Saturday, May 26, 2012

Marvel Burger #1 (redux)- The Man Called Nova

Sorry I haven't updated in over a month, but I've been hard at work on two major projects. One is the teaser book for the Red Dragon Inn Adventure Series coming out at Origins this year (more on that after it is released) and the other has gotten me thinking about this column. First, I wasn't happy with Zorr, so I wanted to freshen him up rules-wise and make him look all prettified like the Watcher Characters in the Marvel Heroic Basic Game. And secondly, I'm not happy about the idea of not including Scenes to make the entire Man Called Nova series playable- so that's what I'm going to do. Not only will I give a synopsis, and datafiles but I will include relevant scenes for Watchers to use on their players.

Good thing I didn't get too far- heh.

So, here is how that last post SHOULD have looked:

The Man Called Nova #1
Release: September 1976
Writer: Marv Wolfman
Pencils: John Buscema
Inks: Joe Sinnot
Letters: Joe Rosen

While dying Nova Centurion Prime Rhomann Dey pilots his massive starship to Earth, trying to chase down the space pirate Zorr, seventeen year old high school student Richard Rider is playing a guys vs. girls basketball game on the basketball court at his high school, Harry S. Truman High School in Hempstead, New York. Due to a bad block, Rich allows his opponent, Donna-Lee Dover to score the game winning basket. After the loss, Mike Burley, all around jerk on campus, yells at Rich for his performance on the court and tosses him aside in frustration. Rich's friend, Ginger Jaye, rushes to Rich's side to console him as Rich wallows in his own failure, but he eventually agrees to go with her to the local ice cream parlor, Uncle Fudge's.

Ignorant to Ginger's affection for him, Rich begins to feel better thanks to her attentions. Unfortunately, Mike Burley shows up at uncle Fudge's to make him feel worse, knocking him off his seat in his greeting. At the same time, 800,000 miles above the Earth, Nova Prime Rhomann Dey laments the destruction of the planet Xandar at Zorr's hands. Paralyzed by Zorr and unable to fight the space pirate in his condition, the Nova Prime transfers his powers via an invisible mind blast to a random human with hopes the power he bestows won't make a greater evil than the one he needs help defeating. Back on Long Island, the blast strikes Rich and sends the high school student into a deep coma.

While Rich recovers in Hempstead Hospital, Rhomann Dey telepathically tells Rich of the centurion powers he has inherited, the horrors Zorr inflicted, and most importantly his duties as the new Nova Prime. Rich wakes up in a panic and gravimetric beams shoot our of his eyes blasting a hole in the hospital wall and nearly hitting his doctor. When Rich finally returns to school, his musings about what he had learned from Dey distract him from his class, but suddenly, he finds he knows the answer to a difficult math question right off the top of his head. This makes him reconsider the idea that Rhomann Dey was a dream, since math was always Rich's worst subject. Upon his return home, no longer denying the abilities bestowed upon him, Rich changes into the man called Nova!

Souring through the skies, Rich tries out the new powers he knows about: flight, strength, and stamina; when his helmet tunes into the police band and Rich decides it's time for a real test. That real test ends up being the  man Rhomman Dey charged Rich with defeating, Zorr! The new Nova manages to avoid most of Zorr's attacks, even landing a few hits of his own, but when Zorr decides to crush Nova with an apartment building, Rich decides to save an occupant opening him up for Zorr's attack. The arrival of Ginger, Mike and Donna-Lee distracts Rich, so he over-calculates his trajectory in avoiding Zorr's attack and collides with the damaged  apartment building. Despite the fact that it will open him up to another attack, Nova holds up the building's weight long enough for his friends to get away. When he returns to the fight, Nova sees Zorr disappear into thin air. Giving his life in the process, Rhomann Dey had used the last of his power to teleport Zorr to his starship, finally defeating him in his death. This leaves Rich alone to learn about his new powers and decide his own fate as Nova.

Marvel Heroic Roleplaying:

I'm not going to do a write up for Rich Rider/Nova since it stands to reason that the pre-Annihilation Wave version of Nova will appear in the Annihilation book in July. By the same logic, I'm not going to stat up Rhomann Dey as Nova Prime because we have yet to see how the Nova Corps is handled in that book. I can always come back to write them up later.  That leaves Zorr.

Action: Enter: Zorr the Conqueror
Zorr has decided to take refuge on Earth temporarily. Tormented by the destruction of his world by Galactus, Zorr has stopped conquering planets, instead he destroys them and siphons their energies into his orbiting space ship. The destruction of Xandar didn't fill his energy reserves with enough power to take on the Devourer of Worlds, so Earth is to be next. Fortunately, he was hounded by the Nova Prime, and though he believes Rhomann Dey to be dying, he's not taking any chances in attacking the planet from orbit. Instead he is "hiding" on the planet. But Zorr's idea of hiding is destroying everything in sight- in this case, Manhattan!

Zorr knows how to handle heroic defenders. If he is outnumbered or faced with an obvious threat, he will throw heroes into buildings or wreck the structures himself creating COLLAPSING BUILDINGS or ENDANGERED CIVILIANS complications in order to force the heroes to waste their time in saving civilians or stopping buildings from crashing to the ground. The moment they have their back turned, rather than run away, Zorr will use the chance to attack the heroes while their defenses are down.

The scene ends when Zorr or the heroes run off.

Options with Enter: Zorr the Conqueror
  • If one of the heroes wears the uniform of a Nova Corps member, Zorr will focus his attacks on that hero, believing them to be Rhomann Dey or sent by the dying Nova Prime.
  • If the battle begins to go badly for the heroes and one or more of them are stressed out, Rhomann Dey can use the last of his energy to teleport Zorr to the dying Nova Prime's orbiting space ship. The endeavor takes the lives of both Zorr and Rhomann Dey.

That's all folks- see you next time with The First Night of the Condor!