Every week in 2018, the plan is that my friend Rod is going to ask me some geeky question that will answer in a post. This week is Week #23, and following on last week’s question, we are still dealing with:
Pick the weirdest powered characters I can think of, rank / seed them and then pit them against each other in a tournament!
So it’s time to kick off the Superheros with Weird Powers Tournament Challenge to the Death…er, to the Submission.
So you can read all about the details of this question and the process that we got here by in last week’s post, here. This week, we’ll begin the actual fighting. Now, I said before that this is going to be long so it’s going to take a few weeks, but I’ve changed my mind and decided to knock the whole thing off over one (extended) weekend, across several different posts.
So here we go with the first half of Round One of the Tournament, the Binder Conference.
Turns fabric into plaid
Fighting on: An Ocean Beach, with lots of waves
The environment doesn’t really give either character a benefit. Triplicate Girl outranks Plaid Lad by a solid 12 points in my initial ranking of the characters.
So, in this battle, Triplicate Girl wins on dice rolls of 2-6, 8, or 12, while Plaid Lad wins with a 9, 10 or 11. 7 is a reroll.
So ready, set…fight!
Plaid Lad looks pretty uncomfortable as Triplicate Girl simply walks slowly towards him. He is digging his heels into the ground but appears to be looking around, trying to find some way to use the environment to his advantage, but he’s coming up empty. When Luornu gets close enough, she simply uses her regular hand-to-hand combat training to deliver a roundhouse kick to Plaid Lad’s jaw. Point to Triplicate Girl, and she didn’t even use her powers! (Roll: 6)
Triplicate Girl shows some mercy, and allows Plaid Lad to get up and prepare himself again. And this time Plaid Lad is going on the offense, running toward his enemy, grabbing sand from the ground and hurtling it at her. He attempts to follow this up with punch, but Luornu triplicates, making her a more confusing target. She easily dodges Plaid Lad’s clumsy attack, and he stumbles into the water, but the sand does its job and she is unable to land a blow. No point awarded (Roll: 7)
Plaid Lad unleashes the full force of his powers, changing the costumes of all three of Triplicate Girl’s bodies from their usual mix of orange and purple into a hideous plaid mess. He’s really going all out, because his own costume has also changed, as well as some seashells that are on the beach. He charges out of the water with the only weapon he’s been able to find…a confused starfish, and attempts to hit one of the Luornu’s with it. She dodges, but is still off kilter because of what Plaid Lad has done to her costume. Both heroes reposition themselves. No Point Awarded. (Roll: 7)
Luornu now goes on the offensive, awing both the audience and her opponent with a beautiful and acrobatic tri-jitsu maneuver which Plaid Lad has no hope of defending himself against. He’s knocked to the ground, losing hold of his starfish in the process. Point to Triplicate Girl! (Roll: 3)
Plaid Lad screams over his frustration of it all, and charges Triplicate Girl like a raging bull. Luornu seems startled, and Plaid Lad smiles at his apparent advantage, but realizes too late that something is missing…he’s only got two of Luornu’s bodies in front of him. The third is behind—she slipped around him in the confusion, and punches him in the back of the head. The other two Luornu’s immediately turn back against him, their little trap having worked, and each take their turn punching him in the face. Point to Triplicate Girl! (Roll: 8)
Plaid Lad is down! Winner: Triplicate Girl (3-0)
Conjoined being and skilled fighter
Plays audio signals from across in time and space
Fighting in: A thick jungle
The environment is a bit of a disadvantage to Antennae Boy—it seems like most uses of his powers are likely to just draw attention to himself in what could turn out to be a bit of a cat-and-mouse game in the thick jungle. So that’s a point advantage to Double-Header, who is likely to be the tougher hand-to-hand fighter.
Double-Header outscores Antennae Boy by 2 points in the initial scores used to determine ranking so that means, in this situation, Double-Header wins on a 2-6 or 11, while Antenna Boy wins on a 8, 9, 10 or 12. 7’s are a reroll.
So ready, set…fight!
The battle begins with both heroes being deposited about 20 meters away from each other, but with the thick jungle all around them, it’s hard for them to see each other. Double-Header almost immediately begins to argue with himself about which way he should go, which gives Antenna Boy hope that he can get close enough to score a point. Antenna Boy jumps from some bushes to attack…but it was a trick! Double-Header intentionally lured him out of hiding with a fake use of his “classic weakness”, and is able to quickly use drive his strong fist into Antenna Boy’s jaw, causing him to fall backwards into the foliage. Point to Double Header! (Roll: 2)
Double-Header won’t let his advantage fall away though, and he quickly dives into the leaves onto the fallen Antenna Boy, delivering some devastating blows into Antenna Boy’s sides. The referees have to pull him back to give his opponent a chance to recover. Point to Double Header! (Roll: 3)
Antenna Boy knows that it’s do or die here, so he uses his power to unleash a cacophony of noises from around time and space. It’s a deafening din, and Double-Header is momentarily stunned. Antenna Boy charges in to press his attack, but Double-Header recovers quickly, grabbing both of Antenna Boy’s overly large ears, and causing the young hero to scream in agony. Both heroes pull back to reposition themselves. No Point Awarded. (Roll: 7)
The battle is back on, but Antenna Boy is still nursing his wounds, rubbing his soar ears. Double-Header takes advantage of this and charges in, head-butting Antenna Boy in the gut…twice! Antenna Boy collapses, incapacitated. Point to Double Header! (Roll: 5)
Antenna Boy is down! Winner: Double-Header (3-0)
Wow! Two shut-outs in a row. And that one was between the Conference’s two most closely ranked players. What will happen next?
Turns into stone
Fighting in: An Indiana Jones style ancient temple with lots of deadly traps
The environment seems to favor both heroes pretty evenly. On one hand, Stone Boy is probably better equipped to avoid being hurt by traps. On the other hand, Polecat may be able to attack from behind some form of shelter that’s likely to be inside…walls, daises, pillars, that sort of thing.
Stone Boy outranks Polecat on the initial ranking scores by 5 points, so that means that he wins on a 2-6, or 10, while Polecat will win on a 8, 9, 11 or 12. 7, as always, is a reroll.
So ready, set…fight!
Polecat and Stone Boy have both arrived in different parts of the temple, and begin to search each other out. Stone Boy, though, sees a position he could use to his advantage and decides to wait. When Polecat cautiously makes his way into one room, careful to avoid the traps, he doesn’t realize that up a ramp is Stone Boy, hunched over into a ball, and turned into stone form. Stone Boy rolls down the ramp, but Polecat dodges at the last second, and unleashes his super-bad-smell power from his stinky horns, causing Stone Boy to go off course and injure himself with a big crash. Point: Polecat. (Roll: 8)
Stone Boy staggers to his feet, but he’s still dazed. Polecat takes the opportunity to ram into him before he can return to his stone form. Stone Boy stumbles backwards and bumps into a hidden panel on the wall, which causes a volley of darts to be released from the mouths of statues around the room, right at him. The game masters have made sure that there is no deadly poison upon them, but the sharp pains Stone Boy feels all over his body definitely rob his strength. Point: Polecat. (Roll: 8)
Stone Boy is determined not to go down so easily, though, and he transforms his fist into stone and is able to give Polecat a mighty bashing in the face. Polecat stumbles backwards, his nose bloodied. Point: Stone Boy. (Roll: 10)
The two combatants are on more or less equal terms now, and they circle around each other warily. Polecat prepares to unleash his stink power again, when he accidentally stumbles onto a disguised trap door. It opens beneath him, and he is about to plunge down when Stone Boy, in an act of genuine heroism, leaps forward and pushes him out of the way. As a result, Stone Boy falls into a pit full of hungry, but non-lethal crocodiles. The judges are all impressed by the sacrificial spirit Stone Boy showed in being willing to help an enemy, and continuity buffs comment that this like what he did when the Substitute Heroes had a contest to join the Legion, but they decide to give the point to Polecat anyway. Point: Polecat. (Roll: 8)
Stone Boy is down! Winner: Polecat (3-1) (on three 8’s, no less)
Eats and digests anything
Makes feathers as heavy as lead with a formula
Fighting in: A construction site in the middle of the night
I can see how both combatants could use this environment to their advantage, so we won’t award points to either side for that. However, Matter-Eater Lad has an 8 point advantage over Rann Antar in terms of initial scorings, so he will win on a 2-6, or 9. Rann Antar wins on an 8, 10, 11 or 12. 7, as always, is a reroll.
So ready, set…fight!
Matter-Eater Lad and Rann Antar both materialize in different areas of the fighting arena, at a distance, but visible to each other. Rann Antar is on a lower floor, and Matter-Eater Lad is further up. This is actually to the disadvantage of both fighters, based on their strategies, and they each attempt to reposition themselves as quickly as possible, avoiding for the moment a direct confrontation. Rann Antar is carrying a basket of feathers, which hinders his ascent, while Tenzil has a flight ring, which means he can lower himself fairly quickly. Once he does, he goes to work eating some of the support beams that are below Rann Antar, leaving a trap for him to fall into. The floor of the construction site gives way beneath Rann Antar’s feet, and he falls a few meters and is dazed. Point: Matter-Eater Lad. (Roll: 5)
Matter-Eater Lad is quick to press his attack, using his flight ring to get to Rann quickly. As Rann is getting up, Matter-Eater Lad belts him with the ol’ one-two, knocking him down again. Point: Matter-Eater Lad. (Roll: 6)
However, immediately following that punch, Matter-Eater Lad loses his footing in the rubble. This gives Rann a chance to get up and get some distance from Matter-Eater Lad, using the clutter of the construction site to take cover. When Matter-Eater Lad looks up again, he’s not sure where Rann Antar is hiding. No Point Awarded. (Roll: 7)
Matter-Eater Lad cautiously makes his way through the construction site, Rann Antar tries to attack—some of the feathers he was carrying around have floated to some precarious positions on the ceiling fixtures of the site. Rann releases his formula using a special gun he’s created, and turns them to lead. They fall toward Matter-Eater Lad…but he’s prepared for this. He dodges most of them, and eats another before it hits him. Now sure of Rann Antar’s position, he is able to use his flight ring to barrel into him, eating his gun and knocking him unconscious. Point: Matter-Eater Lad. (Roll: 5)
Rann Antar is down! Winner: Matter-Eater Lad (3-0)
And that’s the end of the Binder Conference, Round 1. Some very decisive victories, and one surprise with the #6 contestant (Polecat) beating the #3 (Stone Boy). Tune in next time (within a day, probably) to see Round One of the Plastino Conference!