Thursday, May 30, 2019


This are my attempt at making heroes that are physically proto-superhuman, more on par with Doc Savage or the Goon than Superman. These Golden Age style heroes and villains are definitely beyond the average Joe, but are still human. More-or-less...

POWERHOUSE (Fighter Subclass)
Also known as Bricks, Tanks or similar, the Powerhouse is a hero or villain that is hard to miss. Physically, a Powerhouse is enormously muscled, often to a "hulking," degree. These heroes are the result of intense physical training, using their intense focus on physical perfection that they surpass human limits bordering on the superhuman. In the Heroic Age, there are many Powerhouse heroes and villains running around. Several Powerhouse heroes active in Empire City are; Black Lion, Bulldog Denny, Gladiator, Hercules Jr., and Captain Triumph. Known Powerhouse villains in the city are Blunderbore, Curtains (android), Iron Jaw, Monstroso, and Porcupine.

Minimum Ability Scores: Str 16, Con 14

Image result for Hugo Danner
Gladiator by Philip Gordon Wylie
Powerhouses have all of the abilities of a Fighter, with the following changes:

A Powerhouse is skilled at the following tasks: Bend Bars/Lift Gates, Climb Sheer Surfaces, Jump, Swim.

Powerhouses are capable of using their muscles to influence reactions, either through charm and awe, or sheer intimidation. Powerhouses can modify reaction checks with their Strength score rather than Charisma score if the GM deems the situation appropriate.

Powerhouses add 1 and 1/2 their strength bonus to attacks and damage when armed with double-handed, melee weapons.

Powerhouses treat creatures as one size category smaller for grapple and bum rush attacks.

Once per day, a Powerhouse can call on an adrenaline rush and either re-roll a failed strength check with a +2 bonus or double their strength bonus on a single melee attack and damage. They can also make sundering attacks with their bare hands.

A powerhouse spends a great deal of time in training. Every four levels, beginning with fourth level, they can deduct one point from intelligence, wisdom or charisma and add it to their strength score.

Powerhouses gain additional Special Maneuvers as they advance in Powerhouse levels if their strength score is high enough.
  • Burst Chains and Iron Bands (Level 3, Strength 16): A powerhouse can burst chains and iron bands simply by flexing their chest muscles or biceps.
  • Fastball Special (Level 5, Strength 17): A Powerhouse can toss allied rogues (Str 17), daredevils (Str 19) and fighters (Str 21) at opponents. Treat this as a ranged attack with a range of 10 feet. If the muscleman misses, the tossed character gets no attack, loses their turn and suffers 1d4 points of damage. If their attack hits, the tossed character makes an attack as though charging, and the mere act of throwing them scores 1d6 points of damage for rogues, 1d8 for daredevils and 1d10 for fighters, plus the muscleman’s strength bonus.
  • Hammer Nails (Level 7, Strength 18): A powerhouse’s sinews are iron hard, allowing him to hammer nails with his bare fists. Difficulties include hammering sharp items larger than nails, or hammering into materials harder than wood.
  • Bite Through Chains (Level 9, Strength 19): A powerhouse’s jaws are such that he can bite through metal. In addition, he can bite characters that he grapples for 1d6 damage (treat as an additional unarmed attack).
  • Thunder Clap (Level 11, Strength 20): A powerhouse can clap his hands together with such force, that they blast an area with a tremendous cacophony. Every creature in a 10 ft. radius area takes 1d8 points of sonic damage and must succeed on a Fortitude save to avoid being stunned for 1 round. This can be done once every four rounds.
  • Mighty Leap (Level 13, Strength 21): A powerhouse can jump 1 ½ feet per point of Strength from a standing position. From a running start the powerhouse can jump 2 feet per point of Strength.

This subclass is for use with the Grit and Vigor RPG by John Stater and the Heroic Age campaign setting.  

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This are my attempt at making heroes that are physically proto-superhuman, more on par with Doc Savage or the Goon than Superman. These Gold...