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Subject: How Hero Upgrades work rss

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Sandy Petersen
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The prototype Hero sheet looks like this:

Obviously it's going to undergo lots of prettifying in the near future.

If you look on the right-hand side of the sheet, you'll see six rectangles connected by arrows, with different rewards on them. These are your upgrade slots.

There is also a Gift board, which holds 10 Gift cards.

To earn an upgrade, you pay Courage equal to the Cost listed on your sheet, choose a Gift card, and place it on top of one of your upgrade slots. The first slot you choose must always be your Start slot. After that you can pick any slot that is connected to an already-upgraded slot by an arrow. For example, Hannah Hazard must always pick her Cost 4 slot first, and then her next upgrade could be either of her Cost 6 slots.

The printed boost on her hero sheet is an instant, one-time thing. For example, when she pays for her Cost 8 upgrade, she immediately gets +1 to her health cap as well as her current health, AND she gets permanent access to her Head Shot ability.

But she also picks a Gift card, which she lays on top of the upgrade slot, and she gets whatever boost the Gift card has, which ranges from one-time boosts, to new actions, to modifiers to other actions, etc. etc.

For example, Hannah's first upgrade is always the printed result of +1 to cap & current health. But she might take Medikit as her Gift, which increases her First Aid. Or Peer Into The Abyss, which lets her discard and replace the current Demon Legion. Or anything really - there are over 100 gifts, and only 10 or less are visible at a time.

In this manner, a given hero's upgrade results are always different from game to game, but also they follow that hero's pattern.

Here is Hannah's upgrade path

To compare, here is John Dark's upgrade path. He's an occultist who sold his soul to the devil, and now regrets the deal. You can see how his upgrades front-load his special abilities (Dark Exchange and Forfeit Soul), unlike Hannah's.

And here are Professor Maxwell's upgrades. Every hero has a unique path, plus they will be picking different Gifts as they advance.

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Max Maloney
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Why the choice of "Snap Shot" for an ability that requires no movement? No movement implies a careful aimed shot to me, whereas as "snap shot" implies fast, unaimed or reaction fire.
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Sandy Petersen
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I can see your point. I guess I was thinking of it as repeated, not necessarily-aimed shots, not of the movement thing. My idea is that she is shooting multiple times.

BUT never let it be said I do not hear cogent criticisms. I have just gone in and changed the name of that ability to "Zeroed In" which makes far more sense.

Thanks.
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Luis Merlo
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Love the mechanics so far!
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Max Maloney
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Sandy Petersen wrote:
I can see your point. I guess I was thinking of it as repeated, not necessarily-aimed shots, not of the movement thing. My idea is that she is shooting multiple times.

BUT never let it be said I do not hear cogent criticisms. I have just gone in and changed the name of that ability to "Zeroed In" which makes far more sense.

Thanks.

Whoa, cool. Zeroed In is a super sweet name for an ability.
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Brian Busha
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I love the tiered upgrades. Having a stable path means every character has an arc and is somewhat stable, but the gifts system allows quite a bit of flexibility.

Very curious to learn more!
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Sandy Petersen
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Gutrix wrote:
I love the tiered upgrades. Having a stable path means every character has an arc and is somewhat stable, but the gifts system allows quite a bit of flexibility.

Very curious to learn more!


Thanks! I am really happy with this upgrade system, because it keeps the characters highly differentiated, but still able to improve.

One of the key elements of the game is players discussing who should get a particular upgrade. For example, last time we played, the Medikit upgrade was available (increases ability to heal). They didn't want the guy playing Hannah Hazard to take it, because she is often not in the same area with other players (because of her sniping ability).

Sometimes there is a race to take an upgrade before it vanishes forever (which happens to the whole board of cards each time the Desolation marker hits 0).
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Sevan Pasch
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Question: If a character has two Start sections, such as John up above, can they pick both of those Start upgrades, or do must they make a decision that locks out the other Start? Basically, can you fill up all 6 slots with characters that do not have a linear upgrade path?
 
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