First, the GM should decide how much stronger (or weaker or faster, etc.) the average member of race X is compared to the average human. For example, she decides that Ogres are three times stronger than humans, and pixies are eight times weaker (which equals 0.12 times as strong). She then needs to look up the closest numbers to these strength multipliers on the table below, and look in the corresponding Scale column to find the correct racial Strength/Mass Scales. In this example, Ogres are Scale 3 creatures, while Pixies are Scale -6. (You may envision Ogres and Pixies differently, of course.) (See Miscellaneous Charts and Tables for a sample Mass Scale Table with examples.)
The Strength/Mass Scale number is figured into damage in combat, and all weapons and armor are assumed to be of the same Scale as the wielder. (These numbers have been rounded to the nearest useful number. They are only roughly 1.5 times the previous number, but close enough for game purposes.)
Other examples: a GM reads in a Medieval text that a dragon is “as strong as 20 warriors.” Looking at the table, 20 times the human norm is Scale 8. However, since the average warrior has Good strength, she chooses Scale 9 for the average dragon in her world. Of course, an individual dragon can still have Poor Strength compared to other dragons. This is simply listed as Strength Poor (-2), Scale 9.
This same GM wants PC leprechauns to be available.
While they are small, she decides their magic makes them a bit stronger than their size would otherwise indicate:
Scale -4. So a Good Strength leprechaun is as strong as a Terrible Strength human in her world.
The GM can also use this table to determine relative lifting strength or carrying capacity of characters or beasts if she wishes.
The GM may require a Strength roll to lift a given object.
This will depend on the Scale of the character, of course. Thus, a leprechaun might need a Good Difficulty Level Strength roll to lift a rock that a human could lift without even a roll. (See Action Resolution.)
The Gamemaster should refer to the following table when assigning a Scale to a race. This only has to be done once, at race creation.
Scale: Multipliers: Strength Speed
-11 0.01 0.13
-10 0.02 0.16
-9 0.03 0.2
-8 0.04 0.23
-7 0.06 0.28
-6 0.1 0.3
-5 0.15 0.4
-4 0.2 0.5
-3 0.3 0.6
-2 0.5 0.7
-1 0.7 0.8
0 1 1
1 1.5 1.2
2 2.3 1.4
3 3.5 1.7
4 5 2
5 7.5 2.5
6 10 3
7 15 3.5
8 25 4
9 40 5
10 60 6
11 90 7.5
12 130 9
13 200 11
14 300 13
15 450 15
16 650 18
17 1000 22
18 1500 27
19 2500 32
20 4000 38
Cost of Scale
If you are using the Objective Character Creation system, each step of increased Strength/Mass Scale for a player character should cost one attribute level and one gift. This is because each level of Scale includes +1 Strength and extra Mass, which is the equivalent of the Tough Hide gift. However, a generous GM may charge less.
In a superhero game, this gets very expensive, very quickly. An alternative method: let one supernormal power equal a certain Scale. For example, the GM allows one Power to equal Scale 4 (five times as strong as the average human). A character buys three Powers of super strength and has Scale 12 Strength. Another GM allows Scale 13 (200 times as strong as the average human) to equal one Power. Since a character with two Powers in super strength would have Scale 26 Strength (!), the GM decides to limit the amount of super strength available to one Power.
A player then raises or lowers his character’s Strength attribute to show how he compares to the average superstrong superhero. Strength can then be raised to Scale 13 Good, for example, at the cost of one attribute level.
The GM may also allow separate Mass and Strength for superheroes (or even races). For example, the superhero mentioned in Strength and Mass with Strength Scale 10 and Mass Scale 2 would only have to pay for two gifts and ten attribute levels. Or, with a generous GM, a single supernormal power covers the entire cost.
Other supernormal powers may have levels. Examples include Telekinesis (increased power allows greater weight to be lifted), Telepathy (increased power equals greater range), Wind Control (increased power allows such things as a jet of wind, whirlwind, or tornado), etc.
In these cases, each level can be bought as a separate supernormal power, which is expensive. Or you could use the option given above for Scale: one supernormal power buys the supernormal ability at a middling power range, and a simple attribute (or even skill) level raises or lowers it from there.
For Scales below the human norm, each step of Mass Scale includes a fault equivalent to Easily Wounded, and the GM may allow this to be used to balance other traits like any other fault (see Trading Traits).