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Aberrant RPG - Just wanna see a show of 'hands'..


Sovereign
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Hi everyone,

I play Aberrant, but I use the d20 version.

I was just wondering if I'm the only one here who uses those rules?

(If not drop a line in here. I also have some home-rules for certain powers you might wanna take a look at.)

If I am the only one, I'll try to keep my posts in a general "rules-less" manner so as not to mess with anyone's mind. (It's not one of my powers wink )

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Armf.

The greatest difference sits in the range and damage capability of powers. I think D20 is a great system, I use to play D&D very often, BUT it's doesn't fit well with a Superheroic setting, beceuse it's overly PRECISE: a nova shouldn't have to worry about 2 or 3 meters in more or less.

But there are some things I liked anyway:

1)powers are less powerful in D20, but they tend to be more balanced. Many Lvl1 powers are more useful than in D10.

2)taint is much more dangerous and scarry in D20 setting. The risk is very high, and I like it!

3)Extras for powers are more various and entertaining.

There is also a little background difference in D20 : it postulates the existence of Mercer, granddaughter, who tries to counter Proteus' plans. Also, Mercer himself is coming back in 2008 to check the Aeon Society and possibly the whole Utopia.

This is an interesting plot, but somehow different from the Conspiracy scheme of classic Aberrant.

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I'm about to start running a D20 aberrant game. (Just joined the forums today.) Begining it as a D20 modern game set in mid 1997.

What challenges has anyone had running D20? I've been nabbing several of the additonal books including the APG for fluff and additonal powers/extras to use later on in the game. What house rules has anyone made to make it run smoother?

One that I am planning on doing is not putting a limit on the number of extras that someone can have on any given power. Might be a large step out of the box - but I think it will actually increase the power level a step towards what I am looking for.

Another is that with invulnerability I am dividing it into 4 categories. Physical damage, Energy Damage, Quantum, and Mental. (This way someone doesn't have to spend 3 power slots just to be resistant to smashing/bashing/piercing.)

I'm toying with allowing players to buy powers tainted at every other level and make the taint checks reguarding those powers at a higher DC. Still gotta run that through a few scenarios though.

I like the D20 rules especially using the D20 modern ruleset. But I am planing on upping the power level just a tad. So that the players wont start as gods - but eventually will get there.

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Well Tekk One,

The powers I mentioned:

The Mega-Constitution ability (Mega-Stamina in d20 version)

has an enhancement called Adaptability it was basically the most powerful enhancement for any mega-stat.

I had to subdivide it. making you spend additional power points for the extra abilities such as surviving in space or a volcano, not having to eat, sleep or breathe for 24 hours. Then adding your Quantum Score to your saves versus nova-derived poisons and diseases.

I also had to nerf the Warp power, all you had to do was use it once against your enemy and he/she'd be stunned for one round, well if you are part of a team, just keep doing this and you can't help but win because your opponent will never get a turn. I had to change it from being stunned to being shaken and a second application of the power changes the condition from shaken to nauseated.

ALSO this is directed at Pariahpaladin:

I'm not sure if you're referring to d20 or d10 for that Invulnerability reference.

In d20 you choose the type of damage: bludgeoning, slashing, piercing, ballistic, acid, cold, compulsion, darkness, death, electricity, fear, fire, force, healing, language-dependant, light, mind-affecting, negative energy, positive energy, or sonic damage.

In order to KEEP your invulnerability {active} then all you have to do is keep 2 power points unspent in your power reserve, not your eufiber or anything, but your personal reserve. You also must keep an additional 2 points for each additional damage-type you have invulnerability against.

I also dismissed the "base classes" listed in the d20 book.

Use the d20 Modern SRD for a more realistic character.

I designed all of my characters using the d20 Modern SRD.

heck I even statted out David Dunn from the movie "Unbreakable" as a member of "The Guild" (my team of novas who wish to avoid the limelight and easy fame afforded to novas but still wish to do good in the world.)

I have also statted out Totentanz, Caestus Pax, Andre Corbin, Sophia Rousseau, Jennifer "Slider" Landers, and even DIVIS MAL himself! What a BEAST! He's like leveled in the 90s!!!!

It's the only way to make certain he had all of the powers the book listed him with. His quantum score was enormous. It was 33! His final ability scores were obviously increased by a like amount making him VERY god-like.

Thanks for all the replies.

========================

PS if anyone would like me to post the d20 versions I created of any of the characters I mentioned just let me know.

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THe game is broken in d20. The NPCs in most books ranged from the high teens up. Mal being at least level 70+. The ways powers worked most novas would have to gain 5-10 level on erupting....

The flaws in the sysyem is this level based system and point based system have two verry diffrent goals.

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I agree it is broken, but can be fixed.

As for the way the powers work, that can be altered as well.

Instead of gaining levels, allow players to hold their XP until they erupt and then spend it to aquire the desired powers.

The d20 version (ie the version I statted out) Divis Mal is 92nd Level, without the extra 15 levels required for the 5 power slots needed for the "Universe Creation" power.

His Quantum Score is 33 with 201 power points. This may seem like a lot when compared to the d20 system version that could be statted out.

However it does make him way more powerful, more in standing with the story. He is supposed to be pretty much unbeatable.

However I think they need one more class available only to followers of Mal or people who suspect a way to supress Taint.

'Chrysalis' could be a variant PrC to allow Tainted Characters to supress Aberrant levels.......I think I'll get to work on that.

Anyway, regardless of the major flaws with the books rules and write-ups, it can be fixed.

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I tried running Aberrant d20, and eventually switched back because of one GLARING flaw.

What is the Challenge Rating for a Nova as opposed to a Baseline??? confused

Forget powers, Chrysalis, etc.... Unless the above question is answered then running Aberrant d20 is an exercise in utter futility.

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No, it's not smile

But there is effectively a big flaw: a 15lvl baseline combattant can handle a lvl 5 or 6 nova.

About that I used to play for baselines a rule from Cthulhu D20: their massive damage threshold is 10, not 50 anymore: many quantum powers will kill a baseline outright, and that's something logical.

I didn't buy D20Modern, but I guess there are a bunch of good stuff well suited to an Aberrant Campaign.

When you think about Dm as a lvl92 character, you shouldn't be scarred to begin the game with lvl6 to 10 PCs, instead of 3: they won't be in a munchkin style, but they'll be very tough however.

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*sigh* OK, here I go, preparing to piss people off again.

If you want to play Aberrant and have it actually work, play it in the Storyteller system for which it was written. In part, this is because of the miserable, slipshod nature of the d20 conversion, but that's only part of it. The big heart of the matter is that the d20 and Storyteller systems are two very different creatures.

The d20 system is, in effect, a combat engine around which is wrapped a thin veneer of "roleplaying" functionality. It is an outgrowth - and not a terribly distant one, at that - of the old Chainmail miniatures wargaming system of the early 1970s (the seed of D&D was the "Fantasy" appendix at the end of the Chainmail book). Combat is the core of the game, with the entire system geared for it. It does a bang-up job of handling combat...and a piss-poor job of handling anything else.

The Storyteller system, in contrast, was designed specifically as an abstract tool to facilitate roleplaying; combat, while certainly possible within the system, is not the core of the matter. It's a system that was designed to handle social interplay every bit as well as physical conflict, and it does a pretty good job of exactly that.

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As someone who played in the D20 system for over 20 years, I would have to agree with Timeslip. It was only a few years ago that I was introduced to the Storyteller system, via Trinity, and I was confused at first. Only after the first several gaming sessions, did I see the versatility and advantage of the Storyteller system. This is especially true, when it comes to non-combat aspects of roleplaying.

I also find that a character's progression with experience to be superior. The Storyteller system allows for more character creativity, and development as a distinct individual in the roleplaying realm. In most D20 system games, you are locked into an archetype, from which you cannot stray too far. One ranger is essentially similar to another ranger. I must confess that I have not played Aberrant in the D20 system, so I could be wrong.

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I think the D20 Aeon games would have been better if they were based on D20 Modern. D20 Modern isn't as good as the Storyteller system, but it sure as hell is better than the D&D system it's based on.

D20 Modern has six base classes: Strong, Fast, Tough, Smart, Dedicated, and Charismatic. Each is based on the six Abilities (Strength, Dexterity, etc.). The classes only go up to level 10 because it's highly suggested that you multiclass. At every level, you get either a free feat based on your class, or the class lets you choose from a list of special upgrades.

D20 Modern is the only D20 system I ever consider running. But even still, it is a D20 system, which I still hate. Ever since I started with the Storyteller system, I just can't use anything else.

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That old "Look I'm not a Munchkin, I don't play D&D" thinking...

After many years playing, D&D, Vampire, and others, games using D20 and D10 systems, the ONLY differnce I see is THIS: in one system you have to roll 10 dice for each action , in the other there is only ONE to roll.

Very clever.

When you want to play a CHARACTER and not just a piece of paper with stats, ANY system is good for that, even a game where there is only one social stat and very few social skills.

Moreover, I never make my pcs roll when they try to convince someone; they must really roleplay it, "and that's a damn fact"!!

laugh

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Both d10 and d20 are good systems, but they are good for different things. Specifically, the d20 system works very well when characters are supposed to have well-defined roles in the game (note: this may very well be a good thing) and when working with large, long combats with a strategic element to them. d10 is more... personal, with more individualistic characters with vaguer roles, and centered on small-scale combat with a focus on the dramatic instead of the strategic.

Taking this into consideration, I think very open and flexible games like Aberrant and Adventure! work better with d10, simply because of the freedom given by character creation, up to and including the creation of new powers and capabilities (something which is generally more complicated in a d20 system), and also the nature of combat in these systems, which is very different from the type of combat d20 was designed for (medium-scale strategic combat, preferrably with miniatures).

This is hardly a question of judging one system "better" than another (hell, I've had tons of fun playing and DMing D&D), but simply explaining that each system was designed with different things in mind (I mean, never try running a d10 large-scale combat, the dice-rolling will enver end), something which really is important. There is more difference between the two systems than the kind of die rolled.

Of course, d20 is total crap and fails miserably for one excellent reason: You could never play Exalted properly on it. :P

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Quote:
Originally posted by Rorschach:
That old "Look I'm not a Munchkin, I don't play D&D" thinking...
After many years playing, D&D, Vampire, and others, games using D20 and D10 systems, the ONLY differnce I see is THIS: in one system you have to roll 10 dice for each action , in the other there is only ONE to roll.
Very clever.
When you want to play a CHARACTER and not just a piece of paper with stats, ANY system is good for that, even a game where there is only one social stat and very few social skills.
Moreover, I never make my pcs roll when they try to convince someone; they must really roleplay it, "and that's a damn fact"!!
laugh
You're my new favorite person.

DnD does great in non-combat situations if you bother to read the rules and use them for non-combat. Difficulty Class works for all the skills, not just the combat ones. The DM then applies a DC rating and the characters have to hit it, much like the ST system.
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rorschach:
That old "Look I'm not a Munchkin, I don't play D&D" thinking...
After many years playing, D&D, Vampire, and others, games using D20 and D10 systems, the ONLY differnce I see is THIS: in one system you have to roll 10 dice for each action , in the other there is only ONE to roll.
Very clever.
When you want to play a CHARACTER and not just a piece of paper with stats, ANY system is good for that, even a game where there is only one social stat and very few social skills.
Moreover, I never make my pcs roll when they try to convince someone; they must really roleplay it, "and that's a damn fact"!!
laugh
True if you can completly look over the game system you can use any game system to achive the same goals. In d20 as it is with levels, you have to become better in combat if you want to get more skills. Dreamer who is my most powerful nova on this forum, has a quantum of 6, is not the impressive in combat in many ways. She can be cut by a knife.... YT who has way less powers and power who lower levels can be shot by tanks and not care.

D20 power level is way to linked, in way to many ways. WOrld class reseachers can beat up run of the mil soldiers in most cases even if they have a cane and the soilder has a hand gun. THis is a problem because in order to become a world class reachers in d20 you must be of such a level that you can out fight nameless cops,thugs and what have you....
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Quote:
Originally posted by Elena 'Glowbe' Alvarez de la Rosa:

Of course, d20 is total crap and fails miserably for one excellent reason: You could never play Exalted properly on it. :P
You can do Exalted much better than you cna do Abeerant with D20.
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Quote:
Originally posted by Y.T.:
You can do Exalted much better than you cna do Abeerant with D20.
Possibly true, but I don't really play Aberrant except on this forum. However, I play Exalted every other day, and it's even better than sliced bread. And you can't use d20 for it, anyway.

But this isn't a discussion about Exalted.
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I find D20 limiting. I cant do something until I have a feat for it. In D10 I can at least try, its just harder.

And no, you dont roll just one die for everything in D20.

I am swinging a flaming burst longsword. I roll a D20 to see if I hit (and have to calculate modifiers) and then, if I crit, another D20. Then I roll a D8 to find out the damage from the sword and then add a D6 worth of fire damage. If I rolled a critical and confirmed it, I then get to roll a number of D10 dice depending on what the crit modifier is. Since I am attacking an Allip (undead), his hit points are calculated with a number of D12 and those in a 60 foot radius need to roll a savings throw or be affected by a hypnotism effect for 2D4 rounds.

Thats alot of dice to me. Plus keeping track of ALOT of numbers. I like D&D for some things but "Just one die" is a myth. D&D does not lend its hand to simplicity, particularly on the part of a DM.

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Elena and YT, your words make much sense.

In fact these are the reasons I finally dropped D20 for Aberrant (that and the fact converting all this D10 stuff to D20 was pretty boring smile )

I don't like megasocialites who need to have a very high level (and the assorted Attack Bonus) to be good.

Moreover, I think the Aberrant setting (and more generally speaking, a Superheroic setting) doesn't need to get TOO precise, but I already wrote this before smile

I use to play with miniatures even with D10 rules, it's useless but painting models is so cool ... I use heroclix figs also smile

Lemmy, if you're a gorgeous 20 years old lady IRL, might be the beginning of a GREAT lovestory smile

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  • 6 months later...

Flexibility, flexibility, flexibility. If there's one reason that's kept me choosing the Storyteller system games like Aberrant over the d20 games, it's the ability to make snap judgements and combinations on the fly. My favorite is an Exalted game roll in a Sidereal campaign involving Strength+Bureaucracy, but the simple elegance of picking an Attribute and an Ability that fit together in the situation has made running Storyteller games vastly simpler and more enjoyable for me than the more thorough, binding rule system that d20 operates under.

To put it another way, d20 is an amazing system if you want the mechanical component of your games to run like a science or a computer program. For flexibility and a rules system that mostly stays out of your way until you need to put together a die-roll on the fly? d10, any day.

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