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Installations

Installations
INSTALLATIONS
How Much For The Whole Country?

Some characters control far more extensive resources than just a single installation, no matter how large. Billionaire industrialists may have labs, homes, and facilities around the world, while hereditary monarchs (and villainous dictators) can call upon the loyalty and resources of entire nations! Characters from places other than Earth may even rule an entire planet, stellar empire, or dimension!

Generally speaking, such considerable resources are best handled as a Benefit advantage, reflecting the character’s wealth and influence. The GM determines the appropriate rank, based on the availability and usefulness of the resources. The standard rules recommend rank 5 for the equivalent of a billionaire; the king of a small nation might be similar, with the ruler of a planet being perhaps rank 7, and higher ranks for even greater influence. Keep in mind that while this benefit gives a character virtually unlimited access to most material resources, there is only so much the character can do with it all at once. If it becomes problematic, the GM is free to intervene or to cite the various responsibilities that come with such a position of power and influence. After all, it’s difficult enough for a billionaire CEO to run off and play hero, to say nothing of the next Emperor of the Andromeda Galaxy!

Villains are another matter, of course, and some do rule over vast territories. As with minions and other resources, a villain’s game traits don’t have to account for things like material wealth and influence unless the GM wants to keep track of it in some fashion. Even then, the villain does not usually have the same difficulties as heroes in managing such resources (one area where ruling with an iron fist is useful).

From hidden caves and arctic fortresses to urban towers and sanctums sanctorum, comic book heroes have distinctive places they call home in their costumed identities. Likewise, villains operate from hidden lairs and brooding castles, and finding and breaching a villain’s installation can be an important part of an adventure.

Installations include heroic headquarters, villainous lairs, and the many places where heroes and villains might clash. Whether it’s an underground cave, the top floors of a skyscraper, a satellite in orbit, or a base on the Moon, many heroes and villains maintain their own secret (or not so secret) headquarters. Teams may even pool their equipment points to have an installation they share, with the Gamemaster’s approval.

A character can even have multiple bases of operation (see Alternate Installation later in this section). This is more common for villains, who have back-up plans and secret bases they can retreat to when their plans are defeated. If a character’s headquarters is destroyed, the character can choose to rebuild it or build a new installation with different features using the same equipment points. Supervillains often go through a succession of different lairs.

INSTALLATION TRAITS

An installation is a permanent, fixed structure of some sort. The simplest installation may be a stone cottage or tower, while highly advanced installations can be orbiting satellites or vast underground complexes. The term installation covers all types of permanent structures, whether they are used as headquarters, lairs, or what have you.

The key descriptors of an installation are permanent and fixed. A tent or other temporary shelter is more equipment than an installation, while something capable of moving under its own power (rather than drifting on currents or in a fixed orbit) is a vehicle rather than an installation (see Vehicles for more information). Installations may be moved from place to place (see Movable under Installation Features, following) but this is usually an involved process, rather than the mobility of a vehicle.

Unlike more complex items like vehicles, installations have fairly few traits: just their size (starting at small), Toughness (starting at rank 6) and whatever Features or powers the installation is given. Note that installation size is measured on a separate scale, given on the Installation Size Categories table. The installation’s total cost (in equipment points) is based on its traits:

Installations and Power Level

Like vehicles and other gadgets and equipment, installations are limited by the series’ power level, or have their power level determined by their traits (for installations used solely by non-player characters). Gamemasters may wish to limit an installation’s power level to that of the NPC who owns or uses it, but this is not strictly necessary; a PL8 mad scientist could well have a PL12 installation, for example. As with most NPC power levels, it is merely a guideline and tool for the Gamemaster.

Since they have no active defenses, installations may have Toughness ranks up to twice the power level, effectively trading off their “defense” entirely (see Trade-Offs.

Installations and Environments

Also like vehicles, installations are assumed to provide suitable life-support conditions for their inhabitants at no additional point cost. This is usually Earth-normal atmosphere, pressure, temperature, and gravity, regardless of where the installation is located (particularly important for things like orbiting satellites, moon-bases, and deep-sea installations, to name a few). Problems with an installation’s life-support systems can range from a nuisance (like the air conditioning going out on a hot day) to a serious complication (like the air recycling system failing on a space station)!

Immunity to other effects generally requires a Feature for the installation, and an installation’s self-sustained environment does not generally prevent changes to the environment within the installation, such as someone capable of manipulating the temperature, atmosphere, etc. At the GM’s option, use of the installation’s environmental systems may be able to counter some of these effects (“I’ll use the ventilation fans to clear out this gas!”). See Countering Effects, substituting the installation’s power level for an effect rank for the countering check.

Shared Installations

It is common for heroes, at least, to share an installation as a common “home base” and most hero teams will have a headquarters of some kind, even if only to hold meetings and train, if not to interact with the public. Occasionally villain teams will also share an installation, although it more often belongs to the villain team’s leader or organizer. The same is true of villainous organizations, which make extensive use of installations controlled by the organization itself.

A truly shared installation divides its equipment point cost amongst all of the characters who have access to and use it. Generally, each character contributes 1 or more ranks of the Equipment advantage towards the cost of the installation. Characters who leave the team permanently regain any contributed Equipment ranks and may apply them elsewhere. The deficit is either covered by new characters joining the team or by the Gamemaster applying future character point awards towards making up the difference.

TABLE: INSTALLATION TRAIT COST
TRAIT STARTING VALUE EQUIPMENT COST
Size Small 1 point per size category
Toughness 6 1 point per +2 Toughness ranks
Features 1 point per feature
Powers Power cost
TABLE: INSTALLATION ARCHETYPES
STRUCTURE SIZE TOUGHNESS BASE COST
Apartment (1 BR) Diminutive 4 –4
Cottage Tiny 6 –1
Townhouse/Brownstone Tiny 6 –1
House Small 6 0
Warehouse Medium 6 1
Large Warehouse Large 6 2
Mansion Large 6 2
Cavern Large 8 4
Cave complex Huge 8 5
Castle Huge 8 5
Skyscraper (4–6 floors) Large 8 4
Skyscraper (whole building) Gargantuan 8 6
Estate (includes Grounds) Large (Colossal) 6 3
Village Colossal 6 5
Complex (interconnected structures) Colossal 8 7
Complex (massive) Awesome 8 8
Satellite Gargantuan 10 8
TABLE: STRUCTURE SIZE CATEGORIES
STRUCTURE SIZE COST EXAMPLES
Awesome 6 Small town, sprawling installation
Colossal 5 City block, private estate
Gargantuan 4 Skyscraper
Huge 3 Castle
Large 2 Mansion, cave complex
Medium 1 Warehouse
Small 0 House
Tiny -1 Townhouse
Diminutive -2 Apartment
Fine -3 Loft
Miniscule -4 Room

SIZE

A structure’s size is measured similarly to that of a vehicle, and gives a general idea of the overall space it occupies and how much space is available inside it. See Table: Structure Size Categories for guidelines. An installation starts out at Small size for 0 points. Each increase in size category costs 1 point, each decrease in size category gives you an additional point to spend elsewhere on your installation, although you’re not going to have a lot of room for extras!

TOUGHNESS

An installation’ Toughness indicates the strength of its structural materials, particularly its outer structure (walls, ceiling, etc.). A structure starts out with Toughness 6 for 0 points. +2 Toughness costs 1 equipment point.

POWER LEVEL

Some features refer to an installation’ power level. For player characters, this is the power level of the series overall. For non-player characters, particularly villains, this is the base-owner’s effective power level, or whatever power level the GM wishes to set, using the series power level as a guideline.

ALTERNATE INSTALLATIONS

As with vehicles and other forms of equipment, characters may have multiple installations as Alternate Effects of each other (Alternate Headquarters). This is based on the same concept of diminishing returns as other Alternate Effects: an extra installation is not “worth” as much as having the initial one, since the successive installations are more likely used as backups, or provide the feature of having a convenient home-base in different geographic locations.

In the event that a character has more than one installation, such as hidden bases scattered around the world, the others are treated as Alternate Equipment: the character pays the points for the most expensive HQ, then 1 equipment point for each additional installation of the same or lesser cost. The extra installations are largely a convenience (for heroes visiting other areas) and insurance against the loss of any one HQ.

The only exception to the Alternate Installation guideline is a shared installation (previously), the characters sharing the installation all contribute to its cost and pay for any personal installation separately. the installation. As such, they shouldn’t be considered all-purpose Minions of the occupant(s). A base’s personnel may help defend it in case of attack, but they’re not going to go out on missions or otherwise assist outside of their duties. This feature simply ensures there’s someone taking care of the place while the owner isn’t at home.

SHARED INSTALLATIONS

A team of heroes most often has a headquarters they all share. In this case, the team members may divide up the equipment point cost of the installation among them however they wish, usually as evenly as possible. Given the equipment point costs of most HQs, team members rarely have to devote more than a single rank of the Equipment advantage to their installation, an any excess points may also cover things like team vehicles and equipment (commlinks, for example).

Installation Features

The basic features of installations are listed. Many “Features” are also included as part of the default structure of the installation. These include doors and windows, access passages (hallways, stairs, elevators, etc.), storage (closets, crawlspaces, storerooms, etc.), lighting and connections to utilities (unless the installation has its own Power System) and the necessary environmental systems. If the installation has the Living Space Feature, it is also assumed to have full kitchen and sanitary facilities.

The following are additional features which may be useful in some installations.

COMBAT SIMULATOR

A combat simulator is a special room equipped with various devices intended to test characters’ powers and skills and allow them to train in realistic combat situations. Generally, a combat simulator has a suite of equipment that can simulate any appropriate attack effect at a rank up to the installation power level. As an additional feature, the combat simulator can project realistic illusions, allowing it to recreate or simulate almost any environment. Combat simulators are useful for training and short “war games” (pitting the characters against each other or simulated opponents). Clever heroes also can try to lure intruders into the combat simulator or an intruder might override the simulator’s control systems and trap the heroes in it, turning it into a deathtrap.

COMMUNICATIONS

The communications feature allows the installation to receive and transmit on a wide range of radio and TV bands, monitor police and emergency channels, coordinate communications between members of a team, and so forth. It includes communications equipment, consoles, and monitors. The system’s access to restricted communication bands depends on the clearance and skills of the user. Heroes often have access to special government channels, while a successful Technology skill check (DC 25) can grant a user illegal access to restricted systems.

COMPUTER

A state-of-the-art computer system serves the entire installation. This allows characters to make full use of the Technology skill and the computer can be programmed to handle routine base functions (including monitoring communications channels and controlling defensive systems). An artificially intelligent computer system should be created as a Minion or Sidekick, perhaps with the cost shared among members of a team. See Constructs for more.

CONCEALED

The installation is hidden from the outside world in some way. It may be camouflaged behind a false facade, buried underground, or something similar. Note this is in addition to the Isolated feature, if any. An isolated headquarters is difficult to reach, while a concealed headquarters is difficult to find in the first place. Skill checks to locate the headquarters have their DC increased by +10. Each additional feature applied to this increases the DC +5, to a maximum of +30.

DEFENSE SYSTEM

A defense system consists of various weapon emplacements defending the exterior and interior of the installation. A defense system can have any attack effect with a cost no greater than twice the installation power level. Their attack bonus is equal to the power level.

Installations may have defenses beyond just their Toughness and environmental systems. The most common is for some or all of the installation’s Toughness to have the Impervious modifier (at the usual cost of 1 point per rank) making it largely immune to minor damage or attacks. This may come from hardened or super-science materials or special defensive force fields or the like.

Speaking of force fields, an installation may have them as well. They tend to take two forms: additional Sustained Toughness, applied on top of the installation’s normal rank, and a Create effect capable of producing shapes of solid force such as walls, domes, or cubes, perhaps even enclosing the entire installation. Unlike added Toughness, Create effects are independent objects, offering cover (and perhaps concealment) for anything behind them. An installation beneath a force dome (for example) cannot be damaged until an attack breaks through the dome and destroys it.

Lastly, an installation may offer ranks of Immunity beyond just the normal benefits of its environmental systems. For example, a mystic site may have inherent protection against malign magic, granting anyone there Immunity to Magical Attack (5 ranks). Similarly, an installation may be shielded against outside intrusion, providing Immunity to Teleport effects (and related Movement effects) for 5 ranks, preventing anyone from teleporting into or out of the installation. The Gamemaster approves Immunity effects assigned to an installation, just like any other.

DEATHTRAPS

A villainous version of the Defense System feature is deathtraps: the villain’s lair has one or more fiendish traps suitable for disposing of those pesky heroes. Some death-traps are designed as security systems to keep heroes out: concealed auto-guns, walls of flames, sealing rooms that fill with water or sand, and so forth. Others are intended for the slow elimination of captured heroes.

Note that not having this feature does not mean a villain cannot jury-rig a deathtrap within the lair—say, by chaining heroes beneath a rocket counting down to launch, or slowly lowering them into a volcano’s caldera. It just means there’s no part of the base specifically designed as a deathtrap.

Also note that, in spite of the name, not all “deathtraps” are necessarily lethal. Some may be intended to merely incapacitate and capture intruders (more along the lines of a nonlethal Defense System), allowing the villain to interrogate them…and then perhaps put them into a real deathtrap!

DIMENSIONAL PORTAL

The installation has a portal or gateway to another dimension or dimensions. This can range from an otherwise innocuous-looking door to a humming high-tech portal surrounded by support equipment and monitors. The portal provides two-way travel to and from the other dimension, and it may even reach a number of related dimensions. At the GM’s discretion, an appropriate skill check—typically Expertise or Technology—may be required to operate the portal.

DOCK

A dock houses water vehicles and includes access to a nearby waterway, an airlock or lock system for moving vehicles in and out of the dock, and dry-dock facilities for repairing and maintaining water vehicles. The installation should be located within reasonable distance of a body of water to have this feature.

DUAL SIZE

The installation has two separate Size categories: its inside category (purchased normally), which determines the structure’s interior space, and an outside category, one or more size categories smaller. In essence, the installation is larger on the inside than on the outside! So a small house, for example, might contain the space of a huge castle on the inside. The GM may even allow size categories beyond Awesome, with each additional category doubling size; expensive HQs could be pocket universes! Pay the cost of the larger size, plus this feature, which lets you set the exterior size at any smaller category.

In general, the exterior dimensions of the installation cannot be smaller than a miniscule structure, about the size of a closet or phone booth (or, say, a wardrobe or police box), large enough for an adult human to pass through whatever serves as the base’s entrance. Headquarters that have no “exterior” structure, such as an extra-dimensional fortress accessed by a magical talisman, do not have this feature, but instead have things like Dimensional Portal, Isolated, Sealed, and the like.

EFFECT

An installation can be given any appropriate power effect as a feature with the Gamemaster’s approval. The effect cannot have a total cost greater than twice the installation power level and cannot exceed the power level limits. Effects are assumed to affect either the installation or its occupants, if they do both, apply the Affects Others modifier, or take them as separate features.

FIRE PREVENTION SYSTEM

The installation is equipped with an automatic system for detecting and extinguishing fires. Any large open flame sets the system off (beware, fire-using heroes!). It functions as a Nullify Fire 5 effect. A computer-controlled fire prevention system can be programmed to ignore certain sources of fire or the system can be placed on manual control (requiring someone to throw a switch in order to activate it).

GARAGE

A garage houses ground vehicles and includes a ramp, elevator, or other access to move vehicles in and out, facilities for repairing and maintaining vehicles, and a sliding access door.

GROUNDS

In addition to the actual building(s) of the installation, it has a considerable area of land surrounding it. An installation can have surrounding land of one size category larger than the structure at no cost, without having this feature. Having it allows for grounds up to three size categories larger than the structure, so a large mansion could have a colossal area of land.

If the installation has features like Defense System and Security System, they also extend over the grounds (with fences, sensors, weapon emplacements, and so forth).

GYM

A gym consists of weight-training and other exercise machines, space for working out, stretching, and similar exercises, and all the necessary amenities (lockers, showers, etc.). Some HQs may incorporate the gym feature into the combat simulator, for a multi-purpose training room. A gym may also include a pool (heated or unheated, good for aquatic characters), possibly even connected to an outside body of water, to the base’s dock, or both at no additional cost.

HABITAT

A portion of the installation is given over to an artificial environment suitable for certain plants or animals. It may be a greenhouse, arboretum, zoo, or even “living laboratory” with a self-contained ecosystem. The habitat may serve primarily as a place of rest and quiet contemplation, a home for pets or rare creatures, or have more practical uses, including the generation of oxygen (from plants) or the growth of food for the inhabitants of the installation.

HANGAR

A hangar houses air and space vehicles. It includes a hatch and/or runway for the vehicles to launch and facilities for repairing and maintaining flying vehicles. For some HQs the launch facilities of the hangar may require a long tunnel or other access to the outside.

HOLDING CELLS

This Feature may have different enhancements or upgrades, particularly in an installation designed to contain prisoners long-term. For additional Feature ranks, the cells can have the following options:

  • Impervious on the Toughness of the cells.
  • “Punishment” cells (an Affliction effect at the installation’s power level).
  • “Sleeper” cells (an Affliction effect at the installation’s power level that keeps prisoners incapacitated).

INFIRMARY

An infirmary consists of hospital beds and equipment for the full use of the Treatment skill. An infirmary can provide treatment for a number of characters equal to the base’s power level at one time and it can be assumed to have the necessary facilities to handle any unusual physiology of the base’s owner(s).

INTELLIGENT

The installation itself is intelligent, aware, and capable of interaction, having total effective Intellect, Awareness, and Presence ranks up to the installation’s power level. It may be an advanced computer, a magical spirit, or some other disembodied entity. The installation’s intelligence is capable of controlling any part of it, from doors and windows to environmental systems or powers.

ISOLATED

Headquarters with this feature are situated somewhere out of the way like the Antarctic, the bottom of the ocean, on top of a lonely mountain peak, even in orbit or on the Moon. The base’s owner doesn’t have to worry about things like door-to-door salesmen or other unwanted visitors but the installation is also far from civilization (which can be limiting for heroes unable to travel fast). The installation is assumed to provide all the necessary life-support for its location, but doesn’t provide characters with the means to get to the base or travel back. They need the appropriate powers, a vehicle, or a separate base feature.

LABORATORY

A laboratory is a facility for performing scientific tests or experiments. It contains all the necessary scientific equipment, including dedicated computers, if the installation doesn’t have its own computer system. Characters can use the laboratory to perform research, study unusual phenomena (including many super-powers), and so forth. A laboratory may be required for certain Expertise, Investigation, or Technology skill checks, or provide a circumstance bonus to those checks.

LIBRARY

A library allows for use of various Knowledge skills when doing research. A library may consist of printed matter (books and periodicals), microfilm, digital files, or a combination of all three. A library may facilitate certain Expertise skill checks and provide a circumstance bonus for them.

LIVING SPACE

The installation includes all the necessary amenities for people to live there full-time. This is usually a number of residents equal to the HQ’s power level comfortably (possibly more, at the GM’s discretion). It includes bedrooms or private suites, kitchen facilities, dining area, and common living areas. Characters can live in an installation lacking this feature short-term, but they’re not likely to be very comfortable.

MOVABLE

The installation is capable of relocating from one place to another, but it is not as capable as a vehicle in that regard. Generally speaking, moving the installation is a significant undertaking that can only occur (at most) once per game session, and probably less often than that. This may be due to the need to charge powerful batteries, make complex calculations, wait for the right alignment of mystic energies, or any number of other reasons. The key point is that the installation isn’t particularly useful for getting from place-to-place within the context of a single adventure, although it may move between adventures, and even serve as a primary means of conveying characters to adventures, such as a “Tower Beyond Time” that shifts from dimension to dimension, with each dimensional shift heralding a new locale and a new adventure.

PERSONNEL

The installation has a staff of personnel commensurate with its size and facilities. The staff is made up of characters created and controlled by the GM and tasked with servicing does. If this feature is taken twice, the structure will even rebuild itself in a week if it is destroyed! If it cannot rebuild in its original location, it reappears in the nearest suitable place.

Note that an installation’s personnel do not have to be ordinary humans. They could be service robots, magical golems, animated skeletons, enslaved aliens, trained apes, or just about anything else the GM chooses to fit with the theme of the base and its owner(s).

The following guidelines may be helpful in describing and defining installation Personnel in game terms.

  • Personnel should always be considered minions (per the rules given under Conflicts). Non-minions should be regular non-player characters rather than personnel.
  • Personnel should not be useful outside of the context of the installation for the most part. Underlings that accompany characters away from the installation should be acquired via Summon, Minions, or Sidekick.
  • Personnel are subject to the power level limits of the installation and the series, and the GM may require them to be even lower level (6 or less, for example).
  • Personnel can create complications for the owners of the installation, ranging from the need to protect them from potential harm (or rescue them from danger) to interpersonal conflicts or even betrayals.

POWER SYSTEM

A power system makes the installation completely independent of outside power. It has its own generators (which may be solar, geothermal, nuclear, cosmic, or anything else the designer wants). They provide the base’s entire power needs. The installation also has emergency back-up power should the generators fail. This generally lasts for a number of hours equal to the HQ’s power level.

REMOTE FEATURE

One of the installation’s Features is separate from the main structure, such as a laboratory in an isolated area (for safety and security) or a hangar high in the mountains overlooking an installation in a valley far below.

SEALED

This is similar to the Isolated feature, except the lair is sealed off from the outside world rather than isolated by geographic location. It may be a structure with no doors, windows, or other outside access, or behind some sort of barrier. Only the lair’s owner and designated guests may enter, although the GM should determine means by which trespassers might do so, including effects like Dimensional Travel, Insubstantial, Permeate, and Teleport.

SECRET

This is similar to the Concealed feature except the installation is not so much concealed as it is “hiding in plain sight,” its existence as a headquarters unknown. So, for example, people assume the abandoned house on the hill or the old, closed-down factory are just that. This feature increases the DCs of checks to discover the lair—typically starting at DC 10—by +10, with each additional application increasing them by +5 to a maximum of +30 (for truly “top-secret” locations).

SECURITY SYSTEM

Various locks and alarms protect the installation from unauthorized access. A Technology check (DC 20) overcomes these systems. Each additional feature increases the DC by +5, to a maximum of DC 40. The security system may be tied into a defense system (if the installation is equipped with that feature), so triggering an alarm activates the defense system to disable or restrain the intruder(s).

SELF-REPAIRING

The structure of the installation “heals” any damage done to it over time. Essentially, it recovers like a character.

TELEPORT LOCK

The installation has a feature that emits a “beacon” or “lock” for certain Teleport effects, making the installation a “well-known location” and effectively making teleporting to it Accurate (like the extra) so long as the character is going to the installation, has the right Teleport descriptor(s), and is authorized. This is a common “escape hatch” for villains to quickly teleport back to their hidden lair, should plans go awry.

TEMPORAL LIMBO

Time within the installation actually moves at a different rate than that of the world outside! Time within the structure is either slowed or sped up compared to the normal passage of time, passing at half or twice the normal rate. Each additional application of this feature doubles the ratio of time passage: one-quarter or four times, one-eighth or eight times, and so forth.

This time differential allows a character within an accelerated Temporal Limbo to spend additional time planning, building, or recovering while little or no time passes outside, for example. Conversely, it allows characters in a slowed Temporal Limbo to pass great amounts of time outside without aging, perhaps allowing for long periods of self-imposed exile or contemplation.

TROPHY ROOM

The installation has an area specifically dedicated to storing and displaying various trophies, souvenirs, and keepsakes acquired by its owner(s). A trophy room may function primarily as an archive and museum, a storehouse, a monument to its owner’s ego, or some combination thereof. In game terms, the trophy room serves three primary purposes: as a source of adventure hooks involving the items and information stored there, as a source of complications for the same reasons, and as a means for characters using the installation to spend victory points for inspirations, scene edits, and power stunts connected to the contents of the trophy room.

TRANSPORT

While installations themselves are generally fixed (although see the Movable Feature) they may offer different means of transporting people who use them.

The most common is simply for the installation to have the Dock, Garage, or Hangar Features and associated vehicles. See Vehicles for more on the possibilities here. A team vehicle tends to go hand-in-hand with a team headquarters as a primary mode of transportation.

Alternately, the installation might have the ability to transport people. A Teleport effect may be a matter-energy “transporter,” a series of spatial gateways, or some similar set-up, turning the installation into a “way-station” for sending people virtually anywhere.

Typically, such a system is both Extended and Limited to Extended, curtailing its use as a tactical option (since it leaves characters dazed and vulnerable for a round after teleporting). It may be further Limited to certain destinations, such as a linked series of teleport gates, booths, or transport tubes, meaning users cannot just teleport anywhere. Perhaps the system is only one-way: the teleporter in the installation can send characters to any destination within range, but cannot bring them back. They must either return under their own power, or use another teleporter in a different installation to send them back.

The same concept for a teleport system can also apply to various Movement effects, particularly Space Travel (for very long-range teleportation between planets and star systems), Dimensional Travel (for an interdimensional transporter or portal), and Time Travel (for an intertemporal transporter). These options may serve primarily as plot devices, and the GM should keep a close eye on their use, particularly time travel, depending on the settings rules for such.

VARIABLE ENVIRONMENT

Beyond just adjusting thermostats and dimmer switches, the installation is capable of a full range of Environment effects, significantly altering the environment throughout, or in just a select number of rooms. Among other things, this means control over the temperature, gravity, and composition of the atmosphere (or whether there is even an atmosphere at all). Intended primarily to adapt parts of the installation to different life-support needs (for alien visitors, for example) this Feature can also serve as a kind of Deathtrap by flooding an area with toxic gas, evacuating all of the air, raising temperatures to fatal levels, and so forth. In the latter case, the GM may consider overcoming and escaping the environmental hazard a challenge based on the installation’s power level.

WEAPONS

Installations may be equipped with a variety of weapons systems, both external (to defend against assault) and internal (to use against invaders who have breached the installation’s outer defenses). Unless the installation has the Computer or Intelligent Features, these weapons systems require operators, either directly firing the weapon, or controlling them from an interface within the installation.

Weapons can be virtually any attack effect allowed in the setting. The various weapon Gadget Guides, particularly Heavy Weapons, may provide some inspiration and useful suggestions.

Generally speaking, the weapons of heroic installations tend to be non-lethal and aimed at restraining or harmlessly incapacitating targets, while the installations of less scrupulous and more ruthless owners may be quite lethal. Weapons used within the installation are likewise more likely to feature effects that will not severely damage the installation itself.

WORKSHOP

A workshop has all the facilities for making various things. It includes tools, workbenches, supplies, and so forth. The Gamemaster may rule certain projects require a dedicated workshop of their own (which is an additional feature). For example, a workshop can easily handle woodworking, metalworking, and machining, but might not be suitable for creating magical inventions (see Inventing), which require a separate dedicated workshop.

Installation Powers

Installations can have power effects as Features. The Effect Feature gives the installation a power effect at up to its power level in rank, with roughly twice its power level in character point value, although the GM is free to adjust this, if desired, including charging multiple Feature ranks for particularly expensive power effects (with each additional Feature rank doubling the number of available character points, but not changing the maximum effect rank allowed).

Generally, installation powers should be things that focus on the installation itself or its grounds and not extending much beyond. Gamemasters should be cautious about allowing installation powers to have far-reaching use in the series unless they are agreed upon in advance. An example of this is a teleport or portal network, since it effectively gives every character with access to the installation the Teleport power at a substantial rank for virtually no cost! Gamemasters should approve all installation power effects and keep in mind that they are subject to the usual limitations of equipment. Feel free to have them break down at inopportune times, get sabotaged (especially by villainous foes aware of them), or cause other complications (like a teleporter affected by sunspots accidentally sending the heroes to a dangerous parallel Earth, for example).

Other Powers

Installations can have a range of other miscellaneous powers, particularly sensory effects representing external or internal sensor systems or equipment capable of performing scans or analysis.

The key thing to keep in mind for installation powers is: are they an integral part of the installation, or are they independent gadgets in their own right? For example, a scrying pool in a magical sanctum that provides Remote Sensing is an integral part of the installation (as it cannot be moved and must be used there) whereas a crystal ball that offers the same effect is more of a portable and Removable power, rather than something integral to the sanctum.

Alternate Effects

Just as with other power effects, an installation’s powers may have Alternate Effects, usable one at a time (or in combination for Dynamic Alternate Effects). These usually represent “settings” on the installation’s systems, or an allocation of resources like energy or processing power, distributed amongst different systems.

Unlike characters, some installation powers might not be best handled as Alternate Effects if they need to be usable all at the same time. An example is weapons: while characters often have arrays of attacks (usable one at a time), an installation may need to be able to use multiple weapons systems all at once to repel attacks from different sides.

SAMPLE HEADQUARTERS

Gamemasters can use the following sample installations as ready-made lairs for supervillains while players can use them as bases for their heroes.

ABANDONED WAREHOUSE

Size: Medium Toughness: 8 Features: Communications, Computer, Concealed, Garage, Gym, Living Space, Power System, Security System • 10 points.

MOON-BASE

Size: Awesome Toughness: 20 Features: Combat Simulator, Communications, Computer, Defense System, Fire Prevention System, Gym, Hangar, Holding Cells, Infirmary, Isolated, Laboratory, Living Space, Power System, Security System (DC 25), Teleport (Affects Others), Workshop • 28 points.

ORBITING SATELLITE

Size: Colossal Toughness: 20 Features: Combat Simulator, Communications, Computer, Defense System, Fire Prevention System, Gym, Hangar, Holding Cells, Infirmary, Isolated, Laboratory, Living Space, Power System, Security System, Teleport (Affects Others) • 25 points.

SANCTUM SANCTORUM

Size: Medium Toughness: 10 Features: Concealed, Dual-Size (Huge), Laboratory, Library, Living Space, Security System, Workshop • 12 points.

SEA-BASE

Size: Gargantuan Toughness: 14 Features: Communications, Computer, Concealed, Dock, Fire Prevention System, Isolated, Living Space, Power System, Security System • 16 points.

SKYSCRAPER (5 FLOORS)

Size: Large Toughness: 10 Features: Communications, Computer, Defense System, Fire Prevention System, Gym, Hangar, Infirmary, Laboratory, Library, Living Space, Power System, Security System, Workshop • 17 points.

STATELY MANOR

Size: Huge Toughness: 10 Features: Communications, Computer, Concealed, Dock, Garage, Gym, Hangar, Infirmary, Laboratory, Library, Living Space, Power System, Security System, Workshop • 19 points.

UNDERGROUND LAIR

Size: Huge Toughness: 14 Features: Communications, Computer, Concealed, Defense System, Garage, Holding Cells, Isolated, Laboratory, Library, Living Space, Power System, Security System • 19 points.

URBAN FORTRESS

Size: Large Toughness: 12 Features: Combat Simulator, Communications, Computer, Concealed, Defense System, Fire Prevention System, Garage, Gym, Holding Cells, Infirmary, Living Space, Power System, Security System, Workshop • 22 points.