Vanguard Roll Call!

Vanguard Roll Call!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Vanguard: Issue 188: Two Thousand Maniacs!

Vanguard had been gated to the Lost Lands of Antarctica, a hidden valley that time forgot. They searched for the next mysterious Artifact of Power in order to stop the end of the world. They found it at the center of a ruined temple filled with two thousand Dino Men, the evolutionary descendants of the dinosaur! Beneath the valley’s mist, the World Storm, and the solar eclipse beyond, the Dino Men had gathered for some sort of unspeakable, occultic ritual.

Vanguard quickly made plans and leapt into action!
Then all hell broke loose. The Ruin somehow negated many of Vanguard’s superpowers!
Vanguard’s element of surprise was over.  The two thousand Dino Men were about to react.

[OOC: Avatar, Lightning Strike, Sentinel and Symbiote are by the treeline, near the spot marked “V.”
Clone is everywhere there is a spot marked “C.”
Menagerie and Slate are sprawled on the ground in a heap at the spot marked “MS”.
Slingshot is hovering weightlessly at a height of 200 feet at the spot marked “SL,” thanks to Symbiote.
All of Vanguard currently have their superpowers except Menagerie.]

Avatar used the power of Zeus to cause the temperature to suddenly plummet! (Costs 6 Power Points)
The rain immediately turned to snow! Visibility was severely reduced due to the instant white out everywhere… except inside the Ruin! The snowfall served to surreally define the perimeter of the Ruin’s mysterious effect! Within it, the temperature remained tropical, and the snowfall melted into rain again as it entered the Ruin’s area of influence. That area was the marked by the Ruin walls, rising into a half sphere, over 150 feet above the Ruin. The center of that semi-sphere was the altar!

None of the Dino Men inside the Ruin felt any cold. But those outside did! All four Tyrannosaurus Max riders and five of the six Terrordactyl riders were hit by the impossible wintry cold and white out conditions that gripped the valley! “ROOOAAR!” A T-Max shook its head against the chill.
(These dinosaurs and Dino Men take d10 damage to Power, and lose d10 from their initiative! The sixth Terrordactyl rider was safe inside the Ruin’s sphere of influence.)

No Dino Man had ever seen snow before. They all looked up, in wonder. Were the stars falling from the sky?  (All must roll a d20 saving throw vs. Intelligence. If they miss their saving throw, then their initiative is further delayed one phase for every point they missed their save by)

Sentinel was genuinely surprised by the method of rescue he had just experienced. (see last ish!)
He sometimes forgot just how much scientific genius and acumen Lightning Strike possessed since it was usually overshadowed by his lone wolf tactics and superhuman ego.  Ever the peacekeeper, he genuinely said, "Thanks for the save Strike." 
But realizing Strike seemed even more frustrated with him than usual, he couldn't resist and he smiled, performing a quick air kiss towards Strike, "I knew you couldn't live without me."
Then, back to business, added, "Looks like it’s 'magical' based powers that aren't working in the ruins.  You're up, hotshot."

Meanwhile, in the warmth of the Ruin:
Clone entered the temple and saw a large stone altar. Atop the altar was a stone idol of Cthulhu. It was two feet tall and gave off a soft green glow.
It illuminated the five Dino Men that surrounded the altar. They were involved in a mystic ritual of some sort. The central one was a female. 
This High Priestess appeared to be a hybrid between Dino Men, Humans and something else entirely. Flanking her were her four High Priests (two on each side) who also looked different from Dino Men. None were happy to see Clone.

Clone raced to the Ancient Altar and placed his hand on the Stone Idol! (That was Clone’s “attack” and his action ends here!) Clone said in a playfully roguish way, “What’s shake’n ladies? Come here often?”

The high priestess and her high priests screamed in hate at this profane sacrilege!

The high priestess glared malice at Clone and her eyes seemed to penetrate his very flesh!

Clone could feel her mind merging with his!  And then it stopped.  His fractured psyche, the chaos of all those Clone personalities coexisting, formed some kind of mental labyrinth that defended him (as per his Power description). She hesitated….

Then, SHAKOW!!!!! 

A bolt of lightning suddenly came from nowhere and struck her chest in an explosion of hot electricity!

Moments earlier, when the snowfall had begun, Lightning Strike had sprinted into the Ruin. Avatar’s power to bolster morale didn’t exist in the Ruin, but Strike kept his resolve (made a successful Charisma saving throw). Avatar’s power over the weather didn’t work there either, and Strike’s visibility returned.

Seeing that Clone had his hand on the artifact, Strike raced halfway to the altar, following the trail that had been blazed by the pack of invading Clones, to get a clear shot at the priestess and finally provide Clone that cover fire he had requested!  (Costs 4 Power Points)

The high priestess collapsed to the stone floor, unconscious!

The four high priests howled like wild animals and attacked Clone with fast, razor sharp claws! Three missed completely (due to Clone’s evasion!) but the last one tore him to ribbons!  (8 points of damage)

The Clone at the altar fell to the ground, incapacitated.  His bloody hand slid from the Idol of Cthulhu.

Suddenly, another Clone appeared in the doorway to the temple. And another. And another.
Sensing that he may have overstayed his welcome, Clone grabbed the idol. The Clone behind him placed a hand his shoulder, and on the fallen Clone who lay bloody at their feet. The third Clone grabbed the second Clone’s shoulder and turned his head toward the entrance and shouted out desperately, “If we’re going to start teleporting, NOW would be a great time!” 

A hand appeared on his shoulder and Zwooomp!!!
All the Clones disappeared!

Clone had formed a line from the altar to the gate and “chain absorbed” himself all the way back toward the main gate of the Ruin!
Lightning Strike, Menagerie and Slate watched two dozen Clones evaporate right past them! (Strike is located at “LS” on the maps)

Clone suddenly was one body again. That body was near the main gate and he raced through the snow toward Avatar, Sentinel and Symbiote, outside the Ruin. Clone had the idol. It weighed nearly 100 lbs.

Suddenly, snow began to fall into the Ruin, and bitter cold with it!
Menagerie’s powers returned, along with his connection to Archimedes!
Sentinel could read energy in the Ruin!
Avatar’s power to bolster the morale of his comrades in the Ruins returned!

Once the Idol had been removed from its place on the altar, its mysterious effect stopped!

(Due to the freezing cold temperatures, all 2,000 Dino Men take d10 damage to Power, and lose an additional d10 from their initiative, including the sixth Terrordactyl rider. Also, their vision was obscured!)

Slate, flush with the success of saving Menagerie inside the Ruin, delayed his action until the Dino Men responded to Slate and Menagerie’s appearance. He wanted to try to communicate with them.

Menagerie looked at the four Dino-Men that Slate and he had plowed into unconsciousness, and saw they had their own primitive technology of clothing, weapons, tools, etc. All four wore necklaces of stone charms on a leather-like cord.  All had leather-like belts that could hold weapons.  Two had swords that appear fashioned from the fierce jawbone of a dinosaur, complete with layers of razor sharp teeth. They were treated with something like black lacquer. One had a similarly-fashioned dagger, and the fourth had a long spear.
Menagerie quickly picked up the spear. He put his back against Slate's. "Are you really sure about this kid?"

Menagerie held the spear in a nonthreatening manner as he waited for "Internet Jones" to talk with the "natives". Menagerie held his action, ready to coordinate with Slate on their flight. And, heeding Clone’s advice, he reached out to Archimedes, to let him know Vanguard was ready to depart.

BOOM!  Mystic’s familiar portal opened near the heroes by the main gate of the Ruin!

The Dino Men near Menagerie and Slate were slowed by the cold and snow, but from their hateful expressions, it was clear they would attack as soon as they were able.

"Time to move, kid!" Menagerie said. He evaded and used the spear to defend himself. He grabbed Slate and the two ran toward the main gate! The snow blinded them, and they became lost in the seemingly infinite ranks of Dino Men. They couldn’t find the main gate!  (continued below!)

Meanwhile, Slingshot was hovering weightlessly in midair over the Ruins, like an astronaut in zero gravity. From his vantage point, he saw Clone leave with the Idol before the snow began. It was time to go.
(Using his saved action…) The riotous renegade of rubber stretched out to the volcano base, reeled himself to it, and then ricocheted off the stone face to bounce toward the main gate. WHAM!  Slingshot landed beside the Vanguardians that were gathered there.

When he did, three Dino Men near the gate noticed Slingshot and were stunned by his appearance.  One pointed at a pictoglyph on the Ruin wall that looked like Slingshot, and then gestured back at Slingshot.  Other Dino Men took note. Murmurs of astonishment rippled through their ranks. One fell to his knees and outstretched his hands at Slingshot. Then another. And another.

At the gate, Sentinel noticed this. He turned to look at the Idol in Clone’s hands and then out at the collapsing bubble of warmth that had been overcome by the magical snowfall.
Kirk had realized some time ago, when Symbiote had tried unsuccessfully to duplicate his powers, that the source of his gifts might have been different than he and Gramps had originally speculated.  From his energy sense he knew he was in touch with universal forces, with the natural environment, but this seemed to confirm that the source was what most would define as magic.  Although not a shock about himself, it was a surprise to him regarding Slingshot.

Realizing his powers couldn't help directly within the ruins and that Vanguard's element of surprise was now most definitely lost he thought he could provide assistance in another way; a major distraction to keep the inhabitants confused and off-balance.  He figured either the Dino Men were trying to summon Cthulhu or satiate him.  Either way, John's manipulation of the supernatural storm had 'nature' responding to the ceremony beyond what he assumed was the imagining of the Dino Men.  He could work with that.
Perhaps it was his thoughts about the source of his gifts or the environment surrounding them itself but Kirk outstretched his arms palms upward looking more like a mage casting a spell than his normal self, exercising his powers as he concentrated.  His energy shield around him began to change form and morph into the appearance, color, and texture of the images of Cthulhu they had all seen.  Once fully convalesced around him Kirk began to rise into the sky, the image growing into massive size around him towering outside the Ruins. To the denizens of the ruins it appeared as if Cthulhu had arrived!  (Costs 8 points of power and an action to rebuild shields into a giant Cthulhu construct!)

The gigantic form of Cthulhu rose up over the Ruins as the snow (stars?) fell around him!!!
The two thousand Dino Men that had been slowed due to havoc the plummeting temperatures played on their cold blooded physiology were finally able to act!
But they chose not to. Instead they stopped in their tracks.  Peering up through the snowy night sky, they witnessed the return of mighty Cthulhu!  The Dino Men slowly fell to their knees with their hands held above their heads in worship.

Menagerie and Slate looked up through the snow and saw that Cthulhu had come to earth!  Vanguard’s quest to stop him had failed! They could see that the Dino Men were exultant and triumphant!

Menagerie (used his saved action) to cast the spell of Nature Sense to try to contact his mystical patron at this, the ending of all things.  He immediately detected that somehow Cthulhu’s coming created no threat to the Natural Order! Then the sorcerer superhero knew “Cthulhu” was Sentinel. He moved to tell Slate but saw that Slate had already deduced it with his heightened sense of comprehension (and a successful Detect Hidden).
With the ranks of Dino Men on their knees, Menagerie and Slate (and Slate’s heightened sense of comprehension) located the main gate of the Ruins. They ran for it! When they got there, they saw Avatar, Clone, Slingshot and Symbiote! Clone had the artifact!

Symbiote had already deduced “Cthulhu’s” true nature, due to the inexplicable silence accompanying his arrival (and a successful Detect Hidden), and had already shared the good news with the Vanguardians near him at the main gate.

Lightning Strike, still in the Ruins, could sense the electrical power of Sentinel’s communicator from within “Cthulhu” and surmised the reality of what he was looking at.

The four high priests suddenly began barking orders from the altar in their inhuman tongue!

The two thousand Dino Men worshippers of Cthulhu listened and then rose slowly, in confusion and disbelief. They were beginning to focus away from “Cthulhu” and toward the area beneath him: the main gate.  Snarls and barks came from the horde and they began to rush forward at Vanguard! Two Terrordactyl riders came screaming in!  “KRAAAAA!!

Symbiote said, “Let’s go!” He targeted the higher Terrordactyl and increased its weight fourfold with gravity control! The Terrordactyl and his rider fell out of the sky like a stone, crashing hard into the other Terrordactyl beneath them, and they all smashed to the ground at the gate in a whirling tangle of wings and limbs!

Slate threw two flash bang grenades at the gate in an attempt to stall the advancing horde of claws, teeth and swords! WH-WHOOM!

Mystic’s gate was closing soon (at the end of this turn/issue)!
Most Vanguardians wouldn’t reach it in time under their own power (i.e. they’ve already used up their action and movement!)
If the gate shut, the two thousand Dino Men would tear Vanguard apart!

Symbiote grabbed Clone and dove into the portal with him! The Idol was successfully extracted!

Slingshot (using his regular action) expanded one arm into a net shape and enveloped all of Vanguard.
He stretched his other arm into the Ruins, looping around Lightning Strike’s waist, and then straight back and up at “Cthulhu” to grab Sentinel out of his construct! The Cthulhu construct would not fit through the gate (and Sentinel had no actions left to alter its shape before the gate closed) so Sentinel deactivated it! With no construct, Sentinel had no shields, and no ability to fly! He fell into Slingshot’s oversized, waiting hand.

“Cthulhu” disappeared! Poof!

The Dino Man advance suddenly exploded in sound, speed and fury! They were nearly upon Vanguard, screeching and howling like a demon army from hell!

Slingshot reeled the rest of Vanguard to him and, bearing all their weight, leapt through the gate without a moment to spare!  KZZHROOOM!! The gate closed behind them!

Vanguard found themselves in the Special Projects Room of Vanguard Vault with Mystic, Archimedes, Oracle, Shelley Harper, Nanite, Doc Rocket, Sgt. Stone and CHESS Agent Drake.

At Vanguard’s feet were a half dozen severed Dino Man arms in a small pool of blood.
“Cutting it a little close, huh kids?” said Sarge.

Clone handed the Stone Idol of Cthulhu to Mystic.
Sentinel said, “It seems to nullify magic in certain circumstances. Not now, clearly.”
Mystic examined it carefully and Archimedes said, “Not ‘nullify.’ Absorb.”

Slingshot was embracing Nanite and Slate. He turned his head around and said to Sentinel, “Huh? What do you mean? I must have missed the whole "nullifies magic only" part. I thought it nullified all super powers.”

Sentinel replied, “Slate’s powers were unaffected within the Ruin.  Clone’s also. But Strike's powers projected successfully into the Ruin. Avatar's powers projected and failed to work within the Ruin. Menagerie, Sentinel, and Slingshot lost powers within; Sentinel and Slingshot regained powers once outside the Ruin.  The height of the 'field' over the ruins was measured by Symbiote when he raised you high enough to revert you back to superhuman form. That was the evidence I used to reach that conclusion.  At this point it is only a conclusion but it makes sense to me.”

Nanite looked up at her husband. “Wait. What?”

To be continued!

Mystic wants to gate the Idol of Cthulhu to his pocket dimension for safe keeping. 
After doing that, and recovering from the exertion to do that, Vanguard will be ready to target the next artifact in two hours – leaving only two days and 19 hours until the end of the world!

During those two hours, Vanguard will naturally heal all their Power Points and none of their Hit Points.

Everyone, please provide:

a)    Reactions/replies to any and all of the above issue

b)    Your vote for what location Vanguard should target next! Vanguard has three artifacts: the Splinter of the True Cross, the Mayan Sacrificial Dagger, and the Stone Idol of Cthulhu. Six Artifacts remained, and Vanguard knew their locations, thanks to the invention of the Janus Chair. They were:

•          The middle of the Atlantic Ocean
•          Northern France
•          The Nevada desert
•          Moscow (This is assumed to be the Spear of Destiny, in possession of the SSS)
•          Northern California
•          China

c)    A few Vanguardians have saved Level Advancements. (Avatar, Slingshot and Slate.)  If any of you want to use them, you may do so now.
Avatar: fyi, an advancement for you could be a new power, tied to another Greek God, adding to your list of manifestation possibilities.

d)    Anything else you want to do or say

The sooner you answer question “b” the sooner your poor GM will know what he needs to prepare for next issue! 

It’s 2am and the world storm rages on! Vanguard gates next at 4am.

Thanks everyone!


Current Conditions upon gating back to Vanguard Vault:

Avatar: Hit Points: 49, Power Points: 56, Manifestation: Zeus

Clone: Bodies: 1, Hit Points: 22, Power Points: 40, Hit Point Pool: 22

Lightning Strike: Hit Points: 39, Power Points: 70

Menagerie: Hit Points: 14, Power Points: 62, Form: Man

Sentinel: Hit Points: 21, Power Points: 43, Creation Points: 86

Slate: Hit Points: 31, Power Points: 69

Slingshot: Hit Points: 79, Power Points: 90, Invulnerability: 8

Symbiote: Hit Points: 62, Power Points: 83, Charges: 12, Activated: Zero G


OOC: Hi Jeff.

Hopefully I will get to do post this weekend but just for the vote Kirk was going to go along with the already suggested choice with most of the reasoning that they may as well hit the most hostile environment at their strongest and he is banking on the location likely being Atlantis and one of the two places the last entry was thwarted so perhaps they may learn something more they can use in their own efforts (other than massive sacrifice).

But I figured at least my vote now would help you.  (nudge nudge wink wink)



OOC: Do we have any watercraft that we could use for this?  While some have powers to allow some movement and survival in an aquatic environment, not all of us do.  Even those who might be able to support several others (i.e. Sentinel) might be needed in other capacities once a fight or some other plan begins.


OOC: We should have a CHESS watercraft but unless we want to push it through the gate or there is some way of knowing if we are porting into water or an area of air under the water ahead it is hard to what to use.  We also have protective environmental suits.  Sentinel used it also because although his powers would protect him temporarily once we go too far beneath the surface the water pressure begins damaging his constructs... and if rendered unconscious in battle or exhaustion they dissipate too.
Likely we'd all enter in the Chess environmental suits without the craft since we should be porting close to the object.  If we're fortunate we enter into an air environment.  In addition to the suits Kirk will also recommend that each of us carry an extra small handheld type extra container of air with a couple minutes supply of air - since someone's protective suit always gets punctured in these sort of situations and it will buy them some time.



OOC: There was a mantacraft last time we went there, if I recall properly.
There are also pressurized suits available.

Something to think about:  It's 2am we have two days to go and six artifacts.. When are we going to take a power nap? There's going to be a point where we are going to hit some form of penalty. Are we getting "tired"? I assume that some of us can keep on trucking for a while, but we will get to a point where we will be starting to lose some folks.

Jeff can you tell us when we should start feeling the pull of the ZZZZs?

At Vanguard’s feet were a half dozen severed Dino Man arms in a small pool of blood.
“Cutting it a little close, huh kids?” said Sarge.

"Tell me about it! But that was way easier than seeing the ground coming at you at 60 miles an hour and you're human again. I have to say that put things in perspective." He fist-pounds, gently, Symbiote, "But Symbiote saved my, then, skinny bottom. So I'm more than happy to pull his bacon out of the fire, Same goes for everyone." He surveys the rest of the team.

He continues, "Sentinel, that was inspired. Well done."


Nanite looked up at her husband. “Wait. What?”

Embarrassed, he scratches his head. "Sorry, Nan. Ethan dug up some books that seemed to point that I had more than a passing resemblance to some sort of Cthulu freakazoid, but that was after this mess started. We kept looking into it, but we didn't find much. I figured it was just a coincidence. We've been jumping from one thing to the next and, well, I didn't want to worry you, honey. If my powers are actually magical in nature, then there might be more to it than it appears."

He looks at the reflective glass of the cabinet and he sees the family picture: Scott looking back, Nan looking up at him and Ethan leaning close to his mother. He laughs, "Sounds like we each have a part to play with some disaster. Three's a charm!" He hugs them both again.


Lightning Strike:
I am also OK with the middle of the Atlantic Ocean but I want to use what little downtime we have to investigate Atlantis and any other mythology about lost civilizations so we understand what kind of artifact we might be looking for.

Also, given my aversion to water (as per my weakness) is it possible that any underwater craft can be configured so that I can fire electrical blasts underwater similar to an electric eel.



OOC:  Hey Stephane:

Manta craft won't fit through Mystic's gate.

Sleep deprivation: after 18 hours without sleep ( at 2am, or right now ) everyone needs to make d20 saves vs Endurance and Charisma per hour. Each failure gives a -1 to each stat, skill and saving throw. 
A roll of a 20 is an automatic failure. 

After 24 hours with no sleep ( at 8am ) a failed d20 roll means the character acts Fatigued as per the rules.

Nap-wise, every hour of sleep buys you a three hour delay on any of these saving throws being required.



OOC: So the question is do we sleep 4 hours now and delay the outing by 2 hours.

I think that would be the best course of action. that should give us enough rest to complete 4 or so artifacts before another rest and  the last 2 artifacts.

What say you? Fatigued is not a good thing if I remember correctly.Lots of small minuses everywhere, but since we have managed to do each of these excursions by the skin of our teeth, Every minus counts.

On the debrief meeting, Slingshot tables the topic of sleep. "I think the best course of action right now is to have a short rest. If it wasn't for Sentinel's quick thinking and his illusion, we wouldn't be here and we would be neck deep in dinomen right now. We need to stay sharp. I propose we go down for a 4 hour sleep. It will let the magus rest and we will be ready. It's only a two hour delay, but it'll give us a great boost for the next set of teleports."


Menagerie agrees to sleeping for 4 hours



OOC: Mantacraft - Doh!


OOC: I thought I had sent something last week, but I can't find my post... Slate is good with the Atlantic, I'm not sure if Life Support protects him from lack of sleep, but he'll go along with the team, and work in some research time on Atlantis, as well as reading the logs of the teams encounter with the Star Giant, which seems reasonable that this would be related as he recalls some non-Euclidean designs from those logs, that might have been similar to the writings he found in the book from Swastika's lab, or on the temple in the Lost Lands.

He will request a DPV (Diver Propulsion Vehicle), some kind of communication devices for the team that will work above or under water, and he'll trade in his Indy outfit for diving gear and a spear gun with grapnel.  He'll still be carrying his bag of tricks and supernatural defenses, ensuring he has water proof bags for anything that should stay dry (salt, garlic, etc...) but he'll forgo the flash bangs.

He'll also try to spend some down time with his mother.


OOC: My gut tells me that the Atlantic might be a good choice, but with so little time to get all the artifacts we may want to consider "Base Raiding" the group(s) that are also collecting artifacts. With that in mind, we may want to prepare for the possibility of getting "Base Raided" ourselves - they may be thinking the same thing.


[OOC]As per the last time, I won't need a pressure suit, but I'll need a re-breather.

I would like to have a few handy in case we run into underwater problems.

Beyond that, Scott's focus is to get some rest and get on with it. Not sure if you want to expand on the Nanite/explanation scene.

Jon: You can interject into that one as well if you feel the need for it.


Avatar goes for the Atlantic, too.


OOC: Good evening.

Never had time to do more detailed post but most of the things Kirk was going to cover were covered by other PCs at this point so all good.  I'll just add  after Kirk heard what Slingshot said about the picture he found like himself he would add something along the lines of, "That adds up.  I noticed some of the Dinomen reacting towards seeing you and pointing; their reaction seemed to be more of recognition and astonishment.  I also get the feeling that you or your origins will play a much more significant role in events than perhaps we anticipated."

In addition to the pressured suit with oxygen supply Kirk would like the each member to have an additional small separate mouthpiece that houses an additional supply.  I think divers sometimes use these - might only contain a few minutes air but just in case someone's main supply is cut off (which tends to happen in this situation) it might buy some extra time to get help if needed.

On resting, sounds fine.  If it will help perhaps Kirk would try meditating and sleep combo as meditation tends to have good results and Kirk has some training from his mental discipline training, also in case of encountering the Star Giant again that might prepare his mind... but I do want him to receive at least the same benefit in preventing fatigue etc - if this will work game-wise (rule wise) do it and it would be in character.  Thanks.



OOC: I know this is really late, and it's OK if you can't work it into the episode, but this has been bouncing around in my head, so I thought I'd send it in...

IC: Slate rolled to the ground falling atop his father in a tangled mess, along with half of Vanguard.  He crawled out of the tangle as his father pulled himself together.  Pulling his mask off, he looked around at the rest of the team, no one looked damaged or hurt, but they did look tired.  Moving off to the side, Slate waited for them to determine their next steps.
“I know we’re all tired,” Slingshot said pulling himself from the floor, “Maybe we should take a short break and grab some z’s while we can.  I feel we should head for the Atlantic site next, and we’ll need to be at our best.  We got lucky this time, thanks to Clone and Lightning Strikes quick thinking.  We’ll need everyone at the top of their game if we’re going to pull this off.” 

Several of the team members nodded their agreement, and some voiced their opinions and thoughts on the last mission, as they began to disburse.  Slate saw a technician off to the side setting a countdown clock to the 6am time frame Slingshot had appointed as their next mission.

Looking around, Slate realized it was 2am, which explained why the Doc, Shelly, and Nanite were not there.  The three mages looked exhausted as well; even Archimedes’ feathers appeared ruffled. He glanced around to see a few team members drifting off in groups until Slingshot came over and said, “Let’s head upstairs, I’m sure your mom will want to hear about this.”

After a short conversation with Nanite, they headed to their rooms.  Slate logged in to his computer and started a search on the Star Giant, and any information he could find on Atlantis… all the while listening to the wind howling against the Vanguard Vault.  Rain virtually coated the tower as he looked out the window, peering into the darkness punctuated by lightning followed by thunder.  He turned back to his room, taking in the contrast… immaculate, clean, warm, and bright, he began to see how life could be changed if they failed, and a grim determination came over him.  “We cannot fail,” he thought to himself.  He pulled a list of supplies he would need from the internet, and slipped out of the apartment, he could hear Slingshot and Nanite talking softly behind their door.

He headed to the basement, to the Quartermaster to requisition his equipment.  Stace, the young agent that had helped him before was sitting before his computer inside the cage that surrounded the storage area.  “Hey Stace, I need to get a few things,” Slate said smiling.  His smile was short lived… Stace practically snarled at him, “I’m not giving you anything.”  Slate’s smile disappeared… “Why, you helped me before.” Slate responded. 

“Are you kidding me,” Stace slapped his hand upon a book on a nearby counter.  “I nearly lost my job over that flash bang fiasco.  I thought you had gone through the channels, your forms looked legit.  How did I know you created them yourself off of historical documents?  You’re not even an official member of the team.”

“I thought we might need them,” Slate responded.  “Menagerie showed me how to use them, you saw him he was right here with me… I didn’t know I couldn’t just copy the forms… I wasn’t trying to trick you,” Slate stammered trying to defend his actions.  “I wasn’t trying to cause any trouble.”

“Well you sure did.  I’ll be lucky if I ever get off clerk duty.   You know I didn’t join to sit behind a desk all day,” Stace said less aggressively.  “Look kid, I know you didn’t mean any harm, but I’ve got to do things by the book.  You are going to have to get an official Vanguard member to requisition this stuff, or your going to have to be added to the team.  I can’t help you anymore.”

Slate folded the form he had laid on the desk and turned slowly away… “Thanks,” was all he said as he trudged back to the elevators and up to his room. 

Everything was quiet as he entered his room, and lay down on top of the covers, still wearing his uniform.  Looking out the window he sighed, closed his eyes and shut down for the night.

OOC: The equipment Slate wanted was in my original post, I leave it open as to what he actually gets/needs for the next mission.

Still having fun!



OOC: For next stop I vote the Atlantic.  If we go there I'll take Inhuman's power set.  Anywhere else, I'll take Accelerator.



Hey heroes,

I'm busy writing up the next issue and I had an idea.

Right now, you're taking a nap and then gating to the middle of the Atlantic Ocean in your pressurized scuba suits. Once there you have no transport (or shelter) because the Manta Craft can't fit through Mystic's gate. But you guys were trying to find a way to include the Manta Craft.

What about this instead?  Vanguard flies to the middle of the Atlantic Ocean in the Manta Craft.  CHESS pilots fly it there while Vanguard naps on the trip (except Slate, whose Body Power doesn't require sleep.)  The trip will take about 5 hours, so Vanguard can count on 4 hours of sleep, flying above the turbulence of the World Storm. This way, you get the nap, you're close to the same schedule, but now you have the amphibious Manta Craft with you at the hostile environs of the artifact site.
After the mission, Mystic can gate Vanguard back home to save time, while the CHESS pilots fly the jet back.

Everyone, please get me your vote on this subject:  "Gate" or "Fly."


OOC: Fly


OOC: Slate would vote for using the Manta Craft. Since he doesn't need sleep (which I don't think I'd realized), he'll observe the pilots and read the manual to learn how to fly... above and below water.


OOC: Fly


Lightning Strike:
OOC: I will go with flying as well.  We can sleep in the storm and be better prepared.


OOC: I'm good with flying there.

I may want to gate back though.


OOC: Fly


OOC: Jeff, could you give me some examples of what Avatar could use as his power boost?  I'm actually considering saving things up and getting another permanent power, although that would be some time before it happened (unless I took a corresponding weakness?).

Could I work something from myth into the character without an extensive backstory?  Examples that I considered might be Invulnerability a la Achilles with the with a weakness like his (although not an ankle...can't copy directly) or an Invulnerability item a la the Nemean lion skin.  Not that I want Invulnerability, necessarily, but those were things that came to mind.


Sure thing.

Here's how the power works right now:

Magic Power: Divine Manifestation: (Level Three Advancement)
Avatar may manifest an ability of the Twelve Olympians, as a true Avatar of Olympus.
That ability is a temporary superpower (costs 15 power points and one action to manifest)
or a temporary knowledge area skill (costs 5 power points and movement to manifest). Duration is Charisma minutes.
More than one ability may be manifested at a time (Level Four Advancement).
· Ares: Heightened Strength or Heightened Expertise with held weapons or Intimidation skill
· Zeus: Weather Control or Oration skill
· Hephaestus: Immunity from Fire/ Heat or Weaponsmith skill
· Aphrodite: Heightened Charisma or Seduction skill
· Poseidon: Summon Pegasus for Current Power minutes, Water Breathing or Swimming skill
· Artemis: Heightened Expertise with ranged weapons or Hunting skill
· Athena: Heightened Intelligence or Cosmic Awareness or Tactics skill
· Hermes: Heightened Speed or Languages Skill
· Apollo: Light Control or Equestrian skill
· Hera: Heightened Endurance or Diplomacy skill
· Demeter: Speak with Plants or Plant Lore skill
· Hestia: Heightened Defense or Healing skill

So with one level advancement, you can add another superpower under any of the gods in your Olympian Pantheon.
For example, under Athena, add "Invulnerability: 8" to the list of powers that can be manifested.  It's the Aegis of Athena that appears.

I'd rather not add heroes to those that can be manifested (like Heracles or Achilles), in keeping with the 12 Olympians / pantheon motif.
Also, Avatar IS the modern day version of those heroes, similarly empowered by the gods.

Does that make sense?



OOC: Yes, but I can't think of powers to add under the spheres of those gods.


OOC:  Hi
Here are some superpowers that could fit under the Olympian Pantheon:

Any Heightened Stat (most dieties)
Heightened Attack (Ares, Athena, Artemis, others)
Heightened Senses (most dieties)
Pet (Zeus, Athena, Poseidon, others)
Weakness Detection (Ares, Athena, others)
Willpower (Hera)
Animal/Plant Control (Poseidon (fish), Artemis (mammals), Zeus (birds), Demeter (plants), others )
Armor (Athena, Ares)
Dimensional Travel (Hermes)
Emotion Control (Fear or Love or Hate or others)  (Ares, Athena, Aphrodite, Hera, others)
Flame Power (attack blast only)  (Hephaestus or Apollo)
Invulnerability (Athena's shield)
Lightning Control (attack blast only) (Zeus)
Regeneration (ie: Heal Self, or Heal Other)  (Hestia, or even Apollo)
"Life Support" (immunity to poison, no need for sustenance, etc.)  (Hestia)
Revivication (Zeus, Hestia)
Control Water (Poseidon)
Create Earthquake  (Poseidon)

These are just off the top of my head. There could be others. Were you looking for anything in particular?



OOC: No, that's a good list.  You have an expanded idea of Avatar's possible powers over what I had.  I will take a look at these and others and get back with you.

What about either reducing the Power cost for manifesting even further or adding another manifestation (from two up to three)?

If no, then probably either Heightened Attack (under Ares or Athena) or Lightning Control (lightning bolt attack, under Zeus).


OOC: You could do either (ie: reduce power cost, or increase manifestations up to 3 at the same time)


OOC: What could I reduce the PR cost to?


OOC: From a PR of 15 for superpowers and 5 for skills, to a PR of 10 for superpowers and 3 for skills.



OOC: I'll go with that one.


OOC: Done.  I’ll get you a new sheet.