Comic Book Superhero Shenanigans
Original SA post
Part 1: Comic Book Superhero Shenanigans
(Magical Minutias 1 and 2 are just standalone character sheets for monsters. I didn’t see the point of devoting whole posts to them.)
DECEMBER 2012 THE WORLD ENDED .
IT ENDED IN FIRE
IT ENDED IN RAIN
IT ENDED IN DARKNESS
NEMESIS, HAD RETURNED, AN ANCIENT DEVICE BUILT BY THE GODLIKE ATLANTIANS ON EARTH MILLENNIA AGO. IT HAD SEEDED ALIEN WORLDS AND COME HOME TO REIGNITE THE ATLANTIAN GENE ONCE MORE AND BRING ABOUT THE SECOND AGE OF THE GODS.
2024, GODS NOW WALK THE EARTH, MAGIC HAS RETURNED AND BRIGHTLY COLORED HEROES AND VILLAINS HAVE MADE EARTH A POSTHUMAN WORLD WITH ALL THE LOOK OF A COMIC BOOK AND ALL THE PROBLEMS OF A WORLD ON THE VERGE OF A NEW GOLDEN AGE OR FALLING INTO OBLIVION.
The crossover in
Magical Minutia #3: “Crossover”
Nemesis: Modern Mythology
, Channel M’s superhero game that they promise will combine “cyberpunk, superheroics and urban fantasy” and will definitely come out at some point.
The world of Nemesis:Modern Mythology will be our foray into the world of superheroes. We’re not sure when but It’s coming.
At the time of this writing, this book was released over a year ago.
is not out yet.
Though you can buy a Soto art poster for it for 50 cents
or just save the preview picture to your hard drive and rasterbate it if you want.
The opening comic, which isn’t titled, is about this group of characters.
This is Youthquake. They are, it seems, the signature characters of
. Their group name makes them sound like they spend their weekends going around telling people about Jesus and filming bad Christian parodies of Top 40 songs for Youtube.
(No, I don’t know why the redhead is holding a ghost stomach.)
The comic follows Shane Ferris AKA “Mentalmancer”, the blond kid in the yellow. He writes an email to his mom telling her about a typical boring day at his boarding school, Nemesis Academy. He gets up late because his genius roommate tore up his alarm clock for parts, says hi to his friends, catches breakfast in the cafeteria, and saves the world from gold spider-riding soldiers from “the Empire Eternal”. It goes through introducing everyone while they fight, then they go and grab lunch at the local pizza place. Soto didn’t do the art for it, but the comic does have an amazing array of goofy faces, poses, and proportions.
(I didn’t realize Ankle Day was a day you could skip.)
It’s still better than Soto’s stuff though.
Also, only one bit of transformation.
There is no title page or table of contents for the book, nor are there credits for the comic. (Not that it really needs a ToC. There’s only 3 chapters.) DriveThruRPG doesn’t help because it just has “Various” for both the writers and artists. So whoever did this comic didn’t get credit for it. I’m going to guess it’s the same core staff as the previous books.
The first chapter is laid out like a travelogue by
Alice is a witch who invented the “Looking Glass Drive” (LGD for short), an engine that is used to power dimension-hopping vehicles and is installed in her own ship, the Jabberwocky. She spends her free time traveling and cataloguing the different parts of the multiverse with her crew.
She also dyed her hair blonde at some point.
Oh yes. As it’s been hinted at in the past few books, the WGA world, AKA “WWC-Earth”, is part of a greater multiverse. Behold!
(This isn't in the book. I got it from Facebook.)
Yup, we’re part of this multiverse too. FATAL and Friends is canon to
Also, I have a hunch that “Quester Earth” is what was eventually turned into
. I’ve mentioned in other posts that some of the art for that book was accompanied by an explanation of it being for a “witches after the apocalypse” setting.
Alice’s travelogue talks about Nemesis-Earth (AKA “Nemesis-Earth-Prime” AKA “Earth-Olympus” AKA “Super-Earth” AKA “The Perfect World”), the dimension the events of
mostly take place in. (If you read the multiverse chart, you probably noticed there’s a couple versions of the same world because we’re doing Crisis on Infinite Earths stuff now.) Nemesis-Earth is fairly similar to WWC-Earth and ours: There’s about 6 billion people, the dimensional size is roughly the same, and mundane world events have gone mostly the same ways. However, 6 million of the population are post-humans with various super powers, time is a couple years ahead due to the dimension being older, there is no masquerade, magic use is unisex (though still skews mostly female), the overall level of technology is higher, and the overall magic level is slightly lower.
The WWC fucking hates the place and have banned travel to and from it. If you try to open a portal to it on WWC-Earth, they will somehow detect it immediately and stop you. (So they can instantly know about that, yet have trouble finding young witches and getting them into schools and when someone on Earth commits a magical crime.) As a result, it has to be done from another dimension. If you get stuck there for whatever reason, they will not help you. Alice thinks this attitude comes from the fact that otherkin, presumably witches in general, are not, never have been, and never will be the true rulers of the world.
Not surprisingly, Nemesis-Earth’s various ruling bodies more than just frown upon all of the bullshit witches get up to in their own dimension. Trying to torture mundanes on Nemesis-Earth is a good way to get punched in the face and put in jail.
Alice Liddell posted:
Want to get put into traction? Show off your collection of shrunken mortals.
That’s probably another reason why the WWC hates the place: They can’t get away with their bullshit. The WWC are petty assholes.
That said, magic use is more common on Nemesis-Earth and magical enclaves exist in many major cities. Most magic users use their powers for medicinal uses or as sorcerers-for-hire and are a generally friendly bunch. Religious bias against magic use exists, but is rare.
The superhero stuff came about on Nemesis-Earth due to an alien race called “The Arisen”. For a long time, the Arisen were the only sentient race in the universe. Out of loneliness, they messed around with the DNA of primitive humans to create the first post-humans, the Atlantians. The Atlantians, in turn, upgraded the rest of humanity when they found out why the Arisen did it, because… why not, I guess.
At some point, Atlantis got itself into a civil war that killed over 90% of the population. To preserve their race, a group of 6 Atlantians created a device that would, after 50,000 years of charging up, return and reactivate the Atlantian gene within humanity. I guess they put that in when they upgraded some of humanity too, but just let it sit dormant or something.
The device, Nemesis, accomplished this by, I assume, blowing everything the fuck up in 2012. Along with creating 3.5 million post-humans (I guess being post-human makes you super virile…) and reactivating the Earth’s “magical field”, it also killed nearly a billion people and almost completely destroyed civilization. Thankfully, that was 12 years ago and now Nemesis-Earth is a technological wonderland of peace and prosperity, with the occasional comic book villain and Nazi.
(If you recall, there was mention in the core of an Atlantis blowing itself up in WWC-Earth. I’m going to guess this happened in multiple dimensions and Nemesis either nope’d the fuck out or got deactivated by petty witches on WWC-Earth. )
The general premise of modern day Nemesis-Earth is that it’s pretty much our Earth, but better and more progressive. (Seriously, it seems like Nemesis wiped out every far-right person except the Nazis.) During the 12 year rebound in technology, climate change has been eliminated thanks to air-cleaning towers that convert the pollution into resources, and fossil fuels have been replaced by more effective solar and wind power, perpetual motion engines, and rechargeable batteries with decades long lifespans. Most cancers are a thing of the past. Life expectancy for the entire world is now 150 years. Smart, self-driving cars and helicopters are common and available for rent. Underground trains and airships use the planet’s magnetic field to provide fast travel across countries. Paper money has been done away with in favor of debit cards that serve as identification cards. Magic users aren’t massive shits who will turn you into things if you mildly annoy them. Presumably. Any media made before 2012 has been lost though. (Thanks to a typo, the book makes it sound like everyone stopped making TV shows, books, and the like after 2012.)
On Nemesis-Earth, there are several governments and countries of note. As seen from this world map.
(The book doesn't mention this, but I noticed that Hokkaido is no longer part of Japan... and might have been annexed by North Korea?)
Same as the real world US, except it now has 51 states (Hawaii got destroyed during the Nemesis Event, but it picked up Puerto Rico and, somehow, Cuba), universal health care, a female president, and the best technology.
Doesn’t have a write-up.
(That’s… not what your country looks like…)
The African Imperial Union:
A benevolent dictatorship created by Queen Mabaya and her army of metahumans (the in-verse term for the not!mutants that make up most post-humans) shortly after the Nemesis Event. It was not a peaceful takeover. ( I want to know why predominantly Islamic northern Africa and richer than most South Africa survived Mabaya’s mass takeover of the continent.)
Eastern European Waste:
No write-up. I guess everyone that lived there is
in Heaven now.
After the Nemesis Event, England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland (all of it?), and Australia all banded together to protect itself from Germany and Avalon. Prince Harry rules it along with a council of representatives from each country. It’s the only thing keeping the rest of Europe from falling to Germany.
Ruled by fae monarchs King Oberon the 3rd and Queen Titania, Avalon is one of the most magical places on Nemesis-Earth. “The culture here is very Victorian minus the lack of equal rights based on sex". One of Oberon and Titania’s daughters is married to Harry. So I guess the UK doesn’t need to worry about them as much.
Australian Outback Dinosaur Preserve:
The Atlantians had a dinosaur zoo in a pocket dimension near Australia. The Nemesis Event fucked it up, and now part of Australia is Jurassic Park. There are still Aboriginal tribes in the area, but dinosaur attacks are rare, so it’s all good. (Which is a good thing because the area is surrounded by a several hundred foot wide and deep trench. Yeah, they just locked them in there.)
Free Tibet/Dragon Mountains:
The Himalayas are inhabited by dragons that woke up during the Nemesis Event. The Savads, a group of “mystical martial artists”, live in monasteries there and have bred a species of goat the dragons prefer over humans. Also, I guess Tibet told China to get fucked at some point. That part isn’t elaborated on.
The 1000 Year Reich:
A Neo-Nazi group full of metahumans took advantage of the chaos in Germany during the Nemesis Event and set themselves up as rulers. They even have their own version of Ingrid Frieze working with them. Because everything evil comes from Germany. (Alice even starts this blurb by assuring us that she loves the various Germanys she’s visited.)
Other things of note that aren’t included on the map are:
The Trans-American Pantheon Combine:
A worldwide organization of benevolent metahumans that organizes and takes care of various metahuman interests, as well as acting as a worldwide police/military force. Has been effective so far, not that the rest of the world’s governments could do a thing about it if they weren’t. (So why haven’t these guys all gone after Germany?)
The United Nations:
“This version of the U.N actually has some power when it comes to the Earth.” Has its own military, court system, and space program. Deals in worldwide problems, of course.
Nemesis-Earth’s Maximum Inc., except Macdonald Hartman is a metahuman, because of course he is. (Both versions also have doctorates in something now.)
World War 3 Memorial:
A memorial dedicated to a pantheon (group) of metahumans called “The Watch” that died in the 3 month war between Canada (which no longer exists) and an invading alien army, along with the other “less than 100” metahumans that died during it. Millions of humans also died, but they didn’t get a memorial because they’re not special.
The Romanian Rift:
A portal to the Shadow opened up in Romania and split it in half. Vampires hang out here. The UN has a wall around the area.
AB-1 Alert Areas:
A genetically engineered, effectively immortal Godzilla-like monster named Brutus roams the planet destroying cities. (Alice describes him as being a cross between a troll, an ogre, a shark, and Wolverine.) Various governments have set up a network of alert devices that informs people when he’s in the area.
Up next: Rules
One Page of Crunch, Three Pages of Fluff
Original SA post
Part 2: One Page of Crunch, Three Pages of Fluff
I lied. There’s a bit more setting stuff before a couple of new character creation options.
I think Reed Richards-616 would beg to differ.
Crisis of two Earths.
Visiting the world of Earth-Nemesis or interacting with it is a dangerous proposition. Unlike in comic books world crossing interactions are not as "peaceful" as they one would think.
There’s probably other storylines like that, but I’m not a big comic book person. So I wouldn’t know.
The WWC and the Trans-American Pantheon Combine are aware of each other and communicate on a regular basis through an ambassador, Raven Sinclair. She’s on the 20 voodollar bill. No, she is not the same Raven Sinclair who teaches Alteration at Coventry. No, she is not the alternate universe version of that teacher. The explanation is weird and in another book. Along with being a magi (Nemesis term for a magic user), she is also a superhero and part of the best and most notable (adult) pantheon, Team Maximum. (The book doesn’t say who the other members are, but I’m going to guess Nemesis-Macdonald Hartman is involved in some way based on the name.)
Probably due to the line this book is a part of, Nemesis characters and their dimension are portrayed as being more of a threat than WGA characters and WWC-Earth. Metahumans are a paranoid bunch who, due to past experiences, generally assume that anyone visiting their dimension unannounced is there to cause trouble. All post-humans are registered with their respective governments, and children are required to have supervised training on how to use their abilities. Classes on how to properly use one’s powers in public are mandatory, even if the person in question doesn’t do the whole superhero thing. So naturally, they’re not going to take kindly to a group of unsupervised zap-happy tween witches who terrorize mundanes for minor slights. As there is no masquerade on Nemesis-Earth, there is also the danger of them breaking all of that hard work the WWC does to keep it up if they ever visit WWC-Earth. (
) Even more so as metahumans cannot be detected by the WWC’s normal means due to not being magical. So anyone that wanted to come over and take advantage of this could do so pretty easily.
The writing also slightly implies that they’re kind of roid-ragey.
This is but one reason (the top being the openly violent nature of so called super-heroes) that makes Earth-Nemesis a world the WWC would rather it's citizens avoid.
“Turning people into frogs is not a crime! Why are you arresting me?! THIS IS ASSAULT! I DO NOT CONSENT!"
Despite the chapter being called “rules”, there’s only two new rule items. The first is a new heritage for characters who are
. Half-Metahuman characters lose 3 of their starting magic ranks and only have the basic metahuman abilities: Hyper Strength (+3 to Strength based Athletic rolls, +3 Hand to Hand damage, can lift up to a ton), Invulnerability (a point of armor and +1 to rolls against poisons and diseases), and Meta Physology (sic; only needs an hour of sleep, heals 1 extra life point at the end of combat scenes).
The other new bit is a superhero uniform. It costs 3 points, has a base of 2 Armor, and gives an extra point of armor to heat and cold attacks due to being climate controlled.
Add-ons to the uniform include:
(2) Acts as a scuba suit.
(2) Grants night vision.
(2) Has various features meant to protect and aid flying characters. +1 to Flight rolls and takes half damage from falls.
(4) Can carry up to 4 mundane devices and use them when needed.
Here’s a picture of some Nemesis people taking a selfie.
Up next: Character sheets for Youthquake.
Original SA post
Part 3: Youthquake
(What’s going on in the lower right?)
Youthquake is a pantheon based out of Nemesis Academy, a school for metahuman children, in Dallas, Texas. They are the most famous and powerful pantheon of teen superheroes. So no matter what age your
characters are, they are always going to be overshadowed in importance by these guys or Team Maximum. The book states that these characters were chosen out of the hundreds of heroes and villains on Nemesis-Earth because they are the closest in age to typical
characters (all of them are 15 or 16) and the most likely group to respond if they end up on Nemesis-Earth. But really, it’s probably because at least 3 of these characters are self-inserts.
The chapter also stresses that GMs pay attention to the characters’ rankings, since
characters are designed to be more powerful. But rank numbers don’t really mean anything, so who cares. The sheets themselves seem to use the older version of the rules, since they don’t have a Class/Wealth listing and no knacks.
Candice’s parents are actors. She herself was a child star. Her bio implies that she stopped acting (it calls her a “former child star”) when she joined Youthquake, but the comic says that she’s still acting and is the star of a TV show called
Candy’s Sweet Life
While her write-up and Shane stress that she’s smarter than she appears, she doesn’t really get a chance to show that. She has three lines in the comic. One is an insult about how the
Lord of the Rings
look is SOOOOO over, and the other two are her bitching about how she should be getting her hair did.
Candice Phelps posted:
Thanks, by the way, for making me miss my hair appointment at Neimen Marcus'... LOSERS.
I hope everyone appreciate s the sacrifice my hair and I made for them today.
Candice is a Rank 4 NPC. All of the characters in this chapter, except one, have the Metahuman clique, which gives them immortality and immunity to aging spells, a +1 to any two attributes, and a variation on the Meta-Physology perk that, for some reason, requires them to get 4 hours of sleep instead of the one that Half-Metahumans need. It also gives them a +2 to stabilizing rolls.
Candice’s powers are light-based and let her shoot laser beams, create holograms, control light, fly, and turn her body into it.
Han Lee Chin/Chi
Chin (or Han if you go by the comic) is a member of the Savads, as was his grandfather (who trained him) before him. He’s a member of Youthquake partly to continue the Savad tradition. He’s an introvert. Which means he doesn’t talk at all in the comic. So Shane has to explain him to us.
Shane Farris posted:
I'll try to explain how his powers work. Chi controls his and others chi... or life energy (hence the name). That makes him like Jackie Chan, Jet Li and Bruce Lee in their prime times ten. It gives him the ability to find the weaknesses and weak points in almost anything and heal us when we get hurt.
Han is a Rank 3 NPC. Due to being a magical Tibetan punch man, he has the “Supernatural” clique instead of the Metahuman one. This gives him 6 free ranks of Magic based skills, gives him a +1 to his Magic and Resist Magic, lets him restore 2 zap at the end of combat scenes, gives him +2 to Armor against magic attacks, and an immunity to poisons.
As a magical Tibetan punch man, Han is a master of the Jade Dragon style of M’ Katra, the assumed martial arts school of the Savads.
Eric is the country boy son of ranch owners who likes to flirt with girls. He’s also fiercely loyal and has a strong sense of right and wrong and all the other things you’d expect a generic superhero to be. The comic doesn’t give you much of an idea of what he’s like, other than that he quips at the bad guys in a southern accent and calls one person “pard”.
Eric is a Rank 3 NPC.
Powers wise, he’s Green Arrow if he were a green lantern.
Shane Farris posted:
His powers make him the perfect hunter. He never misses and while most people have five senses. I think Eric has closer to fifteen.
And those arrows he can create? They can do more than just hit one target if he wants them to.
Jill is the witch of the group and “potentially one of the most powerful beings alive”. As you’d expect, she’s the snarky asshole who would have been yelled at or kicked out after a few days if characters in the Channel M multiverse acted like real people.
Shane Farris posted:
And last but not least, there's Jilith (Jill) . She never follows the rules. She never uses our code names (or real name) and she's not a team player.
Jill Heedan posted:
Hey, Geek-N-Stein you going to float there day dreaming or help out?
Hey! Like I need help from the nerd wonder.
If you couldn’t tell, she’s actually very loyal and hides her emotions because she’s scared of her powers.
Though she tends to hide her emotions and the fear of her power behind a gruff exterior she has shown to be both caring and loyal.
She also thinks Poison Ivy cosplay/burlesque costumes are appropriate day/school attire, if the last panel of the comic is any indication.
Jilith is probably the self-insert of either Soto or Deborah Dodge. I’m going to guess the later due to the red hair and the lack of extreme edgelord-ness.
Jill is a Rank 5 NPC.
Jill’s “manakinesis” abilities let her cast any spell rank 4 or lower at double the zap cost, can banish people with a Will vs Will roll, and alter existing spells at the cost of the amount of zap used to cast it.
Also, I missed a transformation bit.
These superhero alias are really generic and lame…
Despite being from a middle class Dallas family, Ramses acts like he’s a gangsta because he thinks it’s the cool thing to do. He also has a tendency to run his mouth, but not to the degree that Jill does. I’m going to guess this is Harris’s younger brother’s character. Or one Harris based off his brother. Who knows.
Ramses is a Rank 5 NPC.
As you probably guessed from his “Speedster” heritage, Ramses’s powers are similar to The Flash’s: he has the power of Go Fast, among other things.
Harris Self-Insert #3, Ramses’s older sci-fi and comic book nerd brother, and the moral compass of the group. Arthur is a gentle giant who can take a lot of hits that the rest of the group can’t, and he knows it. The artwork of him can’t decide whether his bulk is muscle or fat.
Arthur is a Rank 5 NPC.
According to Shane, Arthur and Ramses have the best powers.
Shane Farris posted:
You know how every superhero team I used to read about in the comics had one guy with all the cool powers? Super strength, speed, flight, and invulnerability? Guess what Mom? We have two two of them. Mega (Arthur) and his little brother, Max (Ramese).
Arthur has the super strength part of that set. He’s strong enough to bench press an aircraft carrier in the comic, super resilient, can breathe in the vacuum of space, and has 360 degree vision because why not?
If you’re curious, a Nimitz-class aircraft carrier weighs about 97,000 tons when loaded. Arthur’s still got a ways to go before he can bench press one without killing himself.
Arthur and Ramses can also telepathically communicate with each other. Though they don’t have complete mastery of it.
Shane is a “runt” as far as superheroes go. He’s not as strong as your regular metahuman, but makes up for it with his keen intellect, his boundless desire to learn new things, and his psychic abilities. Most of the group gives him unnecessary shit for being a massive nerd.
Shane is a Rank 5 NPC.
Shane doesn’t talk about himself all that much. But as you’ve probably figured, he’s a psychic.
He can also fly, so I don’t know why he’s gushing over the McMann brothers being able to do it.
Maria “Mia” Juarez/Riot
Fun Fact: This is the third Latina character with the name “Mia” in Channel M’s stable of characters, if you count Mia/Nina from Willow-Mistt. I’m starting to suspect there’s an acquaintance of Harris’s with that name.
Mia comes from the crime-ridden slums of El Paso, where she had to do a bunch of things to survive that she’d rather not talk about. Being a member of Youthquake is her way of seeking redemption. Shane claims she’s not a people person and kind of “abrasive”, except when she’s around children. If Shane ever complimented her on her abilities, she would give him a wedgie for being a nerd.
Mia is a Rank 4 NPC.
Mia’s abilities let her control her voice, allowing her to use it to various effect.
If you look closely, you’ll notice that whoever drew their portraits can’t do a whole lot of poses.
The last little section is just three story hooks for using Youthquake. You can either help them, fight against them for Hades P. Anubis’s amusement, or get hunted by them.
And that’s it for that little detour. It’s back to witches being assholes in the next book.
Next Book: Magical Minutia #4: Trinity Stone
, wherein we learn about where witches in the southern United States go to school, learn about the Trinity Valley pocket dimension, and why do some of these teachers have massive tits?!