Distinctive features as a rules system

Distinctive features as a rules system
DC Heroes’ design was distinctive, and was further refined by a second and third edition. Remarkably, most of these features from 1989 would not be out of place in a modern game. Some of its notable features are:

  • A unified scale (“ Attribute Points ” or APs) measuring weight, distance, time, volume, money and information. This allows for quickly evaluating the feasibility and impact of many actions, even at non-intuitive scales. For instance, your Strength in APs minus the weight of an object in APs is the APs of distance you can throw that object.
  • An exponential progression of Attributes Points — a score of 4 corresponds to twice the quantity of a score of 3, a score of 5 is twice as good as a score of 4 and thus four times as good as score of 3, etc. This rapid progression is a sweet spot to handle both Superman and Jimmy Olsen without using huge numbers, but without drowning the differences between characters.
  • A 3×3 grid of physical, mental and mystical/social character stats expressing precision, force and resilience in each area.
  • Action resolution based on 2d10 (re-rolling doubles) and two universal tables.
  • A list of broad Advantages, Drawbacks and Skills that covers most characters very well without being too expensive
  • A lengthy list of Powers describing concrete effects rather than abstract game concepts, and with a streamlined depiction of super-speed.
  • A system of Hero Points spent by characters to enhance their actions. This very important feature of the systems expresses endurance, willpower, narrative immunity, luck… see this article for an in-depth discussion of HPs in DC Heroes.
  • A simple system of Subplots formalizing character(s)-specific stories that run parallel to the main intrigue — romance, secret identity problems, day job matters, mysterious pasts, power complications, good or bad luck, public image problems…
  • A simple system of Genre to change the texture of the game system depending upon whether you‘re telling silly Silver Age stories or gritty Iron Age stories.
  • Technological ( Technology and magical Magic ) inventions, social conflict, special tactics and combat maneuvers, improvised one-off use of powers, and other less distinctive subsystem.

Source info from writeups.org

Distinctive features as a rules system

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