Some GMs like to use the Hit Locations, and the damage modifiers for them, but find that they result in too much extra damage for the type of campaign they are trying to simulate. Here's one way to reduce this extra damage slightly.
In the HERO System, as written, when a character takes damage to a specific location, you first roll the damage for the attack, then multiply or divide for the location and then apply the damage to the target's defenses.
With these optional rules, though, you perform calculations in a different order. With Normal attacks, you roll the damage for the attack, apply defenses and then multiply or divide for the location. With Killing Attacks, you apply the normal modifier to STUN before defenses, but apply the modifier to BODY after defenses.
This option is especially appropriate to campaigns based on movies and fiction where characters soak up a lot of damage and yet are expected to keep going.
Examples Of Normal Damage Attacks
This example uses the normal rules:
Example: Mutsu Sodan is hit in the head with a 5d6 normal-damage attack. The damage rolled is 18 STUN and 5 BODY. The STUN multiplier for a Head shot is x2; the BODY x multiplier for a Head shot is x2. Therefore, the attack is actually 36 STUN, 5 BODY. (Remember that the BODY x multiplier is always applied after defenses.) Sodan has 8PD; therefore, he takes 28 STUNand 0BODY from the attack.
This example uses these optional rules:
Example: Mutsu Sodan is hit in the head with a 5d6 normal-damage attack. The damage rolled is 18 STUN and 5 BODY. Subtracting Sodan's 8 PD, we get 10 STUN and 0 BODY. After multiplying for the Head location, we see Sodan has taken 20 STUN and 0 BODY.
This is a little more complicated, but swiftly becomes second nature when used regularly.
Though this rule makes damage to vital areas a little less severe, it actually balances things by making damage to limbs (hands, feet, arms and legs) a little more severe. Characters will be taking BODY damage from blows that would not have hurt them under the regular rules.
This example uses the regular rules:
Example: Sodan is hit in the arm by an 8d6 kick. The lucky kicker rolls high and gets 35 STUN and 10 BODY. Applying the x¥2 STUN multiplier for the Arm location, we get17STUN(and10 BODY). Subtracting Sodan's 8 PD, we see he has taken 9 STUN and 2 BODY. We then apply the BODYx multiplier of xV2 to find that the final result is 9 STUN and 1 BODY. A painful, but minor wound. This example uses these optional rules:
Example: Sodan is hit in the arm by an 8d6 kick. The kicker rolls high and gets 35 STUN and 10 BODY. First we subtract Sodan's 8 PD and see that he has taken 27 STUN and 2 BODY. Then we apply the xV2 STUN and BODY multipliers for the Arm location; Sodan has taken 13 STUN and 1 BODY.
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