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Old 07-23-2009, 11:03 AM   #7
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Default Re: [supers] [powers] super strength; treat me like I have non-sapient IQ

Johnny, here's how Super ST works. I'm going to keep it simple by assuming that you'll be following the GURPS Supers suggestion of buying ST 20 + Super ST. (It's a good suggestion -- if you use it for everyone with Super ST, their relative "normal STs" are properly balanced against each other.)


To build a brick, first you buy your ST up to 20, which costs 100 points (minus any discounts for Size and other limitations, of course). This is just normal ST, like you'd buy for any character, at 10 points/level.

Then you add extra ST with the Super-Effort enhancement. Because this is a +300% enhancement, the ST ends up costing 40 points/level (minus any discounts for Size and other limitations, of course). That's really expensive, so you don't want to buy Super ST for anyone who isn't going to be a serious powerhouse. (As a rule, if you're not willing to drop about 400+ points into ST, don't bother with Super ST.)

Let's take some examples. Moxie buys ST 20 [100] and then ST +10 (Super-Effort, +300%) [400]. That's ten levels of normal ST for 100 points, and then ten more levels of Super ST for 400 points, for a total of 500 points.

On the bad guy front, Grak is super-strong, but if someone nullifies his powers, he's only ST 10. So he buys ST 20 (Super, -10%) [90] and then ST +11 (Super, -10%; Super-Effort, +300%) [429]. That's ten levels of normal ST for 90 points, and then eleven more levels of Super ST for 429 points, for a total of 519 points. He's stronger than Moxie, but if you hit him with Neutralize (Super), he goes right back to ST 10.

Now, that extra ST that we added can be used two ways. Most of the time, it's just treated like regular ST. So Moxie normally has ST 30, his normal ST 20 plus the extra +10, as seen above. And Grak normally has ST 31.

But both have serious "reserves" of ST that they can call upon. You find the value of this "reserve" by using the Size and Speed/Range table on p. B550. Why that table? Because it's a handy example of what we call a "logarithmic progression" -- notice how every +6 to the size column translates to exactly x10 to range. This makes for a smooth progression that gets bigger faster as you move along the table.

Anyway, you get the reserve ST (or "super ST") by looking up your Super ST on the Size column of the table. So Moxie has Super ST +10, right? Look at the listing for Size +10, then look over to the "yards" column. See how it says "100 yards"? That means Moxie has a reserve of +100 ST. And Grak has a reserve of +150 ST. It has nothing to do with actual yards, mind you -- we're just using this table because all of the complex logarithm math is already done for us.

That's where the numbers come from. Moxie will actually list his Super-ST as "ST +10/+100", to show that it's normally +10, but it can be raised as high as +100 when necessary. And Grak writes "ST +11/+150", for the same reason.

So when do you use the higher ST? Whenever you want, but it costs you 1 FP per use. That's 1 FP per punch, 1 FP per lift, 1 FP per throw, etc. When you do this, you use the higher value for your extra ST.

So let's say Moxie is trying to kick down a door. He has ST 20 and +10 extra ST, for ST 30 (as we calculated, above). So he kicks the door for 3d damage. It should fly open, but the "CLANG!" tells him that it's actually an armored, reinforced door! So he pays 1 FP to kick with Super ST instead. Now he has ST 20 and +100 extra ST, for ST 120 total. (Note that the +100 replaces the +10, it doesn't add to it.) Now when he kicks the door, he does 13d damage, easily knocking it in.

If Moxie and Grak are wrestling on the street, they'll normally use ST 30 (Moxie) against ST 31 (Grak). But if they start taking it seriously enough to use super strength, both can pay 1 FP and now it's a contest of ST 120 (Moxie) against ST 170 (Grak).

Is that more clear?

Now for one last bit of advice: Make sure you understand the above, and you know where the math comes from and what it means. Once you've got it down, you can skip it. Just open GURPS Supers to p. 146 and use the table there. The first six columns (but not the last two!) are explicitly for super strength. See how Moxie's ST is represented with Base Value 10 (because he bought +10 Super ST) and Grak is the same as Base Value 11 (because he bought +11 Super ST). If you make sure that all of your bricks buy ST 20 normally, and then add Super ST on top of that, you've got all of the work already done for you by a Mr. William Stoddard, right there.
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