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Subject: Custom Hero - The Feral Kat rss

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Joseph Guzman
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*The Run Down
Kat is a character inspired by all of the feral archetype characters such as Wolverine, Tigra, Beast, Cheetah, Sabretooth, and many others. A character with abilities of an animal. I have tried making a unique hero in that she is a were (And yes, I do know of Werewolf by Midnight). She will transform back and forth and many of her cards either get a boost while turned or alternating abilities. Not sure if I did this in the best way, but if not, hopefully it can get a tune up here.

*Bio
Kaitlynn Cortez was a just a normal girl who liked normal things in life. Spending time with family, learning from her teachers, hunting, fighting with her friends, nibbling on the occasional intruder into her packs territory. The normal. Her world had followed a different path as a were beast virus mutated a third of the population into weres who quickly formed territories and packs, taking over the world and hunting down humans. Knowing that life would never change for her, trapped into becoming the Beast Lords mate was all not what she wanted. This life, this world was not what she wanted. One day, a loud crack rent the air, scaring most. Not Kat, who was drawn to the sound only to find a rift in their reality. Seeing a way out, she jumped through and came out into a strange world filled with loud noises and strange smells. She left to discover this new world. She had come into a city and not before long, she was stopped and surrounded by many humans in strange clothing. With them, a woman approached her with what looked like a ghost next to her. She was offered asylum in this world and a place in it in exchange for her help. Knowing she would need to learn this world, she agreed and left with them.

Hero: Kat (Human)
HP: 25
Base Power: Toying Around
-Discard up to 2 cards from your hand into your deck, and draw X cards, where X= The amount of cards discarded in this way.

Incapacitated:
-Reveal the top card of the environment deck, discard it or put it back on top of the deck.
-One player may draw a card
-Increase damage of a hero target by 1 until your next turn.

Hero: Kat (Were-Jaguar)
HP: 25
Base Power: Tooth and Claw
-Kat deals a target 2 melee damage

Incapacitated:
-Destroy a target with 2HP or less
-Target hero can use a power now

One-Shot (Qty:24)
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Pounce (Qty:4)
-Kat deals a target 2 melee damage
-If Kat is Human, you may draw a card
-If Kat is a Were-Jaguar, you may play an additional one-shot card
-You may switch Kat's character cards

Scratch (Qty:4)
-Kat deals a target 2 melee damage
-If Kat is Human, you may search your deck for Cat Scratch Fever and put it into your hand. Then shuffle your deck.
-If Kat is a Were-Jaguar, deal 4 melee damage instead

Heightened Senses (Qty:3)
-Look at the top card of the villain deck and environment deck and then replace them.
-You may play a card or draw a card.

Blending In (Qty:3)
-Draw a card
-If Kat is Human, Draw 3 cards instead

Wicked Bite (Qty:3)
-Kat deals a target 3 melee damage
-If Kat is a Were-Jaguar, the damage is irreducible

Savagery (Qty:3)
-Kat deals a target 3 melee damage
-If Kat is Human, draw 2 cards
-If Kat is Were-Jaguar, Kat deals another target 3 melee damage
-You may Switch Kat's character cards

Law of the Jungle (Qty:4)
-If Kat is Human, You may discard up to 3 cards, then draw X cards, where X= the amount of cards discarded
-If Kat is Were-Jaguar, Kat deals 2 targets 2 melee damage. If one of those targets has the lowest HP, deal 3 damage to that target instead.
-You may Switch Kat's character cards


Ongoing, Limited (Qty:12)
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Cat-Like Reflexes (Qty:3)
-When Kat would be dealt damage, you may discard a card to reduce the damage by 2.

Hardened Claws (Qty:3)
-Increase damage dealt by Kat by 1

Shift (Qty:3)
-When Kat switch's character cards, you may choose 1: regain 2HP, draw a card, play an additional card.

Stalking Prey (Qty:3)
At the start of your turn, If Kat is Human, Draw 2 cards. Otherwise you may play a one-shot card.


Ongoing (Qty:4)
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Cat Scratch Fever (Qty:4)
-Play in front of you.
-When Kat deals non-toxic damage to a target, you may move this card onto that target.
-At the start of your turn, Kat deals the target below this card 2 Toxic Damage.

Note: (Were-Jaguar word will be replaced with Paw Symbol and Human replaced with a stick figure person)

Any recommendations and suggestions would be appreciated. This is the first of the custom decks in the Reaction Expansion me and my playgroup have come up with. 11 heroes, 10 villains, and 4 environments.

(Edit Notes)
-Fixed wording through deck
-Fixed Incapacitated Power on Were-Jaguar
-Reworked Shift
-Removed Restraint
-Increased Quantity of Cat-Like Reflexes and Hardened Claws
-Added Stalking Prey
-Added Cat Scratch Fever
-Adjusted Savagery
-Changed human part of Law of the Jungle
-Changed Heightened Senses
-Added Human abilities and changing abilities to various cards
-Changed Base Power of Human Form
-Fixed (hopefully) confusing issue with Cat Scratch Fever
-Changed Base Power to discarding
-Fixed Wording on Shifter to prevent confusion
-Adjusted play additional cards to playing one-shots to make it more in tune with character flavor
-Put in note so my Artist will know to change character card wording to symbols. Thank you Rosgath for the awesome idea.
-Adjusted Heightened Senses to make it more useable.
-Simplified Heightened Senses.
 
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Take Walker
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Interestingly, I once had a superhero RPG character named Feral Cat. I forget what system it was, but all I remember is I designed her dumbly and she ended up killing another hero. <.<

Anyway, despite the dual-character switching, she seems pretty straightforward. By which I mean she doesn't have a whole lot to do other than deal damage, and the damage isn't varied too much. Deck manipulation as a base power seems awfully strong, to boot.

And 8 of a card is very strange. You might want to consider working the shifting into other cards, Sky-Scraper style, and have multiple different ways she can change cards: some to human, some to were, some to whichever isn't currently in play.
 
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Michael Hunter
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I would agree with Takewalker, the two sides don't seem that different. The human in particular doesn't seem to have a strong theme. To break it down, Werecat has...

Deal damage (innate)
Extra play (Pounce)
Deal more damage (Scratch)
Deal irreducible damage (Bite)
Deal more damage (Savagery)
Deal more damage (Law of the Jungle)

While Human has

Villain deck filtering (innate)
Draw cards (Blending in)
Deal more damage (Restraint)
Be marginally tougher (Savagery)
Draw cards and play a card (Law of the Jungle)

Both forms have playing extra cards, both do extra damage. Human has some pretty minimal defence (-1 damage from one attack is not much to wite home about) and some okay draw. If I were playing this I'm not sure when I should be shifting in and out of forms. Werecat for damage, human for... a few random bits and pieces? Kind of drawing, I guess?

The most obvious comparison would be Skyscraper, whose three forms clearly have very different roles. Also, the bulk of her cards are only good in one form/shift you into that form, so you do have a clear pattern where you go into a certain form, use all the good cards from it, change form use all your good cards in that...

Here I would say the distinction isn't really that strong, and on a lot of cards the reward for being in the right form isn't that huge with the exceptions of Savagery and Pounce. I can see myself just shifting any time I get that card for the free 2HP and kind of taking the bonuses of the cards as they come.

Having repeatable villain deck manipulation as an innate can be a bit unfun as you always know what's coming - potentially strong enough that you'd never leave human form at times! Having said that, look at the top and replace is about as weak as manipulation gets but still, you're probably never going to encounter one of the killer cards (Profane Summons, Devastating Aurora, Lab Raid...) as long as this is in play. On the flip side, Heightened senses is kind of a dud. Best case, we don't reveal a one-shot and we know what is coming next turn (which the innate power of Human does better without needing a play) or we discard a random one-shot (which may help, may hurt, entirely random and out of our control) and we don't know what's coming. Whee.

I'd recommend making a stronger distinction between the Human and the Were-cat. Were-cat seems like a pretty clear fit for damage dealer, if Human is supposed to be support and recovery make it that, no mixed messages like Restraint. Off the top of my head, what if the Human had good card draw (maybe as an innate power) some defense and some control (maybe Tracking as a one-shot instead of an innate?), and the Were-cat was a damage dealer with a focus on playing cards fast (a few things like Deal 2 damage, play a card or Discard X cards, deal X targets 3 damage...). This means you'd spend time in Human building up your killer hand, switch to Werecat and go crazy for a couple turns, then back to human to restock...

Don't mean to be too pushy with my ideas, but at the moment seems like it has a cool idea in switching forms but the cards don't quite make it shine!
 
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Seamus Butler
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Just a quick once over.

Jaggid88 wrote:
Incapacitated:
-Reveal the top card of the environment deck, discard it or put it back on top of the deck.
-A player may draw a card
-Increase damage of a hero target by 1 until your next turn.


Wording: -One player may draw a card

Quote:
Incapacitated:
-Destroy an equipment or device card
-Target hero can use a power now


Villains don't have equipment cards, they have devices or relics, although being able to destroy relics would be a major no no against villains like Apostate and Gloomweaver it would make them trivial.

Quote:
One-Shot (Qty:36)


I've said this in other threads, but this many one shots in a deck is quite a game breaking with Super Scientific Tachyon.

Quote:
Shift (Qty:8)
-Switch Kat's character cards
-Kat regains 2 HP
-Draw a card
-You may play an additional card


In the offical decks there's limit of four copies of a card. Also I'm pretty sure this is almost a carbon copy of another card, name eludes me off hand but it looks very familiar. Also it's quite a powerful card in it's own right.

Quote:
Heightened Senses (Qty:3)
-Look at the top card of the villain deck, if it is a one-shot, discard it. Otherwise replace it.


Given her base human power is better than this card, it might be a little handy in Were form but tbh given it's mostly a look at top card card, I'd use this as a discard or wait to let some one else stack the villain deck with a one shot we don't want then use this card to kill it. But on it's own I'd let it do something if it's not a one shot in the villain deck.

Quote:
Pounce (Qty:4)
-Kat deals a target 2 melee damage
-If Kat is a Were-Jaguar, you may play an additional card

Scratch (Qty:4)
-Kat deals a target 2 melee damage
-If Kat is a Were-Jaguar, deal 4 melee damage instead

Wicked Bite (Qty:3)
-Kat deals 1 target 3 melee damage
-If Kat is a Were-Jaguar, the damage is irreducible

Blending In (Qty:3)
-Draw a card
-If Kat is Human, Draw 3 cards instead

Restraint (Qty:3)
-Next time Kat would deal damage, increase it by 2
-If Kat is Human, increase the damage by 3 instead.

Savagery (Qty:4)
-Kat deals a target 3 melee damage
-If Kat is Human, the next time Kat would be dealt damage, reduce it by 1
-If Kat is Were-Jaguar, Kat deals another target 3 melee damage

Law of the Jungle (Qty:4)
-If Kat is Human, Draw 2 cards and play an additional card
-If Kat is Were-Jaguar, Kat deals 2 targets 2 melee damage. If one of those targets has the lowest HP, deal 3 damage to that target instead.


So these are all the in were/human form cards, they're slanted to being in were form, with human seeming to be just a little bit of support, that might be helpful if you run out of cards or the villain is in lock down and you can't hurt them, while were is where you want to be for most of the game dealing better damage, there's no real choice as to which form you should be in for most of the game.


Quote:
Ongoing, Limited (Qty:4)
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Cat-Like Reflexes (Qty:2)
-When Kat would be dealt damage, you may discard a card to reduce the damage by 2.

Hardened Claws (Qty:2)
-Increase damage dealt by Kat by 1


Nice solid ongoings to support Kat.

Overall it's a solid if a little uninspiring deck, I don't see that she has any big combos to build towards and she doesn't really take advantage of her dual base cards.
Suggestions
Reduce the number of copies of cards an flesh out your options.
Add a copule of more ongoings or equipment cards to give her more power options and passive boosts.
Perhaps some that can only be played in one form and when you switch they are destroyed, then equipment that holds between forms.

If you're looking for a little inspiration look at Werewolf: The Apocalyspe RPG and particularily the Bastet source book that deals with the were-jaguars. Also W:TA 20th anniversary edition and it's Changing Breeds source book that also has the were-juagars.



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Joseph Guzman
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Great input from everyone. I know this deck does not shine yet, but thanks to your inputs, I have some ideas on an overhaul for the deck to make it better.

A special thanks to Adelphophage for the idea on changing the decks mechanic. I like it a lot.

Faceontoast and Takewalker, I agree that Shift needs to be reworked. I am going to change it to an ongoing, reduce its count, and modify its ability to adjust the deck. I also agree, way too many one-shots. I just had no idea what to do about it. I will get working on changing this deck today. Thank you for some of the ideas on the ongoings as well Faceontoast. Gave me some really neat ideas. Hope they work out

Also, Adelphophage, I do not think your being pushy. I greatly appreciate your input and ideas as they inspire me and help me make these decks better. As I said in my main page for the decks, Even though I design these decks initially, I want these to be community honed decks. Decks the community helped bring to life.

 
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Joseph Guzman
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Made several changes to the deck. I hope it feels a bit better to everyone. I like it more, but I do feel like it could still have something changed a bit. Not sure what. I did make changes to give the feel of each form a more unique and vital role while giving incentive to switch back and forth. Maybe I need to add new cards in exchange for others. Or need to further work on distinguishing the forms. Any ideas are appreciated as I do feel there is a lot of potential with this hero.
 
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Michael Hunter
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So now we have as Human...
Card filtering (innate)
Draw (Pounce)
Draw (Scratch)
Draw (Blending in)
Draw (Savagery)
Card filtering (Law of the Jungle)
Draw (Stalk the prey)

Were-Jaguar
Deal damage (innate)
Play a card (Pounce)
Play a specific card (Scratch)
Irreducible (Wicked bite)
Deal damage (Savagery)
Deal damage (Law of the Jungle)
Play a card (Stalk the prey)

I like it! Clear identity, Human sets 'em up, Were-Jaguar knocks 'em down. A few notes...

I'm not quite sure how Cat scratch fever works. When I deal them damage, do I play it from my hand? Or do I have to have already played it, have it sitting in my play area and then move it to someone when I slash them?

Is there any specific reason why Toying Around (great name, by the way) shuffles instead of discarding? Shuffling takes a bit of time to do and is fine to do when necessary for gameplay reasons, but doing it turn after turn somewhat pointlessly seems like it'd become a hassle. I'd suggest making it discard, and if you feel the deck really does need some way to put cards back in the deck maybe add it to something like Blending in, so it can happen when needed rather than every turn whether it matters or not?

Heightened senses still seems like a dud. If it is a one-shot I discard it and I've not really gained anything, no information, no particular change that the new card is any better or worse than the one I discarded. If I get a non one-shot it gets played for me to play a card, which is usually going to be terrible for the players! The villain card play is roughly equal in power to the plays of each hero added together, so this is a really bad deal. I can't see ever playing this - have you playtested it?

Syntax on shifter is a bit unclear - is it regain 2 health OR draw OR play, or is it regain 2 health and then either draw or play, or is either gain 2 HP and draw, OR play a card?

Minor idea, and again no playtesting behind this, it seems like Were-Jaguar's extra plays could be used to setup very fast, which seems a little off flavour. Maybe her various extra plays in Jaguar should be one-shots only?

 
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Christopher Webb
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You could actually cut back a lot on wording (and add space for clarification/effects if you like) if you used symbols for her different forms (like a cat face or a paw for Were-form, human face for normal).
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Joseph Guzman
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Made several changes thanks to your suggestions. Changed Heightened Senses so it is more useable for the player. The idea is that you can have a little control. Some villains you are wanting certain cards to be played sooner like Miss Information and my soon to be designed villain Conspiracy. Or just being able to see what is coming so hopefully you can prepare a little. Not supposed to be too strong, just an interesting card that can be a little useful. Good call on the Shifting wording. I hopefully fixed it. Same with the additional play to play a one-shot. I agree that is the way to go for flavor.

Rosgath, love the symbol idea similar to the Naturalist. Did not even cross my mind. Thank you.

Also the reason I had toying around the way I did was just for a different type of ability from the norm and did not think of the hassle it would cause. Good insight on that. I will be playtesting this deck soon once I catch up with designing the rest of the decks. Been pretty busy.
 
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Michael Hunter
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Heightened senses is better, but I'm still not super sold its going to lead to interesting gameplay... If the card is not a one-shot then I really can't imagine I'm ever going to play it just to play a card myself - villain cards are always far more powerful than hero ones. When I inevitably do replace it, I do have some foreknowledge now, which can be useful, so that's something. You mentioned Miss Information where sometimes you want to play cards... but she's about the only villain where that's true, and even with her only sometimes. Seems pretty niche to design a card around!

If it IS a one-shot I have more control, I can replace or discard. This is a good effect that we'll want to have, and one that leads to an interesting decision. But then tacked on is a reward for discarding, but it's pretty weak (2HP), and given how important controlling villain cards are 2HP is probably not going to sway me either way. I can't imagine discarding a weak one-shot that will give us an easy turn like Elemental Outburst, the Grave beckons or Noxious Bite just to gain 2 HP. It doesn't really add much to the decision and is odd to read.

To be honest, it seems like the one shot vs not one-shot and reward for this but not for that is overcomplicated for no real gain in tactics. Gaining 2 HP vs villain control and your card vs a villain cards are such inconsequential rewards by comparison they don't really affect the decisions, and clog up the card a bit. Could it just be something like "Reveal the top card of the villain deck. You may discard it or replace it. Gain 2 HP." Alternately "Reveal the top cards of the environment and villain decks, then replace them. Possibly regain 2 HP depending on balancing"

As usual, sorry for negativity

P.S: In my experience, it's not good to let your designs get too far ahead of your playtesting. Theory can get you so far, you need gameplay information to develop them further. Often I have cool ideas that seem great on paper, but turn 2 of a game I notice this isn't fun/this doesn't work/this is ridiculously overpowered/this is mind bogglingly complex.

The first (and funnest) 25% of making a deck is coming up with theoretically cool mechanics, ideas and cards, but what transforms it in into a tight, fun and tactically interesting deck is a buttload of playtesting, with lots of different allies, against lots of different villains and in a lot of different environments.
 
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Joseph Guzman
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I adjusted Heightened Senses using your suggestion with a little tweak. I hope it gives the feel of preparation for knowing what is coming. Like the early warning system it should be.

Also, I agree about getting to far ahead of myself. I am mainly trying to get all the decks put out there just in case my artist gets cracking faster than expected since I will be working crazy hours for 3-4 month starting next month and may not have much time to design or playtest. I will thankfully be getting my first real playtest of what I do have this weekend and will be posting on some of the decks what I have come up with.
 
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