View Full Version : Palladium's Heroes Unlimited vs. other Super Hero RPGs (sans Marvel Diceless)

04-07-2010, 06:57 PM
I'm looking into getting into a Super Hero based RPG to scratch my Super Heroic itch. Currently I'm heavily leaning towards Heroes Unlimited as I have the most experience with Palladium's system. So sell me on your favorite dice based Super Hero RPG game compared to HU or if you're a HU fan what things do you like best or dislike about the how the system deals with playing Super Heroic games.

Richard Littles
04-07-2010, 07:33 PM
I really enjoy the Hero System because it uses reasoning from effect for everything like super powers, equipment, etc... You can define how your character is exactly the way that you want it. No random generation either. The core rules uses a simple 3d6 die mechanic to resolve everything except damage. The optional rules allow you to define how you want the game to play. The upside is the Hero System can do any genre well and has a devoted fan base that will help a new Hero player with any questions they have. The downside is the many options available for characters and the GM.

04-08-2010, 07:45 AM
The Hero System is the best super hero game system I've ever used and I agree with what Richard said about it. But there's a down side to it, since nothing is random, there's quite a bit of work that needs to be done for creating characters, not really math intensive like say Algebra, but you should point balance the characters.

Some of my best gaming memories from both a player and GM are of various Champions campaign, where as both a player and a GM, I'd get to roll all of the dice that were used in an attack. Fun watching the players squirm as you pull out d6 after d6 for the main villain's attack.

But, I would suggest using the game system you're most comfortable with.

04-08-2010, 08:40 AM
I liked HU. But I altered it in a way to guide the random character generation aspect. Essentially, I had the players choose a general character power source (super powers, self-made, psionics/magic, and bionics/robotics). For me, I am not a big fan of bionics, I more like super powers. But if those come from being an alien, experiment, or mutant, I don't think it REALLY matters.

GURPS is a nice robust system, but complicated. I don't know much about the hero system. I have heard OF it, but don't know much about how it is played and such. I might have to give it a gander.

04-08-2010, 11:05 AM
Thanx for the replies so far. I have the Sidekicks intro to hero but haven't given it a decent read through yet. I'm not opposed to trying a new system but as Palladium games at least RIFTS seems to get alot o' hate on various boards . So I figured I'd see what others say on their favorite system & see if it'll sway me to check it out.

---------- Post added at 09:05 AM ---------- Previous post was at 09:02 AM ----------

For me, I am not a big fan of bionics, I more like super powers.

I happen to like bionics/cyberware as my fav. comics were always cyber heavy such as : Cyberforce , Cable n' such.

04-09-2010, 04:10 AM
I have several version of the Champions game (2, 4, Hero 5th) found the easiest to play was 2nd edition. Rest of them, including 5th, bloated to include other genres and options. I still liked them, just felt I was only using a fraction of what was in the book with regards 5th edition.

My vote would be DC heroes (2nd or 3rd edition). Dead easy to play. Roll 2D10 against a target number for success. Far easier to get into than just about any supers game I found, and in terms of what you got in the box (2nd ed), few can compare (saying that, the 3rd ed was poor value for money). The D6 Legends DC Universe game never grabbed me. I bought it, read it, didn't like, sold.

Marvel Superheroes is easy to learn and free now (www.classicmarvelforever.com). The Marvel Universe RPG came out as 3 books. The core book, with Spiderman on the front, is all you really need though the 2nd is useful too (with the X-men on the front). The third book (Avengers) smacks of them running out of ideas and it was cancelled soon after. No random element, more a resource allocation game. You 'spend' action stones to accomplish stuff. When you run out of stones, you can't do anything till you recover some (which is every round, admittedly, but you may need to rest for several to do certain things).

Mutants and Masterminds takes a while to make characters, as Hero does, but once you've done a few I'm sure it'd speed up. There's lots of add ons and modifiers that can get a bit crunchy. Well supported game with very active forums and loads of books/pdfs for it.

Villains and Vigilantes is an older game where the hero is 'you' and you roll powers. I had mixed succes with that. I liked it, my players didn't so it didn't last long :(

There's loads of other supers games out there (Silver Age Sentinels, Truth & Justice, Aberrant, Godlike, Necessary Evil etc) but overall my choice would be DC Heroes (that said, I'm running a play by post Golden Heroes game right now!)

06-26-2010, 10:16 PM

A bit of thread necromancy, but I like HU and think that's a good choice with thw caveat that you read this blog posting:


If you're looking to do Batman: Year One, Green Arrow: Longbow Hunters, Moon knight, Daredevil, et al, HU is your best bet.

06-26-2010, 10:36 PM
Marvel Superheroes is also a fast and easy game to learn and play.

08-16-2010, 01:16 AM
I had one experience with Heroes Unlimited. It was probably the DM, but it seemed that I was rolling dice for everything. My character was a high tech character who relied on advanced equipment to fight evil. And I could be wrong about this, but I think I had to roll to see if I could successfully make scrambled eggs for breakfast.

I think what I'd like to do is try a bunch of different systems and see which one works the best. But who has time for all that.

08-16-2010, 10:12 AM

Well, U-L, that's what gaming cons are for! There's always plenty of different games to try out in a one-shot. and, usually, the GMs at cons are pretty decent (having been one occasionally myself!) and love the games they demo.

As to rolling to make eggs for breakfast...wtf? I ~might~ make someone roll for something like that, but only if they were trying to impress somebody. Maybe.


07-17-2011, 12:20 AM
LMAO. Well, the HU game does have the cooking skill. As do most of the Palladium games. Making you roll to make breakfast is WAY overkill. You should only roll when using that skill makes a difference in the outcome of an encounter or the story. That said, I don't think I've ever seen the cooking actually used for anything other than comic effect. Mostly it just gets glossed over, though I'm sure you could actually make use of it if you wanted too.

I'm guessing the GM was new or hyper literal, or both. Either way, I certainly hope he gave your character his 25 xp for making this skill roll.

08-02-2011, 12:27 AM
My current faves are BASH, Supers!, and Icons. All three are lite to medium sized rulesets. I used to play Hero, but it was way too much work to make characters. Same with M&M. They are solid systems, just too rules-heavy for me.

12-31-2011, 03:55 PM
Back..nice posts ..I enjoyed the blog write up too. I ended up getting HU 2nd ed. & Mystic China for Christmas this year, so I'll be going with HU. Thanx again for the imput, now I just have to order Ninjas & Superspies n' possibly Beyond the Supernatural (as a potential supplement, not sure about that).