I have kind of penchant for super-powered black ops and spies. Now, I think the absolute best was the short-run by Warren Ellis (big surprise) on Secret Avengers, but I was also a huge fan of John Ostrander’s Suicide Squad comics and The Boys by Garth Ennis. I’ve written some short fiction, but nothing that has seen the light of day other than a very perfunctory homage to The Boys.

From Secret Avengers 18, Written by Warren Ellis, Pencils and Inks by David Aja, Colours by Raul Allen, and Letters by Dave Lanphear

It looks like a system that I created to mimic Borderlands – which I had titled F#ck You Up – will be the basis for a new campaign/playtest in the super-black ops genre. I’m calling it HardCASE.

The PCs each have one particular superpower in that they are the absolute human pinnacle of that skill or ability. So, for example, a character like Deadshot would have Firearms or Aim, whereas Hawkeye would have Archery. Shang-chi could have Martial Arts, as could Iron Fist.

There will be much more to the characters, including Drivers and Training – so while Hawkeye’s power would be Archery, a Driver would likely be “Prove Myself” and Training in “Hand-to-Hand Combat.”

I already have a few ideas for adventures, using the basic backbone I had planned for Mission Creep, Mission Crawl and jazzing it as befits a comic adventure. I’m not going to lighten it or turn it into NextWAVE: Agents of Hate, but this has changed from the Activity to DC’s Checkmate, which means that the badguys will also have powers.

I might recycle some of the stuff from Mundus Novit – which has pretty much disappeared into the dustbin of RPG history – but this is going to be a very different take. In Mundus Novit, part of the direction was that the general public basically knew about superpowers. In HardCASE, it still isn’t general knowledge.

So now I need to adapt F#ck You Up to meet my intentions for HardCASE and to get my ideas on paper – virtual paper that is.

I have chosen to accept my mission.

You can find out more about Secret Avengers, Suicide Squad, and The Boys.

You can find out more about Mundus Novit here and read the fiction tie-in Dark Horizons starting here.

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