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#13767375 May 10, 2018 at 07:52 PM
156 Posts
While hopping about MC, I started a conversation on CORP concerning the creating of a brick character, inspired a bit by Superman/Superboy, who hails from the Arabian Peninsula. He would be a millennial, but have the vibe of a classic superhero, and with it the aforementioned alluded powers of super strength, durability, flight/super leaping, etc.

Regarding empowerment, I was looking at a magical angle, and thought that maybe a Djinn, seeking to escape the bottle he was imprisoned in (or other artifact, seeing as my character is an archaeology student) granted him his wish of superhuman powers, almost out of amusement, perhaps, to see what would befall the young student.

I was curious about there being any precedent for genies or other similar beings to be able to grant such boons, or if there are other possible origins I could be excluding? Naming wise I was thinking perhaps Janissary, or another name tied to elite warriors in the region? I also read up on the Janissary killed in 2005 on mission in the Champs Universe, so I was also curious on possible ways that a successor could be created?
#13767396 May 10, 2018 at 08:23 PM
32 Posts
Well, I can’t speak to the lore of the setting much. But I would say don’t be afraid to try new origin stories. I haven’t heard of anyone getting their powers from a Djinn in comics, but a good example to look to could be Shazam. He gets his powers from a magical source. Or, hell, even someone like Captain Britain, who has Merlin offer him a magical amulet or a sword, and eventually has the whole Captain Britain Corps thing from multiple universes. It may sound kinda hokey, but your origin story really is only limited to your imagination and I think the Djinn idea is a really cool one.
#13767480 May 10, 2018 at 11:43 PM
1302 Posts
Powerful djinn granting wishes to people who free them is a classic element of Middle Eastern folklore; and since folklore very often has real existence in the Champions Universe, I see no problem with what you propose. But if you need more justification, various official Champions heroes and villains were granted super-powers by gods or demons, so there's lots of precedent.
#13767482 May 10, 2018 at 11:54 PM
1302 Posts
As to the name "Janissary," just keep the ethno-cultural background of your character in mind. They were the elite slave army/guards of the Ottoman Turkish sultan, and the Ottoman Empire isn't well remembered by some ethnicities in the region. If your character isn't from there, though, it shouldn't be an issue.

The deceased Janissary was created by one of the US government's recurring projects to produce superhuman soldiers, in this case "Project Onslaught." It's hard to see a way to connect him to your character's origin, though. Only thought I have is that, since the Janissary was killed in Iraq, perhaps his restless spirit lingered there, and was snagged by the djinn and put into your character? Could your character have had some emotional connection to him -- friend or family, perhaps?
#13767483 May 10, 2018 at 11:54 PM
282 Posts
There's prolly some "I dream of Jeanie" types around, and some semi cosmic Al-a-din genies too. Feronius has a guy who turns into a djinn via a magic container, and I've got a Persian girl that morphed into one because she was trapped in a lamp.

Also not all "genies" are the same. Some are impish or comical, others are near angelic in power, or demonic in function depending on the region and period. Its fascinating mythology to look up and goes back millennia!

As for Jannisaries, they were abolished in 1826 after a rather bloody coup- an interesting if mostly forgotten snippet of history. They have a rather storied career and wear rather iconic uniforms. The ones that survived the coup were later executed by being decapitated! Lots of great origin material there!
Go for it! :D

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#13767495 May 11, 2018 at 12:14 AM
156 Posts
#13767482 Lord Liaden wrote:

As to the name "Janissary," just keep the ethno-cultural background of your character in mind. They were the elite slave army/guards of the Ottoman Turkish sultan, and the Ottoman Empire isn't well remembered by some ethnicities in the region. If your character isn't from there, though, it shouldn't be an issue.

The deceased Janissary was created by one of the US government's recurring projects to produce superhuman soldiers, in this case "Project Onslaught." It's hard to see a way to connect him to your character's origin, though. Only thought I have is that, since the Janissary was killed in Iraq, perhaps his restless spirit lingered there, and was snagged by the djinn and put into your character? Could your character have had some emotional connection to him -- friend or family, perhaps?



Hmmm, aside from the djinn angle, any other thoughts on how to create a magical brick character? I do think he’ll bail from the region, or at least be perhaps Arab-American.

I think I’ll stay away from the Janissary name, in that case, and may give him a more fitting moniker after his background is worked out.
#13767503 May 11, 2018 at 12:36 AM
1302 Posts
#13767483 Snookums wrote:

There's prolly some "I dream of Jeanie" types around, and some semi cosmic Al-a-din genies too. Feronius has a guy who turns into a djinn via a magic container, and I've got a Persian girl that morphed into one because she was trapped in a lamp.

Also not all "genies" are the same. Some are impish or comical, others are near angelic in power, or demonic in function depending on the region and period. Its fascinating mythology to look up and goes back millennia!



The most direct use of a djinn/genie in comics is the Golden Age DC character, Johnny Thunder, and his magic sentient "Thunderbolt." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johnny_Thunder_and_Thunderbolt
#13767774 May 11, 2018 at 08:57 AM
1302 Posts
#13767495 Vesta~ wrote:


Hmmm, aside from the djinn angle, any other thoughts on how to create a magical brick character? I do think he’ll bail from the region, or at least be perhaps Arab-American.



I have some thoughts about that. 😉

Ifrit is a villain from Saudi Arabia who has come to believe himself one of those same-named fire spirits from Arab folklore; but he's actually a man who discovered the Ring of Essential Fire, an artifact created by a wizard long ago, which gave him power over fire, but also burned all the hair from his body and turned his skin bright red (the man was driven mad by the experience). Although the lore doesn't state it, said wizard could have created other elemental rings, waiting to be discovered. Earth would seem a good candidate to create a literal "brick." 😄 Note that Ifrit's ring becomes invisible while he wears it, and can't be removed against his will.

The Egyptian goddess Ma'at personifies truth, justice, and the proper order of the Universe, and opposes beings of evil who disrupt that order. In the modern era she created an avatar who travels the world battling supernatural evil, but returns periodically to a hidden fastness in Egypt. There's a long list of official Champions heroes and villains who were empowered by various mythic gods to champion their causes.

Ifrit and Ma'at are both written up in Champions Worldwide.

Now, this origin isn't exactly magical, but there's a way to tie it to the supernatural. Former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein engaged in a joint supers-creation program with the sultan of the (fictional) Arabian Peninsular country of Awad. It had only one actual success, a superstrong brick who became Hussein's personal bodyguard; the other volunteers for the program suffered severe physical side effects, and many were dumped in the desert to die. It's possible that one of them was found by a djinn or other spirit from Faerie, who took pity on him and carried him back to Faerie to heal him and help his body adapt to the experimental treatment. But the passage of time in Faerie is mutable compared to the mortal world, so that a person staying days there could return to Earth to find years had passed.

If none of those work for you, please specify your concerns and we can try again. 😎
#13767828 May 11, 2018 at 10:32 AM
156 Posts
Hmmm, I saw that Ma’at was an active hero and read up on Ifrit as a villain-I think having a character either empowered by Ma’at or idolizing her ability to bring stability and order to the region (given her identity as a goddess of order and such) would be a interesting angle to go on.

I believe nationality wise he will be Egyptian, which I believe opens up potential for becoming perhaps an avatar or being empowered by a artifact of some sort, but I think I require some further specification or brain picking.

I also have in mind that he immigrates to America and specifically, MC, to be raised and trained safely at Ravenswood, I believe.

#13768465 May 12, 2018 at 08:56 AM
48 Posts
As far as Egyptian mythos, a lot of it has revelance in Champions Lore.

Set actively tries to raise an evil champion for himself. The supervillain Anubis gets his powers directly from Set

The actual Anubis is an angry God doggo, annoyed that Set (or someone pretending to be Set) gave a human powers similar to his. And also about the tomb robbing. Anubis actively wants to attack the mortal world.

Osiris is somewhat active as well. He's actively trying to raise a champion to combat Set's. Originally this was Dr. ka's family but Ka has since sworn off working as a part of a God's plan. I don't know if there's any further mention on if Osiris has choseb others but he's probably the easiest one to use since he already has a history of granting mortals powers.
#13768539 May 12, 2018 at 10:30 AM · Edited 5 months ago
1302 Posts
Osiris is an excellent point to raise, Bready, thank you. 😍 With Dr. Ka unwilling to serve Osiris's agenda directly, the Egyptian deity might be looking for a new champion. Osiris has been very manipulative and controlling toward Dr. Ka's ancestors and Ka himself, which is why Ka broke with him. That does offer potential for interesting role playing. (The history of Dr. Ka's lineage is given in his write-up in the Vibora Bay source book, and his grandfather Dr. Twilight is fully detailed in Golden Age Champions.)

If we're talking magic and the Middle East generally, another possibility is the Babylonian chief god Marduk. For decades he's been covertly sending dreams and subconscious impulses encouraging new superhumans to take up the heroic cause, to go where they're needed, and to form teams. His long-term goal is a world where every nation and city has its patron and ruling superheroes, like the gods and demigod kings of ancient Mesopotamia. It doesn't seem much of a stretch for Marduk to take a more active role in creating one. (Marduk's campaign is briefly described on The Mystic World p. 63.)

Based in the Middle East, the Kayvanzadi is one of the premier "occult dynasties" in the world. Descendants of the ageless master alchemist Zarrindokht (by her son Kayvan), this family produces a disproportionate percentage of alchemists and sorcerers. Given the lore precedents, an alchemical source for "brick" powers is certainly within their capabilities. Note that not all of the family members have magical talent, so your character need not have any other abillities aside from potion-derived ones. (The Kayvanzadi are briefly outlined on The Mystic World p. 50 sidebar, and Zarrindokht's history is summarized on p. 56 of the same book.)
#13768578 May 12, 2018 at 11:08 AM
156 Posts
#13768539 Lord Liaden wrote:

Osiris is an excellent point to raise, Bready, thank you. 😍 With Dr. Ka unwilling to serve Osiris's agenda directly, the Egyptian deity might be looking for a new champion. Osiris has been very manipulative and controlling toward Dr. Ka's ancestors and Ka himself, which is why Ka broke with him. That does offer potential for interesting role playing. (The history of Dr. Ka's lineage is given in his write-up in the Vibora Bay source book, and his grandfather Dr. Twilight is fully detailed in Golden Age Champions.)

If we're talking magic and the Middle East generally, another possibility is the Babylonian chief god Marduk. For decades he's been covertly sending dreams and subconscious impulses encouraging new superhumans to take up the heroic cause, to go where they're needed, and to form teams. His long-term goal is a world where every nation and city has its patron and ruling superheroes, like the gods and demigod kings of ancient Mesopotamia. It doesn't seem much of a stretch for Marduk to take a more active role in creating one. (Marduk's campaign is briefly described on The Mystic World p. 63.)

Based in the Middle East, the Kayvanzadi is one of the premier "occult dynasties" in the world. Descendants of the ageless master alchemist Zarrindokht (by her son Kayvan), this family produces a disproportionate percentage of alchemists and sorcerers. Given the lore precedents, an alchemical source for "brick" powers is certainly within their capabilities. Note that not all of the family members have magical talent, so your character need not have any other abillities aside from potion-derived ones. (The Kayvanzadi are briefly outlined on The Mystic World p. 50 sidebar, and Zarrindokht's history is summarized on p. 56 of the same book.)



You’re right, Osiris would be a great source for a mortal being empowered, especially if they had no idea about the misfortune that befall Dr. Ka’s family until after, perhaps?

And interesting with the god Marduk-as well as the alchemy and sorcery family route. I do think I want to keep his family relatively normal, immigrants to the US, but normal nonetheless.

As far as divine empowerment, how would you go about giving this young adult powers from either Osiris or Marduk? Via an artifact or simple blessing?
#13768617 May 12, 2018 at 11:54 AM · Edited 5 months ago
1302 Posts
It could easily go either way. For example, Dr. Ka's grandfather Dr. Twilight received his powers in a vision of Osiris while touring the Pyramids at Giza. The Nigerian hero Ogun was granted an empowering vision by the god of that name, after being nearly beaten to death by thugs. OTOH Myrmidon, a member of UNITY, found archaic Greek-style armor and weapons at a lost temple, which transformed him as soon as he touched them. Necrull's grotesque powers infused his body through lightning hitting an ancient statue of Anubis.

Keep in mind that all the occult dynasties of the world have a higher than normal proportion of magically talented people, but the majority are "normal" people; although most are probably aware of their family legacy and may know practicing relatives.
#13768619 May 12, 2018 at 11:57 AM
156 Posts
I see, so typically through a vision or artifacts or armor already empowered. Would there be any precadent for him having standard ‘brick’ abilities, or would his abilities end up more like Dr. Ka’s do you think?
#13768626 May 12, 2018 at 12:04 PM · Edited 5 months ago
1302 Posts
Again, it's pretty wide open. Myrmidon has low-brick-level strength and toughness, enchanted weapons and armor, and combat skills. The first Johnny Hercules was given a talisman by Zeus containing the essence of Hercules as a demigod, which he gave up when he became fully a god; it doesn't get much more brick-ish than that. 😉 The types of powers a god can grant a champion may be thematically related to the god, or very different. The Mexican hero Macahuitl was empowered by the Aztec god of death, but gained physical enhancements, magic weapons, and a "spirit eagle" companion -- nothing to do with Death per se.
#13768634 May 12, 2018 at 12:08 PM
156 Posts
I feel like I could go the full brick or classical hero package too, with flight, super strength, and durability, more the powered warrior route, not unlike Wonder Woman or Wonder Girl, or have him use a bit of sorcery.

As far as rping elements or adding more narrative stuff to his character, any idea for complications that arise from being Osiris’s new champion, potential enemies, machinations, etc?
#13768654 May 12, 2018 at 12:31 PM
48 Posts
Osiris is raising a champions pretty much specifically to fight Set. So you could create any kind of supervillain you'd like, craft a backstory in relation to Set, and sick them on your hero. There's a villain from the book Conquerers, Killers, and Crooks named Anubis who was granted powers by Set. He chose the name Anubis because he believes his powers are from Anubis, not Set which is another thing you can keep in mind. Could even go an extra mile and make the antag another hero who thinks they're working for Osiris instead.

Dr. Ka would also undoubtedly try to warn and convince your hero about working with Osiris if he were discover your hero was Osiris' new champion.
#13768671 May 12, 2018 at 12:57 PM
1302 Posts
Bready gives excellent advice. I would just add that, after years of proving his loyalty and capacity for evil, Set finally revealed to the supervillain Anubis that he (Set) was actually the villain's patron.

There is another possibility that would free a character from direct manipulation by a god. As revealed in the PDF mini-book The Hercules Force, after the first Johnny Hercules was killed by Dr. Destroyer, his talisman was left depowered. But the Hercules Force apparently still existed, because years later it "chose" a worthy vessel to become the second Johnny Hercules. The villain Typhon was the recipient of the "Typhon Force," the essence of that mythic monster, granting him great strength, fiery breath, growth to giant size, and the power to spawn other monsters. The Typhon Force is described as being a kind of balance to the Hercules Force.

That book suggests other mythic "forces" might exist in the world, awaiting appropriate hosts. So you could pattern your character after your favorite deceased mythical hero or monster.
#13768680 May 12, 2018 at 01:11 PM
156 Posts
#13768654 Bready wrote:

Osiris is raising a champions pretty much specifically to fight Set. So you could create any kind of supervillain you'd like, craft a backstory in relation to Set, and sick them on your hero. There's a villain from the book Conquerers, Killers, and Crooks named Anubis who was granted powers by Set. He chose the name Anubis because he believes his powers are from Anubis, not Set which is another thing you can keep in mind. Could even go an extra mile and make the antag another hero who thinks they're working for Osiris instead.

Dr. Ka would also undoubtedly try to warn and convince your hero about working with Osiris if he were discover your hero was Osiris' new champion.



I like that, so yeah, I could make maybe an angel of death villain, perhaps named Roc, empowered by Set, or a cursed family of healers, given destructive powers by Sekhmet, etc.

Dr. Ka warning or cautioning him would be a nice story element.
#13768681 May 12, 2018 at 01:12 PM
156 Posts
#13768671 Lord Liaden wrote:

Bready gives excellent advice. I would just add that, after years of proving his loyalty and capacity for evil, Set finally revealed to the supervillain Anubis that he (Set) was actually the villain's patron.

There is another possibility that would free a character from direct manipulation by a god. As revealed in the PDF mini-book The Hercules Force, after the first Johnny Hercules was killed by Dr. Destroyer, his talisman was left depowered. But the Hercules Force apparently still existed, because years later it "chose" a worthy vessel to become the second Johnny Hercules. The villain Typhon was the recipient of the "Typhon Force," the essence of that mythic monster, granting him great strength, fiery breath, growth to giant size, and the power to spawn other monsters. The Typhon Force is described as being a kind of balance to the Hercules Force.

That book suggests other mythic "forces" might exist in the world, awaiting appropriate hosts. So you could pattern your character after your favorite deceased mythical hero or monster.



I feel that the direct manipulation angle is nice, but it’s also good to leave potential for the character discovering their own power or becoming independent, too. As far as mythical forces, I am curious about if maybe Horus could perhaps serve as a source of power?