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 Post subject: Mastermind's Manual
PostPosted: Sat Feb 17, 2007 10:50 am 
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This is the book I was thinking of:

Mastermind's Manual

"The Mastermind's Manual is the perfect companion to the award-winning Mutants & Masterminds Superhero Roleplaying Game. In its pages you will find endless ways to customize the M&M system to suit your game, along with helpful Gamemaster advice, and insight into how the game is designed and played. The Mastermind's Manual includes a vast array of optional and variant rules, complete guidelines for creating your own feats and super-powers, expanded systems for proficiency, combat, chases, skill use, and nearly every other aspect of the game. With the Mastermind's Manual, you open up infinite possibilities, infinite options, and the power to truly make the world yours. It's your master plan for taking the game to the next level... and what mastermind wouldn't want that?"

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 18, 2007 10:39 pm 
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Here's a blurb from a RPGnet review of the book:

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Maps and figures! Tactical combat! Attacks of opportunities! This chapter is sure to please the d20 fans that missed these elements from the core M&M as well as those wanting a bit more strategy in their superhero slugfests. In addition to these other alternative rules are included such as the defense roll, mental combat, multiple attacks, flanking, and dozens of others.

Some of these will be familiar to d20 fans. The defense roll, for example, is just a change where instead of a base 10 Defense the player rolls a 1d20 and adds their modifiers. This can lead to even more chaotic combat for those that desire it. Others, like mental combat, are simple but fun additions to the options already available. Readers of comics (X-Men comes to mind) have observed many instances of super hero psychics dueling in the realm of the mind.

These additions are well thought out and there’s something for everyone. Indeed, like the rest of the book this section will stimulate the reader’s imagination and most GMs will immediately start imagining how they might tweak the next game to get the style of play they’re hoping for.


Full review:

http://www.rpg.net/reviews/archive/12/12258.phtml

I think I need to order this ASAP. :)

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 19, 2007 11:42 am 
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Wow, another game/campaign that is requiring more and more books before we've even started it. While it does look cool, I may just opt out of the M&M thing, as I haven't purchased any of the books yet, and don't relish the idea of that kind of expenditure just now.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 19, 2007 12:20 pm 
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Jonkga wrote:
Wow, another game/campaign that is requiring more and more books before we've even started it. While it does look cool, I may just opt out of the M&M thing, as I haven't purchased any of the books yet, and don't relish the idea of that kind of expenditure just now.


You don't need to buy anything; we've got enough copies of the core rule book that you could easily borrow one (I think we've got three of them; maybe four). Hell, you don't even need to make a character -- there's already a Speedster example in the M&M core book -- we could just copy that for you and tweak him a bit with some power feats.

This rule book is more of a Game Master's book, and I'm looking to get it specifically because of some of Bob's super-speed hang ups. And because it looks nifty. It's an Unearthed Arcana like book -- all sorts of optional rules, of which you'd probably only use a handful (and any we did use I'd probably wiki-ize). It's not something players would buy unless they were really, really into M&M game mechanics.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 19, 2007 4:55 pm 
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Wow, that book sounds like it was specifically made for me! Yay!

When I read through the rules for M&M, it remindes me of the Fading Suns rules in that they don't seem to provide rules for things that characters are often going to do, or the rules don't model those things very well. In Fading Suns, we had the problem with gunfire rules (specifically automatic weapons fire). If M&M, we have problems with movement rules as applied to combat.

Although not everyone agrees, IMO, d20 is a huge succes precisely because it does model so many things that characters are apt to do, both in combat and out of combat. Movement rules, combat movement, skill checks, combat itself, the effect of spells in combat, the designers really took it a lot into consideration and provided a ruleset that could handle a lot of things, and could extrapolate well. Other gaming systems, well, not so much.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 19, 2007 5:00 pm 
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EvilGenius wrote:
Although not everyone agrees, IMO, d20 is a huge succes precisely because it does model so many things that characters are apt to do, both in combat and out of combat. Movement rules, combat movement, skill checks, combat itself, the effect of spells in combat, the designers really took it a lot into consideration and provided a ruleset that could handle a lot of things, and could extrapolate well. Other gaming systems, well, not so much.


I think you can abstract it enough to avoid things getting super hairy, but we'll see. I don't know if there's anyway you could realistically (or at least, effectively) model superheroic movement without using some sort of digital mapping software to track who was where when. The scales are just so huge.

But I am interested to see what the book has to say on the matter. I'll probably buy it in March, as I've pretty much tapped my resources this month. :)

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 19, 2007 5:08 pm 
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Another thing that I really didn't get a good feel for when I was reading through the M&M rules is the effect of using objects in combat. They show you pictures of guys throwing cars at other guys, but I didn't really get the ingame combat effect of that action. I'll have to really read through the rules again, but it's definitely something that at least needs to be clarified, IMO.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 19, 2007 5:10 pm 
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EvilGenius wrote:
Another thing that I really didn't get a good feel for when I was reading through the M&M rules is the effect of using objects in combat. They show you pictures of guys throwing cars at other guys, but I didn't really get the ingame combat effect of that action. I'll have to really read through the rules again, but it's definitely something that at least needs to be clarified, IMO.


Yeah, we haven't really tried anything like that -- it's mostly been powers vs. powers rather than powers vs. semi truck. :)

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PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 10:13 pm 
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FYI, I just ordered this book. I also got Lockdown, which is a super-hero prison source book.

To recap, both of these are GM-centeric books, so they're not anything others need to worry about buying.

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PostPosted: Fri May 04, 2007 3:00 pm 
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I picked up Instant Superheroes this week. It's not as helpful as I would have liked... but still good for some quick play heroes.


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