View Full Version : GURPSify Dragon Ball - PEACH my rules supplement!

2017-11-26, 07:34 PM
EDIT 7/2019: In case you found this and you know who wrote it, my Dragon Ball setting which I eventually made into a very long game manual changed radically after this. The dumb ideas about telekinesis being the main power and telekinetically compresed balls of plasma were replaced. My original "GURPSification" was awful and I replaced it over the course of a few months with a much better version. I guess the original dumb ideas did pave the way for better ones though. My original ideas may have been as terrible as the live action Dragon Ball movie was said to be (honestly I never watched it) but over time I made a better setting closer to the anime and manga. You can message me if you want to learn about it - I decided to leave it unpublished. Originally, ki was a type of spirit energy. Later, ki became spirit matter that evaporated off of your spirit body, but you could infuse it with spirit energy. In the real world, in my mind, ki is a form of creativity that comes forth from your soul. Unfortunately, I think my first attempt at GURPSifying Dragon Ball had poor ki flow but I got better at it over time.

this is my second GURPS thread. my first one just basically was about super heroes and it ended with "buy GURPS supers". now i've ordered GURPS supers for my parents to give me something to unwrap at Christmas but i don't own a copy yet. i doubt what i want to do here in this thread is covered in as much detail as i want though.

here's another thread i posted in: http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?542404-DBZ-Warrior-(PEACH)

i wanted to take the essence of Dragon Ball and make an rpg out of it. the idea is to have it more consistent than the actual series. so no destroying planets at a low level with ki blasts, though ki blasts would have the power to destroy buildings, tanks, military aircraft, etc. what is the purpose of this you ask? well ... that's a good question. i just keep having dreams about it and i would like to finish this idea i have. just for the sake of it being cool and fun to do. treat it as an exercise in rpg gameological thinking.

so there are at core monk abilities (enhance speed, durability, and power; ki blasts) and telekinesis (tk itself, flight, teleport, time slowdown, shape and direct ki blasts which are basically controlled explosions). there's a lot of physics out there that could probably be used for this. for example, lightning blasts resulting in matter antimatter reactions. i believe it's usually better to rely on aesthetics and coolness and drama instead of trying to sciencify things, the way Akira did with all his glorious plot holes, but we know enough science now that we can do some sciencification. it's fun.

anyway, let's start with telekinesis. the relevant variables are range, mass you can move, precision of movement, and how fast you can move something (in physics terms, work/second? like Akira, not exactly a physics buff).

for monk abilities, you could just use the gurps combat system and attributes. for example, increasing strength, hit points, passive defense, armor, etc. http://www.sjgames.com/gurps/lite/3e/gurpslite.pdf

any ideas? i guess i kind of rubber ducked through a lot of this.

2017-11-28, 01:39 AM
Sadly as you are dealing with GURPS, many of the ideas are already out there. Or at least partially.
Pyramid #3-16 has martial art styles for flying characters and tournament rules. There is, of course GURPS Martial Arts. The Power Up series would have several ideas for a DB game, as does Action 3 - Flying Fists. And you will already have GURPS Supers, as most DB characters are supers, and that is not getting into DBZ.
Also the Cinematic Combat Rules are going to be the default for the game.

2017-11-28, 06:48 PM
Sadly as you are dealing with GURPS, many of the ideas are already out there. Or at least partially.
Pyramid #3-16 has martial art styles for flying characters and tournament rules. There is, of course GURPS Martial Arts. The Power Up series would have several ideas for a DB game, as does Action 3 - Flying Fists. And you will already have GURPS Supers, as most DB characters are supers, and that is not getting into DBZ.
Also the Cinematic Combat Rules are going to be the default for the game.

okay ... that's useful information, i'll see if i can get ahold of some of those materials. by dragon ball btw i just meant dragon ball, dragon ball z, etc. - the manga didn't make a distinction between when goku was a child and when he was an adult, it was all just "Dragon Ball".

2017-12-01, 06:51 AM
Something absolutely vital to avoid ludicrous pts bloat for the characters abilities is to enable exponential scaling of Innate attacks/DR/ST and HP. If you do not do this, a player who bought those things at just a tiny bit weaker levels than the others would have boatloads of points with which to be drastically more skilled.

I strongly recommend Pyramid 3/83 Alternate GURPS 4 for its know your own strength article for better ST scaling. In my homebrew I extended it, I can give the file if needed (maybe via email, don't know how to do upload things onto this forum). The extension involved applying similar scaling to hp, DR and IA damage, and also changing enhancements and limitations to fit better.

2017-12-01, 07:56 AM
Well in the dragon ball universe the characters that are oriented on being smart and skilled instead of tough were extremely smart and skilled(like inventing capsules or other silly inventions) or used very polyvalent magic

2017-12-01, 08:21 AM
This is less like that and more like doing a few% less damage/DR etc etc in order to become omnicompetent and so out-skilling opponents that they can't tag you.

Linear costs for linear damage + needing blasts of mass destruction = nothing else even comes remotely close in pts cost, and skimping even 1% there can give easy omnicompetence.

2017-12-01, 09:59 PM
i kind of nerfed my version compared to Dragon Ball (well Dragon Ball Z and Dragon Ball Super). the power level is more like Naruto, to give an example, but maybe a little more powerful than that, given the power of ki to strengthen the body and the power of ki blasts to destroy things. though i don't remember Naruto very well.

the ability of strength to punch through things seems to scale up quite a lot, but strikes are also limited by the equation of momentum = speed * mass. so a person's body is only so massive, though with ki the speed could be scaled up quite a lot if we're going by how the Dragon Ball universe is. i've heard that tornadoes can drive plastic forks through trees if the tornado is intense enough.

i wanted to create something here that is similar to Dragon Ball, but more balanced and consistent superpower wise. i'm not trying to imitate the manga/show 100%. it's kind of silly, but i'm just trying to realize my vision here. this form of reasoning could apply to all super powers ... i guess rewriting GURPs supers would be a lot. basically i like Dragon Ball a lot, have had frequent dreams about having the powers since childhood, and now DBZ and DB Super are the only two tv shows i watch, besides occasionally my little pony FIM. DB shows how it is the characters and character drama that make a story great, not logical consistency, but i am a nerd, so here we have my GURPSification....

2017-12-02, 04:47 AM
You don't have to go very far to make the ultra blasting powers cost appropriately instead of being very overpriced. Assuming you want to stay below nuke level attacks you could do something like this.

For DR and Innate Attack, first 10 levels are normal and then after that every 10 levels always double the DR/dice of damage.

So for example a burning attack is base 5 points per dice of damage.

In our case a 320 dice attack that could destroy a house would cost 50 + 50 * 6 (320 = 10 * 2^6, its that exponent that informs our price) = 350 points base. 350 points is enough to get many skills at a high level but this is still reasonably balanced with skill purchases, each dice of extra damage becomes gradually less costly as utility becomes more marginal.

Linear cost would make the base price be 5 * 320 = 1600, which is definitely too much.

With this system really strong attacks and DR become more affordable, allowing you to build your super powerful characters for 3k points or less and without them being easily omnicompetent.

Of course, you can tweak theses numbers to fit your preferred scale.

It is also important to remember to look player sheets over and enforce maximums, unlimited pumping of some advantages can lead to boring binaries sometimes.

For Strength, you do much the same.

ST up to 20 is as normal, and then after that every 100 points spent = doubling.

So basically

ST 20-40 = 2 ST per 10 pts
ST 40-80 = 4 ST per 10 pts

etc etc.

And that is a simple hotfix that should work nicely for characters at up to city level firepower/durability/etc etc.

2017-12-03, 06:10 PM
@Ottriman, thank you, I wouldn't have thought of a lot of those technical things if you hadn't posted.

anyway, i have a conceptual update. i think instead of having "ki powers" and "telekinesis", we can make it just "ki powers". you can control your ki blasts because you have effective telekinesis over only your unique energy signature. this also allows flight and short term teleport because your body is suffused with your own ki energy. it does not allow, i don't think, stuff like really precise telekinetic control over matter to allow you to perform "magical" feats, and it does not allow you to grab onto the space time continuum thus allowing time control. but i think this is a good spin off from the series. it would also make a good super power (as i dealt with in another thread). ki powers are sort of based off of legends and such, so it's not just about Dragon Ball.

in Dragon Ball, there is magic as well as "ki powers". so telekinesis could fall under this umbrella, as well as various other powers. you could have super powers/magic in any universe, but i am a fan of the DB universe as many others are.

so to conclude you could have a generic "ki power" hero, or one who can heal instead of do destructive ki blasts. or one with both powers, why not!

just wanted to get my vision out there.

2017-12-04, 11:07 AM
Yep, GURPS is a great toolbox but it tends to not explain the fact that it's biased towards semi-realistic humans.

For magic, I'd advise modeling it with advantages and power modifiers and avoid something like GURPS Magic. GURPS Magic mostly just works well at sub-400 pts total low-tech games and the further from that you go the worse its assumptions hold up.

If you haven't got GURPS Powers or GURPS Martial Arts already I do recommend them for the kind of game you are going for.

I'd allow cinematic combat options and martial arts, though you must watch out for Power Blow and Flying Leap since both of them can greatly increase damage. I did have a problem in one of my games of a player one-shotting everything with huge burst damage thanks to stacking those for five times or more the normal expected damage.

So I'd only allow one of those to multiply strength for an attack (for any given attack).

Additionally to what I said about scaling for ST/DR/IA and such, you might be willing to do the same kind of super scaling for Telekinesis (since it's supposed to be competitive) and Temperature tolerance (if the players are supposed to adventure in places like volcanoes or stars.

Oh and just remembered that hp being used for collisions causes issues (your guys aren't super massive presumably). Thus you could either use the injury tolerance option in Powers that divides damage, or separate mass from hp into separate mass points that are used instead of hp for collisions (and would be a 0 pts feature).

Hope I helped.

2017-12-04, 08:33 PM
@Ottriman, i joined the gurps forums so i could make a thread about this there (i see you're a member there too!). as i said in that thread, i'm waiting till Christmas to unwrap GURPS Powers and Supers - i'll work out the details of the mechanics then. might resurrect this thread then as well.

2017-12-18, 11:53 PM
i just wanted to say, i continued this thread at: http://forums.sjgames.com/showthread.php?t=153473

i'm getting GURPS Powers for Christmas (already under the tree but i have to wait to open it :) ) - so on the 25th i'm going to start working to finish this homebrew. i'm going to do a fancy write up to finally finish this and get it out of my head, so i can work on my game again, so i'll post that here once i'm finished, and on the GURPS forums.

2017-12-19, 03:32 AM
Yes, I have seen it on the GURPS forums.

I've just been busy, and the rest of the community was handling it pretty well so I didn't jump in.

2017-12-20, 12:19 AM
i made a comparison between a computer's memory and bus as the "ki reserve" and "upper limit of ki points you can spend on any one action/ki points spent per second (because in GURPS one round is one second)". most of the ki powers are variable, so the "ki bus" is important. kaioken and super saiyan both increase the ki bus as well as the ki reserves. kaioken is anywhere from x2 to x20 - it degrades your body over time and past x20 it becomes too much. maybe it costs fatigue and/or health per round? super saiyan is x40, and unlike in DBZ i limited it to just one level of super saiyan. super saiyan is a "rare" ability, and is worth more than its point cost would suggest. super saiyan might have a per second ki cost.

Frieza race are a bit overpowered (and i'm not going to nerf them for game balance, like DB Xenoverse did - a campaign could do something like LA for it - i.e. less points); Namekians can regenerate and use magic and have innate ki abilities; Saiyans have super saiyan and become stronger after being beaten up. those are the three main playable races i could think of. you could do human, but they suck compared to the other ones. or you could just make up some races, since this after all is not DB canon. it is nice to have some canon, so you can play the game in a familiar campaign world.

some other thoughts, ki blasts are limited and don't scale past a certain point. i think i already said that but now i'm considering how to represent it numerically. the energy cost is divided into how much ki it takes to create the heated expansion of air (the explosion), and how much it takes to telekinetically contain and direct the explosion. a ki blast is basically plasma, i would assume, since it is a dense packet of super heated air. it might have some element of a particle beam since the ki converts to raw energy, which could produce particles. anyway this is on my to do. i don't want to reinvent the wheel, so i'm waiting until Christmas to open GURPS Powers.

so actions include a violent telekinetic push, the "Frieza-kills-Krillin" attack which would be great against mooks, various shapes of ki blasts, a force shield (which might be a bit redundant since you can just ki fortify your flesh - but maybe versus certain types of attacks a telekinetic shield would be cheaper in terms of ki points?), and i can't remember any more....

one change i would make from GURPS is to separate lifting strength from strength based striking damage. i'm not sure how i would do this. and it should be a free action to activate your ki, but you might keep your ki fortification up while going about your day out of a sense of caution. eventually it might even become automatic - you don't want to end up like Goku after his fight with Golden Frieza!

the one thing i wanted to do was to cap your ki reserves and ki bus. maybe i would have an ability called "extra ki reserves" or something, which would allow you to indefinitely increase your ki reserves, but realistically not that much in a campaign. so it's a soft cap rather than a hard one. i said i wasn't going to play this, but now it's starting to actually sound fun! anybody know any other manga that's in this flavor, to look at for ideas?

edit: more to say! the main contribution to H2H damage from ki usage would be enhancing your speed and making your striking limb invulnerable like an iron rod. i don't know how to represent this in GURPS? do i need another book, lol?

edit2: and there should be a mechanism for "finding more energy" when you're seemingly empty, via a will save i'm guessing. Goku does this a lot.

2017-12-20, 07:18 AM
Humans have more super scientists than other races in dragon ball.(at least the last time I did count the number of super scientists)
Maybe they have extra ranks in skills or something like that.
Or maybe it is just that we see more the human scientists than the others.

2017-12-20, 09:20 AM
I think you could do a "ki reserve" style thing by having everyone take an energy reserve for the ki power source. Then you mandate that their ki abilities cost this energy reserve. Since you're capping this per second you could either give everyone extreme regeneration for this energy reserve, or perhaps to model tiredness better you give everyone the ability to refresh it to full by spending an fp.

As to power multiplier abilities, I would probably stay away from them myself. In GURPS being twice as capable than your opponent in eveyr way means you will destroy them in a round or two with basically no difficulty. Balancing going from normal power to winning right away is a lot of hassle.

But oh well here's a crack at it.


Altered Time Rate 1 linked with Lifting and striking strength linked with bonus energy reserve and some dr.

The whole thing costs hp or fp every second.

You will find that attempting to go for bigger power multipliers will quickly rack up the cost to extreme levels. I think that if you are to allow power multiplication like this it should definitely be very limited.

I also think that power multiplier/transformation spam has become toxic to dragon ball and shouldn't be emulated.

2017-12-20, 03:40 PM
thanks for the input Ottriman and noob! i just need to get this out of my system so i can resume working on what actually matters in my life (like my video game) ... i'll do my best with this homebrew, considering now how to or whether to incorporate kaioken. it could be a story ability that isn't available to everyone - same with super saiyan. i have time so i'll think about this....

i think i at least can include a version of kaioken that increases ki bus and/or ki reserve, but not multiplicatively. maybe logarithmically, lol? it has a health drain effect attached to it. how does that sound?

so we're getting rid of the x2, x20, x40 multipliers and making something SOMEWHAT balanced. i don't want super saiyan to be too balanced - but a saiyan with SS should be reasonably balanced compared to a namekian with their various abilities or a frost demon.

2017-12-23, 04:40 PM
Dragon Ball is not good at racial balance. On the bright side, while Super Saiyans have ridiculous power levels, Namekians have some neat magic and weird racial abilities, and humans have the time to live actual lives.

A while ago, I sorted out a series of advantages which provided linear cost for exponentially-increasing strength, durability, and speed, and worked out how much of each would roughly approximate a 10x increase in power level. Sadly, I can't find it right now. It might have gotten deleted in one computer bleh or another.

2017-12-28, 11:52 PM
i'm almost done with this.

so far as races go, i have super saiyan (puts saiyans on a tier above humans, which makes sense anyhow, but not radically overpowered as it only doubles your ki points; the same as kaioken III except that costs 3 fatigue per second), going to implement the "buy a power level boost" after recovering from near death ability as i don't think it is too overpowered with the way i've done things. i have namekian regeneration but not any of their magic abilities statted yet. i should probably incorporate something like that but i wouldn't know where to start. i haven't looked at the magery parts of GURPS.

anyway, i came on here because i was having trouble with some things in particular. at power level 15 (you buy ki meditation, then power level increase N; each gives +5 ki points, and this ki point total is your power level) you get ki sense for free. this allows you to sense the energy of other biologicals, regardless of whether they have developed their ki or not. it allows you to parry ki blasts (or you could use teleport, which is a higher level ability, to automatically dodge and possibly position yourself for a counter attack), while non-ki users can only dodge. but i think it should also grant defensive bonuses - you can sense the energy of your opponent, so for example when he gets ready to deliver a blow. i'm just not sure how to stat this defensive bonus, or how it would work exactly, so i figured i'd ask here as i already have at the GURPS forums.

2017-12-30, 11:23 AM
1. It shouldn't be an automatic thing. Not only does that ruin any chance of having a straight X points per level thing, but it's clearly not how energy-sensing works in the universe. Aside from being a skill characters have to learn, there are also plenty of extremely powerful (by normal-Earthling standards) people in Frieza's army who can't sense energy, despite otherwise fighting like the Z-Fighters.
2. Let's break down the ki-sensing advantages one by one.
—Actually sensing ki: Detect, obviously, probably with some of the enhancements in GURPS Powers.
—Allows you to parry blasts instead of dodging: Probably perk-level. I don't think having multiple choices of defense is that big of a detail. (I'm also not sure that you need ki sense to do that, with Frieza and company again being the probable counter-example.)
—There are a couple of advantages that give improved defenses; I think the simplest is called Enhanced Defences. Just chuck some modifiers on some of those and fold in the point cost.

2017-12-30, 10:28 PM
one thing i'm thinking about is how to make super saiyan better balanced. the most powerful ki blast besides "scaling sphere" (which is uncapped and is like a missile) costs 60 ki per second, so you'd need a power level of at least 60 to use it and could take out a tank with it as it has an armor divisor of 10 and i allow rolling to hit the same spot and burn through armor. (also, i'm not sure if ki blasts should be all out attacks or what - they seem like all out attacks. i guess they are "innate attacks", but i need to look up the rules for those again.) and i'm keeping with GURPS so that the most powerful strike is at strength 100 (like a fist propelled by a tornado). so anyway a saiyan with a power level of 100 (100 ki points per maneuver; this is pretty much an epic level or level 20 correlate ability if you're thinking of d20) goes super saiyan and gets a power level of 200, but it doesn't help much. he can still only punch at ki level 100, or he could spend 200 on a scaling sphere that does 60 - 300 damage not including the armor divisor, but that would probably be overkill and it would suck if it missed; basically using scaling sphere that way is just a good way to burn through all your ki reserve in 5 seconds. a saiyan with a power level of 35 might get some benefits to having a power level of 70, but now that i think of it that's almost too powerful (though the GM could just restrict super saiyan; still have to have it in there - but i guess i could make kaioken more powerful?). not sure about a couple of things, would welcome input.

2017-12-31, 08:36 AM
It sounds like you're designing a whole new system to go alongside GURPS's systems. There's nothing wrong with this, but it's going to get harder and harder for us to give you advice if we don't know what those systems are and how they work with pre-existing GURPS systems. I don't suppose you have it on a Google doc or something else easily-shareable?

2017-12-31, 08:48 PM
here's the bulk of it: https://hastebin.com/teqosabike.vbs

2018-01-04, 08:44 PM
i made some significant changes, though this is a bit hard to read in this format: https://hastebin.com/anojocanik.vbs

for example, now there is no "ki reserve", you just have ki per maneuver and maneuvers typically cost action points (from a Pyramid article, action points are meant to represent short term fatigue).

i have just a couple things left to figure out. i'll probably finish this on Saturday when i meet with my friend who's also into this kind of thing, but anyway ... have yet to figure out the costs and effects for the "telekinetic push" type maneuver nor the "telekinetic shield", nor the nuances of defending against super-powered attacks for people who vary in their power level. plus a couple other things. any ideas would be welcome though like i said i'll probably finish this by Saturday regardless.

edit: figured out TK push ... still haven't figured out the use of TK shield. i have to balance it with DR. maybe you can TK shield things you couldn't endure with your DR? hmmm....
edit2: figured out TK shield ... i'm not super enthused about it, but it's good against missiles, which would kill even a high powered ki fighter otherwise. as you could see from the link, i increased flight speed dramatically, but it's still not fast enough (as it is in Dragon Ball) to outrun an explosion. i basically made it so a high level ki fighter could move about as fast as an aircraft. i wonder if i actually made it too weak, but these numbers are open to interpretation anyway. i could make it +50 yards/second instead of +25 yards/second, but that seems a bit extreme ... hmmm .....

2018-01-07, 08:51 PM
okay, i have a preliminary write up. i'm sure there are still improvements to make. so one post with the write up to follow this one which lists the tiers i cooked up:

the first three tiers are arguably "realistic", the latter ones belong to fantasy:

Tier 0: no ki powers
Tier 1: can slightly enhance oneself (a karateka breaking a board)
Tier 2: proficient in ki; can enhance onself; can heal
Tier 3: weak ki blasts, flight (your typical alien mook)
Tier 4: ki blasts, significantly enhanced physical
Tier 5: strong ki blasts, warp (teleport)
Tier 6: super powers!
Tier 7: epic

2018-01-07, 08:57 PM
Please, PEACH!

edit: just check out the link in my sig - the homebrew "Qi Hero" writeup is on my website