The FEAT Roll Revisited

Long-time players of the MARVEL SUPER HEROES Original game should be very familiar with the concept of FEAT rolls. The success of any action is determined by a FEAT roll. Briefly summarizing, you make a FEAT roll in the following fashion:

  1. Determine the Ability, Power, or Talent you are checking.
  2. Find out the rank of that Ability, Power, or Talent.
  3. Roll percentile dice.
  4. Cross-reference the number you roll against the Ability’s rank. This gives a red, yellow, green, or white result.
  5. Usually (but not always), a colored result means the action was a success, with the color determining the degree of success. A white result is usually (but not always) a failure in the attempt.

All this is old news. We have a few more clarifications, expansions, and revisions for the Advanced Set.

The Updated Universal Table

Take a look at the table on the back cover. It looks similar to the one provided in the Original MARVEL SUPER HEROES Set, and indeed it contains all the information of the original, plus a few other things.

First, instead of one number, each ability has a rank range as opposed to a single rank number. Previously, a Remarkable Strength had a rank number of 30, rain or shine. Now, a Strength anywhere from 26 to 35 is considered to be Remarkable, and FEATs using Remarkable Strength use this column. The Standard Rank Numbers (used with pre-generated characters) are listed above the Rank Range.

Second, there are more columns in this table than the previous one. There are now a Shift Y and Shift Z beyond Shift X, to allow the super-heavyweights (like an angry Hulk) to reach higher levels. Note the separation between Shift Z and Class 1000. You cannot shift in normal circumstances above Shift Z.

There are three additional columns above Class 1000, to help better define the more powerful cosmic individuals of the Marvel Universe. Class 3000 and Class 5000 will be beyond the reach of most Marvel player characters, arid the Beyond level will be possessed only by the most powerful beings, those capable of wiping out a universe with a mere thought.

Despite these additions, the Universal Table functions the same way as previously. The Player rolls the dice, and cross-references the number with his rank for a result.

Types of FEATS

The following are the different types of FEATs called for during the game.

  • Ability FEATs are those that rely on one of the seven primary abilities (Fighting, Agility, Strength, Endurance, Reason, Intuition, and Psyche). These FEATs may be raised or lowered by Talents or the existing situation.
  • Power FEATs are those that rely on one of the hero’s individual Powers: a character with Water Control of Amazing checks on the Amazing column to determine success.
  • Talent FEATs are those that rely on the hero’s Talents, where the Talent modifies a specific ability for FEATs.
  • Popularity FEATs are those used in social interaction, and use the Popularity rank, and may be modified by Contacts.
  • Resource FEATs are used in connection with the character’s Resource rank, and determine if the character can afford a specific item or piece of equipment. Think of this as a “Credit Check:’ for now – we’ll explain it further below.

Making FEATs

In the past, the standard procedure has been to allow all FEAT rolls, limited only by the Judge’s discretion. Spider-Man cannot lift a 747, but can probably lift a private plane. Can he lift a corporate jet? This has been a Judge’s prerogative. In any event, the player needed only make a green FEAT to succeed.

In the Advanced Set, we add the idea of Intensity to determine whether certain FEATs are feasible or not, and the type of result needed for the FEAT to succeed.

If a FEAT does not have a given, stated intensity, assume that any color result means success. Combat FEATS have varying degrees of success, and as such are discussed in full in the combat section.

An Intensity is set as a rank (Unearthly, Monstrous, etc.). Compare the requisite ability against the intensity to determine the color of the FEAT required for success. If the Intensity rank is greater than the Ability rank, only a red result will be successful. If the two are equal, a yellow result is needed for success. If the Ability rank is greater than the Intensity rank, then a green FEAT is needed. Option: if unstated, the Judge may declare the Intensity to be Typical. 

A summary of FEAT Intensities is provided in the Judge’s Book. There are items with variable Intensity levels, such as poisons and gases. That information and the effects of these items are covered under their sections in the Judge’s Book.

Automatic FEATs: 

Certain actions can be assumed to be automatically successful. Picking up a normal chair is a simple act, and would not require a FEAT roll to determine its success. (Picking up a chair while dodging bullets and defusing a bomb simultaneously will require a FEAT roll. More on multiple actions later.) In general, if an item is more than three ranks lower in Intensity than the requisite Ability, the FEAT can be considered automatic, with the Judge’s permission. The sole purpose for Automatic FEATs is to prevent the game from being dominated by die rolls. The Judge always has the power to ask for FEAT rolls. In some cases, items like Poisons may require FEATs regardless of the Intensity.

Impossible FEATs

(Optional Rule) As a guideline, any action more than one rank above the ability may be considered impossible. The Resource FEAT is always limited in this fashion (check it out).

Shifting the Rank

Certain situations may result in the shifting of a column to the right or left. A shift to the right is considered a positive shift (+1, +2, or +3CS, or column shift). A shift to the left, making the FEAT more difficult, is considered a negative shift (-1, -2, or -3CS). Column Shifts are primarily involved as per specific situations (trying to lift an object on a slippery incline may result in a shift of -1 or – 2CS). Those involved in combat are discussed in the combat section.

Shifting of ranks may make certain FEATs automatic (or impossible). No FEAT may be shifted to the left below Shift O or to the right above Shift Z. Anything in the Class 1000, Class 3000, Class 5000 or Beyond columns may not be shifted, except in specific circumstances listed for that FEAT.

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