~ ZEJ Statistical Contest ~ Welcome back to the ZEJ Statistical Contest. I'm your host, Eebit, and I'm here to (re-)introduce a little bit of friendly, creative competition to the statistical roleplayers of ZEJ with our fourth iteration of the contest! Iteration 4: Excess Ability Overhaul In this iteration of the ZEJ Statistical Contest, we are going to zone in on a particular element of the profile creation process that I cannot help but feel is often thrown to the wayside. We're going to focus a little more intently on a single facet of the profile creation process, where in past iterations we have looked at the profile as a whole. In this iteration, we're focusing on Excess Abilities, or X-Ability for short. Historically, the way we have seen X-Abilities handled is pretty rigid. Formulaic, even. The parameters have been pretty established over the course of statistical roleplaying's lifetime. You know -- 200% Piercing Damage for a single target. 150% Piercing Damage for an area of effect. 100% Piercing Damage for a Range of all enemies. Maybe throw in a "Chance of <x>" for the sake of a little personal flavour. Overall, it's a tried and true formula! But, to me, it lacks some character. There are some profiles where it fits just fine! There's really no problem with some profiles having the "standard form" of an X-Ability -- if it makes sense. The 200% Pierce nuke is nice for characters who are offense-oriented and can make use of that. But sometimes, I can't help but feel that it would push the profile just that little bit further if the X-Ability better cohered with the rest of the profile and its established mechanics. We've evolved in how complex our profiles are getting, but the X-Ability has not evolved with us. I think that there is an equal (or perhaps, greater) lack of X-Abilities for those character archetypes that aren't damage-oriented. I feel like, with this contest, it'll do us good in better establishing X-Abilities as a fundamental part of the character creation process. And maybe along the way, it'll unearth some wisdom on exactly what a "good" X-Ability looks like to the statistical roleplayers of ZEJ. Initially my idea was to make an X-Ability in complete isolation, but I thought that that would be a lot harder to do without the established context of a profile being right there. So, without any further fanfare, let me get to the important stuff! 1. The TASK: The task in this iteration is to take an already-existing character and design a new X-Ability for them that breaks the mold of the "standard" X-Abilities. By this, I mean that participants should attempt to create something unconventional -- beyond the previously-described "200% Piercing Damage, Chance of <x>" X-Ability. I figured that taking an existing profile for the sake of improvement might make for a better sense of collaboration, and provide a "framework" to work within. There are plenty of characters with statistical profiles in our Character Database, but make sure that you ask permission if you would like to tackle a profile that was not created by you! 2. The SPECIFICATIONS: A successful submission must: - Include a link to the original profile (either directly to a post containing the profile or a Pastebin submission of the profile). - Create a new, interesting X-Ability that does NOT follow the "typical" pattern of X-Abilities. - Not use the same X-Ability of the previous profile for submission. A successful submission could (should?): - Cohere with the profile that it is tied to. Perhaps by incorporating the individual mechanics that are laid out in the profile. - Attempt to tie in with the overall "direction" of the profile. --- For example, a character that tends towards the "Control" archetype might want an appropriate "zone control" X-Ability, while a "Support" character might want one that instead focuses on aiding their allies. - Keep in mind that an X-Ability is designed to not solely be about a single burst of Damage -- rather, it should be the manifestation of that character's "ultimate (or otherwise, signature) move". 3. The DEADLINE: <IMPORTANT> As this is a challenge that has much smaller scope than previous challenges (we're really only focusing on one particular field of the profile creation process), I intend to keep this short and sweet to minimize procrastination. In the interests of maximal creativity, you guys have ONE WEEK -- that is, until MONDAY TUESDAY, MAY 17TH at 11:59pm EST to PM me (@"Eebit") the X-Ability of your character. There will be no deadline extensions. 4. BONUS ROUND: For an added challenge, I'd like to extend the original challenge to encompass the E-Trigger of the chosen profile as well. Let your imagination run wild and think of a personal, character-specific steroid / buff to maximize their capabilities and push their playstyle to the limit! With that all established, I'd like to also mention that if you are planning on participating, please post in this thread (and if/once you have decided on it, include which profile you intend to tackle).