Marvel Super Heroes
Each turn is six seconds long. As such, there is a limited amount of time available in which a character can act. The Players’ Book, p. 19, tries to give some guidance as to what a character can do in a single turn, but the rules there seem a bit cumbersome.
There are three types of actions: Automatic, movement, and dice. An automatic action is one that does not require a FEAT roll. It is the opposite of a dice action, which does require a FEAT roll. A movement action is obviously moving from point A to point B. A character is allowed one automatic action, one movement action, and one dice action per turn.
If the character is attempting multiple actions using the rules above (see Simultaneous Actions or Targets), all of the attempted actions constitute the character’s one dice action for the turn (even if the actions do not require a FEAT roll).
The character’s movement action can occur either before or after her dice action for the round. A character cannot normally, therefore, move into range, attack, and then duck back out of sight all in a single turn.
If the character forgoes her dice and/or her movement actions for the turn, she can perform additional automatic actions. This way, a character can perform up to three automatic actions in a single turn. Automatic actions include such things as such things as opening doors, activating a defensive power such as Force Field, standing up after being knocked down, picking up something off the floor, and so on. Some adjudication is necessary. For example, picking up a dropped weapon while villains are firing is not necessarily an automatic action.
A turn proceeds in the following fashion:
- The Judge determines what is happening in the world around the heroes, involving those characters and actions not controlled by the players. He notes these to himself, or, if he wishes, writes them down (writing things down is generally time-consuming, but helps in key situations).
- The players in turn determine what their heroes are doing. Player’s may perform more than one action during a turn, but this may limit the success of other actions. The players tell the judge what their characters are doing.
- Roll Initiative. Initiative is only important when one action may change or override another action. The side with the highest initiative has its actions take place first. Initiative is usually used in combat and other damage-inducing situations.
- Pre-Action rolls are made. In certain situations, such as defensive actions (dodging, blocking, and evading), a FEAT roll may be made before anyone on either sides takes any actions. These are Pre-Action FEATS and are rolled at this time. Certain moderator planned actions (such as explosions) may occur at this time. See Changing Actions, below.
- The actions of the side with initiative take place. Run either the Judge’s or the Player’s actions, depending on which side got the high initiative.
- The actions of the side that got the lower roll take place. Run the remaining side’s actions.