Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Popular Comics #41

Pretty funny.

We return to Shark Egan to consider biting -- should a person biting do points of damage? Normally, an improvised weapon does 1-3 points of damage, but can a person's bite realistically do even that much? I think I would, charitably, allow a bite to do 0-1 points of damage.

Biting is a real theme in this story. Can a person's teeth realistically chew through rope? I'd probably give the rope a saving throw vs. wrecking things of a 2 or 3.

And look, conger eels again! I'm definitely keeping those in 2nd edition.

The Hurricane Kids (or at least one of them) has to deal with baby pteranodons. Given their small size and light weight, I'd probably give them 1-4 hit points. Considering Alan is a 1st-level fighter fighting with a club, the baby pteranodons are actually a pretty tough encounter. That he has to climb away from the nest with a 200' drop if he fails a climb check is really making the scenario challenging.

This page illustrates how Heroes can improvise working weapons (that would do normal 1-6 points of damage), but what I really want to talk about here are the strange berries that give him back his energy. Hit points? It is not that uncommon for adventure modules to feature something like this -- a quick pick-me-up that Heroes can find in the middle of the scenario. Video games have, of course, made this ubiquitous.

Maybe I should have kept track of how many "escaping from jail" jokes I've read in these comics so far. Probably not as many as the goat jokes.

At first I thought this "slow bomb" might be something cool, but it's just a stick of dynamite with a long fuse on it. An actual slow bomb -- that halves movement and number of attacks to everyone caught in the area of effect -- would have made a neat trophy item for Hideouts & Hoodlums.

We've talked about this ghost before. I'm pointing out the gorilla because, frankly, I'm surprised at how few gorillas we've seen in comics so far.

I'm sharing this page for two reasons. One, I'm amused that the time bomb appears to be hidden among some lacy lingerie. Two, it seems the Editor set a target Armor Class for that open porthole (remember that planes this long ago didn't need to be pressurized), the player rolled really close to that number, and the Editor used that to play up the suspense of whether the bomb would go through the porthole or not.  Had the roll been really high, like a 20, the Editor could have described how easily the shot was made (over the shoulder, or with one eye closed, or the like).

(Scans courtesy of Comic Book Plus)

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