MM 3 Crafting Rules
Return to Mutants and Masterminds
The advantages Artificer, Inventor, and Ritualist -- hereafter grouped as "crafting advantages" -- are great for representing heroes who can rig anything together given time. However, when it comes to being able to do this in a round-by-round combat situation, things get much trickier.
Canonically, Quickness can reduce the speed of crafting, but in practice this has turned out to be completely broken. It's trivial to build a character who can craft unlimited devices or rituals, each as a standard action. The solution I've found is to take Quickness out of the equation completely (by declaring that it doesn't work with crafting) and focus on improving the "jury-rigging" rules.
Here, "PPC" is an abbreviation for the device or ritual's Power Point Cost.
Crafting Rules Summarized
Normal crafting using Artificer or Inventor requires (PPC) hours and then a skill roll to design the device, followed by another (4 x PPC) hours and another skill roll to build it. You can then use it normally, for one scene.
With Ritualist, you must spend (4 x PPC) hours crafting the ritual and make a skill roll. If successful, you can use the ritual for one scene, by spending (10 x PPC) minutes casting it and making a skill roll.
In all cases, the DC is (PPC + 10). This means that if the device's PPC is no higher than your ranks in crafting skill, it can be done as a routine action. For every -5 to the skill roll (which means -5 to the maximum PPC if this is a routine action), you can move the time down by one rank -- or just halve the time cumulatively, which is usually simpler.
Important House Rule: A device or ritual can raise your abilities but cannot be used to acquire skill ranks. This has simply proven too abusive. What you can do is enhance your abilities and optionally add the Jack-of-All-Trades advantage.
For all three crafting advantages, jury-rigging speeds things up. However, this costs a hero point!
The time required is now PPC rounds, and you need only make a single skill check with a DC of (PPC + 15). You cannot do this as a routine action unless you have an applicable Skill Mastery advantage; if so, the device's PPC can be no higher than (your ranks in crafting skill) - 5.
For Artificer or Inventor, that creates a device that lasts for the scene. For Ritualist, this is the time and action needed to cast the ritual each time.
As a house rule, you can speed up the jury-rigging time, but it's difficult. For every -10 to the skill roll, halve the creation time, rounding up. So as a routine action, someone with Skill Mastery can craft in (PPC / 2) rounds as long as the PPC doesn't exceed (crafting skill ranks) - 15 . . . or craft in (PPC / 4) rounds as long as the PPC doesn't exceed (crafting skill ranks) - 25. (This is a good time to pull out Ultimate Effort!)
New Advantage: Inspired Craft
Fortune, Ranked (1/2 PL)
You may use this advantage a number of times per game session equal to your Inspired Craft rank, with a maximum rank of half the series' power level (rounded down). Your Inspired Craft ranks refresh when your hero points "reset" at the start of the next game session. Each use gives you one of the following effects:
1. You may use the jury-rigging rules for Artificer, Inventor, or Ritualist without having to spend a hero point.
2. For Artificer or Inventor, you may get another one-scene use out of a previous invention without having to spend a hero point. (This benefit does not apply to a Ritualist, whose rituals may be recast normally anyway; use the option above to speed up this casting time.)
3. You can declare that you already invented a specific creation during downtime. You must roll (or make a routine check) to craft it, using the normal invention rules with no modifiers for time spent (since you're assumed to have taken your time making this earlier). If your invention roll fails, the Inspired Craft point is wasted, but you may try again. For Artificer or Inventor, success means the item is waiting for you at your home base ("right where I left it!"). For Ritualist, success skips the creation time and lets you get right to casting.
For Artificer or Inventor, neither #2 nor #3 allow you to declare that you retroactively brought it along with you! You must fetch it normally or spend an actual Hero Point to edit the scene so that it's available. (Because of the latter option, a crafter with high levels of Inspired Craft and a few hero points in pocket is incredibly versatile and effective.)
Return to Mutants and Masterminds