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Light City #2 - The Elemental
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Light City #2 - The Elemental

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Welcome (Back) to Light City!

This is the second class designed to bring four-color superheroics to the excellent Swords & Wizardry Light ruleset.  Light City may not be your permanent home for metahuman roleplaying, but we hope you'll enjoy visiting now and then!

 
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Reviews (2)
Discussions (5)
Customer avatar
Royce R July 02, 2017 4:07 am UTC
PURCHASER
Hi Jonathan,

I just read your article statting out Halo and Firestar and your comments on the problem that is flying, Since the Elemental corresponds to the Magic-User, why not let a high Intelligence give a +1 bonus to flying success?
Customer avatar
Jonathan L July 03, 2017 3:46 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
I think you might be right that an ability modifier is at least one of the keys to easing that issue! I initially avoided it for simplicity, but it really does make sense, doesn't it? I admit, though, I'm more tempted to just use DEX, although that would be a nice way to make INT count a little more...

Thanks for bringing this up, by the way!
Customer avatar
Royce R July 03, 2017 4:30 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Or both DEX and INT. Let's face it: in real life it takes both, whether you are an avian or an aviator.
Customer avatar
Royce R June 30, 2017 6:24 am UTC
PURCHASER
Hi Jonathan,

Your article statting The Ray clarified something for me. I had always considered Elemental Strike a free use of the power not bound by the "feats per day per level" limit.

I can't wait to see the Sidekick. Robin is the archetype, but which one do you use? Four boys and two girls have had the job. And don't knock yourself for dreaming about what Light City may one day be. I dream of one day buying a nice hardcover POD of Light City on Lulu, then going over to Kickstarter for a GM screen, stand-ups, and modules.
Customer avatar
Jonathan L July 01, 2017 5:56 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
Ah! That's something I probably need to make clearer in the class description. The Elemental Strike is a free use of the power; it functions as an attack. I guess I've given it terms in character writeups ("Atomic Strike" for the Atomic Thunderbolt and "Light Ray" for the Ray) that obscure the source of those attacks. The use of an unerring, Magic Missile-esque effect, however, does follow the "per day" rule.

(Also, thank you for the encouragment! There are definitely plans for Light City. They may take a WHILE, but there are plans...!)
Customer avatar
Royce R June 23, 2017 8:56 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Hi Justin,

I think I've come up with a basic Elemental "spell book" that covers every element but Speed. For the most part it was just a matter of assigning logical levels for attainment while keeping the low power levels of the Golden Age and S&W(C)L in mind.

Level 3, Elemental Shield: AC 3[16]. It lasts for two rounds, plus an additional round for every two levels the Elemental is above 3rd.

Level 4, Elemental Strike: The hero can fire two projectiles of his element that do a base damage of 1d6 up to 60' away.

Level 5, Wall: The Elemental can create a wall of his element 50' long, 5' high, and 2'' thick that does a base damage of 2d6 to anything trying to pass through it and has a duration of 2 rounds. For every 10' less than 50' the wall is in length, the wall can be made 1' higher, 1" thicker, and do an additional d6 of damage. The wall can also be shaped into an enclosure that will

Level 5, Hold: 1d6 human-sized...See more
Customer avatar
Jonathan L June 25, 2017 4:22 am UTC
PUBLISHER
Hey Royce! I think that looks like a good progression for how an Elemental would learn to use their powers in creative ways! I'm interested in why you chose some of the levels you did...e.g. two for 5th and 7th, but none for 6th, and starting at 3rd level. Was it more about comparison to SWL characters or keeping power levels low for starting PCs?
Customer avatar
Royce R June 25, 2017 1:44 pm UTC
PURCHASER
"At the time, it seemed the logical thing to do." You had already devoted 1st, 4th, and 7th levels to Elemental Strike improvements, and levels 1-6 saw improvements in takeoffs and landings for the Flight ability. Once the hero had learned to shield himself at third, the next step would be shielding others via a wall at fifth. (Now that you mention it, I see where shaping the wall into an enclosure for holding, or protecting, others, would be better gained at sixth, as the only other improvement there is in the flight ability.) Once the hero has learned to shape the wall into an enclosure, the next step would be to "carve" the cylinder as desired and, if necessary, animate it at seventh.
Customer avatar
Royce R June 25, 2017 1:57 pm UTC
PURCHASER
And Jonathan, my apologies for confusing you and Justin in my original post. The Sidekick Justin used was a budding elemental and I had that on my mind when I was coming up with the "spell book".
Customer avatar
Jonathan L June 26, 2017 3:41 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
I think you've put much more logic into balancing this class along its progression than I have! (And no problem on the name...I'll answer to pretty much anything...!)
Customer avatar
Royce R June 06, 2017 11:57 pm UTC
PURCHASER
FOR SOME REASON I CAN'T LEAVE A REVIEW ON THE REVIEW PAGE EVEN THOUGH I JUST BOUGHT IT. I GIVE 5 OUT OF 5, AND HOPE TO SEE "THE GIFTED" SOON!
Customer avatar
Justin I June 07, 2017 5:17 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Trying going to account and finding it under your "Products Awaiting Review."
Customer avatar
Royce R June 07, 2017 8:47 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Thanks, Justin!
Customer avatar
Royce R June 06, 2017 11:42 pm UTC
PURCHASER
In a thread we engaged in on the Brawler page, you said that the Speedster archtype might have to be done separately from the heroes corresponding to fantasy's "big four". After reading Light City #2 I'm not so sure. The Elemental as you have presented him would be very adaptable to DC's concept of the Speedforce. A player running a speedster Elemental might want to make sure their PC has a high Dexterity to minimize damage from miscalculations and forego the ability to fly, however.
Customer avatar
Jonathan L June 08, 2017 12:57 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
It's funny you mention that, as while writing up the Elemental, it kept occurring to me how much the Flash does seem like a Speed Force Elemental. There are those little extra abilities like the phasing and the arm-cyclones and whatnot...and even with flying, the Blue Streak was practically a flyer back in the day, and didn't Wally basically run in space a time or two...? Now I'll definitely be thinking a little harder about fitting a Speedster into the Elemental mold...

I do think that the most essential ability of a Speedster (being able to do a lot of stuff in a short time) is probably different enough from a "flying and blasting" archetype that it'll work as its own class, for ease of use if nothing else. (With that said, superspeed is an incredibly difficult ability to balance if you give it anything close to the scale presented in comics...!).

Thanks a ton for your thoughts and interest here!!
Customer avatar
Royce R June 08, 2017 5:47 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Golden Age heroes were much less "super" than their counterparts today, no doubt. If the Elemental, regardless of element. corresponds to the Magic-User, it may help to come up with a definitive list of feats/powers by level for each element, much like a spell book, based on what is shown in the Golden Age stories. This may make Light City more cumbersome than originally intended, however.
Customer avatar
Jonathan L June 09, 2017 10:38 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
I think it'd be pretty rad to see a more complex Elemental mapped out with talent trees and whatnot according to the power they tap into! That's definitely beyond what I'm hoping to do initially (as I try to keep things a little more general and freeform), but who knows what might be possible in the future...? I really see Light City as sort of a sandbox for those of us who really like Swords & Wizardry Light and want to play around in spandex using its super-simple rules, so there's certainly room to build more involved powers rules into it!

And, a dirty little secret about Light City: While drawing on public domain characters pretty much necessitates a Golden Age connection, I'm quite consciously hoping that the Silver Age and beyond don't get left out of the fun. I'm certainly trying to keep the feasibility of more modern characters in mind as classes are carried out to 7th level. Part of that is due to the fact that while I love GA pulpiness, my four-color heart lies in later ages...and...See more
Customer avatar
Royce R June 10, 2017 12:55 am UTC
PURCHASER
Well, as for doing Light City in Silver or Modern Age settings, Justin Isaac is doing a great job converting his M&M characters into Light City format on his Halls of the Nephilim website. A product you didn't mention, Guardians, uses themed power sets during character creation, listing various usages of a themed power in order of increasing energy cost and devastation in battle. An editor (GM) could go through their lists and figure out what happens at 3rd, 5th, and 7th level.

As for me, my heart is in the Golden Age and always will be. The first comic book I ever owned was DC 100-page Super Spectacular #6, featuring a reprint of the first Justice League/Justice Society team-up and a ton of other Golden Age material. What can I say, I was hooked. It got to the point that all I bought from DC was JLA/JSA team-ups and reprints and The Invaders and Jack Kirby Thor and Captain America reprints from Marvel. The only Modern books I've read were the comics based on the Batman Adventures and Batman:...See more
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File Last Updated:
June 26, 2017
This title was added to our catalog on June 06, 2017.
Publisher Info
Monstrous Matters
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