Jump to content

Blue Stinger (PL10) - My First Submission


Recommended Posts

Alright, here he is: my first FCPbP character! I think I got everything mostly right, but I figured it'd be smart to run it by some people who know stuff before submitting it to the Character Bank. Also, I normally wouldn't draw character art, but HeroFactory wasn't giving me what I wanted.

Player Name: JediDalek
Character Name: The Blue Stinger
Power Level: 10 (150PP)
Trade-Offs: None
Unspent Power Points: 0
Progress To Bronze Status: 0/30


In Brief: Danny Randall is a wisecracking college student who was forcibly converted into a cyborg assassin by a rogue SHADOW scientist. Escaping before he could be conditioned into a killer, he now fights a war of vengeance against SHADOW's secret conspiracies as the Blue Stinger.

Residence: Freedom City, NJ. (Attending Freedom College)
Base of Operations:Freedom City, Southside. Living off-campus in a low-rent apartment.
Catchphrase: “Stinger Strike!!!”

Alternate Identity: Danny Randall
Identity: Secret
Birthplace: Kansas City, MO
Occupation: Student, part time server at Sparrow's Cafe

              Nattie "Sparrow” Stuarts: Boss and sometimes mother figure. Also a retired bronze-age superheroine.

              Samantha Krieger: Friend and former partner in following the trail of Dr. Gruber. Currently missing.

Family: Mother & Father (Both died when he was 18)

Age: 21 (DoB: May 2, 1994)
Gender: Male
Ethnicity: Caucasian
Height: 5' 8”
Weight: 167 Lbs.
Eyes: Green
Hair: Brown

For the most part, Danny looks like an average slacker college kid, favoring dark colored jeans and t-shirts with the occasional plaid shirt. He is fairly skinny, and his brown hair is often medium length and disheveled. Personality wise, he is quiet but friendly, usually watching the crowd while keeping to himself with a slouched, unassuming posture. 

In costume, he is covered almost from head to toe in a blue & black battle suit, with a buglike helmet that alludes to his origin as the result of the Red Scorpion's research, and a lighter blue scarf tied around his neck. He is more confident in this form, and carries himself in a more upright manner. This confidence also leads him to be much more talkative and more lighthearted in general. When in battle with a supervillain that threatens others, however, his personality changes yet again and he becomes more aggressive as his heart begins to burn with the righteous flames of justice.


Power Descriptions:
One of the only visible manifestations of Danny's power is his transformation into the Blue Stinger. The Stinger battlesuit is normally compacted into a disc sized unit that sits discreetly on the user's back, small enough to be hidden under normal clothing. Upon the activation of a mental or verbal trigger, the battlesuit decompresses and assembles over the user's body. Due to the electromagnetic field that surrounds this armor, there is a noticeable "spark" effect when it recieves damage. 


When Danny Randall was 18, his parents died in what everyone told him was a random car accident. His journalist father had been looking into the shady dealings of a local business magnate for the last month and while there wasn't much in the way of an investigation, Danny was old enough to put two & two together. With nothing left for him in the Midwest, he decided to move as far away as possible, as soon as he could. Growing up in a world full of aliens and superbeings, Danny had always been fascinated with the science behind such amazing events and his Science grades, while not as good as some, were good enough 
to get him enrolled into Freedom College.

In Freedom, Danny kept mostly to himself, never one to make friends easily. After a month of near complete solitude, he finally found himself in Sparrow's Cafe. The Cafe was run by Nattie Stuarts, formerly known as "The Spectacular Sparrow", a retired crimefighter who decided she could do more by giving the kids of Southside a safe place to spend their afternoon than by punching crooks in the face. When a lost and empty Danny walked into he place, she could tell he needed a hand. After a few minutes of talking she decided he was a good kid, and gave him a job at the cafe. Over time, she would become an important figure in his life, giving him advice and motivating him to push himself. She even taught him a thing or two about fighting when business would slow. 

For two years, he subsisted through college, studying Engineering and working at the cafe. His life was destined to change, though, during the summer before his Junior year, when a panicked girl caught him outside his apartment, telling him that someone was following her and she needed a place to hide. She introduced herself as Samantha Krieger, granddaughter of a German supervillain known only as “The Red Scorpion” who was said to have created the plans for a cyborg supersoldier. After his defection to the US near the end of the war, any trace of said project seemed to have disappeared with him, until 3 weeks ago, when a group of thieves broke into Samantha's home and stole a few heirloom paintings. She was certain that those paintings somehow contained the last secrets of her grandfather's research, and that whoever stole those paintings was someone with an eye on finishing her grandfather's work, someone with a lot of resources at their disposal. When she began to notice certain faces following her around town, her suspicions were merely confirmed.

Danny always hated a bully, be they the pushy jerks in high school or the “untouchable” businessman who felt that his checking account was more important than the lives of a loving mother & father. Whoever wanted to silence this girl was just more of the same, and Danny wasn't going to let them win again.

They became good friends after that, as they slowly edged closer and closer to the truth, constantly evading these mysterious "bad guys". After two months, they finally had a lead. The pair follwed a clue into an abandoned warehouse in the Waterfront... and into the clutches of one Dr Elias Gruber, a former compatriot of Samantha's grandfather who had taken on his mantle, now working for SHADOW to create an army of cyborg assassins. Struggle as they might, the two could not overcome his personal detachment of SHADOW agents. The last Danny saw of Samantha, the two of them were both being dragged away as test subjects for Gruber's new endeavor: Project SCORPIO.

When Danny finally awoke, he discovered that he was no longer fully human, his skeleton and most of his organs replaced by machines that enhanced his strength, speed and stamina, and clad in a strange, bug-like armor. Restrained and imprisoned, all that was left was the mental conditioning that would destroy his identity and leave him a loyal minion of the new Red Scorpion. But then, as all seemed lost, the hidden base had a power failure. Danny seized his chance and escaped, his new powers giving him the strength to fight off his guards. Danny searched the base for Samantha, but all he could find was the blue scarf she'd been wearing. Gruber had escaped, and seemingly taken her with him.

Danny left the destroyed base with a new purpose on his mind. Tying the scarf over his armor as a reminder, he pledged to fight evil, be it Gruber or more of his kind. Some day, he would save Samantha and redeem her grandfather's image as the Blue Stinger.

Personality & Motivation:
For most of his life, Danny has seen people he cares about be pushed around by those with more power. Now that he has the strength to fight back, he has little patience for anyone who would hurt the weak, and will fight them with unwavering ferocity, and a passion that only a very green superhero could muster.

Danny has been through quite a few dark situations by this point, and would have every reason to be very grim. Despite this, he was raised to see the good side of things, and to appreciate good humor. Because of this, he always tries to behave in a light-hearted and optimistic manner, constantly making jokes and quips. Even so, the reality of a bad situation some times dawns on him, allowing a little cynicism to permeate his humor.

Before gaining his powers, Danny led a fairly uneventful life. He would often try to escape this boredom through reckless street driving in less populace areas, becoming something of an adrenaline junkie, even dabbling in free running before returning to his love of the road. Gaining enhanced durability and reflexes has merely raised the bar for what he considers excitement, and he can often be seen racing his bike through the city at breakneck speeds.

Powers & Tactics:
The cyborg conversion gave Danny increased strength, speed and durability, as well as enhanced sight & hearing. He also posesses a unique set of battle armor, meant to be the standard for what would have been SCORPIO assassins. The armor compacts into a small unit which attaches to a coupling unit in his back, allowing it to be "summoned" by mental command. The armor produces a light magnetic field that allows the wearer to stick to most surfaces, in addition to absorbing forces such as the impact of a long fall, or limited amounts of damage. Through mental effort, this field can be briefly concentrated in either the hands or feet for a single, powerful attack.

While he lacks much in the way of formal combat training, the Blue Stinger attempts to compensate by virtue of his incredible speed & strength, fighting with a mixture of pro wrestling moves and “things he saw in a movie one time”. In line with this sense of the dramatic, Stinger is quite fond of delivering flying kicks or elbow drops from high buildings. While very unorthodox, this approach has caught at least a few super villains off guard.


Cyborg Human: As a result of project SCORPIO, Danny is both man and machine, and feels as though he has lost some of his humanity. In social situations, this may cause him to suffer penalties due to a loss of empathy either from himself, or from those who know about his condition.

Enemies (SHADOW/Red Scorpion): The mad doctor who captured Danny was working for SHADOW. He had the resources to lead Sam & Danny into his trap, so it is only a matter of time before he finds out Danny's secret identity and relays it to his masters. In addition, they would seem to have Samantha captive, and Danny would do just about anything to get her back safe.

Hey, I Have An Idea...”: Danny is the product of a generation weaned on TV and action movies and, even for a super hero, he sometimes gets ideas that just aren't feasible in real life. Any time Danny is faced with a fairly simple problem, he can be made to take a much more complicated and difficult approach to solving it, preferably one that has the potential to fail horribly.

Hot Blooded: Danny has a particular hatred for “bullies”; anyone who uses their power to hurt others who can't defend themselves. He will fight these forces, even if severely outmatched. If he witnesses any kind of bullying or oppression, the GM can force him to step in. In addition, he will never willingly flee from such a fight unless he makes a very difficult willpower roll.

Legacy of The Scorpion: Danny hasn't been the Blue Stinger long, and is still making a name for himself. Since his armor was originally crafted in the image of a Golden Age supervillain, however, those familiar with the Red Scorpion might know just enough to jump to all the wrong conclusions and treat him as a villain until he is able to clear things up.

They Can't All Be Zingers: As any comedian will tell you, for every funny joke you tell, there is always the crushing silence after that one joke misses its mark. During any social situation, the GM can make Danny tell a joke that is very stupid and either offends someone or somehow diminishes their opinion of him. (He will, however, never use any humor that goes against site rules eg. no sexual/racial slurs, no "R-rated" jokes, etc. He can be ignorant, but he's not a jerk.)

Wouldn't Hit a Lady: Danny feels a great amount of guilt over leading Samantha into the clutches of SHADOW. Coupled with a somewhat “old-school” upbringing, this causes him to have moral compunctions about deliberately causing harm to females. Whenever he is in a fight with a female opponent, the GM can ask him to make a willpower roll to make the first blow, and give him a penalty to the rest of his attack rolls against that opponent.

Abilities: 0 + 8 + 4 + 4 + 0 + 2 = 18PP
Strength: 30/10 (+10/+0)
Dexterity: 28/18 (+9/+4)
Constitution: 22/14 (+6/+2)
Intelligence: 14 (+2)
Wisdom: 10 (+0)
Charisma: 12 (+1)

Combat: 8 + 20 = 28PP
Initiative: +9
Attack: +4 Base, +10 Melee (4 Base + 6 Focus), +4 Ranged
Grapple: +20
Defense: +10 (+10 Base, +0 Dodge Focus), +5 Flat-Footed
Knockback: -5/-3

Saving Throws: 2 + 1 + 6 = 9PP
Toughness: +10/+6 (+6 Con, +4 from Device/Battle Armor)
Fortitude: +8 (+6 Con, +2)
Reflex: +10 (+9 Dex, +1)
Will: +6 (+0 Wis, +6)

Skills: 104R = 26PP
Acrobatics 11 (+20) Skill Mastery

Bluff 15 (+16) Skill Mastery

Craft, Mechanical 11 (+13)
Diplomacy 8 (+9)

Drive 11 (+20) Skill Mastery 
Knowledge, Physical Science 12 (+14)

Knowledge, Pop Culture 15 (+17)
Notice 10 (+10)

Stealth 11(+20) Skill Mastery


Feats: 17PP
Accurate Attack
Acrobatic Bluff

All Out Attack

Attack Focus: Melee 6

Elusive Target
Equipment 2


Improved Initiative 2

Power Attack (Device Feat)

Quick Change (Device Feat)

Skill Mastery (Acrobatics, Bluff, Drive, Stealth)


Equipment: 2PP = 10EP

Motorcycle (15 Str, 5 Spd, 10 Def, 8 Tough) [9EP] 


Powers: 8 + 8 + 10 + 20 + 4 + 1 + 1 = 52PP

Device 1: [8PP] (10PP Container, Hard to Lose) (Battle Armor)

             Protection 4 [4PP] 

             Super Movement 2 [2PP] (Slow Fall, Wall-Crawling)

             Feats: Power Attack, Quick Change [2PP]

Cyborg Human 8.8: (44PP Container [Passive, Permanent]) [44PP] (Technological)

             Enhanced Constitution 8: [8PP] 

             Enhanced Dexterity 10: [10PP] 

             Enhanced Strength 20: [20PP] 

             Immunity 4: [4PP] (Vaccum, High Pressure, Suffocation)

            Super Senses 2: [2PP] (Extended Hearing 1, Infravision)

Drawbacks: (-0) + (-0) = -0PP

DC Block

ATTACK                                  RANGE      SAVE                                      EFFECT

Unarmed                                   Touch        DC20 Toughness (Staged)     Damage (Physical)

Stinger Strike (Power Attack)     Touch        DC25 Toughness (Staged)     Damage (Physical)


Totals: Abilities (18) + Combat (28) + Saving Throws (9) + Skills (26) + Feats (17) + Powers (52) - Drawbacks (0) = 150/150 Power Points


Concept: At his core, the Blue Stinger is in no small part inspired by the Kamen Rider series' with a little bit of Spider-Man. More specifically, he is inspired by the Showa Era (Pre 1990's) riders, who were all cyborgs and overall felt a little more "Silver Age" in their stories. Ultimately, my idea was to take the typical Showa Rider, and portray him as seen through the lens of 1970's Marvel Comics.

Edited by JediDalek
Fixing Sheet
Link to comment

On my phone so I can't give a detailed reply, but off hand, his attack and his defense don't meet caps. 


He has the Defense of a PL 5, or someone who is fully Toughness-shifted. But his Toughness is only +10. He either needs more Defense, or more Toughness. Going by his inspiration I would suggest he either go 10 and 10, or may 8 and 12 (for the highest trade-off) for Defense and Toughness, respectively. 


His Base Attack is 0 and his Melee is 2, but I don't even see ranks of attack specialization. I would suggest getting at least about 3-4 Base Attack, and then buy up to 8 Melee via Attack Specialization. 

EDIT: Fluff looks great to me though. And I approve of Kamen Rider homages on general principle, especially when properly filtered for Western comics like you did here. Henshin-a-go-go, man!

Edited by KnightDisciple
Link to comment

Alright, cool. I think I can move some points around to help the Attack & Defense. Just for future reference, are the minimums I need to hit here a hard thing that I missed in the rules, or more of just a thing where I'll have a bad time if I go out with less than that?

Also, glad to see some KR appreciation. I was worried everyone would think I was trying to shoehorn in a power ranger or something. Haha.


Edited by JediDalek
Link to comment

While I'm not a master of Character Creation compared to the other members here, can help you a bit on the formatting. Skills mention their full rank at the end when you apply ability bonuses. Example: Computers  should be written as Computers 8 (+10) Also you don't need []'s around skills and feats :P

Also you should change how you have written of your super senses. They should look more like:


Super Senses 2 (Extended Hearing, Infravision) [2PP] 


Just to help make things clear. Could rename them Cyber Senses to keep with the Theme :P I'm certain I missed other things, but that is why we have other members here.

Edited by Darksider42
Link to comment

You don't need the brackets around skill names or rank numbers, and you don't need an R for ranks. Here is the format:

Computers 4 (+8)

That is someone with 4 ranks in the Computers skill and a +4 Intelligence mod, given by an 18 Intelligence score. 

Feats don't need brackets either. 

Ranged Attack Bonus would be +4.

Caps and meeting them is not quite an ironclad Rules As Written but it might as well be. If you aren't meeting caps for your chosen Power Level it will cause you, and honestly anyone in a thread with you, to be frustrated 

if you took a Power Level 10 slot but built a Power Level 7 caps character who just had a broader skill base or the like, that could work. 

Also, no reason to have odd-numbered ability scores.  Might save a couple points there. 

P.S.: Just saw the character is from Kansas City. Extra mad props for that. 

Link to comment

Alright, thanks. I did what you guys suggested/said, cleaned up the brackets and evened out my abilities, sticking the extra point into Melee Focus. I also fixed my Attack & Grapple numbers, since I think there were some miscalculations in there, and re-worded some fluff to sound less like I wrote it at 4:00 AM. 

And the caps situation makes sense, you definitely don't want to be the "less competent sidekick" guy. I tried looking at a few other "punch/kick-ey" characters in the bank to make sure I was in their vicinity. 

And yeah. Haha. I was born in Springfield, so KC was a good compromise for someplace I know but am not personally from.

Link to comment

Okay, so looking better, but a couple of things to note.

His Defense/Toughness balance looks good.

But his Attack/Damage is off. Not even counting a Strike Power, he has +12 Damage and +11 Attack, which makes him more of a PL 12. When you add his Attack Bonus and Damage Bonus and divide by 2, it needs to equal his Power Level. So it could be 10 and 10, like his Defense/Toughness. Or 12 and 8. Or 15 and 5. 11 and 9. Etc. But as it stands, it's too much.

Further, with his Strength being so high, adding on the Strike on top of that pushes him to the point of having Damage equal to a Damage-Shifted PL 15-20! +22 Damage is way too high; we max out at PL 15, and allow a maximum of +/- 5 Tradeoff, meaning the highest Damage you can get is +20.

With that said, you have a couple options here. There are 2 fairly easy ways to "bypass" Caps: the feats that shift your bonuses (Power Attack, Accurate Attack, All-Out Attack, etc), and Autofire.

What you could do, as an example, is have +10 Melee Attack, a +10 Strength modifier, and then pay 10PP to add Autofire to that Damage Bonus. Per our House Rules you only get the 1st rank of Autofire, so you'd have the potential for a maximum of +5 damage if you bypass the enemy's defense by 10. If you took the Power Attack feat on top of that, theoretically (aka if the dice love you and the enemy has a low Defense), you could get +5 Power Attack, +5 Autofire, and +10 base Damage, for +20, for a Toughness Save DC of 35. But that takes a lot of luck. It's awesome when it happens, but it's rare.

I would say for the "full power Stingers", just buy Power Attack. Or buy up Autofire.

You could also pay no extra PP and make the Stun and Paralyze Linked to his Unarmed. As well, you could look at giving them the Flaws that limit their maximum impact, which lets you get 10 ranks and a DC 20 save, albeit while sacrificing the ability to possibly KO an opponent. But on the flip side it would let you have a better shot of slowing them down and "debuffing" them, so it's your call there. I think the Stingers could be represented by just having those 2 powers, and representing "Full Power" by way of Power Attack, and possibly one or two other tradeoff feats.

As far as formatting goes, my personal suggestions, though these are by no means commands or the like, would be a couple of things.

-For the flavor descriptions, do like this:

Super Senses 2:  (Extended Hearing 1, Infravision) [2PP] ("Cyborg Senses")

This way, it's clear what the power is (Super Senses), what specifically it gives you (Extended Hearing 1, Infravision), how much it costs ([2PP]), and what fluff you're justifying it with (Cyborg Senses). You should probably also give the powers a Descriptor or two, like Technology or the like. Electrical for the Stun and Paralyze on the Stingers, mayhaps?

You could, if you like, use a Container to encapsulate all the non-costume/armor powers, and call it something like "Cybernetic Body X.X", where "X.X" is the total number of PP in the container divided by 5. I personally probably like Containers almost too much, but for an idea of what I mean, take a look at Thoughtspeed and Sun Walker. Thoughtspeed has a couple of Arrays, and they both have a few various Containers that help me describe and encapsulate various powers they possess. To me it's a nice way to record-keep, as well as to inject a bit of flavor via the Container names.

Descriptors are important for things like resistance, vulnerability, nullify, etc.

Also, try playing around with our Device and Array tags. They're really nice for organization and such.

Device X (stuff) [device]More stuff[/device]

Array X (stuff) [array]power 1

power 2[/array]


EDIT: Annnnd apparently the IPS upgrade broke our Device and Array tags, my apologies. :-/

Edited by KnightDisciple
Link to comment

For examples of what KD's talking about with intentionally undercapping, feel free to take a look at my signature and the PCs linked in it.  They're all intentionally, explicitly undercapped.  Power Level and Power Points aren't automatically tied together by the rules.  Technically, in a tabletop game of M&M, the GM would just set a power level cap for the entire group.  Since that isn't really feasible here, the architects of the site went down the path of least resistance and tied Power Level (your caps for combat traits, Ability bonuses, Skill ranks, etc.) to Power Point total, automatically increasing the former when you accumulate enough of the latter.  In my case, I've got PCs who have enough power points to be PL10, 12, and 15, but they're built to hit caps as a PL7 and two PL10s, and I advertise that in as many places as possible (sheet, sig, etc.) so that anyone recruiting me for a thread knows precisely what my character is capable of in game terms.

I'm getting the impression that a primer on how M&M power levels work is in order.

If you're actually trying to make a functionally PL10 character, and not a lower PL character who happens to be built with more than 15PP per power level, then you'll want your best possible (Attack + Damage) and (Defense + Toughness) to average out to 10.  You're free to trade off within +/-5 on those two axes as you see fit, depending on whether your concept calls for someone who floats like a butterfly or stings like a freight train.  So you could have Attack +10 and Damage 10, or Attack +15 and Damage 5, or Attack +5 and Damage 15, or anything in between.

The thing to remember is that PL caps apply to your character in his best possible situation.  M&M is built backwards from most RPG systems.  Instead of starting with a foundation of basic traits and then building situational and synergistic bonuses, you start with a cap and build up to it.  In other games, the guy with Attack Specialization (Swords) and Favored Enemy (Ninjas) is just as good at non-sword combat as everyone else, but is better at swordfighting than they are.  In M&M, the guy who bought Attack Specialization (Swords) is worse at all-around combat then everyone else, and only measures up when he's got a sword and is stabbing a ninja with it.  In exchange, he paid fewer points than the guy who just bought base Attack bonus that works equally well everywhere against everyone with everything.

It's also worth noting that most traits aren't bound by PL caps unless they directly affect combat.  If he's got enough points, you can have a PL0 character with Flight 20.

As it is, this character is actually breaking his PL caps.  Assuming you're building up to PL10 (you can't build any higher until he earns some points in-game), with a STR bonus of +12, he couldn't have a total attack bonus higher than +8 with any attack that would use that STR bonus (unarmed strikes, grapples, thrown objects, etc.).  12 + 8 = 20, 20 / 2 = 10.

As far as the exotic saves go, most "conventional wisdom" leans toward one of two options: 1) Going for an average of (PL-2) among all 3, Fort, Ref, and Will.  This lines up with most of the sample builds in the books (terrible though they are, this is one ofthe few areas where they're about right).  So a PL10 hero would usually have something like +8 in all 3, or +6, +8, and +10, or +15, +5, and +4, something like that  2) Match Reflex to Defense, and average Fort and Will together to the PL like you'd do with Attack/Damage and Defense/Toughness.  So Fort 10 / Will 10, Fort 5 / Will 15, etc.  You don't need to adopt either of these design philosophies, but most people do.  As it is, with a Will save that low, and neither Fort or Ref particularly high, he'd be considered significantly undercapped on exotic saves by most people's standards.  (The 2E rules techically allow you to buy all 3 exotic saves up to PL+5, or +15 for a PL10 hero, but that would make for an extremely boring game for all involved, and there's no way the rednames would let it through.  Rule #1 of M&M is that just because you can do something, that doesn't mean you should.  They designed a system that could build anything, and knowingly exchanged "balance" for flexibility, under the assumption that GMs would know when to say "No.")

The house rules allow anyone to use Accurate, All-Out, Defense, and/or Power Attack for up to +/-2 without having the feat.  You only need to buy the feat to do +/-3, 4, or 5.  So if you don't see yourself trading off by more than 1-2 in combat, you can ditch those feats and buy them later.

Improved Block counts against PL caps.  Block uses your Attack caps.  So you can't take Improved Block unless you lower your Attack bonus by 2.  So you'd only hit attack caps when blocking.  It's the worst feat ever.  Every time someone writes it on their sheet, the gods murder a puppy.  And not something obnoxious, like a chihuahua.  A cute one.

The skills are still messed up.  For example, I see "Computers 8 (+2)."  If he's got INT 14 (+2) and 8 ranks in Computers, then you'd write "Computers 8 (+10)".

When it comes to skills, relatively few of them involve contested rolls.  Most of them have static difficulty classes.  When you decide to invest any points at all into a skill, actually read the entry for it and look for the DCs associated with it.  Look at what tasks you want to be able to reliably perform.  Then buy your total skill bonus (whether with Ability ranks or skill ranks) to within 10 or 20 of those DCs you want to hit, depending on whether you can take 20 or just 10 with it.  If you're buying Survival, then the DCs are really low, and you'll probably never need more than +5, +10 at the most, unless you're using it for tracking.  If you're buying Computers and you want to be able to hack into the Pentagon surveillance cameras, then the sky is the limit, because Computers DCs are INSANE.

Then ask if you ever, ever need to be able to use that skill in combat, or in anything else the GM would call a "stressful situation."  If the answer is "Yes," then strongly consider picking up the Skill Mastery feat.  If it's something that will involve contested rolls (Bluff, Intimidate, etc.) or rolls where you can't take 10, even with Skill Mastery (like anything involving Concentration), then strongly consider the Second Chance feat, which will give you a reroll on a failed check (which amounts to about a +5 bonus, statistically speaking).  If it's a skill you'll probably only use once every Presidential term, but when you need it, you really need it (Escape, for example), then consider Ultimate Effort.

That Strike array needs work if you want it to actually, well, work.  I would either give the Paralyze and Stun APs a flaw to bring their cost down to match the Strike, or else give the Strike an extra to bring its cost up to match the others.  This is something the book builds never do, and one of the big reasons why they're so awful.  If you are going to bring a +8 attack bonus with a rank 5 Stun or Paralyze, then you're bringing a PL6.5 (8 + 5 = 13, 13 / 2 = 6.5) attack to a PL10 fight, and you will get frustrated watching it not work.  Not all your attacks have to be the same rank, but they should all average out to your PL.  It's common, for example, for people to build PL10 Superman clones with Attack +6, STR 38 (+14), and a Blast 10 with Accurate 2 (+4 Attack) for the eye beams.  So both his punches and eye blasts are PL10 attacks, but one is +6/+14 and the other is +10/+10.  The books are full of garbage builds where someone has Attack +10 and Blast 10 (AP: Disintegrate 4), and they make my eyes bleed, because no one is going to fail a save against such a low-rank attack unless they're so low PL that they'd also fail a save against a stiff breeze.

I would also question how much you'll get out of having such similar attacks like Stun and Paralyze arrayed together.  I'd consider dropping one, using that 1PP to buy a rank of Luck instead, and then power-stunting during play if you need to.  Extra Effort, Hero Points, and particularly the "Heroic Feat" and "Power Stunt" mechanics are the most important rules in this game, and also the most overlooked.  The game is specifically designed so that you don't have to buy everything your PC can do all at once in advance.  You can use Extra Effort to gain a new, temporary Alternate Power (or any other power feat), and you can burn a HP to temporarily gain a power or non-power feat.

If you want to get reliable use out of that Acrobatic Bluff, then your Acrobatics skill bonus needs to be higher.  Keep in mind that feinting is a standard action by default, and you can do it as a move action at -5.  So if you want to be able to feint someone and then attack them in the same round, you either need to use Extra Effort to get a second standard action, or you need to feint at -5.  And you need to have a decent chance of beating their Acrobatics or Sense Motive bonus.  I wouldn't bother with Acrobatic Bluff on a character with less than +15 Acrobatics, minimum.  And if you're not going to really invest in that Acrobatics bonus, then I question how much you'll get out of those points you're putting into DEX.  It costs 2PP per +1.  Reflex Save costs 1PP per +1.  Initiative and Skills cost 0.25PP per +1 (1PP per 4 ranks).  So you only even break even on DEX if you care about Reflex save and Initiative AND at least 3 Dex-based skills.

EDIT: Looks like KD posted at the same time I did, so there's probably some overlap between the post above and mine.

Edited by ShaenTheBrain
Link to comment

Okay, this was a bit more in-depth than my last revision, so let's see if I remember everything:

I balanced out his attack and damage by taking some points out of strength, since I felt balace made sense for this character. The only reason I put his strength that high in the first place was because of a misunderstanding I had about how strong his inspiration character was. I tried to similarly balance out the saves, favoring reflex a little more and will a little less, since I see the character as agile but maybe not the most disciplined.

I switched out some of the feats and consolidated the cyborg stuff into a container as you suggested. I decided to drop the stingers as a concept entirely, since I realized that he had them more as a justification for his name than for anything I actually planned on doing. With the points from that, I added Power Attack to his armor for the same effect the stingers had, and used the remaining points to add a couple movement powers to the armor, and to fix up my skills a little.

I decided I did want to focus on Dex skills, as driving crazy and jumping really high are things I want to do. While I didn't see any rule against having skills over 20, I couldn't find many active characters who did, and reasoned that if some of these super-knowledgable characters only have academic knowledge up to 20, then I should probably not go beyond that.

Overall, I realized a few of my problems came from the fact that I completely wrote his backstory, and then statted around that instead of trying to make the two grow naturally together. 

Link to comment

That makes sense. The book says going over 15 makes you one of the best in the world, so someone starting out probably wouldn't have anything higher than that, anyway. I do find the idea of a character with over 15 ranks in Pop Culture kind of funny, though. They just spend too much time on Reddit... Haha.

Link to comment
  • Create New...