Monday, October 26, 2009

Smooth Criminals

While there are plenty of new Perks and Flaws, and a number of refinements to them, one a lot of you may appreciate is the revised Ranged Perk. What's so great about it? For one thing, it's free!

Well, sort of. Ranged has been split into two separate Perks. The first is simply Ranged, which does what you expect it to: allows Attacks and other Abilities to be used in a distant-y fashion. In the old game, this Perk tacked on a +5 Endurance cost. The most obvious consequence of this was it made making grunts with handguns problematic. They can barely afford +1 Abilities, much less be saddled with Endurance costs. But even for full-fledged heroes, I found you didn't get very much bang for your buck. Since OVA assumes that everyone in a given scuffle can reach anyone and deliver a beatdown barring some satisfying excuse (sniping from a building, dropping stuff from a zeppelin, or otherwise being justifiably far away), it just wasn't worth the Endurance expense for such a marginally useful Perk.

Of course, the new Ranged didn't get off exactly scott-free. It's now made expressly clear when you use this Perk that you do not get to add any Strong bonuses. Also, unlike hand-to-hand attacks, ranged fighting is guaranteed to mess up the surroundings, which pending on the locale, can be a very bad idea.

But if you like your attacks with a little muscle, you can purchase the Ranged, Strength-Powered Perk, allowing you to put your full might into it in exchange for the +5 Endurance cost. Overall this seems a little fairer, and it certainly settles once and for all what Ranged Attacks get to add Strong and which do not.

These two use the Ranged perk in both of its new facets. Ancel knows all about attacking his opponents from a distance using a grand arsenal of weaponry and his expert skill. Zurkrieg's raw power is evident in everything he does, but he certainly exhibits it when using his length-changing cane. But with their stylish suits and unassuming day jobs, you may not see the danger until it is much too late.


  1. In OVA1, I just use the ranged perk with an automatic flaw : the obligation to use a ranged weapon. So it's endurance free.

  2. That might work in a lot of cases, but it sort of crumples when you're given such things as chi-blasts, fireballs, or even ninja stars. (Sure, a shuriken is a weapon, technically, but have YOU ever seen a ninja run out?)

    But that aside, I've found the old Ranged simply wasn't as good as taking Accurate, Extra Damage, or any of a multitude of other nifty advantages.