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Super powers in Year Zero Engine

Posted: Sat 14 Oct 2023, 17:56
by ulmus
Has anyone attempted to make a super hero game using the Year Zero rules?

I think it would fit well for a game in the style of The Boys or Wildcards but I don’t quite see how to do super power mechanics. I’m currently thinking of using the die pool version and then reserve the higher die types for super powers. And to have basic powers that can always be used and powers that require some sort of will power point activation connected to the push mechanic.

Re: Super powers in Year Zero Engine

Posted: Sat 14 Oct 2023, 18:53
by ExileInParadise
My first pass at getting Year Zero extended into super powers would start with reviewing all of the added Magic pieces in the FTL-licensed Year Zero Engine Standard Reference Document 1.0.

Those spell effects already have mechanics/rules around them - and may be easily remixable into super-powers.

Next I would look at Mutant: Year Zero itself and the mutations and animal uplift mechanics/rules there for what else might be usable.

The last, I would take your favorite superhero RPG and go power by power converting those to the equivalent Year Zero stats and pools scale.

Re: Super powers in Year Zero Engine

Posted: Sat 14 Oct 2023, 19:09
by ulmus
I’ve played quite a bit with the different versions of the engine and absolutely agree with your suggestions.

I think that while the somewhat erratic nature of push-effect-powered powers is pretty good for some powers, I would like to have some more at-will style, like super strength, super speed, etc that is always in effect.

I’m thinking right now to split super powers into multiple effects, some of which are at will and some powered by super points, but I’m curious if someone has experience already.

Also, free league typically tweaks the push mechanic for each version of the engine. What is a good push mechanic for a gritty supers game? Characteristics damage? Take a condition? Stress? Build up of negative super energy?

Re: Super powers in Year Zero Engine

Posted: Sat 14 Oct 2023, 20:56
by Byrax

Re: Super powers in Year Zero Engine

Posted: Sat 14 Oct 2023, 21:38
by ulmus
That is exactly what I was looking for, thanks! Have you played it?

Re: Super powers in Year Zero Engine

Posted: Sat 14 Oct 2023, 21:41
by Byrax
Nope, but was looking for something like it a few years ago. I think I might have seen another hack as well. Maybe Hellboyish/BPRD?

Re: Super powers in Year Zero Engine

Posted: Tue 14 Nov 2023, 11:27
by FatherJ_ct
I have done 3 sessions at my local game store of Superhero zero the past month and a half (every other week).

I am still getting used to the system and tweaking a GM cheatsheet for myself. Still a lot more to get exposure to using/dealing with the powers. Last session we had tension score/tension roll get out of hand quick. Went from tension score1 to 8...then on the 8, three banes, so went to 21 (resulting in the heroic climax action/broken on the table. Two power level ups through all that as well. I was shocked and surprised in less than 6 rounds of combat we had that quick escalation from the 8 to 21....so 21 tension dice plus power/skill dice to roll. yeesh.

The player and I went over it a couple of times and it seemed correct, just hadn't run into that situation yet. So still getting handle on how powers and tension rolls play out.

I have offered to do a session online soon for the discord group I game with frequently. Just have to figure out how I want to build a world in foundry vtt to do it.

Re: Super powers in Year Zero Engine

Posted: Tue 14 Nov 2023, 22:10
by ulmus
I’ve looked at super zero now and while it does look nice, I’m not sure that it’s quite my thing. The tension rules seem a bit off balance (which seems to be confirmed by your experiences).

Lots of things to be inspired by, though.