.


Full Moon: St John doesn't completely lose control during the full moon, but it does put considerable strain on his abilities to remain calm, rational, and human-looking.

Secret Identity: Barghest tries to hide his true species. St John tries to hide his true species and that he has any connection to Barghest.

The Pack: St John's relationship with the rest of the Varens clan is shaky after he ran out on them.

Wolf Out: High levels of stress make not shifting to werewolf difficult. Powerful emotions are the most dangerous this way, but adrenaline, fatigue, and other physical stresses can force a change, too.

Abilities: 14 + 10 + 24 + 0 + 4 + 0 = 42PP

Strength: 24 (+7)

Dexterity: 20 (+5)

Constitution: 24 (+7)

Intelligence: 10 (+0)

Wisdom: 14 (+2)

Charisma: 10 (+0)

Combat: 6 + 4 = 10PP

Initiative: +0

Attack: +3 Melee, +3 Ranged, +7 Unarmed

Grapple: +10

Defense: +5 (+3 Base, +2 Dodge Focus), +3 Flat-Footed

Knockback: -3

Saving Throws: 0 + 0 + 3 = 3PP

Toughness: +7/+10 (+7 Con, +3 Protection)

Fortitude: +7 (+7 Con, +0)

Reflex: +5 (+5 Dex, +0)

Will: +5 (+2 Wis, +3)

Skills: 56R = 14PP

Craft (Mechanical) 6 (+6)

Disable Device 4 (+4)

Intimidate 8 (+8)

Know (Pop Culture) 4 (+4)

Know (Streetwise) 8 (+8)

Notice 6 (+8)

Search 4 (+4)

Sense Motive 6 (+8)

Stealth 6 (+11)

Survival 4 (+6)

Feats: 14PP

Attack Special (Unarmed) 2

Attractive 2

Dodge Focus 2


Luck 1

Improved Initiative

Move-By Action

Power Attack

Quick Change


Takedown Attack

Uncanny Dodge (Olfactory)

Powers: 5 + 2 + 11 + 2 + 5 = 25PP

Alternate Form 1 (Rougarou) [5pp]

Protection 3 ('thick skin') [3]

Super-Senses 2 (Low-Light Vision, Ultrahearing)[2]

Immunity 2 (Disease, Poison) [2pp]

Regeneration 11 ('accelerated healing'; bruised/no action 3, injured/no action 6, resurrection/day 2; PFs Regrowth) [11pp]

Speed 2 (25 MPH) [2pp]

Super-Senses 5 (Accurate 2 Acute 1 Tracking 2 Scent) [5pp]

Drawbacks: -3 = -3PP

Weakness (Wolfsbane; Frequency Uncommon; Intensity Moderate [-1 all checks and attack/defense]) [-3pp]

DC Block

ATTACK      RANGE     SAVE                        EFFECT

Unarmed     Touch     DC22 Toughness (Staged)     Damage (Physical)

Totals: Abilities (42) + Combat (10) + Saving Throws (3) + Skills (14) + Feats (14) + Powers (25) - Drawbacks (3) = 105/105 Power Points

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  • 1 month later...


Player Name: Russoboo

Character Name: Armada

Power Level: 7 (105/105PP)

Trade-Offs: -5 Defense / +5 Toughness

Unspent Power Points: 0

Progress To Bronze Status: 0/30

In Brief: Modern day mythical hero sponsored by treasure-loving spirit.

Alternate Identity: Matvey "Matthew" Lagunov

Identity: Secret

Birthplace: Chicago, IL

Occupation: Singed

Affiliations: Parkhurst Mystics



Age: 24 (DoB: December 2nd, 1988)

Apparent Age: 24

Gender: Male

Ethnicity: Caucasian

Height: 5'10"

Weight: 170 lbs

Eyes: Hazel

Hair: Red-Brown

(Physical Description)

Power Descriptions: Armada's powers are magical in nature, but require no incantations or gestures. Quite simply, he is capable of summoning duplicates of legendary and mythical arms and armor. The summons are usually accompanied by flashes of light, rushes of hot forge air, or the din of battle, rendering Armada's powers somewhat theatrical by default. Rather than cast spells himself, he relies exclusively on the powers and abilities forged into each individual weapon. 


Personality & Motivation:

Powers & Tactics:


Abilities: 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 8 = 8PP

Strength: 10 (+0)

Dexterity: 10 (+0)

Constitution: 10 (+0)

Intelligence: 10 (+0)

Wisdom: 10 (+0)

Charisma: 18 (+4)

Combat: 14 + 4 = 18PP

Initiative: +0

Attack: +7 (+7 Base)

Grapple: +0

Defense: +2 (+2 Base), +5 Flat-Footed

Knockback: -0

Saving Throws: 5 + 4 + 5 = 18PP

Toughness: +12 (+12 Protection)

Fortitude: +6 (+6)

Reflex: +6 (+6)

Will: +6 (+6)

Skills: 32R = 8PP

Bluff 4 (+8)

Diplomacy 4 (+8)

Knowledge (Arcane Lore) 4 (+4)

Knowledge (Pop Culture) 5 (+5)

Language 1 (English [native], Russian)

Notice 4 (+4)

Perform (Singing) 6 (+10)

Sense Motive 4 (+4)

Feats: 9PP

Elusive Target

Evasion 2

Improved Critical 2 [Recast]


Move-By Action

Quick Change

Takedown Attack

Powers: 8 + 22 + 12 + 2 = 54 pp

Damage 7 ("Recast"; summon, magic, weapon; PFs: Variable Descriptor 1 [any physical damage type]) [8pp]

Mythical Weapons (summon, magic, weapon; PFs: Alternate Power 8) [22pp]

BP: Concealment 7 (Tarnkappe; visual [all], hearing [all], olfactory [normal]) [14/14]

AP: Dazzle (Visual) 7 (Excalibur; light) [14/14]

AP: Emotion Control 7 (Cupid's Arrow) [14/14]

AP: ESP (Visual/Auditory) 7 (The Smoking Mirror; Flaws: Feedback) [14/14]

AP: Flight 7 (Prince Husain's Carpet; Extras: Affects Others; Flaws Platform; 1000 mph) [14/14]

AP: Nullify Magic 7 (Ring of Dispel; Extras: Area [burst]; Flaws: Range [Touch]) [14/14]

AP: Snare 7 (Gleipnir; metal, chain) [14/14]

AP: Adds Area [Line] and Penetrating 7 to Damage (Riyu Jingu Bang) [14/14]

AP: Adds Range [Ranged] and Autofire 1 to Damage (Gandiva) [14/14]

Protection 12 (Aegis; summon, magic, metal, armor; Extras: Force Field [+0]) [12pp]

Speed 2 (Seven-League Boots; magic; 25 mph) [2pp]

Drawbacks: 0PP


DC Block

ATTACK          RANGE  SAVE                    EFFECT
Unarmed         Touch  DC15 Toughness (Staged) Damage (Physical)
Damage          Touch  DC22 Toughness (Staged) Damage (Physical)
Dazzle          Ranged DC22 Reflex             Visual Dazzle
Emotion Control Ranged DC22 Will               Various
Nullify         Burst  DC22 Will               Counter
Snare           Ranged DC22 Reflex             Entangled/Bound
Totals: Abilities (8) + Combat (18) + Saving Throws (18) + Skills (8) + Feats (9) + Powers (54) - Drawbacks (0) = 105/105 Power Points Edited by Russoboo
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