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Old 11-19-2010, 12:34 PM   #31
sir_pudding
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Default Re: [Supers] What's the point of making Mêlée-oriented characters?

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And, well, if your side has, say, 3 offensive characters (and 2 non-offensive) and their side has 5, on average after the shooting stops your side has zero offensive (and 2 non-offensive), their side has 3 offensive.
This why straight-up attrition slugfests are generally a bad idea. On the other hand if you use your 2 defenders to put your 3 offenders in a position that allows them control of the battlefield, then you win.
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Old 11-19-2010, 12:37 PM   #32
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Default Re: [Supers] What's the point of making Mêlée-oriented characters?

So far, no one's touched on grappling and incapacitation.

A brick is an all-purpose tool. A blaster is a rifle. You can't use a rifle to subdue a strong teammate who's being mind-controlled. You can't use a rifle to take down a foe carrying a ton of explosives. The ability to walk up to someone and grab him is amazingly useful, and it's often the fastest way to end a combat. (If you've ever managed to get pinned after a grapple and takedown, you know how there's nothing that says You Lose quite like a pin.)

In addition, there are times when you need to get up close. Say the bad guy stole something, and getting it back is the priority (e.g., a chemical weapon that's about to go off) -- someone needs to be able to take it away from him.

Basically, a brick can do dozens of things, while a blaster can do one thing. That's not to knock blasters -- you need a ranged attack or two in your group! -- just to say that bricks are really important as well.
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Old 11-19-2010, 12:39 PM   #33
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Default Re: [Supers] What's the point of making Mêlée-oriented characters?

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And, well, if your side has, say, 3 offensive characters (and 2 non-offensive) and their side has 5, on average after the shooting stops your side has zero offensive (and 2 non-offensive), their side has 3 offensive.
And three pure-offense guys who can't hit your two guys have lost if, as sir_pudding said, the goal is maneuver and not attrition. Having a purely offensive force that can't stop me from walking in and doing what I need to do isn't that useful. It's why light infantry can just drive past artillery and even armor to blow something up or take a city. The point being that in a combined-arms situation, the side that's all anything generally loses, dollars being equal. A $4 billion army of armor will lose to an army that's, say, $1 billion air cav, $1 billion armor, $1 billion artillery, and $1 billion mech inf.

Getting back to supers, this is why it can be fun to play a zippy ninja, hefty tank, long-ranged blaster, or supporting role (healer, hacker, etc.). Your side will win against unbalanced forces and not lose so easily to balanced ones. Granted, individualist players won't see the goals of their side as important to their fun, but that's not a rules issue . . . that's a personal hangup.
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Old 11-19-2010, 12:46 PM   #34
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Default Re: [Supers] What's the point of making Mêlée-oriented characters?

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And three pure-offense guys who can't hit your two guys have lost if, as sir_pudding said, the goal is maneuver and not attrition.
Generally speaking, the three high offense guys can drop the defense guys, it just takes them a while. As for maneuver, that's only relevant if the defense can do something when they reach the destination. In the end, there needs to be something about the character which compels the opposition to not ignore you; if there isn't, you aren't pulling your weight. That doesn't have to be offense (though that's usually simplest), but letting their firepower wax your firepower, then hunt you down at leisure, is not a winning strategy.
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The point being that in a combined-arms situation, the side that's all anything generally loses, dollars being equal.
Not really relevant; there are no 'all defense, no offense' units in that mix.
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Old 11-19-2010, 01:45 PM   #35
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Default Re: [Supers] What's the point of making Mêlée-oriented characters?

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Generally speaking, the three high offense guys can drop the defense guys, it just takes them a while. As for maneuver, that's only relevant if the defense can do something when they reach the destination. In the end, there needs to be something about the character which compels the opposition to not ignore you; if there isn't, you aren't pulling your weight. That doesn't have to be offense (though that's usually simplest), but letting their firepower wax your firepower, then hunt you down at leisure, is not a winning strategy.
You don't play much in the way of supers, do you, Anthony?

Observations from multiple decades of playing supers games:

Blasters are pre-Madonna’s. They’re pretty and flashy and they expect everyone to bow to their awesomeness. Sure, they can be impressive, but, they’re fragile and they’re of no real strategic use. Tactically, in a small battle, they’re going to win.

Scrappers are reliving their first day in prison. Every fight is “Prison Rules.” You go and find the biggest, meanest, nastiest thing in the fight, that isn’t you and not on your side, and you beat it up. You tie it up and you don’t let it do anything else but focus on you. A large supply of quickly replenishing HP is the ultimate defense.

Tanks are walking walls. Their job is to tie up scads of goons. That’s a strategic role. And, that’s the one that’s going to get the attention of the enemy’s long-range snipers. You go in and keep everyone’s attention off the squishies in the backfield and hope that the scrapper is doing his job.

A well-made blaster can have the ability to take out their foes in a non-lethal manner. Blue Electron has a nice alternative attack power that includes a high-ST bind and all of her attacks include “Side Effect: Stunning” and a couple of “Side Effect: Unconsciousness.”

But, Blue Electron is a single-target girl. She’s got a single AoE, but it’s not really strong enough to do more than slaughter innocent civilians . . . hence she doesn’t use it much. Heartbreaker, the team Scrapper (and person who explained the logic that scrappers are reliving their first day in prison every fight), is much more versatile, and all she has is, as listed above, a large supply of HP that regenerate quickly and some mystically-enhanced martial arts.

Blue Electron has a higher “body count” (they really try not to kill people), but Heartbreaker is usually the one who takes out the high-priority targets. And, a group of guys with AK-47s is pretty worrisome to BE, HB just waltzes up and introduces them to her feet and fists.

And, while BE can immobilize and incapacitate some targets, the threat of HB coming over to trounce them is enough to get some enemies to lay down their weapons.

Scrappers tend to be more effective in a fight because they have more options open to them then "I shoot it, again."
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Old 11-19-2010, 01:56 PM   #36
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Default Re: [Supers] What's the point of making Mêlée-oriented characters?

Using Mark's Blaster, Scrapper and Tank definitions: The Things is the teams's scraper, The Human Touch the Blaster, and The invisible Woman is Heavy Tank (either protecting the team, or encasing the goons in her fields) Where Mr Fantastic is a Light Tank with his Binding attack.
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Old 11-19-2010, 01:56 PM   #37
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Default Re: [Supers] What's the point of making Mêlée-oriented characters?

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In actual play, the most annoying and arguably powerful heroes are this last type. They have stupidly high DX, Basic Speed, Basic Move, Dodge, Extra Attacks, and weapon skills, and spend most of their time not being hit whilst throwing unavoidable Deceptive Attacks many times a turn. If they have Luck and/or are allowed to spend points to convert nasty hits to flesh wounds, they basically just run up and win. Sure, the blaster may get a dozen shots in the interim, but these mostly get dodged or force the bad guys behind cover; even if you allow Deceptive Attack with ranged combat, range and cover penalties eat into it. Once the ninja or swashbuckler gets in the enemy's face, the fight is over, although there may be a delay while the brick lumbers up and does the actual clapping-in-irons part.
And to pile on, the thing about high-DX ninja types is that if the game is TL8 or higher, then a couple of points in Guns means that your obscenely hard-to-hit and sneaky melee sword nickel and dime guy has just picked up something that can do 7-15d damage to the better part of 500-1000yds.

The versatility of high stats, esp ST, DX, and IQ, is hard to overstate.
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Old 11-19-2010, 02:06 PM   #38
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Default Re: [Supers] What's the point of making Mêlée-oriented characters?

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You don't play much in the way of supers, do you, Anthony
Only for twenty years. I have never seen an effective tank that didn't have plenty of offensive power.
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Old 11-19-2010, 02:07 PM   #39
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Default Re: [Supers] What's the point of making Mêlée-oriented characters?

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Not unless that blaster is pays a premium for guided shots. Which increases the price difference on the IA form Melee limitation and the Guided Enhancement.
And this may be cheaper using Imbuements and homing or guided attacks, though the FP cost may be a factor.
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Old 11-19-2010, 02:11 PM   #40
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Default Re: [Supers] What's the point of making Mêlée-oriented characters?

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Blasters are pre-Madonna’s.
If this is intentional, it's hysterical. If it wasn't intentional, it's still darn funny.













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