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Author Topic: Mistborn Adventure Game and other Settings (Avatar: The Last Airbender)  (Read 3460 times)
Albertorius
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« Reply #15 on: August 16, 2012, 03:54:16 PM »

I think the most important thing about an Avatar setting is remembering that non-benders are total bad-asses too. Sokka may get played for laughs, but he's also got tons of practical skills that keep the party afloat. The young bandit with the twin tiger swords kicked the crap out Ang in a heads up fight with no special trickery. The crack archer unit from the fire kingdom whuped a massively powerful airbender... you know, the benders arguably best against arrows? When the fire prince went into disguise... he didn't exactly get less holy-crap-that's-awesome for not using his bending for a while. And his girlfriend with the knives? *shudder*

...and then there was Sokka's teacher... Dude is critiquing technique and dishing a precisely calibrated beating simultaneously.

Chi blocking is sexy and all, but every weapon master in that setting is hell on wheels. And they all actually act like they live in a world with bending - which means if you are a professional hardcase, you train with the knowledge that benders are out there and you've got to counter them stunt by stunt, skill by skill, not just roll over and die.
Absolutely agreed: non-benders should be every bit as badasses as benders, just in different ways. That's what probably would be more difficult, actually. My first thought was allowing non benders to pick stunts and make a list of stunts for that. But that might end up being too cheap...
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Aminar
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« Reply #16 on: August 16, 2012, 05:58:14 PM »

Unless they first purchase a power for chi-blocking, or weapons mastery(for a given weapon-Fists, Swords, Spears, boomerangs, Hook Swords, etc.).  They could be the pre-req to a large group of stunts. Throw in a requirement for a related trait and you have a decent way to manage it.  Among other things they can unbind their sword skill from physique that way.

That lets weapon masters keep up with benders late game.
« Last Edit: August 16, 2012, 06:17:43 PM by Aminar » Logged
Aminar
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« Reply #17 on: August 16, 2012, 06:26:17 PM »

I would like to point out that from a game perspective letting the avatar position not be exclusive is a good idea.  But that's more a DM choice thing.
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Morgenstern
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« Reply #18 on: August 16, 2012, 06:35:47 PM »

On the subject of chi-blocking, lets look at what's really going on when benders find themselves without bending. There are actually 4 different effects at work.

Paralysis. Benders need to be able to move to perform their manipulations of the elements. In some ways this is no more potent than carrying a good pair of handcuffs. Plus side: it has applications against non-benders too. Downside: Truely advanced benders like Uncle Iroh and Tensin can perform limited but startling bending effects even when seemingly immobilized.

Chi-blockage. The actual chi blockage discipline seems much rarer than "mere" limbic paralysis, thought the technique is clearly trainable on at least an elite cadre scale as seen during the Korra series. While often applied simultaneously to paralysis, it can last significantly longer.

Avatar's Judgement. A likely irreversable severing of the target's chi from the spirit world via spirit bending, eliminating their bending abilites at the the root. Rarely employed by the Avatar and possibly manifesting in others as a unique talent, see Amon's Curse.

Amon's Curse. Believed to be a spirit technique granted to Amon as an anointed agent of the spirit world tasked with righting the natural balance - possibly as a result of the splintering of the Avatar Soul. This technique looks like both traditional chi-blocking and the Avatar's Judgement, requiring brief physical contact.
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« Last Edit: August 16, 2012, 06:41:02 PM by Morgenstern » Logged

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« Reply #19 on: August 16, 2012, 06:37:26 PM »

The third one is spirit bending, not chi-blocking.
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Morgenstern
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« Reply #20 on: August 16, 2012, 06:39:07 PM »

The third one is spirit bending, not chi-blocking.

Hence the observation that suspending a bender's abilities can actually be accomplished in a number of ways Smiley. Updated post for clarity.
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« Reply #21 on: August 16, 2012, 06:40:46 PM »

Other non-bender badasses to help catalog things.

Suki - Beat Aang and the gang. Presumeably learned chi blocking from Ty Li as well.
Ty Li - Beat Team Avatar. Possibly the first chi blocker. Oh, and she took down Azula.
Mai - Beat Team Avatar and Azula.
Hakoda - Genius strategist, leader, and weapon smith.
The Mechanist - All those wonderful toys.
Teo - The world's first combat pilot and one of the first tankers.
June - 'nuff said.

Asami Saito - Seriously... Brains, looks, tears through chi blockers, and drives like Steve McQueen.
Hiroshi Saito - All those evil machines.
The Lieutenant - Beats Korra, Lin, and Mako. Probably would have beat Amon without the later cheating. Plus, Lance Hennrickson.
Naga - Kicked the Lieutenant's ass.
Commader Bumi - Aang's son and General Iroh's right hand wild man.
Gommu - The wise and noble hobo. Also quite possibly a White Lotus.

Pema - Bad ass? With what she puts up with? She defines it.
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« Reply #22 on: August 16, 2012, 06:41:02 PM »

True, but what we've been discussing is largely used by Tai-li and the equalists.  Spirit bending should be left to someone who can bend all the elements.(As having rogue spirit benders running around could go very bad very quick(Could be a fun story arc, but we haven't seen Spirit bending do anything but take away bending.)
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« Reply #23 on: August 16, 2012, 06:42:45 PM »

Do we know Bumi doesn't bend?  I'm still theorizing mom's waterbending.

And we should wait on Korra until we get the base system set up, as updating to Korra-tech will require some work.

Basic Earth bending
Lift to a certain weight-100 lb's of earth.
Throw up to three range? +2 damage.

Basic Waterbending
Turn up to three cubic feet of water to ice.
Throw up to two range- +2 Damage
Lift up to 50 lbs of water.
Swim Speed of up to three range.

Basic Airbending
Increase move range by +1
Throw up to 3 range +1 damage
+1 defense dice

Basic Fire-Bending
Create Fire
3 range +2 damage
« Last Edit: August 16, 2012, 06:56:36 PM by Aminar » Logged
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« Reply #24 on: August 16, 2012, 06:44:57 PM »

The third one is spirit bending, not chi-blocking.

Hence the observation that suspending a bender's abilities can actually be accomplished in a number of ways Smiley. Updated post for clarity.

The tern in the series literature and used by the lion turtle is energy bending. Anyone who can be given the ability by another energy bender. Even non-benders. It predates elemental bending. It can also grant or restore bending. It's dangerous as hell though.

Also, there's no such thing as fire-healing. Healing's the province of water.
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« Reply #25 on: August 16, 2012, 06:53:15 PM »

Do we know Bumi doesn't bend?  I'm still theorizing mom's waterbending.

Per Nick Aang and Katara kids in birth order are:

Kya - Waterbender
Bumi - Non-bender
Tenzin - Airbender
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Aminar
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« Reply #26 on: August 16, 2012, 06:57:21 PM »

See my previous post for stuff.  And where did that info come from?
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ZetaStriker
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« Reply #27 on: August 16, 2012, 06:58:20 PM »

I'd arrange subtypes as "trait trees". An entry trait that allows its generic use, then several other traits that can be taken after the first is available. They roll off the original power, but unlock new uses . . . and are of course all unavailable without a character knowing the appropriate Secret.

I'd also make Chi-Blocking something as simple as a Secret. "Weak" power characters can take it instead of two traits, or it can be bought with advancements if you have an rp excuse to learn it from a master. Perhaps Chi-Blocking damage will impose a -1 penalty to Physique or bending with each hit, while nudges can be spent to deal additional "damage" to bending only regardless of the original attack target. So they can only drop Physique one point at a time, preventing the fact that it ignores health from being too quickly overpowering, but can eliminate bending more quickly with good rolls. I feel that balances well enough to match the Weak power source.

Now, other martial arts do not need to be Average power either. To be fair, I'm not even convinced bending will be overpowering in the way people seem to think. They have ranged "weapons" and a bunch of unique utility effects, but they aren't giving Thug-like combat bonuses. At least, I don't think they should. Traits - particularly the bonus traits of a Weak character - should be more than enough to represent martial artists in this setting. Especially since they'll be some of the only characters using traditional weapons, and will likely be able to match or even beat most benders in terms of damage because of it. There's no reason a traited out martial artist shouldn't be looking at similar damage and dice pools to most benders.

So that leaves the last and most important question . . . what will bending do!? We need rules for this, because if it's just Physique with some rp effects it hardly fits the Average power rules. We also need to determine the "weapon properties" of each element, such as Lighting ray vs. Water whip vs. Stone blast vs. Air blade.
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Morgenstern
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« Reply #28 on: August 16, 2012, 07:02:07 PM »

Also, there's no such thing as fire-healing. Healing's the province of water.

Heh. There's no such thing as bloodbending outside of a full moon... 'til it happens. Fire seems to be the province of chi, as firebenders are able to evoke fire from within rather than draw on elements around them. There are few restorative powers in the world more primordial than warmth. We see water benders cure injuries, but how about disease? Combine that with what we know about Ang's dificulties with firebending and possibilities emerge...

...While the Korra tale thrived on reusing every unussal aspect of bending seen over the course of 3 season in one massive flurry, it also introduce wild talents like crazy. Having a few plausible concepts handy to spring on players seems usefull Smiley.

I left out one more way benders can be blocked, and possibly the most important: self-obstruction. Both Avatars we see have blocks against their abilities. Ang's lead to some very pointed discussion of chakras and their relationship to bending. Ang and Korra both have the tremendous advantage of knowing they should have abilites that are otherwise invisible. How many potential benders are out there who simply never realize they have an obstruction that could be overcome we will never know.
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Krensky
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« Reply #29 on: August 16, 2012, 07:27:49 PM »

If we're just going to make up abilities, why don't we talk about shadowbending and choclate chip cookie dough bending too? Psychis bloodbending without a full moon is a power thing. Using fir to heal goes against the premise of the art. We saw what focused chi and firebending gets you: Combustion Man.

Aang's block was fire bending. He was afraid of it and didn't like it because he burned Katara and it was diametrically opposed to the negative jing centered philosophy of the ai nomads and airbending.

His block was earthbending because as Toph put it no amount of dodging or tricks will convinve a rock to move.

Similarly, Korra's block was airbending because she was a massively aggressive, positive jing oriented person and airbending is about evasion and negative jing.

Until the shit hits the fan and the airbenders kill everyone pissing them off, that is.
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We can lick gravity, but sometimes the paperwork is overwhelming. - Werner von Braun
Right now you have no idea how lucky you are that I am not a sociopath. - A sign seen above my desk.
There's no upside in screwing with things you can't explain. - Captain Roy Montgomery
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