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Aberrant RPG - Powerful Novas (quantum 6+)

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According to Worldwide Phase 1 there are fewer then ten of such novas in 2009. Now White Wolf publishes the players guide. When would you estimate is the time a "quantum 6+) chronicle would be played ? Or would you reserve them to be just NPCs ? I dont have the players guide yet so bear with me if it already gives the answers

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Semper Servus

Ahriman

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The PG isn't really specific. I think since the PG's release the timeline has extended to 2014. I could be wrong about that. There probably aren't many more than 10 in the canon universe anyway. If you are playing a strictly, or nearly strictly, canon game, I would recommend allowing PCs to get to quantum 6 with much trepidation, or not at all.

For instance, it is my opinion that quantum of that level should be scary - really scary. I would only allow PCs who have been in the game for long periods of time and are experienced with both the systems of the game as well as whatever scenario the game takes place in to achieve that kind of power. In other words, only the absolute best players in your game should ge that high. Otherwise you're asking for abusive power usage. I hate to sound so general about the competency of most players, but quantum 5 abilities are brutal enough. The abilities quantum 6 allows for (not to mention the Mastery extra!) is just frightening.

I currently have three players in my campaign that are at quantum 5, and a couple are talking about moving up to 6. I don't have many issues with this, mostly since all these players have been playing their characters for almost two years, I trust them to not abuse the new abilities Quantum 6 gives because they're experienced Aberrant players. I definitely wouldn't let starting characters go up to quantum 6 no matter what the circumstances.

Okay, I'm done rambling now.

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"When did HE become a nova? Natural Agitator? No sh!t, dude!"

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As of 2009 Divis Mal, Scripture, Cestus Pax, Sophie Rousseau, Gabriel Malchor, and Anteaus all have quantum of 6+. These are only Novas who are publicly known to have that level of power but there may be more.

The players guide mentioned that Mal is going to find his lead diminishing in the next decade as Nova Quantum levels increase to match his. Presumably he is not standing still so we can assume that his quantum hits 9 at about 2020 or so.

I have played a game where two of the characters managed to get quantum 6 and one managed quantum 7! I don't really recommend it as PCs of that power level can overcome almost anything...you are talking the power of the characters from The Authority comic here...

A character with Quantum 6 can have 2 extras on a level 3 power turning it into Muchkin paradise as the PCs quantum bolt with two levels of reduced cost and the explosive enhancement turns half of New York into slag for zero quantum cost...and thats not including the mastery enhancement which multiplies by 5 the output of a power. (More to it than that but thats a simple explaination...)

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Quantum 6+ does pose some difficult questions. The first of which is do you allow the rules in the PG to become part of your game. If the answer is no then you simply have to watch for abuses of level 1, 2, and 3 powers. If the answer is yes, you will then have to reevaluate where you are taking your game. The powers and abilities in the PG are quite literally World-Altering. A Nova with any of the new powers could easily dismantle any game unless the game is designed for high levels of power or the player and storyteller can work well together. I have created an NPC who has Quantum 8 and a couple of level 4 powers to test-run the playability of a character of this magnitude. So far he is damn scary.

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I believe that quantum levels should be limited or not limited by what the storyteller is comfortable with. If a ST is happy and can handle quantum scores of 6+ then fine. If they prefer to handle games that do not have "Fat crackling cosmic power of the Gods" then fine too. We are playing to enjoy ourselves after all.

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In the game I am playing in 2 out of the three characters in the game have quantum 6 (the one wuss with Q4 is me unfortunately) and it really hasn't been completely unbalancing.

One character had Quantum Construct, Forcefield and BioManipulation with Mastery on it along with Boost with three extras (extra Stat, extra Stat, and extended duration). The other has Temporal Manipulation, Spatial Manipulation and something else with Mastery and Chimeric Aberration with to Reduced Cost extras and Chimeric Aberation with two Reduced Cost extras and the Affect Other extra.

The fact is, the game didn't change a whole hell of a lot. We still don't even think about messing with people like Pax or Mal. We just have finally been defined as movers and shakers within the Nova community.

The one truly gross thing that occured because of Q6 was when the first guy I described, Jay "The Saint" Prince got whacked. We were playing through my ST's version of the Night of Long Knives and our group (a Casablanca related group) was getting messed with by the Cult of Mal. We had a lot of trouble because so many of the Cultists were MegaSocials, something my group is still fairly vunerable to. In the end Jay took off with a couple of NPC allies to take out a Cultist set up in Prague. Bummer, turns out Delomier was waiting there for him. One smile and a little Domination:Area later and everybody was standing there grinning like idiots. Delomier then got on his high horse and started berating Jay for being so prideful and that it was time he was punished for his sins. Well, Jay was a religious zealot and in his state of mind completely agreed with The Apostle. His Quantum Construct had always been defined as his calling forth religious entities to assist him, so he decided that he needed to be punished by the very person that gave him his powers; God. End result? The City of Prague is at the center of a 80 kilometre radius area that was irrevocably turned to salt and then rained on by a great tempest (Disintigrate defined as Sodom and Gommorah style cleansing).

So, high power is cool, but its no reason for the game to be completely ravaged. We've had fun.

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You nuked Prague?!? Man, I liked that place. It used to be a place a guy could unwind in. This sucks. I guess the war is just around the corner.

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Hey, and while we're (kinda) on the topic of Extras and whatnot, I have another "Must be somewhere in the book but I just canna find it!" Questions:

1) What's the Experience Point cost to add an Extra to a power that you've already purchased? Is it the cost of a new power, but one level up?

2) What page is this information on?

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Kirby, page 230, bottom, righthand corner.

The cost will be 3 plus 2 for every level you have in the power past the first. This goes for taking a 1 to a 2 and a 2 to a 3.

i.e. Getting your Level 3 Q-bolt the area effect extra would be 3+2+2=7 xp. The only problem is that now it is ALWAYS area effect.

Have fun.

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So does anyone have any ideas on how to handle pre-existing extras on powers when the character goes from Q5 to Q6? Eg. Acharater with Q5 and Quantum Bolt with the MIRV extra goes to Q6, later he wants to raise the power of his Q Bolt. does he pay the cost of a third or second level power? What about all the experience points/nova points he spent before he raised his Quantum? I havn't found the rules for this situation in the PG (unless I am totally blind)!

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You won't find it... it's not there.

IMO, it is totally up to the Storyteller.

And IMHO, if you raise your quantum that high, all power 'revert' to the level they would be had you have that Quantum whe you bought them.

So your AP QB (hehehe) will return to level 2 when you reach Quantum 6.

Twinkish? Hardly... if you allow your player to reach quantum 6+, then isn't it downright silly to limit such _godlike_ being with petty limitation like that? The player probably worked very hard to get his quantum that high, don't make him 'relearn' his old power because he already had put extras on them ;p

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As far as I am aware if you have a Q-bolt with mirv which makes it a level 3 power and then gain quantum 6, nothing happens to the quantum bolt at all. Why should it? All it means is that if you want you can add yet another extra to the power making it level 4. (Quantum 6 allows two extras onto a level 2 I think)

As for XP costs they remain as a level three power. (or level 4 if he has added the second extra) Well, thats the way it looks to me anyhow...could be wrong but it seems the most balanced.

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Another question. The PG states that characters can get Mega-stats higher than 5. All that is required is a quantum of the desired score -1 and a regular attribute equal to the Mega-stat. As far as I have found, the PG does not give any guidelines on raising normal attributes, I figure anyone willing to pay 20+ exp. for a stat of 6 or higher can have it, but it got me thinking. Can other traits, like abilities and backgrounds be raised above 5 as well? I know they briefly mention recources in the PG but the whole subject seems like an afterthought. So, thoughts anyone?

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Good point. Backgrounds would be raised over 5, as this has to be justified properly (maybe Buendia could have Eufiber raised over 5).

In other WW games, 'normal' stats can be raised over 5, with an increment in the xp multiplier (say x6 for attributes and x3 for abilities). However, in Aberrant, this incremet in cost is silly (they costs too much normally). Maybe can be said that all stats are limited at the Quantum level.

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Backgrounds above five are possible and sometimes really interesting. Take for example a Nova with Fame 7, he or she cannot go anywhere without being recognised and mobbed. Resources above five are possible too, it just means you have more cash...highly likely considering Nova paypackets.

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Sure but think about the ramifications of some of the others. Node with Instars between 7 and 11!, Mentor of, oh lets say 7. Um....... just who would that be? Attunement of these levels could be really cool, scary but cool. Eufiber could potentally give 10 soak and hold 10 Quantum points! I'm not sure I want to even consider Dormancy higher than 5. I think I have to think about this a little more carefully.

[This message has been edited by Atwight (edited 05-03-2001).]

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The fact is that there are two big groups of backgrounds, one of 'mundane' backgrounds, that has to be justified upon buying (as you say, no one can buy mentor at 10 simply becouse there isn't no one as powerfull) and thus implicitly limited. The others are backgrounds that are nova-related, and are more powerfull (your imagine of an attunement 10 nova that can make an entire city disappear is quite impressive...). This background can be limited, say, at the same level of quantum (above 5). Can be more balanced?

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I was thinking something similar. I call the leap from Q5 to Q6 "The Quantum Barrier" due to how difficult it is to earn all that exp and the jump in potential power it creates. I am thinking of limiting certain backgrounds to a score of 5 until the character has broken "The Quantum Barrier". They would be Node, Dormancy, and Attunement. Eufiber higher that 5 cannot be synthesized and only Buendia (or any Nova with Matter Creation 6+) can create/provide such an advanced culture. Very rare stuff and very expensive. as for the others, It is unlikely anyone will be able to convince me that their character concept deserves any barckground rating higher than 5 to start and it will take some truly outstanding roleplaying to gain those higher scores. With the ossible exception of Resources.

About the Mentor background, Only three or four Novas qualify as of 2008 to be Mentors of that power. Divis Mal and Ceastus Pax are of course the two most obvious, but Anteus is another possibility that I can think of off the top of my head. However, in 2015, the Player's Guide states (I think thats where I read it) that there are several Novas catching up to Divis' power level and the Higher level Mentor possibilities start to open up.

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I wasn't sure of Sophie, I don't know anything about her besides she has something to do with the Aberrant movement, and I know even less about Scripture (Heard him refrenced to the Teregen on this site). I think most world gov leaders would be a 6 at most, directors of Aeon and members of the UN 7 and Max hovering at 8 or 9, all depending on what they have to offer their students. That's just my personal opininon though smile.gif.

So what about my other ideas on handling high background scores?

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For starters, once you are an effective 50+ Nova points, do you really have/need a mentor. That's when it becomes something more like an ally, don't ya think?

I remember that Vampire did something like this with Elders. Basically, mundane backgrounds could go as high as 10, but they represent different things. At Resources 10, you own the world or something silly like that. Still, the idea of 6+ in Followers, Resources, Influence, Allies, Contacts, Backing and the like are do-able without destroying the game. Certainly Mercer has several backgrounds which excede the normal 5 limit.

Let your coincence (and your pain threshold) be your guide.

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My PGs are quite powerfull, so I find Q6+ opponents a good way to make the classic one megathough villain.

You can even use your little munchkin heart to make some funny suprise. If a nova masters Clone... it's a level 3 power so it would cost half roundin down to activate, but every clone costs only one point... And you have your immortal nightmare! Mwhahahahah!!!!!!!!!!!!

Obviously, I would forbid every player to buy such a silly, powerfull and unbalancing mastering...

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ONe of my players did that without Q6 using the errataed clone rules in the players hand book he just played a brick and cloned himself. He didn't have to worry about quatum expenditure. My question is why do you need a foe with q6+ unless you plan for DBZ style power escalation. JUst twink out what you have.

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Actually I think that Domination with the Possession enhancement is really good for villians...they just pick a PC/NPC with good powers and use them as armour and weapons. Imagine the players surprise when the badguy turns out to be a good-guy imprisoned againnst his will.

Also how do the players react when the villian possesses an innocent and threatens to kill himself if the players don't leave him alone?

Worse...what if the enemy possesses someone like Pax?

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What, you mean what Bagman did in the beginning of the game I ran earlier this year ?

Actually, any damage done to the possessed person is inflicted on the possessing nova.

No soak for that either.

Ouch.

Of course, bad guys get to be munchkin without it being a bad thing...

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A few weeks back, we ran across someone who switched the psyches in bodies. He jumped into you, and you ended up in his last victim. A real nightmare for all concerned.

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Ooh, nasty.

Very nasty.

There's worse though.

There's the wonder of Mirage with the area enhancement.

Just think of the wonders you can do with a nice Area-effect mirage...

"Yes Ma'am, that really was the President!"

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You guys think quantum level 6 is a pain. Some guy in our game, (which is played about 4 times a week) recieved enough experience to boost his character to quantum level ten. TEN!!! As storyteller I was going to not allow it for the fact he would be a god like character. Nothing, not even the colony good stand up to him.

After a serious discussion with him he agreed that after we finished this story, his character would disappear or die in a glorious manner so that he wouldn't get mad on a character he has had since the beginning. I allowed him to receive quantum level ten. The story came to be I put him against a foe noone, NOONE could defeat. Whom you ask. Satan, Lucifer, the prince of darkness himself. My players character whom his Nova's name was Armageddon who had a taint of ten. He was the best player I ever had.

He knew when not to destroy my beautifully writtened stories with ultra-godlike powers. He knew when to act properly and such. So I pitted him against a storyline against satan. He and his fellow players who were at quantum 7. After a great story of the end of the world I made satan immpossible to beat. But I promised Daniel, (my player's real name.) that I would put in a tiny flaw in satan and an artifact that would kill him. I gave no hints were it was located and told him it was useless to look because he would never find it.

I promised him I would not change the location if he did find it, (one in one billionth of a chance) his character would be taken into god-hood and we would start a new game, (the previous game wouldn't count, it was just a final game to give all our retiring characters a final attempt to achieve their goals) I also promised I'd buy them all dinner if they did find it.

They started and after about two months they came close to the object, so close it made me sweat, after a brilliant idea by Daniel he located the object. After he found I took a moment and went outside and fell over laughing at the fact that they found it.

So I went back inside and they fought Lucifer himself. I took a character sheet and maxed out all the traits to ten for the dark prince. Their characters made awesome rolls while the dark prince botched and failed almost every one of his. He did kill one of their characters but they WON. THEY WON!!!! I made a great ending of their characters deemed heroes for all time. Ater that I took them out for a dinner well deserved. And I didn't make up one bit of this story at all.

Enon

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I won't get into this. Thinking about it makes my head hurt.

But Ranger, you missed one of the Q6+ club. Namely, Bounty of the Teragen. She's able to manipulate and nullify (if only for a time) the Projects' sterility agents, meaning she has Biomanipulation, a Q6 ability.

Just thought I'd point out.

--@venger

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Don't try to run, you son of a bitch. You'll just die tired.

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Enon, I'm speechless...almost.

Avenger will probably want to pimp-slap me for this.

Enon, how? It would take a starting character 280 xp to go from Q:5 to Q:10. Even at the hideously grand amount of 7 xp a session, that takes 40 sessions by itself and I can bet he got other things as well.

How did they earn these points? What was the threat that the faced 4 times a week that let them do this? The Earth was not reduced to bread-crumbs?

Okay...you statted Satan. You are somehow suprised he lost? Your players figured out where this mystic artifact was. Duh?

So anyway, Satan is rolling his satanic dice pool and he BOTCHED!!! Yeah, right.

I take it your party has already dealt with the likes of Divis Mal and Pax. With Satan handily out of the way, what's next, the Norse Pantheon?

Enon, please tell me your a teenager. I hate to think an adult did something like this and was serious about it.

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I play with the companion rules for high quantum stating hat you basically have to have certain amounts of powers, mega attributes, and extra's to show you are developing your character and make it harder to get really high quantum.

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Quantum 6 is a game changer.  Not because it opens up a whole new realm of available powers, but because most Story Tellers don't do math (or can't, as the case may be).  Let's face it, every Cheeto finger stained weeb and their mother are bee lining it straight for Mastery I and if there one thing Mastery I will do, if you're not ready for it, it will ruin your game.  Now, there's nothing wrong with a character having Armor 6 or Quantum Imprint 6 and all the fancy new extras they can slap on them, but when you allow Mastery I you are shifting the power scale considerably.

A 30m radius effect becomes 30km, and all numerical values are doubled (so damage, in this case) For those who are among the 'can't do math' or the 'I don't have to do math, I just Google everything', I'll save you the time.  That's 19 miles (18.6 technically).  Your Quantum Bolt that used to only blast everything awesomely in roughly a hundred or so foot radius... has now wiped out everything within 18 miles.  Need some perspective?  Okay, Manhattan Island, is 13.5 miles long and 2.5 wide.  Yes, if you drop that Quantum Bolt in Manhattan, everything and everyone is dead.

You've just wiped out Manhattan, and all it cost you was one Extra to a Level 2 power.

Point being: know what you're getting into.  Games have been wrecked over Q6 because the STs really were not expecting what was coming next...

In my games, I've adapted Mastery to apply to each power differently.  Instead of a blanket of stat changes that the same for every power, Mastery of Armor and Mastery of Domination are not the same.  Dice pools or successes certainly increase, to reflect your new level of power, but it's more tailored to the power itself.

Animal Mastery:

Mastery I: You may speak with animals at no cost, this power is always functioning.  You may double the area from which you summon, and the amount of animals you summon.  They appear instantly (through portals, leaping from hedges, swooping from building like they were already there, etc)

Mastery II: Like Quantum Construct, you may bolster the might of your animals, at the cost of summoning few animals.  You may summon 5 times the amount of animals.  You may spend the summoning pool successes to instead buy attributes, skills, or even certain powers for your animals (like armor, sensory shield, psychic shield, etc).    Also, there is no limit on distance (aside from the planet you're actually on) you may summon animals from anywhere.

Mastery III: You may summon ten times the normal animals, but what you purchase for one animal may applied to all animals at no extra cost.  So if you summon a horde of 50 bears and spend the left over pool on Armor, Claws, and Mega-Strength... then all the bears possess these powers.  Also, there is no limit on distance (aside from the planet you're actually on) you may summon animals from anywhere.   You may now summon animals that do not actually exist (dinosaurs, dragons, unicorns, griffons).  You are the penultimate master of beasts, you summon what you desire.

Something like that.

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