Combining Powers

Sometimes two or more people may want to work together and combine their powers into a new hybrid special attack. When you combine powers, you add both attack values together into a single super-attack.

Not All Combinations Are Possible

Combined attacks have to be explainable and make sense. You can’t combine any random powers that seemingly would not interact with each other. For example, if one character has super speed and another character can read minds, how would combining those two powers actually work? They’re not related to each other; it’s hard to imagine how one power would interact with, modify, or amplify the other power. Maybe you can think of a way. But within the game, if you want to combine two or more powers, you have to be able to describe and explain to your Game Master how and why those powers work well together in combination.

On the other hand, imagine one character has ice breath and another has heat vision. Even though they seem to be opposites (cold and hot), they’re both types of energy-based attacks. If someone got hit with both ice and fire at the same time, surely those combined powers would produce an interesting result. You and the Game Master can easily imagine and visualize how those two powers might interact with each other.

Calculating Combined Powers

If both powers damage a character’s stats, you combine the total stat damage from both powers into a single attack. It’s especially helpful when the defending character has a really high defense that’s difficult to penetrate. (Example: combine metal claws with poison acid. Both attacking characters combine their individual powers’ total Health damage into a single, devastating hit.)

If both powers affect characters in other ways (but don’t damage any stats), you combine the total relevant Attributes from both characters, making the attack significantly harder for the defender to resist. (Example: combine mind control with reading minds. Both attacking characters combine their total “Mental” Attribute. The defender would have to beat their combined score to resist it.)

If one power deals stat damage and the other power affects characters in another way, there is no added bonus or benefit, other than doing two different attacks on the same character on the same turn. (Example: levitation and heat vision. The first power lifts them off the ground, the second power damages their Health. But the defending character can still try to resist being levitated with an Attribute check against the first attacker only, and then reduce damage with their total defenses against the second attacker only.)

If an attacker rolls a “Critical Hit” or “Critical Fail,” it applies to their individual attack, not the combined total. You combine the strength of the powers after all other calculations and modifications.

Random Results

Powers don’t always combine and interact the way we expect. They might accidentally cancel each other out, work as expected, or react to be even more powerful than thought possible!

First, you calculate the total, combined stat damage or attribute strength for your combined powers. (For example, if metal claws deals 10 Health damage and poison acid deals 5 Health damage, their total combined Health damage would be 15.)

Then the Game Master rolls a d4.

If the roll result is 1, the powers cancel each other out, fail to work, and deal no damage (perhaps the poison acid dissolved the metal claws; oops). If the roll result is 2 or 3, they deal “normal” damage, and work as expected. (For example, metal claws and poison acid would cause 15 Health damage.) If the roll result is 4, then they work unexpectedly well, and deal double normal damage (meaning, your metal claws and poison acid would do 30 Health damage instead)!

Turn Order Matters

Combining powers is a single action taken by two or more characters working together. But whose turn does the combined attack happen on? The combined attack happens on the turn of the character with the lowest total Initiative; whoever goes last.

For example, suppose “Captain Amazing” has an Initiative of 15 and goes first in battle. There’s a few monsters, with Initiatives between 12 and 9. Then there’s “Side-Kick Joe” with an Initiate of 5, who takes the last turn each round of battle.

On Captain Amazing’s turn, she’d declare that she’s going to combine powers with Side-Kick Joe. She would not do anything else this turn. Then the monsters would all take their turns. Then, on Side-Kick Joe’s turn, the two heroes would combine their powers and do a single, awesome attack on a single target monster.

Bigger Team-Ups are Possible

There is no limit to the number of characters that can combine their powers, as long as the Game Master agrees all those individual powers could and would combine together in a meaningful way. You could potentially have 3 characters, 4 characters, or even your entire team working together, combining and fusing their separate powers into one, single, mega, ultimate super-powered attack action.

What About Weapons?

The same rules apply when combining equipment-based attacks instead of and/or in combination with power-based attacks.

Limitations

Must Be Possible: Again, it has to make sense and be believable that the separate powers could and would interact with each other. The Game Master has final say on this. If your Game Master believes there’d be no interaction between two or more powers, then they cannot be combined.

Chance of Failure: The Game Master always rolls a d4 for every combined attack. That means there’s always a 25% chance the combo will do no damage at all, effectively wasting both characters’ turns.

One Target Only: Although two or more people are combining their attacks, their focus is always on a single target. The only way to hit multiple targets is if at least one of the combined powers also has an area of effect. If there is an area of effect, the combined total attack applies to the entire area.

Target Within Everyone’s Range: All combining characters must individually be within range of their intended target. If a character cannot reach that target independently on their own, or if they’re somehow blocked or prevented from reaching that target even if within range, they cannot combine their power to attack.