View Full Version : GURPSify these superpowers/superhero plotline

2017-08-18, 09:40 PM
my dad was absent from my weekly D&D meet up, so i decided after shooting the breeze for a couple hours to do some GURPS. the team wanted something modern themed so i eventually settled on the DC comics world. i don't know much about the DC comics world as i am not really a fan of that, but i had watched part of Suicide Squad a little while before, so that's where i got the idea.

so far i decided on telekinesis and ki powers like in Dragon Ball except more balanced and minus the plasma energy discharges that make no sense. (it does make sense if you have telekinesis to make air balls and the ability to radiate heat, then you could make balls of plasma, but they might be more useful as melee weapons like in Naruto, and certainly would not have the power to destroy planets easily - they would collapse into a black hole before they had that kind of power, i'm guessing.)

for ki powers, i thought of Max Steel as well - his powers are just like what i imagine destructive ki powers (channeling spirit energy) would work like, minus the power of flight. the idea is IF we had a spirit body with certain powers, this is what it might be like. (i also deduced that impressive ki powers plus powerful telekinesis would be God-like, but i'm not letting the players choose multiple powers, just one. or maybe they could choose multiple weaker powers ... whatever sounds cool.)

okay, end rant. you get the idea. this is kind of a cool idea to run with. if i can think of enough, i might run this adventure next week instead of the usual FR campaign setting ones we do.

i like this idea of a superhero type world that's a little bit more gritty ... too much realism could ruin the superhero world i guess. others have probably thought about this more than me, and i would be interested to read your thoughts.

edit: i'm not buying any more GURPs materials unless you guys say they're really good. i thought of pyrokinesis, which was in the movie i mentioned. i only have four players, so i don't need too many .... seeing ghosts like JLH is another one but kind of weak. seeing ghosts plus manipulating electrical fields and telepathy might be cool. be like The Shaman
edit2: now i'm editing like crazy like i do in all my Unity threads lol. if you can think of cool plot lines that would be awesome too. i'm not too great at that ... but i'm good at elaborating on ideas
edit3: so now i guess i have another- be like the Professor in the X-Men. that fits in with this world variant i'm creating. basically a high-powered psion. i'll look at psionics for that. could theme it various ways. could be like a seductive women who combines physical charisma-based manipulation with psionic powers. one of my players might like that.

Yuki Akuma
2017-08-19, 08:32 AM
I can't even begin to dissect what you're actually trying to ask.

But, **** it.

Okay. Ki powers. The way to build these is to generally use the Chi Mastery system, which is somewhat similar to how Psionics works - Chi abilities are bought as advantages with the Chi -10% limitation. The Chi limitation requires the character have Disicplines of Faith (Chi Rituals) [-10] and spends 1d hours a day spent performing ritual actions to center your chi and must pay double for rations to represent a restricted diet. If you fail to perform the ritual actions or eat the wrong food your chi powers fail until you take a day to re-center yourself.

You could also make a custom power modifier tied to a different [-10] disadvantage, if you think it would suit the theme of your world better. Or you could refluff the Psionic power modifier and make Ki-disruption abilities along the same likes as antipsi, although that would feel more like "generic superpowers" to me rather than ki.

Don't forget to make some sort of Ki Talent. I'd suggest 10 points per rank, but if it affects cinematic skills like Power Blow and Flying Leap too it should cost 15 per rank because that's a super broad Talent.

Costs Fatigue is also a good idea to put on big Ki powers to represent it taking a lot of life energy to cast.

Most ki blasts and such would be built using Innate Attack, but ki can also be used to justify all sorts of abilities.

2017-08-19, 07:29 PM
thanks Yuki Akuma! you gave me some ideas about how to do Ki. once (and if) i figure it out i'll probably post here so other people can use it.

i looked more into telekinesis on the internet, and it could be pretty overpowered if you allow microscopic manipulation, so i'll limit it to macroscopic type manipulations.

would pyrokinesis just be the ability to increase the speed of particles in an area (radiate heat) or would there need to be the addition of fuel? just wondering. i guess i could look at the wikipedia page on fire and figure it out.

Dragon Ball was my starting point for ki powers. they use meditation to find their ki ... and i think that's the real world practice as well, though it is debatable whether the real world version of ki is even real (won't get into that as it would require talking about religion). Naruto has some pretty cool powers too but requires me to abandon the facade of realism. i'm thinking from my experience with D&D and roleplaying games that realism does not always make for fun gameplay however ... so i'm undecided about this. you could just use KI, or spirit energy, for everything, and have that as the basis of your superhero world, as you suggested.

i keep on having dreams where i have macroscopic telekinesis ... so i assumed this might have something to do with the spirit world (for me the spirit world is empirical, not a religious idea, but then again i am schizophrenic so believe what you want).

so for powers to choose from i have: telekinesis, pyrokinesis, generic ki powers, The Shaman's powers, and Mind Controller. five powers to choose from and four players. could i lump telekinesis in with pyrokinesis (microscopic manipulation)? pyrokinesis i guess is powerful enough ... kind of boring though, compared to the other ones. and mind controller might be too powerful. any other powers people can think of would be handy therefore, as i think i only have three out of the four i need.

really i should be working on my video game, but Unity's animation system is making me depressed, it's a pain in the butt ... and i'm still recovering from a soda binge i went on three days ago

2017-08-21, 08:22 PM
okay, i have decided there are four powers and several limitations for balance purposes.

there is macroscopic telekinesis that cannot squish peoples' hearts or brains because the person's "spirit"/spirit body/etc. protects their interior organs. still can be used like the jedi power at lower levels (force choke for epicness!), and at higher levels for flight or squishing people into flesh balls etc.

there is pyrokinesis, the ability to heat matter by making the particles move around faster. like macro telekinesis, it cannot be used to turn peoples' brains into char because of the spirit protecting it. still can be used to combust dead or inorganic materials. the ability to slow down matter as well is called cryokinesis and could be an alternative, but i think it is overpowered for this adventure.

there are ki powers, basically like Max Steel's powers minus flight or the armor. these could alternatively be used for healing, but i'd rather not introduce that complexity (though would be a good addition to this 4-person party now that i think about it). can be used to make flesh impervious like superman, can be used for increasing power of blows, and ... that's about it. seems a little weak and inflexible - if anyone has any ideas on how to improve, would have a listening ear.

then there is the Shaman's powers, which are like psionics. telepathy, the ability to interact with spirits, and the ability to manipulate electromagnetic fields. kind of the wild card in this group of superpowers.

also, i have no idea what story could be used for an adventure. if anybody reads comics and could give me ideas, that would be cool. i want a modern setting. i can work to elaborate an idea if i have a starting point. i might look at d20 modern for ideas.

edit: i think i will make the ki power user the healer as well as the melee fighter. makes sense.

2017-08-21, 10:39 PM
You have 4 books in Gurps that could help you define these powers

First you have Chinese Elemental Powers, which is a book about channeling your chi through elemental sorcery, kinda like the last airbender. http://www.sjgames.com/gurps/books/chineseelementalpowers/

Secondly you have Psionic Powers which has Telepathy, mind control, Telekinesis, electrokinesis, pyrokinesis and all that.

Thirdly you have Supers which is just about super powers.

Fourth you have Powers which is a crunch book that allows you to make up whatever power you want to.

As for not investing in any of these products then you can make your own powers. The basic set has a decent section in the advantages chapter how to make powers/advantages.

As for providing idea for the game is pretty hard unless you can provide information on the power level. Else just run something simple.

Dr. Sinister is sending out his minions to rob laboratories to secure the parts he needs for his mind control device so he can take control of key figures in the goverment.

The PC's must squeeze some sleezy underworld NPC's to gain info on the next target of Dr. Sinisters henchmen

The PC's must stop Dr. Sinisters henchmen from raiding the SubTomic Labs and get the Sub-Atomic Coagulator he needs for his mind control device.

The PC's must interrogate one of the henchmen to uncover Dr. Sinisters hideout.

The PC's must confront Dr. Sinister

2017-08-22, 12:06 AM
I highly suggest you obtain a copy of GURPS Supers (https://www.google.com/search?q=gurps+supers+pdf&oq=gurps+supers&aqs=chrome.1.69i57j0l5.4484j0j7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8). All your work is done for you....

2017-08-22, 03:47 PM
I highly suggest you obtain a copy of GURPS Supers (https://www.google.com/search?q=gurps+supers+pdf&oq=gurps+supers&aqs=chrome.1.69i57j0l5.4484j0j7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8). All your work is done for you....

i could do that i guess ... no need to reinvent the wheel. last night i figured out how to do some of it ... i think now i have some momentum, i might as well just finish it myself.

2017-08-22, 11:17 PM
okay. i got most of it besides the actual point costs, which is what i wanted to ask about.

all four powers will be fueled by "spirit energy". spirit energy starts at 10 for everyone and you can assign points to it as if it were an attribute (same point costs as an attribute). it's basically like fatigue in that it lasts for the encounter, and running out doesn't mean you fall unconscious just that you can't use your abilities any more.

1. Macroscopic Telekinesis: Divided into how much mass you can move, how many objects you can move, and how fast you can move them. Uses the Mental (hard) telekinesis skill. Costs spirit energy per mass moved (haven't decided the cost yet) and per speed moved at.

2. Thermokinesis: Can cool or heat matter. Costs spirit energy per magnitude of heat shifted (toward hotter or cooler) and per volume affected.

3. Ki Powers: Can boost strength or natural armor or can heal. Costs spirit energy per strength point boosted for that action (an attack, lifting an object, etc.), and per X points of DR used in defending against attacks that round (or per 1 second). Also costs per N hit points healed using the Mental (hard) heal skill.

4. Shaman Powers: Can do telepathy at will for free - able to detect surface thoughts and mental pictures, and to convey them to a person. Can talk with the dead like J.L. Hewitt's character except can also spend spirit energy to try and summon dead that have passed to another realm (cost at DM's discretion). Electrokinesis - costs X spirit energy per magnitude voltage, and Y spirit energy per magnitude current.

Any ideas about the costs and units guys? I'm also unsure about how electrokinesis could be used/balanced because electricity is complex and i don't understand it well.

edit: figured out electrokinesis. allows you to populate space with charged particles. so you could shoot lightning from a point to an enemy, or ... shape a magnetic field. pretty much just shoot lightning. oh well ... that's why the shaman doesn't just have electrokinesis.