Sunday, June 17, 2018

Silver Streak Comics #2 - pt. 3

We're back with Red Reeves, Boy Magician.  We might need a mass fly spell, or a flying carpet spell, that explains how magic-users are able to transport others with them like this.

But then we get to the house and, well, this was a mighty complicated wish Tom made. The genie has allegedly created a house, teleported the wife and child there, and stocked it with "everything."  That's got to be a wish spell.  Although...perhaps the genie simply gave them someone else's abandoned house, or even removed the original occupants!

And then there's this curious exchange (or how it should have happened):

"Dad, can you find a place for Jordan?"

"I don't know...he did try to rob us; I'm not sure if I can trust him....Wait, why are you looking at me like that? Don't use your magic on me!  I'll do whatever you say!"

The elements of Spanish reveal that this jungle must be the Amazon Jungle in South America, for a change!

I haven't actually been running grappling rules as-written for some time. Instead of having the attacker and the defender make different kinds of rolls, I've been making them both make attack rolls. This way, no one is a defender in combat; both sides wind up being grappling attackers.

The other change I'm tempted to try is have multiple attackers add their attack scores together for comparison, but that's going to make it almost impossible for a single target to avoid being overwhelmed, which may be the best reason of all to treat one side as the defender. With different game mechanics, the defender saves to resist each attacker, eliminating much of the advantage that stacking combat scores would give one side.
I finally solved the problem of non-superheroes snapping all these bonds by giving everyone the wrecking things mechanic, but at one die less.

I don't think I've ever had a player who would fall for this "I had to kidnap you first to get you to accept this plot hook" story...

There may be something to this...I can't find evidence of anyone lifting more than 500 lbs. until 1970 (Vasily Alekseyev).

"I'm going to take you on a fantastic adventure...but first you have to step alone into this cave with me and strip down to your underwear..."  Yeah, I don't think I've had any players who would go along with this either!

The implication seems to be that the needle is inserting some sort of drug into the over-stressed muscles, making Lance the first weightlifter to get ahead via doping.

As for uprooting the tree, I could see a case for both wrecking things and the power Raise Car being used here.

This "done in one punch" approach to early comic book fights is something I normally ignore for Hideouts & Hoodlums...yet, here, I wonder if one could make a case for the Super Punch power being activated.

Leopards are statted as cougars in H&H and are found already in both editions.

I have never considered super-brachiation a necessary superpower...and still don't.  But I see where this feature is going now, turning Lance into Super-Tarzan!

Here's some an astronomy lesson for us. Our still-unnamed scientist has charted his way to a planet that he thinks won't be visible until they pass Saturn. Then how has he charted something he can't see? The answer is math! Indeed, Neptune was discovered the same way, before telescopes could spot it.

So what planet are they thinking they'll find? It can't be Pluto, because everyone knew about Pluto by 1930. But it was unknown that Pluto had moons until 1978. He may have miscalculated the mass of Pluto's five moons and thought it was enough mass to be a tenth planet.

The scientist is also injected with the super drug so he can withstand the pressure of escape velocity. Of course, astronauts will easily withstand that pressure in the future; maybe he was just looking for an excuse to shoot up...
Here we see thugs -- a very common mobster -- in action. 

NRC, very likely, intentionally looks like NBC, which had been on the radio since 1926. What throws me is the term "society deb singer." I can't find any evidence that this was a term used in radio, or would have any special meaning to the reader in 1940, other than to tell you that Doris Dare is young and well-bred. The name seems intentionally close to Doris Day, which is surprising because Doris Day had only begun her career in 1939 and would not become widely famous until 1945. This could be coincidental.

I'm not sure which of these facts speaks more poorly for sanitariums circa 1940 -- the fact that the attendant carries a big wooden club, or the fact that he seems fine with his patient going five days without eating. I don't know how much of this is true, but even half of it is true I sure am glad I'm not in 1940 and a sanitarium!

(Scans courtesy of Digital Comic Museum.)

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Silver Streak Comics #2 - pt. 2

This strip is called Captain Fearless, but you won't see Capt. Fearless on this page. Dugan seems to be presented as a Supporting Cast Member, but he plays such a significant role in the story that he must be a played Hero.  

The hideout door closes behind Dugan, seemingly of its own accord. This is interesting to me because a staple of Old School D&D is that dungeon doors are resistant to opening, difficult to keep open. Could this be true of H&H hideouts too?

We get a told more than we're shown of Dugan's battle with six yellow peril hoodlums, so it's unclear if Dugan was able to start using the knife on the same turn he disarmed the hoodlum who had held it, or if he had to wait until the next turn. I would wager the latter is the case.

Ting Ling makes a good case for why more hoodlums should not be armed with guns in hideouts.  I'll have to recall it later, as the struggle is constant to downplay the importance of guns in an active Hideouts & Hoodlums campaign.

Dugan must be at least 2nd or 3rd level (a detective or sergeant, by level title), allowing him to come across three off-duty marines and easily recruit them to follow him into combat.

Did I say three?  Because now it seems Dugan has six marines fighting with him (maybe a wandering encounter of marines heard the fighting and joined in?).  This is one well-defended hideout; I count at least 15 yellow peril hoodlums in this fight, and possibly more.

I've not given this much thought yet, but I wonder if there is room for a hoodlum class?  The one on the left definitely seems to be a cowardly hoodlum, while the one on the right, with "more experience," seems to be a robber. I may work on this and see if I can produce an optional hoodlum class by next year's The Trophy Case issue.

Our cowardly hoodlum makes a surprisingly good case for turning to crime in 1940.  We also learn the value of a complete set of silverware in 1940.

Boy, that Aladdin movie sure would have turned out different if the Genie could have just kept his own lamp away from Jafar!  

Like the example in the basic book about how Johnny Thunder's Thunderbolt-genie is a living wand for his spell focus, I think we're seeing the same thing play out here. Tom is casting Minor Telekinesis (a 3rd level spell!) to acquire the gun, but the magic appears to be coming from the Genie.

Normally I go with the narrator when he's naming mobster archetypes, but I've already established this guy is a cowardly hoodlum, so no burglar for you!

I think there's more magic going on here than meets the eye.  Somehow, Tom winds up at the judge's bench right next to the judge.  It makes no sense that any judge would allow this...unless Tom has cast Charm Person on the judge?  

Some subtle legerdemain seems to have allowed Tom to keep the gun he confiscated!  He could have made a skill check for sleight of hand, or maybe he cast a spell and made it invisible.  

Phantasmal Image spells would normally not be permissible in court, but then anything goes once you have the judge charmed!

(Scans courtesy of Digital Comic Museum.)

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Silver Streak Comics #2 - pt. 1

Back when I was working on Supplement IV: Captains, Magicians, and Incredible Men, Steve Lopez volunteered to read and stat all the Lev Gleason characters. So this is only the second issue of Silver Streak Comics I've ever read.

This is The Claw, and I love that map!  I feel like I should put out an adventure module based on The Claw's hideout now. Noo, more work to do!!

It's curious that the invader nation The Claw contacts is distant Germany and not the much closer Japan. Of course, in 1940, Germany was on American minds more than Japan. Give them two more years.

Okay, let's try to figure out what this is. It's a series of submarine-tanks, being pulled by one submarine, like a train? And how large is it? Recall that the cabin of a train engine is only wide enough for two people to work side-by-side; this train has four people working side-by-side at the controls. So it's twice as wide as a train, or 20'.  The 1939-launched USS Seawolf had a beam width of 26', so that seems legit.

Unlike normal tank turrets, these turrets must be able to shoot straight up. That means they can't be full-sized tank guns, or the recoil would surely damage the roofs of the tanks.

Interesting. Either these are special recoilless tank guns or some other weapons have been set up underwater. Actually, it no longer makes sense for us to be talking about tank guns with this kind of range; a tank gun is good for over a mile away, but not 50 miles away. Indeed, that's really good for even a 1940-era rocket launcher. These must be trophy weapons -- Rocket Launcher +3 or better!

Hard to believe that in just a few issues the original Daredevil is going to be beating this guy up with a boomerang!

So, apparently The Claw can grow to at least 1,000' tall. That puts him well outside the height I gave clawed giants way back in Book II: Mobsters and Trophies.  In fact, the only other giants we've seen this size are the recently seen Martian slave giants in Fantastic Comics!  Could The Claw be a rogue Martian giant, with some mutant trait of megalomania instead of obsequiousness?  It is an interesting question to mull over!

Oh, and The Claw can use Control Weather, apparently on a global scale. As just a special ability.  I'm increasingly wary of statting clawed giants like this and treating The Claw as an unique individual.

This may be the loopiest page Jack Cole ever drew. Apparently, Jerry Morris invented a...flashlight that stops the motion of water molecules? There is no way this makes sense, even by comic book science standards!

So let's think about this one. Light bulbs do heat up when turned on. That could, in theory, catalyze a gas contained in the bulb. I still don't get how that causes the light from the bulb to freeze liquids.

It seems unlikely that Jerry, just a passenger on board, is able to command the captain and the crew of the ship so quickly, but in the midst of a global crisis, I guess they figure they'll throw their lot in with anyone who's got a plan.

At least the snow tires are believable!

I'm having trouble letting go of this. its shallowest, the average depth of the Atlantic Ocean is just shy of 12,000'.  This freezing ray, then, has a range of 12'000', and freezes colder and faster than something at absolute zero does to its surroundings.

The ice sleds remind me of how Iceman gets around in later X-Men stories.

At least dumping acid down into the whirlpool is a smart tactic -- though environmentally unfriendly!

Acid bullets have been a trophy item in Hideouts & Hoodlums since Book II: Mobsters & Trophies, but was never diagrammed until this very panel!

Evidence that clawed giants (slave giants?) regenerate, even after death!

(Scans courtesy of Digital Comics Museum.)

Friday, June 8, 2018

Flash Comics #1

All-American Comics, which will become half of DC Comics, debuts one of their better titles this month with Flash Comics #1.

This was the birthplace of several major DC franchises, most notably the Flash. I had reviewed the Flash story already in the very first issue of The Trophy Case, though not with the level of specificity I've achieved since on this blog, so I will have some more notes here.

First off is some more consideration of where the Flash's stories were located. I had written before about how the Flash could have been a Midwestern hero. He does move to New York City to attend Coleman University for his graduate studies, but at the start of his origin story, Jay Garrick (the Flash) went to Midwestern University -- and there was a real Midwestern University already in 1940, then in Chicago, Illinois.

Jay is so addicted to cigarettes that he has trouble waiting for his smoking break; indeed, one could argue that it is Jay's anxiety about being without a cig for so long that leads to the accident that gives him his powers.

Professor Hughes, the teacher supervising Jay's experiments, and at least one doctor at this unnamed Chicago hospital, are the first to learn Jay's secret, even before he tells his friend Joan. Then he reveals his super-speed to an entire football stadium, completely tossing out the pulpish trope of keeping a secret identity.

An entire year seems to pass during The Flash's origin story!

How fast is the Flash? A caption already describes him as moving at the speed of light, but it sure seems like the Flash only sprints at under Mach 2; that means he's using the Race the Bullet power.

Next up is Cliff Cornwall, Special Agent. Cliff is revealed to already have some field experience, as the Army borrows him from the FBI for this mission because of his reputation.

Cliff requisitions a monoplane fighter, with a machine gun mounted over the single prop, for the flight out to Alaska. And he's just 1st level?  I suspect some brevet ranks here.  I also can't identify the plane type. It looks like a Blohm and Voss Ha 137 because of the wing configuration, but that was a German plane.

The biplane that attacks Cliff gains surprise, demonstrating that surprise rules even apply to vehicular combat.

Mount Logan is a real location in Alaska; it is the highest mountain in Canada and the second-highest peak in North America, after Denali.

It seems awful convenient that the enemy aviators who shot down so many planes then left them all lying in a valley, still flyable, and stocked with bombs. But it is still a smart tactic of Cliff's to bomb the enemy runway first, so none of their planes can take off.

Cliff's reward for helping the captured Army flyers escape is to get more work from the Army in the future. He also got a Supporting Cast Member out of the deal, Lys Valliere, an Alaskan native who can shoot, fly a plane, and doesn't mind being called "honey girl."

The Hawkman is next. Carter Hall is said to be a wealthy research scientist, though this origin story does not specify the science. Later stories will tell us it is archaeology, though perhaps metallurgy would be more appropriate. Also, like Jay Garrick, we see Carter Hall is a pipe smoker.

Carter has discovered the "ninth metal", that defies gravity; this is a reference to the John Carter of Mars books and the metal hull of their airships.  We also find out later that ninth metal repels electricity, though I don't know how many comic book writers have remembered that since.   

Magic is subtle in Hawkman's world; his knowledge of his reincarnated past comes to him like a dream, and Hath-Set's most impressive spell seems to be Darkness 15' Radius.  Borrowing a trope from science fiction, magic is said to be one of the "older sciences."

At least one of the soldiers fighting Prince Khufu (Carter) is armed with what appears to be a period-accurate khopesh sword.

Abydos is a real place, and is indeed one of the oldest cities of ancient Egypt. Khufu apparently ruled from there.

The hawk helmet is implied to be an Egyptian relic, a ceremonial mask of the Egyptian hawk god.  The hawk god is called Anubis by the narrator, though who he meant was Horus.

On the other hand, perhaps Carter's field of study is electrician, as he invents a "dynamo detector" that tells him exactly where his enemy is using one, miles away.  It isn't clear what Dr. Hastor's plans are, exactly, or how channeling electricity through subway tunnels is going to help him rule the world. I guess extortion is his game? 

Hawkman's initial weapons are a wooden quarterstaff (wise against a foe wielding electricity, I suppose) and a crossbow.

It is unclear what caused Carter, Shiera, and Hastor to all remember their earlier reincarnations around the same time. 

Johnny Thunder's real name is John L. Thunder. He was kidnapped by Badhnisians in August 1918, for having been born at precisely 7 am on the 7th of July in 1917.

The island kingdom of Badhnisia is fictional, as are their enemies, the people of Agolea. But we know this is somewhere in Asia because a woman flees from their war with Johnny to nearby, and real-world, Borneo.  

The story picks up with Johnny at the age of 23, in 1939. He inadvertently casts Charm Person to make a man "go jump at a duck."  He inadvertently makes a falling man stop falling with Levitate. On another day, he inadvertently casts  Gust of Wind by telling two Badhnisian agents to "blow away."

There is no mention or appearance of Johnny's Thunderbolt in this story. For now, Johnny's power only works one hour per day, which does not exactly fit with how magic-users work in Hideouts & Hoodlums. But Johnny is still clearly a magician.

Johnny has two siblings who we only hear about.

Next is a one-shot story called "The Demon Dummy."  The villain is a corrupt (private) detective and the hero is a ventriloquist.  But this is no hero like Dean Denton; our ventriloquist gets framed for murder, arrested, and pines for the girl he lost until finally being released from prison the month after she died.

In the time of Zorro, or circa 1840 anyway, El Castigo -- The Whip -- also protected the people of Mexico.  He could use a whip to disarm a gunman or unhorse a rider.  A century later, Rod Gaynor is a bored rich boy on the road, brought by random coin tosses to the real community of Seguro, California (though, here, it seems to be an incorporated town). He is moved by the plight of the local poor and the legend of The Whip and dons century-old gear just in time to stop a lynching.

As The Whip, Rod can entangle someone with a whip and drag them.  He can make a horse break down a door.  He defeats the corrupt sheriff (equal to a captain, so 5th level?), though a lot of that is because of superstitious locals shouting that this is the ghost of The Whip unnerving the sheriff.

Don's disguise is supplemented with an outrageous fake accent.  Marissa, a local girl, guesses Rod is the new Whip.  Rod also has an Asian manservant named Wing.          

(Flash story read in Golden Age Flash Archives vol. 1; the rest read at

Sunday, June 3, 2018

Fantastic Comics #2 - pt. 5

Flick Falcon in the Fourth Dimension is one crazy acid trip of a comic strip. His fourth-dimensional machine allows him to travel between planets, like a really-long range teleporter.

I thought slave giants were only 30' tall last time, but this guy is crazy tall, unless those are really tiny mountains. Maybe 10,000' tall?

These are much shorter than dwarfs, and even midget men, we've seen before in comics. In fact, the only thing that's come close are gnomes.

Flip and his girlfriend, Adele, were both knocked out at the same time with sleeping drug, so this demonstrates that you should roll separately for random duration. This might be a magical mickey, since even dragging Adele across the ground long distance doesn't wake her up.

Yeah. I really didn't see this coming.

This is Mars; does that mean dancing girl here is a Red Martian?

On Mars, gnomes apparently live in cities. So thousands of gnomes might be encountered at a time there?

So this takes place in the 30th century -- just like the Legion of Superheroes! You can tell it's the future because submarines can fly and cities have lots of tall overpasses in them.

20,000 men? That seems like overkill, Sub. Note to all future Hideouts & Hoodlums players: if you ask for 20,000 men to help you in any of my scenarios, the answer is no.

Speaking of overkill, Sub shows up at Atlantis with his 20,000 men, and finds 3 frog-men guarding the entrance to the city. Between panels, Sub's lieutenant asks, "We've taken the city gate, sir. What would you like our other 19,997 men to do now?"

Then Sub says, "The gate wasn't the hard part. We have to still breach the citadel. It'll be well-defended too, by frog-men armed with hydro-ray guns."

"Hydro-ray guns? Doesn't that mean fire hoses?"

Seriously, I do like the exotic architecture on that citadel.

"See? Hydro-ray guns are serious weapons! They just killed 11 men in 1 shot!"

"Um...I hate to sound crass or anything, Captain Saunders, but we do still have 19,986 more men, and that's not even counting the three we left guarding the frog-men at the gate we could go back and get. If we lose 10-20 crossing the courtyard to the citadel doors, isn't that acceptable losses in warfare?  And we do have a legitimate reason for overthrowing Atlantis, right sir? It's not just because of that cleavage you keep staring at...?"

I was going to write in-character "Why don't we use the disintegrator on the parapets of the citadel and take out those ray guns, sir?" But I think the disintegrator is clearly shown to have no range here, making it a nice way to wreck things without superheroes, but with no ability of turning it into much of a weapon.

I am not giving frog-men good stats. Look how quickly they go down, just from being grappled!  I'm thinking 1-1 Hit Dice.

(Scans courtesy of Comic Book Plus.)

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Fantastic Comics #2 - pt. 4

Welcome back! We're still on January 1940 and this is still Space Smith. Unlike many features, "Space" doesn't seem to be his nickname -- it's his actual first name!

The science is wacky here -- especially weird, being a Fletcher Hanks story. The effect of "long range power lights" is not altogether clear, but they seem to be holding Space's ship in place.

The same applies to "radio-phonic detectors." It's not just a radio, but some sort of eavesdropping device for listening across the vacuum of space. And how did the ogres hear Space's radio call? Do they have some sort of "radio-phonic detector" too?

And then there's "anti-Earth demolishing rays." How exactly are they anti-Earth? Would they not work against other planets?

Ray-resistant shielding is new. If your campaign has too many rayguns floating around in it, your players will want ray-resistors too.

Ramming with spaceships seems fraught with peril, but ogre's must be very confident in their own shielding. Vehicular ramming damage is something that can be found in the 2nd edition basic book's trophy-transportation section, and even for airborne flying objects the ramming damage can be extremely high. I can't imagine how much damage to assign to ramming with a spaceship.

Are the ogres flying without any aid? The demolisher guns can be fired by ogre-sized opponents as if handguns, and superheroes should be able to do the same regardless of size.

Quick-shrinker bombs can take a 10' tall ogre and reduce them to...not sure, but probably under 3' tall, or at least 70% shrinkage, with a corresponding loss in strength (and, I would presume, carrying capacity, and damage). Of course, I'm assuming Martian ogres are 10' tall; given how stocky they look, perhaps they are shorter.

This is the next story, Captain Kidd, and the real mystery here is, where is Morgia Island? This page says it is in the tropics, and the legend of bamboo torture comes from Asia. But where would you find an island in that area? The South China Sea? Well, maybe; there are over 250 islands there, but none of them are known for having gold...

What interests me far more is the design of that temple. Windowless, accessible only by a front door that is only accessible by going underwater, and vaguely shaped like a cubist elephant -- brilliant stuff!

I'm not sure how the hat keeps the gun dry, but maybe we do need a mechanic to see if guns still work once they're wet. 2 in 6 chance of not firing? Anything to discourage players from overly relying on firearms!

I like the idea of a large statue that works like a slot machine; tug the arm and out pops a whiskey bottle from where his kidney should be!

I like the detail of the grenades mounted on the wall -- thank goodness the natives never mistook them for torches!  It would also be a nice encounter for Heroes to walk into an occupied room, see grenades on the wall, and then whoever wins initiative has a chance to grab the grenades first.

Those gold ingots look pretty heavy, and gold was worth $34.50 an ounce back then. that's why you don't want your front door underwater. Actually, I think the real lesson here is to always have a secret escape route from your temple.

Not sure how Kidd knows the bad guy was called "The Voice," since only the narrator called him that up to this point. Maybe one of the natives told him.

This is from a short humor strip called Professor Fiend. People are out to get the Professor for inventing a raygun that fires (*ahem*) permanent waves and curls people's hair.

Shrinking in order to hide is actually a good tactic, if you have the magic or the science for it. A "normal" potion of shrinking (as found in the H&H basic book's trophy section) stops at shrinking you down to about 6" tall. Here, the Professor shrinks to one-quarter of an inch tall, pauses, and keeps shrinking to the size of an atom (not unlike some future superheroes!).

(Scans courtesy of Comic Book Plus.)

Monday, May 28, 2018

Fantastic Comics #2 - pt. 3

This is Richard of Warwick, possibly intended to be the real-life Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick, but here is called The Golden Knight. It's telling that the Muslim knights are taking him prisoner, treating him well, and still all he wants to do is kill them all.

Ironically, one of the reasons I made Hideouts & Hoodlums is because I wanted to get away from RPGs where the main goal is always to kill your adversaries. Oh well...

If Richard was a Mysteryman this would be easy -- spend a stunt, instant arrow split!  But The Golden Knight is obviously a fighter archetype, which means we are bound by the attack roll mechanic fighters have to follow.

Now, for hitting a bulls-eye, we could probably assign Armor Class values to the target based on the average probable chance of hitting the bulls-eye. Unfortunately, it's not easy finding an absolute average for that -- just too many variables. I've seen numbers for the probability of hitting a bulls-eye range everywhere from 1% to 36%. So let's go with the average of that and say 18.5%, and maybe we'll even round up to an even 20%.  The AC that has an equivalent value for level 1 fighters is AC 2. Let's assume that is at short range.

How to account for splitting the arrow, as opposed to the second arrow just bouncing off? Let's assume the difficulty is just 5% worse for that, and drop the target's AC to 1. If someone then came along after Richard and wanted to split his arrow, they would have to hit AC 0.

Oh, and that feast? All I see is a bowl of fruit, so I don't think it's the "feast" that Richard finds so splendorous...

Despite a fair amount of historical bigotry, I can't help but like this feature. A major part of that is this girl, Lady Elissa. By coincidence, Ehlissa is a major character in my own webcomic, and I once ran a 10-year D&D campaign in the Land of Ahlissa (South Province).

This first panel is a little confusing. The "one blow" that "felled" that man did not knock him unconscious, because he's still talking. Was he knocked prone by the blow (which means we need a knock down rule for H&H?)? Was the "blow" a grappling attack?

Later, it looks like Richard killed the two guards. Is he making a cruel joke about them being "quiet for a long, long time"? Are they dead? Remember, at the normal mood setting for H&H campaigns, it is almost impossible for a Hero to accidentally kill someone, so these guards are unconscious -- unless the mood of the scenario is set to very dark.

This is Yank Wilson, Super Spy Q-4. The spy was an unpopular Hero class in 1st edition H&H and is unlikely to return in 2nd edition.

Besides the unusually distinctive artwork ( says it's by Jack Parr, but I wonder if he was only inking Fine or Eisner?), I like this page for the unusually specific planning of the bad guys. We know they need 50 spies to work the plan. We know they need 100 tons of super-explosive -- which is scary, because this is what exploding 100 tons of TNT looks like. We know they plan to use "misleading and subversive propaganda to shatter public morale," 56 years before Fox News. And it's interesting how Count Lustig Von Blackgard either slips up, or mistakenly thinks the U.S. has a secret police as his own country does.

Now, despite all that elaborate planning, Count Von Blackgard went and spelled "sabotage" backwards as the name of his dummy company. Now, I am torn about this because, while it makes the villain seem like an idiot if the players figure it out too quickly, it also seems like the sort of puzzle that players will likely be able to solve on their own, and little is more frustrating for players than puzzles they cannot figure out.

I'm curious what "devious legal channels" it took to rent the office next to Egatobas', but I can imagine they had to use some sort of subterfuge to get the previous tenants to leave quickly and quietly.

Hmm, drugging bad guys with narcotics? A very rare, but not unprecedented move for a Hero in the Golden Age. At least it's just a sleeping drug; I would have to draw the line and forbid Heroes from using lethal drugs.

At this point in the scenario, Yank has little to do but coordinate. As players, it would be more fun for the players to control squads of the G-Men attacking the saboteurs at the docks. Given their love of bombs, I wonder if it would make more sense to stat the saboteurs as anarchists, rather than spies. To date, I have not seen anything distinctive about saboteurs to build their own mobster type/archetype around.

Fletcher Hanks' Space Smith faces Martian ogres, which I'm guessing are like normal fantasy ogres, except their number of appearing can be over 100, and they have their own spaceships.

(Scans courtesy of Comic Book Plus.)