Monday, June 27, 2016

Wonder Comics #2 - pt. 1

The Winged Wonders filler includes tidbits like how fast the planes can go, their mileage, and even how much they sell for -- though never all three details for the same plane. Those are good stats to have for all transports in the game, though that information can be hard to come across.

Yarko the Great is another Will Eisner classic, one I enjoy so much that I used him in one of my fiction pieces in The Trophy Case.

And what a good setting to debut on! Hex House is just begging for Heroes to come explore it. It even reminds me a little of Tegel Manor...

And here we see Yarko cast his first spell. It seems to pretty obviously be Hold Person, but then it also sets a precedent for the caster being able to un-hold portions of the victim, like his mouth. And what happens next? Did Yarko then cast Charm Person to get information out of his prisoner? Or is Yarko hoping the father will talk just to get out of the spell?

I'm not sure how to deal with Shaddiba's first spell here. Is this some higher-level Charm spell that can deflect weaker Charm spells? The spell at the end is clearly a Sleep spell.

Yarko casts Polymorph on himself to become a swallow. So we know he's at least 7th level already!  Magic-Users often seem to have a level advantage over the other Hero classes; which is why I'm flipping the XP progression charts and making M-U's advance in level the fastest.

The wording and imagery are entirely different around this next spell, which seems to be the image of a prisoner superimposed over Yarko. This has to be Phantasmal Force/Silent Image. I would even hazard a guess that the last spell, that transforms a whip into a snake is actually more illusion magic, as being able to transform a non-living thing into a living thing should have to be some awfully high-level magic.

Yarko's first stunt here could have been accomplished so much easier just by levitating the guard straight up and letting him fall straight down, but the horizontal movement betrays that Yarko is using Telekinesis, a spell twice as high in level. Now we know Yarko is at least 8th level by the number of 4th level spells he's cast.

Now, what's happening in the second part of this page is a little less clear. It looks like it could be just physical combat, with a little extra flavor text around it. Or is it the rule for Magic-Users engaging in a combat of wills, that was first proposed in The Trophy Case and added to the class in Supplement V?

Since this combat is unseen, it could very well be a contest of wills. The chasms might be...I don't know, mental chasms? The space between neurons firing in the brain? If this is not a contest of wills, but an actual combination of physical brawling and tossing Lightning Bolt spells at each other, then where did the Chasm of Oblivion come from? Because then, this looks an awful lot like the 9th level spell Imprisonment at the end, and then Yarko would have to be at least 18th level!

Nope, it was all a contest of wills after all!  The nice thing about the mechanics I came up with for contests of wills is that there is no level requirement, so Yarko doesn't have to be "the most powerful magician in the world" to have won this battle.

Although I was long leaning against it, I've decided that contests of wills need to be kept in 2nd edition Hideouts & Hoodlums.

(Scans courtesy of Digital Comic Museum)

No comments:

Post a Comment