HERO System Stuff

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High Fantasy Hero — D&D without the D&D

This is a good old rip-roaring, rollicking fantasy campaign filled with absurdly improbably monsters, vast mounds of treasure, plentiful magic, and lots and lots of dungeons. Just like the olden days.

The Terran Empire Campaign
Presently in hiatus

This is where I'll be putting stuff for this new (as of December 2003) space opera campaign. If you have Hero Designer v.2 — and I strongly recommend it, if you don't — there is a Terran Empire oriented character template for it here (right-click on the link and select "Save target as...").

The Neverwhen Fantasy Hero Campaign
Presently in hiatus

Background info and stuff for one of the fantasy campaigns I run.

The campaign is based in an alternative historical Earth, from a primarily European perspective, and the level of technology available is more or less that which pertained about 1450 AD. Check out the link for more information.

The Gaean Reach Space Opera Campaign
Presently in hiatus

Background information and house rules for Fitz's Space Opera campaign, starring the brave men, women and machines of the Sutton Hoo Exploration and Salvage Company. This is all information which is available to the characters/players, so planetary descriptions and what-have-you don't include any of the nasty surprises which I might have cooked up for them.

This section includes a Game Diary, (link opens in a new window) with inclusions from one of the characters and appropriate comments from the GM.

The Diabolical Deeds of the Dastardly Doktor Depravo
presently in hiatus

A Pulp Hero campaign starring The Evillest Evil Genius of them all!

Doktor Depravo is my favourite arch-villain. He's Ming the Merciless, Doctor Fu Manchu, and Margaret Thatcher all rolled up into one. His Lust For Power Knows No Bounds! He Must Be Stopped! And the brave lads and lasses under Wing Commander Sir Arthur Crefton-Lockyer (KBE, VC, DC, DFC and bar), are just the chaps to give the Doktor a Bloody Nose!

This is an on-again, off-again Pulp campaign. Somehow it never really seems to take off as a face-to-face tabletop game, though every once in a while I'll read an old Sax Romher "Fu Manchu" novel and get all inspired to give it one more try.

NOTE: While I wouldn't say that I'm a superstitious person, I'm beginning to become a little uncomfortable about doing anything about this campaign. It seems as though every time I try to start it up, something really really bad happens in my life. Probably just coincidence.

Resources and Stuff

HitLoc ChartHit Location Quick Reference Chart

This one-page A4 PDF file (approx. 17 kilobytes) shows a schematic view of a human body, with colour-coded Hit Locations and their damage modifiers, plus the CV modifiers for called shots for both specific locations and general location areas.

GM Screen

This PDF file (approx. 56 kilobytes) is a layout for a four-panel GM's screen for quick reference to a bunch of stuff I find useful during Hero System gaming. The layout is on A4 pages, but the margins should be deep enough to print without any problems on US Letter paper. Once pasted to cardboard and trimmed down, the resulting screen should be only about 170mm (about 7 inches) high, low enough for short-arses such as myself to be able to see over reasonably easily.

I've colour-coded the headings of the tables so that all the related tables on each sheet stand out visually from the others, but the colours are just ad-hoc choices — I haven't tried to make them consistent (as yet) across all four sheets. Hopefully, once you've used it for a couple of hours the meaning of the colour codes should be burned irrevocably into your brain.

Combat Modifiers, Hit Locations and STR/Throwing Table

This PDF file (approx. 36 kilobytes) contains Combat Modifiers (including those for Presence Attacks) that I forgot to include in the GM SCreen above, a Hit Location chart similar to the one above, and a table giving STR values for throwing, jumping, and damage. I laminated the two sheets back-to-back and leave them on the gaming table for easy access by everyone during play. It would probably be a good idea to have two copies — one for the players, and one for the GM behind the screen.

GM's Character Record Sheet

This small (approx. 23 kilobytes) 1-page PDF file is laid out to allow a GM to record abbreviated characteristic information for up to five characters, including characteristic rolls, notes on levels, special attacks and defences, etc. It also includes a Combat Order chart, allowing the GM to see at a glance who acts in which phases, and in which DEX order.

The page is designed for an A4 page, but Acrobat will scale it quite happily to print on the barbaric US Letter format paper.

Hero System Monster Reference Chart

Listed in this PDF (approx. 27 kilobytes) in alphabetical order are all the monsters, creatures and machines from the Hero System Bestiary (HSB) and Monsters, Minions & Marauders (MMM).

Each numbered monster name is followed by a nominal point value (taken from the Total Cost entry in their description) and a page reference — HSB or MMM, as above. The individual monsters are numbered to facilitate random selection, if the GM so desires.

Strength Table

This is the standard HERO Strength Table, but with examples which may be more useful in a fantasy milieu than the ones they give you in the Rulebook. Also attached is a Continuous Strength Chart (just in case you need to know how much you can lift with a STR of 86). I can't take the credit for that one; all I did was htmlize it. If anyone can tell me who created the original text file, I'd love to be able to give credit where credit is due.

The Ultimate Grimoire and Spellfinder Utility

My friend Mark Doherty went to a huge amount of trouble to collate and format all the spells he could find for Fantasy Hero back in the 4th Edition HERO days, and he has recently updated the results to conform to the 5th Edition rules. I've reformatted that document and created a PDF specifically for display on a computer screen — each spell has its own page, instantly accessible from the hyperlinked table of contents. Personally, I use it from a laptop at the gaming table.

Also accessible from this page is a utility written for me by another friend, Steve Rennell, designed to ease the task of finding spells within the gargantuan abyss that is the Ultimate Grimoire.

Runequest II to HERO 5th Ed. Conversion Notes

Also by Mark Doherty, but reformatted by me to suit my own tastes. These pages cover most of the bases for anyone wanting to convert their Runequest campaign to the HERO System — and who wouldn't, after all. The Runequest system was a real cracker in its day, but it's definitely showing its age in these fast-paced modern times.