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Sentinels of the Multiverse» Forums » Variants

Subject: Custom Hero: Null rss

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Paul Watson
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Another new hero, this one who wasn't a villain first. The spectral hitman Null. Orignally he was much mroe high tech then I somehow drifted into full ghost mode and here we are.

Null
History:
Garth Monaghan grew up in Rook City. As he tells it, he fell in with a bad crowd early, engaging in petty theft and running errands he shouldn't for people he shouldn't. He graduated into a killer. Quick, effective, silent. Oh, he says he had standard. No innocents, just those in the business.
Of course, when you interfere with the business in Rook City, you draw attention of the worst sort and Grant found someone quicker, more effective, quieter, and so he died. And that was that.
Except the story doesn't end there. Grant believes his will for justice, or revenge, kept him here. He may even be right. Keeping his guns and generating etheral bullets, Grant continues to interfere with business. Who knows when his time on Earth will truly end. Certainly not him.

Null
HP: 27
Power:
Double Tap: Null deals 1 target 1 projectile damage. Null deals 1 target 1 projectile damage.
Description: A semi-transparent figure, with Rook city behind him. Wearing a suit and fedora, a gunshot hole in his shirt over his heart. Arms by his side, a pistol in each hand smoking.

Incapacitated Abilities
-Destroy a target with 1 hp.
-Select a hero target. Damage that target deals is irreducible until the start of your turn.
-Reduce all damage dealt by 1.
Description: Null in a blank void, what looks like smoke spiralling around him, his body fading into it.

Ambush (2)
One-Shot
Null deals 1 target 2 projectile damage. Targets dealt damage this way cannot deal damage until the start of Null's turn.
Description: Null emerging from a wall behind the thief, guns blazing.
Quote: "Scans are clean. Make it quick before..." - The Thief
"...it's too late? Too late." - Null

Damnation Rounds (2)
Equipment, Limited
Whenever Null deals damage, you may choose the type of that damage
Increase damage dealt by Null by 1.
Description: Null firing into Skinwalker GloomWeaver, trails of fire behind the guns.
Quote: "Have a little piece of Hell on Earth." - Null

Drawn to the Void (2)
Ongoing, Limited
Power: Select a deck. That deck cannot play cards until the start of Null's turn.
Null deals himself 3 psychic damage. Then destroy this card.
Description: Null standing before La Capitan, a swirling darkness through his chest, reaching out towards her.
Quote: "You ever get the feeling that there's something inside you gnawing and clawing to get out and wreck havoc on the world? A great big bundle of hate and darkness and pain?" - Null
"No. Why do you..." - Wraith
"Me neither." - Null

Gaze Into the Void (2)
Ongoing, Execution
The first time Null destroys a target each turn, Null may use a power. Null may deal up to 3 targets 1 infernal damage each.
Description: Null firing into a gene-bound firesworn, black lightning arcing out into other gene-bound.
Quote: "Beware you who fight monsters..."

Ghost Bullets (2)
Equipment, Limited
Damage dealt by Null is irreducible
Description: Firing at the Hippo, the bullets trailing black lightning, the Hippo bleeding from numerous gunshot wounds.
Quote: "Hah! I got skin like a tank. You think bullets can hurt me?" - The Hippo
"These bullets? Yes." - Null

Hitman (2)
Ongoing, Limited
Whenever damage dealt by Null reduces a target to 1 hp, destroy that target.
Description: Staring down the barrel of a gun in Null's hand.
Quote: "Sorry, pal, but it's you or me. And I kinda like me more." Null

In the Walls (2)
Ongoing, Limited
Power: Look at the top 2 cards of the villain deck. Discard 1 of them. Put the other on top of the deck.
Description: Chairman Pike and the Operative talking to the Underbosses, Null's face appearing high on the wall.
Quote: "Being a ghost has some advantages. I can get anywhere. Seedy hideouts, volcanic bases, ruined civilisations, varsity cheerleaders' locker room..." - Null
"What?!" - Wraith
"Only once, I swear...Maybe twice." - Null

Null and Void (2)
Ongoing, Execution
The first time Null destroys a target each turn, Null may play a card and use a power.

The first time Null destroys a target each turn, Null may deal up to 3 targets 1 infernal damage each.
Description:
Quote: "It's a curse." -NightMist
"How can you be so sure?" - The Wraith
"I know a thing or two about curses." - NightMist

Into the Void (2)
Ongoing, Execution

The first time Null destroys a target each turn, Null may destroy a target with 3 or fewer hit points.
Description: Null standing over the Contract, the latter faded and translucent.
Quote: "They haven't found any sign of a body?" The Wraith
"Nope. Like he vanished off the face of the Earth." Mr Fixer

Invisible (2)
Ongoing, Limited
Null is immune to damage. Null cannot play cards or use powers.
At the start of Null's turn, you may destroy this card.
Description: Null surrounded by darkness, everything around him grey and featureness. The Chairman and the Operative, the latter behind a deck, the former by his side. Null, invisibly, to one side.
Quote: "Can the dead die? Dunno, don't intend to find out anytime soon." - Null "You'll get yours, man. Soon." Null

Return from the Void (2)
One-Shot
Each hero may take a card, other than Return from the Void, from their trash into their hand.
You may play draw a card now.
Description: Null reaching into darkness, up to his shoulder, no sign of his arm inside it.
Quote: "The Void does not give up its secrets easily. Fortunately , I can be quite persuasive." Null

Soul Harvest (3)
One-Shot
Null deals 1 target 1 irreducible toxic damage and 1 irreducible infernal damage.
Description: The Contract, looking shocked, Null's hand emerging from his chest, training blood and black lightning.
Quote: "Hello, Bobby. Did you miss me? Oh, right, you didn't." Null

Soulbind Ammunition (2)
Equipment, Limited
The first time each turn Whenever Null deals damage to a target, reduce all damage dealt by that target by 1 until the start of your next turn.
Description: The Muscle clutching his arm, the limb crawling with black lightning, blood weeping from a bullet hole.
Quote: "These? Hunks of guilt, fear and hate. Of course they make good weapons." Null

Spectral Assassin (3)
One-Shot
Search Null's trash and deck for an Execution card and put it into your hand.
Destroy a target with 4 or fewer hit points.
Description: Null standing over a hired gun, firing both pistols into him.
Quote: "You're done." Null

Spectre (2)
Ongoing, Limited
Reduce damage dealt to Null by 1.
Description: Null standing in a hail of bullets whipping through him.
Quote: "...and now I'm forever doomed to walk the Earth until I find my killer, or something." Null

The Void Gazes Into You (2)
Ongoing, Execution
The first time Null destroys a target each turn, Null may draw play a card
Description: Close up on Null's face, eyes and mouth black inside.
Quote: …that you do not become a monster.

The Void Hungers (2)
Ongoing
Power: Destroy an Ongoing or Environment card.
Description: A portal fiend falling into a black hole of lightning.
Quote: "…the abyss also looks into you. And it doesn't like the view." Null

The Void Never Dies (2)
Ongoing, Execution
The first time Null destroys a target each turn, Null regains 1 hp and may draw 1 card.
Description: Null standing calmly as Ambuscade slices into him.
Quote: "Kill me? You can't kill the dead, boy." Null

Void Phantom (2)
One-Shot
You may draw a card.
You may play a card or deal 1 target 2 projectile damage.
Description: Fixer and Expatriette in a blood-spattered room, chalk outlines on the floor.
Quote: "How did anyone get in? The door was still locked." -Expatriette
"I guess whatever it was didn't need to use doors." - Mister Fixer


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Dennison Milenkaya
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I rather dislike that no-one has yet commented on this hero. I love the flavor of it. The theme of this deck makes this Ghost Rider/Punisher blend a way cooler gunman than Expatriette. The images you solicit and the quotes really bring out an awesome history of death, remorse, revenge, and renewal. The interactions of the other heroes solving some CSI crime scene are spectacular.

I always like to see something more to a deck than the simple Play, Power, Draw routine. This deck has a lot of Ongoing cards that cause Null to do *more* when he destroys a target. You got everything from destroying another target to drawing to regaining HP. And he does it in a less contrived manner than K.N.Y.F.E. It fits the hitman concept quite well.

However, I'm really concerned about the disparate worth of some of those cards.

The Void Never Dies is exceptionally weak. I have a card in Bruni the Butcher's deck that causes all hero targets to regain 1 HP every time Bruni destroys a target and it isn't a very good healing effect. (Works for him, since healing isn't his thing, but side-track.) I think that healing just this one character up to once per turn this way is very under-powered, given that experience. Granted, it is an entirely different deck and plays nothing like this one, but one can still gauge a rate of proc, especially since there's few ways Null will deal damage out-of-turn. I'd boost it to Null regaining 2 HP and test from there. If nothing else, if you find it is too much, you can always go down, but if 1 is too little, you still need to find a sweet spot.

Null And Void is probably meant as a Signature move, but it is really strong. Receiving just an additional card play or power use would be awesome. Both at once from one card is huge. Personally, I'd split it into two cards.

Perhaps you can cause Null And Void to allow an additional card play only. It is still fairly Signature, since we get to see more of what Null can do that way. Then The Void Gazes Into You, instead of card draw, can allow a power use. This fits nicely with the title, since Null's alternate powers either spy on a deck or prevent that deck from playing a card. If you do, you can have The Void Never Dies draw a card and regain 1 HP. Neither of those effects is terribly strong, by comparison, and combined equate to about what his other "The first time Null destroys a target" cards do.

Also, have you considered tagging those "The first time Null destroys a target" cards as Penance and providing a card to allow a search-for-and-play-a-Penance-card effect so that the player may choose among this deck's functionally distinct cards to play, rather than leaving it all up to random chance for how he performs? It can take the place of Spectral Assassin (fits that name well enough), since that card really only does what Oblivion does using the deck's special rule. Also, consider renaming Oblivion, as it is a popular Nightmist card title, already.
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Paul Watson
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Thanks for the comments.

Null and Void was very strong. I've been planning on reducing it's power after some more playtesting, especially given it's not limited made it clear just how broken it could get.

I've taken your sugestions on board and made some changes to the cards, labelling them Executions to distinguish them. Also swapped some of their effects around so that Gaze into the Void and the Void Gazes Into You are complimentary with one playing a card and one using a power.

Oblivion: D'oh! Can't believe I didn't notice that. It was a late change and I've changed it's name to Into the Void. Also reduced its power so that Spectral Assassin in boosted.

Changed the number of Spectral Assassin and Void Phantoms and made Spectral Assassin a search card. However, I wanted it to keep the assassination feel so it lets you draw but not play. Will playtest this and see how it works.

And reduced Soulbind Ammunition to only hit each target once after hitting Apostate 4 times in a round and completely negating his damage potential.
 
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Michael Ahlers
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I've got an Excel spreadsheet build that lets me print playtest copies of new hero decks on 4 pages (10 business card sized card per page). Null seems like he deserves a playtest or two. I'll drop by this thread after I have the chance to try him out.
 
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Dennison Milenkaya
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The changes are great so far. Return From The Void needs some attention. There's not much to stop Null from playing his second to recover his first and then play it. In no time, all his friends will have their entire trash pile in their hands. If you want the cards to go directly into their hands, you should not allow Null to play a card afterwards.
 
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Paul Watson
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Actually, cards don't go to the trash until they've finished resolving. This includes the effects of any powers or cards that are put into play by the first card, so at best this can be done twice in a single round. It could be done over multiple rounds, but so can Return From the Deep.

I'll keep an eye on it, but it hasn't produced anything massively broken yet.
 
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Dennison Milenkaya
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I've always felt that might be the case, which was of particular concern when designing Rhianissa. I added her combo-breaker, just in case, and liked it enough that I decided to keep it even if the cards are not actually discarded 'til the end (Dominion style), but the Sentinels rulebook doesn't actually specify this. While it may be the actual letter of Sentinels' law, I don't expect most players to realize this. Less than 15% of people who play any board game are going to look it up on-line and even then, they rarely look for answers to questions they think they already know.

Anyway, I'm glad to hear this. It's something I've wondered for awhile. Can you please point me to a citation on it?

But, that's why I didn't say it'll happen in one round. Null can still do it: Play copy A in round 1 to recover copy B, play copy B in round 2 to recover copy A. He doesn't need to play B with A's extra play. Reclaim From The Deep works for Tempest because he can't do this along with whatever else he was going to do; he can do it to the exclusion of any other card plays. Null can do it every round without slowing down. Then his friends, who don't need to draw before using their returned cards just keep doing [most awesome thing they own] each turn. It's extremely powerful and homogenizes play. I feel it needs attention.
 
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Paul Watson
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I do not have a cite. Spiff's semi-official clarifications document has a reference for all effects on a card being resolved. A card hasn't finished resolving until the played card is resolved. I beleive this was discussed on the forum, probably around Ambuscade's constant shuffling, but cannot recall exactly where.

Return from the Void is powerful and it's the card I'm keeping a close eye on at the moment. I'll bear what you said in mind and may change it in the future, but I'll be testing it a bit more first.

EDIT: Changed my mind. Went the Vernal Sonata route and added the text "other than Return from the Void" to the selection from trash to make sure this can't happen without screwing too much with how I want Return to work.
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Michael Ahlers
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ran a couple of test games. so far, so good. working on a better looking set of (still-artless) cards for the next round of playtesting. will be back on here after that with a full report
 
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Paul Watson
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Change Log: After some more plays, changed Return from the Void to be draw a card rather than play a card.
 
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Naomi Nabbit
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I have not playtested these cards, but isn't Drawn to the Void too strong? He only deals himself 3 damage to lock down the Villain deck. With one or more heroes in play who can heal (The Sentinels, Omnitron-X, Argent Adept, etc), you can keep the Villain deck locked down indefinitely.

Maybe it should either be a one-shot or have some downside that keeps it from being used repeatedly. Something like:

"Power: Select a deck. That deck cannot play cards until the start of Null's turn. Null deals himself 3 psychic damage. Then, increase all damage Null deals to himself by 2 for each time this Power has been activated."

So, the first time it's 3, then 5, then 7, then 9... He can reset this by Destroying the card and playing a new one.
 
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Derrick Maltman
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Really love this hero! (and all of your work) I've been working on a few heroes that hopefully I'm brave enough to post one day; one of them is a ghost character like null though she has more of a Danny Phantom vibe if anyone remembers that old Nickelodeon show lol.
 
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Paul Watson
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After more plays fixed Drawn to the Void to prevent the possivblity of it dominating. Have had this changed for a while but never put it up here.
 
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This guy seems very useful when he's surrounded by tons of weak targets, but how does he do in a game with stronger targets or none (Deadline, Spite, Plague Rat)? Seems like he becomes significantly worse because of how many Execution cards are in the deck.
 
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Paul Watson
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YouLostMe wrote:
This guy seems very useful when he's surrounded by tons of weak targets, but how does he do in a game with stronger targets or none (Deadline, Spite, Plague Rat)? Seems like he becomes significantly worse because of how many Execution cards are in the deck.


He is worse in target poor situations, just like Chrono-Ranger is worse against targets with damage reduction. He still contributes fine in those situations, you just have to focus on equipment to enhance his base power or the environment to trigger executions.
 
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Paul Watson
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Because everyone is getting promos these days.

Null had many run ins with the hunter of souls known as the Reaper but finally he was able to conquer the spirit of death itself, taking its scythe. Now wielding the unpredictable power, Null is darker, less inclined to joke, almost as if he pursues a scred duty he cannot shirk.

Null: Grim Reaper
HP: 27
Terminus Est: Play the bottom card of your deck. You may activate an Execution cad as if you had just destroyed a target.
Description: Null, with the left side of his face reduced to a skull, holding a crackling black scytthe in his skeletal left hand.

Incapacitated Abilities:
- Destroy an environment card.
- Redirect the next damage dealt to a hero target to the source of that damage.
- One player may draw a card now.
Description: Null pulling a reaper's hood over his face, just a skull under the hood.
 
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John Ellis
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And a bit belated but done!

https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0B0_aVx-vyU-0MlJPSmMw...

test cards for Null
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Paul Watson
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Thank you for doing this.
 
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Michael Ahlers
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I've been a fan of Null for some time, so I decided he deserved some art.

With Paul's permission, I'm sharing it.

You can find his full deck here:
http://www.mekulius.com/sotm/null/index.htm

By the way, I don't recall Paul ever naming this expansion (Convoy, Equinox, Militia, Null, Rainbow, and their Nemeses), so I picked "Revolution".

Enjoy.
 
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Michael Ahlers
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For those of you who don't want to leave BGG to get the images, here they are:











































 
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