Powers between themes are many and varied. At first, when starting this MUSH, we wanted to catalog as many 'offensive' powers - that is, powers that were deeply powerful enough to cause problems for other players to the extent that RP was no longer enjoyable - as possible and grade them, but the variety spawned by popular culture and human creativity rendered this impractical.
As such, we present a general guideline - something that should be followed as best as possible. It is up to the player to, in good faith, try to follow this, and the admin to, in good faith, try to enforce this as best as possible.
In general, due to the IC circumstances, it can be assumed that most worlds are roughly equal to one another in terms of power. This means that the hero from one series can likely battle another on even footing. This will often cause strange match-ups (which some might actually LIKE) - after all, one does not normally see a forty foot tall robot, a warrior from Krypton, a street fighting punk, and a sword-bearing knight all having roughly the same power levels. However, on this MUSH, due to the unique physics in place, that is EXACTLY what happens. Of course, perfection cannot possibly be achieved by this - some people will always edge others out - but we do try.
How, then, do we achieve this? How does Phil with the ability to turn people into stone compare to a guy with a sword, and how does Jill with the ability to cause atomic destruction with a wave of her hand compare to someone with a knife? There's a few things that we do to handle this.
- TECH IS MAGIC, MAGIC IS TECH - Anything that a paranormal power, such as magic can do, technology can do, and vice-versa. Though some differences are inherent, the general effects are the same. Don't assume one is necessarily better than the other.
- ABSOLUTE POWER THRESHOLD - most powers have a definitive range in which they can be used. In general, unless you apply for something with greater influence, you cannot blast apart anything larger than a city block or so. Mind you that this is plenty for most characters, from Transformers to Jedi to super sorcerers. This is MAINLY a guideline - stuff can sometimes exceed that - but we don't want people blowing up entire cities, continents, planets, etc. in one hit.
- MAIN CHARACTER AURA - an oft-referred to thing in stories that allows main characters to survive ridiculous odds, we have something along those lines here. The same phenomenon that caused the worlds to unify also picked out many of the 'important' people and allowed their strength to be kept relatively constant relative to the strength of others. So massively debilitating attacks may bring down large contingents of soldiers but would leave a main character standing. Nevertheless, the powers of wanton super-strength that can destroy worlds will be reigned in to some extent. We're not in the business of slaughtering NPCs without end.
- EVERYONE CAN BE DEFEATED - You need to rethink your character if you have an inherent immortal, or if the only way to stop you is through stabbing you in the heart at a 45 degree angle with a sword minted of silver and three drops of dragon's blood. Even ageless characters and regenerators can be killed, here - every appable character can die. Not necessarily easily, though. Consensual death still applies (see the rules on condeath for more information on that), but the ability to be killed makes RP around a character distinctly different than one that cannot be killed. All characters must also be able to be beaten into submission, and should be from time to time if you're engaging in combat. Chances are, your defensive powers only extend so far as the other guy's offensive powers, at least when fighting other player characters.
Furthermore, you SHOULD be defeated every now and then. If you have never had a meaningful loss amongst tons of victories, small and great, you are doing something wrong. Winning is fun, but it's not so much fun for everybody else if they never win, and it's even less fun when they do win, but it just gets downplayed.
- SATURDAY NIGHT'S ALRIGHT FOR FIGHTING - This means that, simply put, the best way to take on fellow powered player characters is to simply slug it out with them. Excessively debilitating attacks (i.e. mind control, one-hit KO powers, etc.), death spells, black holes and the like just aren't that likely to WORK; often enough their effects will only stun your opponent for a round or do some moderate damage. Although this isn't absolute, it's a rule of thumb. As an alternative to having your horrible spell/attack/etc. work, you might have it be a stun-type attack that causes your opponent to have to fend it off for a round.
- PLAY SMART - When you're in the middle of a fight, sometimes you shouldn't just attack and attack and attack. Take cover to avoid the conflict, assess the situation, try to come up with some creative use of your powers to claim victory without going through direct confrontations. Sure, it's SIMPLEST to slug it out with your opponent... but how do you know that's not what they want you to do? Don't just ignore it when people are doing what they do well and it doesn't happened to fit into 'slug it out' -- someone with stealth technology, or who has some other way to move around without being detected, should be able to do that without you punching the ground randomly and ferreting them out while they burrow under the ground.
Unless people are twinking out, you shouldn't have to fight every moment to get something done... but bear in mind even when you use your abilities well, you still shouldn't have win every time. Villains, this especially applies to you -- you can do any number of things like this -- hostage taking, and so forth, but you still shouldn't be succeeding EVERY time you do something. Anyway, the point is: Think about the situation, and act in a manner that is to your advantage ICly, don't just punch until one of you can't anymore. That huge mecha may be reluctant to try to punch a humanoid-sized target that's sitting on top of something he's trying to defend in the first place. Likewise, huge mecha, a lot of you are probably very effective at transport interception -- a train's going to have a hard time not struggling with that Evangelion if it parks itself on it's tracks.
- TP-ONLY POWERS ARE BULL - Although occasionally we'll let out someone with a TP/admin-permission-only power, they do not ICly have control over it. They do not have an 'honor code' that prevents them from using it or anything like that. The simple matter is, unless an admin gives the stamp of approval, if someone with a TP only power tries to do it it will mysteriously fail.
- CROSS-WORLD POWER EXCHANGES DON'T ALWAYS GO WELL - Oftentimes characters from highly different worlds cannot gain a very great competency in each others skills; for instance, it would be highly unusual for a magic user from a medieval world to acquire the ability to pilot a mecha (or at least, pilot it well). Keep this in mind.
- HOMEFIELD ADVANTAGE - weird and uberpowers tend to work better in the worlds they came from, and to a lesser extent, on those who are from those worlds.
- POWERS MUST BE CONSISTANT WITH THE BASIC THEME - if the other news files say it can't be done, it can't be done. These are universal laws to the MUSH.
- THE LESS PERSISTANT, THE BETTER - Trying to turn someone to stone permanently is a lot less likely to work than trying to cause someone's body to react slower in battle. Keep this in mind. A short-term handicap might work as a stun, but something much more devastating probably won't. Mind you that in general we're trying to get people to duke it out in terms of damage. Again - as an alternative to it working, your opponent could have to fend it off as a stun-type attack for a round.
So, what does all this mean? Well, to make a long story short - Basically the worst, mass-destruction, super-powerful super powers generally only affect NPCs with full intensity, if that. Though there are exceptions (usually with player consent and a lot of IC time and effort), this is the general rule of thumb. Most massively destructive powers are also diminished in size of effect and strength of effect. Finally, most characters are within the same power realm - someone with X amount of stat points is about the same in terms of power
Although many powers may be inappable in a particular case (or possibly all cases), there is one that will never be appable, and that's time travel, simply because there's no way to effectively use it on a large scale on a MUSH.