Power Tricks in Tales of Justice | World Anvil

Power Tricks

In Blood of Heroes, this is actually titled “Trick Powers”, which doesn’t really describe the situation: the character is trying a trick with his power, not necessarily doing a “superpowered trick”.


Pulling off such a stunt will cost Hero Points. Power Tricks require the Player to concentrate on what he is doing, so only one can be attempted at a time … and if his attempt to use his power in an unusual way completely fails, he cannot try it again until he’s had a good while to think about why it didn’t work.


The Cool Rule is definitely involved in use of this rule: the player must have a good explanation, under the Cool Rule, for how their current Power could be used to create an irregular-but-related effect, and sell the GM on it. “I have Energy Absorption, so I can use it to absorb the kinetic energy of falling and give myself Flight!” is not going to work.


Once the GM agrees with the theory, it’s time to find out how well it’ll work in actual practice. First, the Player must make a Trick Roll: AV/EV of the APs of the original Power, OV/RV equal to twice the Factor Cost (including Bonuses and Limitations) of the Trick Power. Any RAPs gained from this roll translate directly to the maximum amount of APs that the temporary Power will have, up to the maximum of the original Power’s APs. (So, even if several doubles are rolled in the process, the Power Trick will never be more effective than the base Power.)


The Trick Roll can be improved by spending Hero Points to raise AV and/or EV, if lives and villain-stopping are truly at stake. Trick Rolls do not take up the Player’s Dice Action for that round, but only one Trick Roll may be made per Character per phase. If the Trick Roll fails to get any RAPs, then (in-game) the Character couldn’t quite figure out how to apply his powers that way, and (out of game) no Hero Points are lost except those spent on increasing the AV/EV.


If the Trick Roll succeeded, the Player pays {5 Hero Points x Factor Cost (including Bonuses and Limitations) of the temporary Power}+{1 Hero Point x total # of APs of the Temporary Power}. Now he can roll his actual Dice Action for the phase, applying his Power Trick to saving someone’s life or defeating a villainous trap!




Let’s say that Dr. Steven Reynolds, who has Telekinesis 7, is trying to destroy a pop-up turret before it can pop out of its emplacement, and he decides to use his TK to yank in all directions at once — effectively mimicking the Bomb power. Bomb has a Factor Cost of 3; although the explosion’s normal range is half the APs of the power, it can be purchased with a special Factor Cost Bonus: Controllable Blast Radius (+1FC), which would allow Dr. Reynolds to decrease the maximum APs of distance the attack will extend, without affecting his attack roll in any way. That makes for a modified Factor Cost of 4, which still isn’t too bad … at least, not ’til we double it.


If Dr. Reynolds doesn’t have a whole lot of HP to spare, he’s not going to want to add to his AV or EV, so he’d be rolling a 7/7 versus an 8/8 to try to pull off this new Trick. It’s probably a good thing that 7 and 8 are in the same row or column on the Action and Result Tables! He needs to roll at least an 11 to get any RAPs at all, which would (in his case) automatically start at 2 RAPs. A roll of 17, on the other hand, adds a couple of column shifts to the result: Dr. Reynolds winds up with 4 RAPs.


Applying Power Trick Math, we get:


{5 x (Factor Cost=4)}+{1HP x 4 RAPs} = 24HP
The doc pays 24 HP, focuses all his attention on the turret emplacement, and does the best he can with 4 APs of Telekinesis-Bomb to yank it into mangled pieces, right there in the ground!


Note: If the same Power Trick is attempted more than twice, the GM is going to ask the PC to buy the new Power, instead.


Author's Notes

We are still experimenting with this rule. Please give feedback on what you think worked in a session, and what you think is not holding up very well in play.

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