Vibranium

23rd Sep 2022, 12:00 AM in Trials Of The Tesseract
Vibranium
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Author Notes:

23rd Sep 2022, 12:00 AM
Vibranium is so prohibitively expensive that cost is the only reason Rob has never considered it for use in the Iron Man suits. Stark Industries can't reasonably afford to procure any.

Just in case you were wondering. ;)

Comments:

23rd Sep 2022, 1:37 AM
Corebrute
I'm almost afraid to see the logic that Black Panther's player comes up with for how he can have a whole country of Vibranium at his finger tips.
23rd Sep 2022, 10:49 AM
Michael
The movie has your answer: Wakanda was built around the only asteroid strike on Earth to ever contain that metal. Which must have been a very early event in the formation of Earth, because with how much Vibranium we see in Wakanda and considering the volume of it combined with reflecting property, the shockwave of that impact would kill any multi-cell organism on the entire Eastern Hemisphere.
23rd Sep 2022, 10:56 AM
Corebrute
I know the comic/movie lore! I meant how would a player convince a DM that they should have access to that much Vibranium, let alone a whole country.

Actually good point, we saw an executive class in charge of a whole company, is there a class called King/Ruler? Is Black Panther perhaps a prestige class or template like Super Soldier?
23rd Sep 2022, 5:39 PM
All I will say, for now, is that Wakanda's currently running under a different set and scale of rules. Everything else is for future me to figure out flesh out the details of based on what I already gave him. XD

There's 12% of a plan, bare minimum. An argument could be made for 15.
25th Sep 2022, 1:20 AM
Corebrute
If I may make a suggestion, Black Panther could be an excellent time for the Timely version of the Kingmaker rules to be used. Rules for running a kingdom, and even usurping a kingdom, could be a lot of fun.

Thankfully by the time we get there, Black Panther 2 will be out, so you can incorporate the effects of all Killmonger's actions into the rules of Black Panther 1.

You could even use a variation of the Dynasty Founder feat for Killmonger, which explicitly states the goal is to usurp a kingdom and significantly change it's laws with an intimidate check: https://www.aonprd.com/FeatDisplay.aspx?ItemName=Dynasty%20Founder
23rd Sep 2022, 11:36 AM
Otaku
I confess, since he's not bound by the same legal restrictions as the film was, I had hoped adamantium would also be mentioned. After a quick perusal of Wikipedia, I guess it would be "Proto Adamantium" and that wouldn't be a thing for the in-setting history at this point in time. Still might have been a fun explanation for Howard being willing to part with it. Well, that and how wealth is handled in some RPGs.

Ha! You thought it was I was just being a comic fanboy but in fact it was I being a GURPS fanboy!

...

And a painful, forced Jojo's Bizarre Adventure reference as well. XP

Anyway, since I already referenced it, I'll explain. In GURPS, the "Wealth" Advantage comes in various levels, and is a weird blend of various factors. By default, it covers your starting wealth (which covers everything you own) and your wealth-generating potential. The latter affects how well you're paid for your job e.g. if you have Wealth: Struggling you can still be a struggling Actor, Doctor, Investor, etc. just as you can be a Wealth: Filthy in those careers. There's even more to it, but not relevant for where I'm going with this...

...which is how - in GURPS - Wealth is important to game balance. Money can't buy happiness, but it can by valuable equipment, pay for allies, favors, etc. Things that can simulate actual GURPS Advantages, which Advantages that would otherwise cost Character Points. Now, if the GM is rewarding you with wealth (lower-case "w") intended to increase your character's Wealth.. that isn't a problem. The GM will just tell you what you're getting and to adjust your Wealth stat accordingly. If, however, the players get some stuff that wasn't really meant for them, at least, not in the long term, then they need to go with the GM (or come up with their own plans) to use it, keep it but cough up the Character Points they need to raise their Wealth Advantage accordingly, or "lose" the wealth. It might sound very restrictive, but as I've tried to explain, money is pretty versatile in GURPS... but GURPS being what it is, there are a lot of situations where characters can logically acquire wealth over the course of play.

How does this pertain to the above strip? Well, it doesn't since they aren't using GURPS, but if they were:

Howard (being run by Gwen) acquires the Vibranium (Proto Adamantium?) metal, but can't really make good use of it. It's monetary value, however, means Gwen needs to find a use for it that benefits Howard indirectly, so that she doesn't need to cough up the Character Points for it. The shield is so valuable, selling it would mean a bunch of money but for that to manifest as permanent gain, she's got to cough up Character Points. What Gwen can do is find another player with a PC that can use the shield well and has the CP to pay for it. Yes, in GURPS you can spend Character Points for equipment. There is even a specific advantage called "Signature Gear": it can let you access abnormally good equipment so long as it makes sense for the character and the setting, and the equipment is seen as a "part" of that character. Meaning the GM needs a really good reason to deprive you of your equipment permanently. So Gwen finds a way for Howard to benefit from this obscenely expensive loot without having to spend any of Howard's CP, while Steve gains access to something he otherwise wouldn't justify and that he wanted to spend CP to obtain.

...ugh, that took me way too long to explain and I'm not sure if it makes any sense. >.> I shouldn't have even bothered, but since I did, I'm leaving it up.

Sorry, gang. XP
24th Sep 2022, 11:50 AM
I mean, obviously I can only speak for me, but I don't think there's anything that needs apologizing for, I appreciate the breakdown. If anything the Wealth concept is actually easier for me to follow than most GURPS stuff. XD

I'll admit, adamantium and its sub-adamantiums never really occurred to me. I figured one ridiculous over-the-top super-metal was enough, at least until we have an idea of when and where adamantium is showing up.
25th Sep 2022, 1:31 AM
Corebrute
I always appreciate your points on GURPS. I wonder in GURPS, if you buy Signature Gear with points, do you still roll to craft it? Or do you just get it? Or should the player roll to craft first, and then if it's a success, a player can spend the character points to make it a permanent Signature Gear?
25th Sep 2022, 6:44 PM
Otaku
Excellent question! I believe this depends on how much work Howard Stark needs to do in order to turn it into a shield. I don't know the current canon for Cap's shield in the comics, but at least at one point the shield was essentially an accident. From Wikipedia:

During one of his experiments to fuse vibranium with an experimental steel alloy, MacLain falls asleep and awakens to find that the resulting alloy had set in a tank hatch mold. However, he was not able to duplicate it, because as MacLain described it, "some unknown factor" was present during the experiment that he could not identify. The shield was then painted to become Captain America's weapon and symbol. MacLain would later attempt to recreate the shield's metal to no avail, his experiments instead eventually yielding the super-metal adamantium. While adamantium has been portrayed as practically indestructable, MacLain said was "no match" for the mysterious Vibranium/Proto-Adamantium shield.

So, having just read that when I posted above, I wasn't even worried about anyone having to truly "craft" the shield. It doesn't sound like Howard experienced a similar "happy accident", so unless the GM handwaves the requirement, Gwen would roll for Howard to craft it (possibly more than one roll), but Chris wouldn't have to cough up the CP for it if Howard failed. If this was all part of backstory from character creation, then no roll would be required: the GM would let Chris know if the Shield was something Steve could acquire, and all Chris has to do is have Steve pay the relevant costs. It gets a bit muddy since there are revisions to this rule I just learned about (and don't have time to learn), as well as the Shield being one-of-a-kind... but in the spirit of Gwen, I'd just suggest Steve invest in the U.S. Military/Government as a Patron (since Steve will be stuck with an Extremely Hazardous Duty to them anyway), so they can technically foot the bill. If that is the case, Steve might be able to spend only one Character Point (on top of what was invested in the Patron) to ensure that Shield is essentially his...

...or, instead of Signature Gear, he buys it as a Gadget. Yeah, I totally forgot about this option, which actually lines up with the template I posted under SNAFU (Comic #284). Buying gear as a Gadget comes with the whole "GM cannot arbitrarily deprive you of it" thing, but you're just paying the CP needed to basically build the Shield like an Ally character. Yes, this process can be used to build something non-sentient, though giving Cap a self-aware shield might be funny while also explaining some of his stunts with it. XD The version in the template is inferior to the movie/comic book version, but a more expensive version of the build can replicate something like Captain America traditionally has. I'd go into more details, but besides remembering how out of practice I am with these rules, I also did that thing where I went to kill a few minutes on Comic Fury and now I'm about an hour behind schedule so I gotta go! My bad! ^^'

Thanks (to you and TheScarlettTroll) for enjoying what I write, though. :)
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