While String Theory MUX has evolved from its Heroes origins to some extent, powersets should remain consistent with some of the parameters and limitations as defined in the show.

First, all SLC-Expressive characters manifest one ability. This ability may have a multitude of facets and applications, but at its core, it is based on one single power. In formatting your powerset, it might be helpful to consider a breakdown in which you describe an overview of what your power can do, and then, if applicable, a list of stunts that can be applied by this power, either in a numeric list or with shorthand stunt names. Lastly, if you haven't already defined any limitations or drawbacks, an extra paragraph that gives an overview of overall limitations is typically a good way to finish. (You may be able to summarise your power in one cohesive summary, and that's fine too.)

Second, abilities tend to be smaller in scope than what you might encounter in other superhero canons. The strongest heroes in Marvel comics, for example, can toss around 100 tons of material. In String Theory, we typically limit feats of super strength to about two tons. We encourage players not to think small, per se, but to think specific.

Another leaf we take from Heroes is treating abilities with a quasi-realistic, semi-scientific perspective. While all superpowers will be innately fantastic, we discourage abilities that start becoming too much like magical fantasy, or depend on wildly unrealistic physics external to your power. You should consider the realistic application of your superpower in a realistic world. You may be able to fly, but if you crash through a brick wall at sonic speed, you will suffer the consequences.

However, we also strongly encourage applicants not to get too caught up in the science to the point where we need to break out a textbook to comprehend what your power is. Consider how your power works in fiction, and what it would look like or act like in roleplay.

When considering what to include in your powerset, here are some of the things we typically expect to see:

  • if your power has a range, what is that range numerically, and does this range vary between stunts?
  • does anyone possess an ability to resist or counter your power? (i.e. a telepath might be able to resist dream manipulation)
  • how experienced is your character with their power, and does it vary between stunts?
  • what limitations or drawbacks does your character suffer? typically, the more powerful the ability, the more we will expect to see limitations and drawbacks as a counterbalance.
  • if your character can do a lot of different things with their power, consider focusing on either the subtle aspects of their ability or its heavy-hitting aspects, rather than trying to encompass the entire spectrum.

Feature Characters

As explained in our Alts newsfile, characters who are marked as FCs are able to app beyond regular restrictions. While restricted concepts remain restricted, what this means for abilities is that you will be approved to have less limitations with regards to your ability, whether that means having a more diverse array of stunts, being able to push beyond the typical numerical limits we may put on powers, range-wise, or have influence over a certain sphere of power that we would not normally approve in characters who are not marked as FC.

Having an FC is not compulsory, and it is more about having the focus of your storytelling rather than possessing and achieving phenomenal cosmic power or amassing a lot of resources. It's for the sake of game balance that, if we feel you are requesting an ability that pushes the boundaries of acceptability, we may suggest assigning the character FC status.


You may also wish to look at our Wanted Concepts listing, and at our Restricted Concepts listing for what concepts are restricted from application, or are considered limited or overdone and therefore in need of adjustment to be approved.

For information on superpowers in context of our theme, please visit the SLC-Expressive page.

For ideas about superpowers and their classifications, visit the Power Index.

And finally, here's the optional ability template made by Manhattan:
There is also Manhattan's template which can be found here: http://string-theory.wikidot.com/forum/t-10291777/need-help-with-ability-design

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