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Aberrant RPG - Aggro claws

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In the case of the latest d20 versions, though, the effect of strength is pretty negligible. IIRC, at most +5, compared to at least, what, 3d8 damage and up? The rest of the modifiers you imply are either skill or force related; in this context, the equivalent of upping the quantum rating, base dice, or number of average sux achieved.

That said, I'd be halfway inclined to just treat a lightsaber as somewhere abouts +10L melee, just like the whipsword in Aberrant. Combine that with 4-5 Str and plenty of extra sux, and your looking at upward of 20L total. . . which against almost everything I can remember getting cut in Star Wars, is probably more than enough to cover the "casual slicing."

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one possible interpretation of Agg+Claws would be "acid fingers" ...it would be the acidic fingers causing the Agg damage, not the arm or hand behind those fingers. That's fine as far as it goes, and if I'm playing a character with this power and I reach out and pat someone on the back with these fingers then I have no argument, but if this same character also has M.Str 5 and I decide that he's going to form his hand into a knife fist and slam those fingers into his enemy's torso with all his strength then - speaking purely from a realistic point of view - my character is going to be doing a lot more than (Q. + Sux) damage (or whatever). Why? Precisely because he's using his full strength!

The problem is you already admitted the acid does a certain (limited) amount of damage, then you went on to describe a second attack (Mega-Strength) which also does damage. You aren’t claiming that the acid does more damage because of the Mega-Strength, you’re just claiming the *attack* should do more.

What you have described is two linked attacks. If someone is totally impervious to acid, but still can take damage from shear brute force, then he should take damage from the later. If someone is impervious to shear brute force, but still can be affected by Agg attacks, then he will be.

Assuming the ST permits (I wouldn’t, but that’s because I don’t like linked attacks), you could define that as {Claws linked to Claws+Agg.}

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The problem is you already admitted the acid does a certain (limited) amount of damage, then you went on to describe a second attack (Mega-Strength) which also does damage. You aren’t claiming that the acid does more damage because of the Mega-Strength, you’re just claiming the *attack* should do more.

Yeah, that's pretty much what I'm saying. Although I'm not saying that I have a definite solution to the problem (unfortunately), it's just that I really, really don't like the rules for applying Agg (as they stand) when applied to Claws. The more I look at it, the less sense it makes. I mean, the basis of this power is that your character strikes out at his opponents with his fists/fingers/feet/whatever and it does something more than the usual bashing damage, but that damage is still based - or at least enhanced - by the force of your character's blow. It doesn't matter that your character has basic Claws, he or she still does Str+Claws damage in lethal dice. Not because this is a "balanced effect", but because when you take a swing at someone with a sword or knife or what-have-you, the brute force with which you swing that sword has everything to do with how much damage you end up doing with that swing. Why does it have to be different for Agg?

Let's look at this from a different angle for a moment: Let's say you've got an extroardinarily sharp knife - not the Claws power mind you, just a knife. Now, if a skilled user such as a butcher took this razor sharp knife they could "casually" carve all the meat right off any animal (and presumably a human as well). If we look at this sort of thing as an attack, then I think it would be fair to say that slowly carving a couple pounds of flesh out of someone's stomach is at least as damaging (and possibly more so) that a powerful slashing or stabbing attack using that same knife, but the user isn't depending on their strength at all, just the sharpness of the blade. Now, considering that it's possible to inflict the same or more damage with a lethal attack without relying on strength at all, does that mean that we should disallow the use of Str or M.Str with the basic Claws power? No? Then why do we have to do so with the Agg version?

Just saying that it's not balanced and strength needs to be taken out of the equation doesn't do it for me because, while I certainly agree that M.Str 5+Claws+Agg is pretty ridiculous and almost certainly overkill, that still doesn't solve the underlying brokeness of the Agg extra. And this is really where my problem lies, not with the Claws power and how it works, but with the lame cop-out of an excuse for an extra they left us with. It's so generic, and the wording just confuses. Look at Mental Blast+Agg, possessed by Anna Devries. In the basic version you roll Int+Mental Blast vs. opponent's WP, and your net successes equal the amount of bashing damage you do. But if you apply the Agg extra exactly as stated in the core book, then you get to add your Q rating in automatic successes to that damage, and it's all Aggravated!

Wait, what!? ::ohmy

I thought aggravated attacks were supposed to be a trade-off of less points of damage per attack, but with damage that punches through most normal attacks, thus "balancing things out"? But this looks an aweful lot like I just got a whole lot more bang for my buck! So what's going on here? ::ohmy ::glare ::angry

Now let's go back to the case of Claws+Agg. The Agg extra states that "when applied to a power that causes bashing or lethal damage, makes that damage aggravated". But, rather unfortunately, the Claws power states that "when used in close combat, Claws convert the bashing damage caused by the character's normal punches and strikes into lethal damage. Furthermore (emphasis added by poster), the character may roll one exra damage die per dot he has in Claws." So here's the real problem: the Agg extra converts the damage from another power into aggravated damage, but the Claws power converts damage done by fists/feet into lethal damage. Agg is converting the damage from Claws into aggravated damage, but claws is converting the damage from "normal punches and strikes" into lethal damage - they're both operating on the principal of converting outside resources (in this case damaging effects) into something more refined or efficient. Bashing vs. Lethal, Lethal vs. Aggravated. Neither power is doing any damage on it's own, instead both are refining and adding to the base damage done by the underlying power or attack (Claws adds its rating in extra die while Agg adds Q levels of successes), which in this case is....(dramatic drum roll inserted here)...."the bashing damage caused by the character's normal puches and strikes"!! I can lay this out in a mathematical equation if you like, but the results still look the same...

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*points up a bunch of posts*

This is why I basically rework it from scratch.

Btw, since Mental Blast seems on the weak side, I'd suggest changing it so the normal version adds quantum to the number of levels bashing damage done. . .

( perhaps there should be a "lethal" adder that converts otherwise bashing attacks to lethal damage first, and make it so Agg can only be applied to an already lethal attack? )

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…I really, really don't like the rules for applying Agg (as they stand) when applied to Claws. The more I look at it, the less sense it makes. I mean, the basis of this power is that your character strikes out at his opponents with his fists/fingers/feet/whatever and it does something more than the usual bashing damage, but that damage is still based - or at least enhanced - by the force of your character's blow.
That’s most of the problem right there. Aggravated by definition represents total tissue destruction and is therefore not an *effect* that stacks with Strength. Slap AGG on Claws and you don’t have a Strength based attack anymore, so you are actually shutting down most of what Claws does.

Further, Claws + Agg needed to get nerf’ed is because it’s a level 1 power that does 1 die of damage on it’s own, and (more importantly) there are already supposedly more powerful Agg attacks out there that already fill any nitch you might want to give it. Claws+Agg+Ranged is a Q-min 1 power and should be totally out classed by Disintegration. For that matter Claws+Agg should be outclassed by Immolate + Agg.

Btw, since Mental Blast seems on the weak side, I'd suggest changing it so the normal version adds quantum to the number of levels bashing damage done. . .

( perhaps there should be a "lethal" adder that converts otherwise bashing attacks to lethal damage first, and make it so Agg can only be applied to an already lethal attack? )

The lethal adder wouldn’t help since that would be an extra you couldn’t take with Aggravated, and Agg already works with Bashing.

As for it needing an upgrade, it’s an resisted undodgeable ranged Intelligence based source of damage that can even be used through Telepathy + Channeling. Even without the Aggravated extra (which make the damage Agg and adds [Q] succ), it’s already pretty special.

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That’s most of the problem right there. Aggravated by definition represents total tissue destruction and is therefore not an *effect* that stacks with Strength. Slap AGG on Claws and you don’t have a Strength based attack anymore, so you are actually shutting down most of what Claws does.

Actually, in that case, you're shutting down all of what Claws does. I'll put it down in quotes for you again: "Claws convert the bashing damage caused by the character's normal punches and strikes into lethal damage." True, Claws also adds extra damage die based on the character's level, but so does Agg add damage successes based on the character's Quantum, why does Agg overide? The point I was making in my previous post is that, while Claws is a power and Agg is an extra, they are essentially doing *exactly* the same thing - converting one kind of damage into another. That's all either of them do; convert damage and add a little extra punch while they're at it. What you're saying is that in putting Agg on Claws I negate the effect of Claws and turn Agg into some kind of new power, and this makes even less sense to me.

Further, Claws + Agg needed to get nerf’ed is because it’s a level 1 power that does 1 die of damage on it’s own, and (more importantly) there are already supposedly more powerful Agg attacks out there that already fill any nitch you might want to give it. Claws+Agg+Ranged is a Q-min 1 power and should be totally out classed by Disintegration. For that matter Claws+Agg should be outclassed by Immolate + Agg.

Now here's the funny part. Technically, I totally agree with you Alex. The way it's listed Claws+Agg sucks and I would never allow it as an ST. In fact, the way I came to the conclusion that it was broken was as a player; I wanted to put Claws+Agg on my character but didn't after reading the rules and realizing how broken they were - I didn't even bother consulting my ST, I just made the call myself. What I don't like is just "nerfing" Claws and leaving it at that when the Agg extra pretty much sucks for every other power as well. In fact I think the only one it seems all that balanced or well written for is Immolate (and that has it's own special description in the power listing). But let's not forget that someone with Immolate who strikes out at someone still does their normal striking damage, they just get to add the damage from Immolate on top of that (check the rules, that's what it says). Claws might be just a Q1 L1 power, but unlike Immolate only the character's hands (and possibly) feet do damage, and unlike Q-Bolt it's is touch only. So if we're going to disallow the Agg extra from working the way it says it works with Claws, then we should at least allow the character to still do their bashing damage "underneath" whatever amount of Agg damage the attack does. And no, this doesn't put it in the same category as Immolate, let alone outclass it. Immolate does damage whether the nova attacks their opponent or whether their opponent attacks them (assuming its close combat), Claws only works when the nova attacks their opponent - and *only* when they attack with hands/feet - an attack with the elbow, head, or knee doesn't benefit as it would with Immolate.

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Key word being "resisted", which more or less makes up for the 'undodgeable.'

My main problem is, its totally outclassed by its defensive counterpart. Even ignoring the ( incorrect and massively broken, IMHO ) interpretation that Psychic Shield provides both resistance sux and soak against it, 5 dots of Psychic Shield ( a L1 power ) will reduce 5 dots of Mental Blast ( an L2 power ) to ping damage at best, even if comboed with Mega Int 5. And unlike Strobe/Sensory Shield, Mental Blast *does* have a resistance roll, so you don't even get free and clear shots on people lacking the defensive quantum power.

And while you can use it through Telepathic Channeling, then you do run into double defense, as the Psychic Shield protects against both the Telepathy and the Mental Blast.

Basically, Mental Blast currently compares poorly with the other offensive mental powers like Dominate and Mirage ( which have the same sux comparisons, but only needs 3 net sux to get a fight-ending level of effect, at most, and lasts more than a single turn to boot ).

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My main problem is, its totally outclassed by its defensive counterpart. Even ignoring the ( incorrect and massively broken, IMHO ) interpretation that Psychic Shield provides both resistance sux and soak against it, 5 dots of Psychic Shield ( a L1 power ) will reduce 5 dots of Mental Blast ( an L2 power ) to ping damage at best, even if comboed with Mega Int 5. And unlike Strobe/Sensory Shield, Mental Blast *does* have a resistance roll, so you don't even get free and clear shots on people lacking the defensive quantum power.
ALL of the specialty attacks are shut down by 3-ish nova points in the appropriate defense. Suffocation. Strobe. Mental attacks. Ambush. Etc. I think I counted once and there were eight examples. And you get the bulk of your attack with one dot while the defense needs more.
Basically, Mental Blast currently compares poorly with the other offensive mental powers like Dominate and Mirage ( which have the same sux comparisons, but only needs 3 net sux to get a fight-ending level of effect, at most, and lasts more than a single turn to boot ).
MB can be used to kill people and has no “use” issues. Dominate has issues with it’s use (like needing a common language), etc.
What you're saying is that in putting Agg on Claws I negate the effect of Claws and turn Agg into some kind of new power, and this makes even less sense to me.
Actually the book says outright that putting an extra on a power makes it a new power.

Unlike peanut butter and chocolate, everything doesn’t go well together and this is one of them. You have a “pumps strength attack” power being given an extra that doesn’t allow strength damage.

And the heck of it is, it’s *still* potentially a nasty power. It’s a level 2 power maintenance power that does Agg, which means you can put yet another extra on that, and do insane things with your up to 5 dice of aggravated. Even with the errata, it’s still possible to make it broken.

Burning gives you a maintenance power that does 21 dice of Agg. Area makes your attack unblockable, undodgable, and seriously broken. Either or both of them can be used as multiple actions and thus many times per combat round. Let’s try comparing that to the other Q-min 1 powers.

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Unlike peanut butter and chocolate, everything doesn’t go well together and this is one of them. You have a “pumps strength attack” power being given an extra that doesn’t allow strength damage.

And the heck of it is, it’s *still* potentially a nasty power. It’s a level 2 power maintenance power that does Agg, which means you can put yet another extra on that, and do insane things with your up to 5 dice of aggravated. Even with the errata, it’s still possible to make it broken.

Burning gives you a maintenance power that does 21 dice of Agg. Area makes your attack unblockable, undodgable, and seriously broken. Either or both of them can be used as multiple actions and thus many times per combat round. Let’s try comparing that to the other Q-min 1 powers.

Once again I totally agree with you as far as the "it's broken" part goes (though I still don't see taking Strength out of the equation unless you also think Intelligence needs to be taken out of the M.Blast example). Personally, as it's listed, I just wouldn't even allow the Agg extra for Claws (or most other powers for that matter), at least not until or unless I could come up with a more realistic system for expressing it.

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Claws is (at best) Dex based, not strength based. Claws adds to HTH attacks, but Strength does NOT add to Claw damage.

Meaning that no matter how high your strength, the power Claws is still doing just 1 die per dot.

If you want to make Claws into a serious attack power by itself, you're welcome to... but you also have to forgo the Strength because you're not really doing normal HTH attacks any more.

For example: Claws + Ranged would do 1d per dot at a range. Claws + Area would do 1d per dot with an area.

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Claws is (at best) Dex based, not strength based. Claws adds to HTH attacks, but Strength does NOT add to Claw damage.

Meaning that no matter how high your strength, the power Claws is still doing just 1 die per dot.

If you want to make Claws into a serious attack power by itself, you're welcome to... but you also have to forgo the Strength because you're not really doing normal HTH attacks any more.

For example: Claws + Ranged would do 1d per dot at a range. Claws + Area would do 1d per dot with an area.

Actually, the Kinetic Discharge extra is a ranged version of the Claws power, and it's a pretty good one precisely because I get to add my Str. to the damage.

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Actually, the Kinetic Discharge extra is a ranged version of the Claws power, and it's a pretty good one precisely because I get to add my Str. to the damage.
Other way around.

Mega-Strength can throw things. KD allows you to add Claws to the things you can already do ranged. You can also add (dots in claws) to things like bullets and melee weapons.

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Actually Claws are sorta both Str- and Dex-based. As a melee attack, Dex+Brawling (or Martial Arts) successes beyond those needed to hit add to damage. Also, they modify punch damage so that it goes from bashing to lethal, with +1 die/point in Claws. So, a Str 4/Mega-Str 3 character with Claws 3 starts with (4d10+3d10+2d10 (for the maneuver)+[15]=) 9d10[15] lethal damage, instead of 6d10[15] bashing. And, yes, anything that affects Strength or Dex affects that damage.

The part that makes Claws a nice power is that it changes one damage to another, with a little extra damage. That's all it needs really. As for ranged, Kinetic Discharge does that well, as long as you have a weapon you can use. Otherwise, if you are looking at a better damaging power, just use Q-bolt...

Oh, and M-blast is scary....especially with Aggravated attached to it...

BTW: Where is the errata (page number) for Claws in the APG? Thanks!

FR

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So....what was it?

FR

It's been a looong time since I read it, but as I recall it said you got to use your rating in Claws as dice to determine aggravated damage successes. No adding strength, no adding Quantum in auto-successes. I find it rather telling that it never made it into the APG, and was in fact pretty much the only part of that errata that didn't.

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Claws, page 186

Add to Extras: Aggravated Damage (User inflicts Claws dice of aggravated damage, and may add one die to the damage total per extra success, maximum five additional dice. Do not add Strength to the damage roll).

RE: Errata

There was one other piece that only partly made it in (meaning I strongly suspect it, unlike claws, was delibrately left out). Basically Shockwave and Thunderclap were bumped to Mega-Str x5 dice in damage (and Crush couldn't make it lethal). What made it into the APG was only the part about crush not working in combo. Basically the problem with Thunderclap's errata is it's much worse than the original problem, especially considering hypermovement allows an area Thunderclap 'wake'.

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Oh, definitely agree, as originally written, Thunderclap and Shockwave were useless. As for Hypermovement, by inclination is to solve the matter by getting rid of the sonic boom. If a nova wants to be able to generate sonic booms, buy the Explosion extra for Hypermovement ( sort of like what Zulu-Tango did ).

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That probably wasn't enough of a comment. OK, as is, with enough Mega-Strength Shockwave....

1) Does damage outright to baselines, not much, but not only is it ping damage but it's area mega-ping damage.

2) Knocks everyone over. It takes a half action to get up, and baselines likely take another ping attack. So that's an average of 1.5 levels of bashing damage to baselines over a pretty wide area, although it's actually going to run from 0 to 4 health levels.

3) Knocks over most buildings because you're doing an area mega-strength attack to their foundations.

Point #3 is especially strong since it lets you re-create 9-11 whenever you want.

Make the damage Mega-Strength x5 and it's way too strong. 25 dice of area bashing damage on top of everything else listed.

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Just to clarify one last time: I fully agree with Alex Green and those others who say that you shouldn't be able to just do a straight Str+Claws roll to determine your aggravated damage. As soon as you throw M.Str into the mix this becomes extremely twinkish/munchkinish/whateverish. But I don't agree with this because I think that aggravated would always exclude Str. damage. I just happen to think that other problems in the existing rules, such as the extremely crappy rules for the Agg extra itself and the over the top auto-successes that M.Str provides, make allowing a character to add his/her Str./M.Str into the mix a very dangerous idea. I mean sure, you've gotta spend all those nova/exp points to get your M.Str up to level five and that is worth considering, but you don't have to spend much (relatively speaking) to get all five dots in a L2 Maintenance power that (assuming you have M.Str 5) is doing a minimum of 25 levels of aggravated damage per attack. WWAAAAYYY too much for so little effort IMHO.

What I don't like - and the reason I've been posting on this thread - is the Agg extra itself. It's essentially useless, and it causes more problems than it even begins to address. The only one it's semi-suited for is Q.Bolt and even then it just represents (to me at least) a cheap cop-out way of getting your (slightly weaker) Disintegration power without having to cough up the extra points for getting your Q up to 5 as well. I don't know, maybe I'm being too harsh on it, but personally I think it's the Agg extra that needs a complete rewrite, not the Claws+Agg power.

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Agg Examples:

Claws + Agg (which needed errata).

Disin (no extra)

Mental Blast + Agg (works pretty good).

Poison + Agg (also works pretty good)

Q-Bolt + Agg (needed errata to limit range)

Q-Conversion + Agg (probably should use claws errata)

Immolate + Agg (has own write up).

Basically the Agg extra exists for

1) Power-maxes

2) Q6 gods.

3) Mental Blast & Poison

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Agg Examples:

Claws + Agg (which needed errata).

Disin (no extra)

Mental Blast + Agg (works pretty good).

Poison + Agg (also works pretty good)

Q-Bolt + Agg (needed errata to limit range)

Q-Conversion + Agg (probably should use claws errata)

Immolate + Agg (has own write up).

Basically the Agg extra exists for

1) Power-maxes

2) Q6 gods.

3) Mental Blast & Poison

Now see, I have to disagree there too. The (works pretty good) examples you gave (M.Blast and Poison) both fly in the face of the standard that WW set for aggravated powers. Which is that they do less damage numbers-wise than their bashing and lethal counterparts. But in the case of both M.Blast and Poison this isn't the case. Poison comes the closest to working correctly, but M.Blast gets a huge boost in damage and that damage is converted to aggravated! I guess I don't see how this (works pretty good) in a balanced way that also stays true to the standard set for the other powers (such as Q.Bolt and Immolate - and Q.Inferno for that matter) where their numbers get reduced in exchange for increased potency.

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Poison is easy. You lose a ton of versatility in exchange for a big increase in lethality.

Mental Blast… is harder to defend. One argument is the power itself is underpowered, i.e. that it should also have Q autosucc as part of the power. However the nature of the beast (Willpower resisted direct damage that works over Telepathy + Channeling and is backed by Intelligence) implies that isn’t the case.

Another argument is that it’s a horror of an attack that you shouldn’t use unless you want the target dead, which limits it’s usefulness.

Not sure, it’s existence doesn’t unbalance the game, but it’s definitely an aberration, and the ST would be *well* within his rights to not allow it's use by PCs. In a way it's a power written for an NPC.

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That, honestly, is an argument I wouldn't buy easily. IMO, any power or construct thats allowed in the setting should, theoretically, be allowable to the PCs.

I say that "theoretically," because there are issues of game balance. However, the justification should be more involved than "This is an NPC Only Power."

For example, in the campaign I'm in, none of the players can buy Armor Piercing. This, however, is because the GM has eliminated AP from the setting, period.

OTOH, known of the players can buy Agg attacks, either. This is because, while agg exists, it is exceedingly rare and potent ( as is the defenses ). As such, it is, for all intents and purposes, a Q6 only power.

Beyond that, I don't believe any standard power is forbidden the PCs.

More generally, if the GM doesn't want to deal with, say, Telepathy, the proper answer isn't "this is an NPC only power," but "this is a power I don't particularly want to have available to the party for various reasons, so, could everyone build concepts other than telepaths?"

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Poison is easy. You lose a ton of versatility in exchange for a big increase in lethality.

Mental Blast… is harder to defend. One argument is the power itself is underpowered, i.e. that it should also have Q autosucc as part of the power. However the nature of the beast (Willpower resisted direct damage that works over Telepathy + Channeling and is backed by Intelligence) implies that isn’t the case.

Another argument is that it’s a horror of an attack that you shouldn’t use unless you want the target dead, which limits it’s usefulness.

Not sure, it’s existence doesn’t unbalance the game, but it’s definitely an aberration, and the ST would be *well* within his rights to not allow it's use by PCs. In a way it's a power written for an NPC.

Hmm... Y'know? I never thought about the loss of versatility when putting Agg on Poison. Really good point there, Alex. I gotta give that one to you. And actually, I agree with everything else in your post as well. Right down to M.Blast+Agg being somewhat of an NPC power (I've always thought that, even before I got the Elites book). Though as an ST, I wouldn't necassarily ban its use, I just wouldn't allow it without a really good character concept.

Just to double check though; am I really the only one who thinks that the generic Aggravated Extra (even with the errata in the APG) is just not that good? I mean so far we're only looking at one power (Poison) for which it really works well, and even there it's little more than a touch-only version of Disintegrate with a low Q cost. I'm not including Immolate because it has it's own version which I think works best of all. Also, regarding the Claws+Agg, I still kind of think it would work to allow the bashing damage from strikes and punches "underneath" the aggravated damage as this is what Immolate does and no one has any problem with how that works. I don't know though, is there some balance issue there that I'm just not seeing?

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I agree, pretty much. Aggravated is an extra that works considerably different ways depending on the power.

A suggested solution: instead of having Aggravated as an extra, have Aggravated Attack as a power, with several different purchasable configurations. Thus, you can define how melee, ranged, mental, toxin-based, and such all at once. Not quite the standard way powers are defined, but meh.

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...(Poison) for which it really works well, and even there it's little more than a touch-only version of Disintegrate with a low Q cost.

RE: Poison + Agg

Still wouldn't damage non-living creatures since poison doesn't work on walls and the like. Would still have a delay and prolonged effect.

am I really the only one who thinks that the generic Aggravated Extra (even with the errata in the APG) is just not that good?

Poison. Q-Bolt (Disin is much better if you have Q5). Mental Blast is almost too powerful but that's an ST thing. Powermax.

Didn't work for: Claws, Immolate (but this was known).

So basically it's 3 out of 4.

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Poison. Q-Bolt (Disin is much better if you have Q5). Mental Blast is almost too powerful but that's an ST thing. Powermax.

Didn't work for: Claws, Immolate (but this was known).

So basically it's 3 out of 4.

Oh sure Alex, just toe the party line, just Toe the party line! I see how it is! ::wink ::biggrin Well, I guess we're all entitled to our own opinions. And seeing how I don't, even after thinking about it for a while, have an alternative suggestion for an Agg rewrite I'll just leave the rest of you to it. Have at 'em Alex! ::cool

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After some more thought on this topic, this is the version I am going to offer to my occasional-weekend-group:

Putting the Aggravated extra on Claws changes all hand-to-hand damage in combat. Instead of changing all bashing damage to lethal, hand-to-hand attacks instead inflict one level of Aggravated per dor of Mega-Strength, plus one die of Aggravated for each dot in Strength and Claws, and extra successes left over from the attack roll. Damage dice from special maneuvers (targeting, hyperspeed strikes, rapid strike, etc) add as Aggravated damage. The Crush Enhancement cannot be used in tandem with Claws (Aggravated).

So, maxed out, you'd have [5]+15dA damage without the special stuff, and even then I don't think it gets up to [5]+25A at best.. It's still easier to get enough soak up to reduce that to ping, but it allows for applying Strength (in a limited manner). That's more damage than Disintigrate 5, but it would also cost you far more in NP/XP to acquire. (Q5+Dis5 v. Q4+M-Str5+M-Dex5+Claws5)

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The problem with your idea, is that it isn't far more expensive than Disintegrate. Sure, you need to buy up Mega Strength to get the real oomph. . . but you can do it at lower Quantum. In particular, at Quantum 1, you can take Str 5, Mega Str 2, Claws ( Agg ) 1, and be doing 6[2] + Sux agg damage. With a maintenance power usable multiple times per turn. That only costs 10 NP, all told, with more than half of that going into Mega Strength that has other usages.

Even assuming a Quantum of 5, for the same nova points, you could buy Disintegrate 5, *or* Claws ( Agg ) 4 and Mega Strength 4. The latter does about as much damage, is a maintenance power, can be used multiple times per turn, and Mega Strength has other usages.

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The problem with your idea, is that it isn't far more expensive than Disintegrate. Sure, you need to buy up Mega Strength to get the real oomph. . . but you can do it at lower Quantum. In particular, at Quantum 1, you can take Str 5, Mega Str 2, Claws ( Agg ) 1, and be doing 6[2] + Sux agg damage. With a maintenance power usable multiple times per turn. That only costs 10 NP, all told, with more than half of that going into Mega Strength that has other usages.

Even assuming a Quantum of 5, for the same nova points, you could buy Disintegrate 5, *or* Claws ( Agg ) 4 and Mega Strength 4. The latter does about as much damage, is a maintenance power, can be used multiple times per turn, and Mega Strength has other usages.

Perhaps. For a single dot, sure it's cheaper, although I still don't think it's bad enough to break it. But I'm going to run with this and see how it works. If it does turn out to be terribly broken, I'll scrap this and go without the Mega-Strength on it. Or simply turn it around against them. ::devil

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Call me skeptical, but I've grown increasingly unhappy with the very idea of maintenance powers doing agg damage. The underlying dynamic is, either the target has agg defense, or they don't. If they don't have the defense, they die when they get hit, and if they do have the defense, even Disintegrate 5 won't do anything ( barring the unlikely case of "Low lethal soak + Hardbody" ). So, the fact that agg claws and immolate don't do as much raw damage as Disintegrate really doesn't act as sufficient balance against their ability to strike multiple times a turn cheaply.

I mean, looking at it like this: Disintegrate 5 basically means once a turn, for 3 qp, you can make any target within range die, if they don't fully dodge. For the same price, but requiring less Quantum prereq, you can get Immolate ( Agg ) 5, which. . . lets you basically kill as many targets in melee range as you can hit, per turn, plus any person that strikes you in melee. And only paying 3 qp for every 7+ turns.

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I didn't read through the whole thread, but on the argument between Cottus and Alex on whether or not an aggravated-type attack could receive a bonus from strength, here's my take on it, using the example of acid as an aggravated attack. Being splashed by a powerful acid is going to burn off your clothes, the outer layer of any body armor or similar protective equipment, and some skin. Being hit by the same acid coming out of a fire hose is going to create a very large hole where the spray hits and burn off quite a bit of skin around it as the acid splashes. If someone with very little strength slaps you with acid fingers, it's going to burn the skin off your face, sure, but that's it. If someone with mega-strength hits you with an acid fist with the force of an 18 wheeler behind it, you're not going to have a head left. It's not even just a matter of being hit with the acid, and then being hit by a powerful bashing force as Cottus is putting it, it's a matter of the acid being pushed into you at greater force, causing it to go much deeper and tear through you more.

If there's no way to make the extra account for strength without unbalancing it, it probably shouldn't be allowed, or should require a new power instead of a power with an extra.

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That kind of effect is really two separate damage mechanisms, the acid burning and the fist-through-face, though. The fact that your acid is burning the guy's face, isn't making the fist damage chemical.

The best way to produce this effect is via an Immolate for the acid, so you can punch somebody for raw damage and do burning too. Stick limits on it so the Immolate only applies when you punch or grab someone, and your good to go. Might even reduce the base Immolate to a level 1 power ( before applying agg ).

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Like I said - this is just the version I'm going to try. If it turns out to be too strong, then I'll nerf it further. I have already used this on an NPC against the party; the NPC however did not have mega-strength. All but one PC in the party has Regeneration (the newest one), and the NPC novas they've had to face in combat have also had Regen, so it's not going to be something overwhelming as an attack, unless someone manages the one-shot kill.

It's much harder coming up with good justification to give antagonist NPCs dots in Psychic Shield so that the Surrepitious Telepathy can't walk all over him. ::laugh

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If someone with mega-strength hits you with an acid fist with the force of an 18 wheeler behind it, you're not going to have a head left. It's not even just a matter of being hit with the acid, and then being hit by a powerful bashing force as Cottus is putting it, it's a matter of the acid being pushed into you at greater force, causing it to go much deeper and tear through you more.

An Acid Fist is a good example on why they shouldn't stack. In the above example the acid does *no* extra damage at all, the entire damage is in the strength effect. I'm a 50 soak nova without agg defenses. Normally I'd take a die or two from the acid... but because it's on the fist of a Mega-Str 5 nova (which is an effect I'd normally soak totally) I take more damage?

Call me skeptical, but I've grown increasingly unhappy with the very idea of maintenance powers doing agg damage.

That's why it's rare and has other restrictions. Immolate+Agg is a level 3 power and very expensive to get up to the point where you can two punch someone. Claws+Agg (with the errata) doesn't do much damage.

Putting the Aggravated extra on Claws changes all hand-to-hand damage in combat. Instead of changing all bashing damage to lethal, hand-to-hand attacks instead inflict one level of Aggravated per dor of Mega-Strength, plus one die of Aggravated for each dot in Strength and Claws, and extra successes left over from the attack roll. Damage dice from special maneuvers (targeting, hyperspeed strikes, rapid strike, etc) add as Aggravated damage.

M-Str 5 is easy to get, ditto Str 5, so if you implement this broadly (i.e. make it available for the PCs) you're going to find 6[5]+ Agg attacks are cheap, easy, and common. MUCH worse, this is off a level two power. The following all become possible.

Claws+Agg+RQC (use it forever)

Claws+Agg+Ranged (HTH at a distance)

Claws+Agg+Area (grim)

And this is with one dot of power. In comparison [5] for Immolate+Agg is extremely expensive to buy (5 dots of a level 3 power).

Note that even with Errata Claws+Agg+Burning is pretty grim at 5 dots (worse than Disin), it's just that it's so expensive that no one gets it.

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Even with the errata, Claws ( Agg ) 5 is cheap to get, way cheaper than Disintegrate 5. That leaves plenty of points free for supplementing it with Mega Dex, Rapid Strike, and Quickness. For 30 nova points ( which wouldn't even pay for Disintegrate 5, when you include Q min ), you could get the claws, Mega Dex 5, and the free rapid strike enhancement. Now your looking at 10-15 dice agg, per attack, for a cost of only 1 quantum each plus maintenance fees. Or you could take a little less Claws and Mega Dex, and add some Mega Wits and Quickness, for more cost per turn, but multiple attacks.

Or Claws ( Agg, Ranged ), which is *still* cheaper than Disintegrate ( no Q min ), and you can now dish out maintenance agg at range, including multiple attacks and ( IIRC ) Rapid Strike bonuses.

Or the Claws ( Agg, Burning ) you mentioned, which, sure, its expensive to get 5 dots. . . but why bother getting 5 dots, when you can instead get, say, 2 dots, and supplement it with Mega Dex, Mega Wits, Rapid Strike, and Quickness? All of which synergize with the Burning.

The fact that you can do all this stuff with extra actions is just icing on the cake. Even at a high powered level, where Q5 Disintegrate 5 is an easily affordable purchase, you'd be better off getting one of these cheaper Claws tricks. Especially since you can use them with Accelerate Time persistent extra actions.

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