Modiphius.com  |  Modiphius Shop

Distortion vs Martial arts?

How would one treat Distortion (Aspect of Kinetics), which reads “A creature slain by this spell vanishes in a flash of light, leaving no trace but a few motes of ash.”, when used against a Martial artist using arts such as Diamond Will- “While this technique remains in effect, the character may ignore any status effects and conditions caused by injury or Dread (up to and including death)”- or Strike From Beyond the Grave; “Upon death, his body remains animate, suffering one Mental Wound at the start of each round. The character ignores the effects of any and all injuries he has suffered. Once he can suffer no more Mental Wounds, his body finally dies.”?

When it comes to Diamond Will I can kind of see it holding up against Distortion, “… the character may ignore any status effects and conditions caused by injury (up to and including death)” since essentially it stops you from actually dying, but when it comes to SFBG which reads “…body remains animate” I’m not as certain since it even states that you are in fact dead. Surely Distortion, which leaves no body behind once a creature is slain, wins out over one or both of them?

2 Likes

I suppose I can chime in and try to look at it from two starting perspectives, mechanics and fluff.

Mechanically, a lot of stuff has fluffy description in their base text instead of being entirely pure mechanics, which can lead to a possible thought process like the one you’re having. As well, Distortion doesn’t say anything in regards to if said creature has a supernatural effect protecting it from dying totally, and considering that Painless is exactly like Diamond Will and is a core book Dark Gift, the writers, if aware of both items and the possibility of both interacting, could have had an explicit statement regarding that instead of what might just be exciting fluff (bro! You can disintegrate someone!), especially since in some of the powers they go out of their way to explain intricacies of what is and isn’t possible, like Impel right next to Distortion. I honestly think from a mechanics perspective that Distortion will completely disintegrate a slain creature (instead of saying something like, “it probably only would actually disintegrate the affected area”, which is also entirely more than likely since it probably is just fluff meant to excite), UNLESS they have something supernatural that is protecting them from sudden, whole body exploding (disintegration in this case I guess) death, such as Painless, Diamond Will, and/or Strike.

In terms of fluff, since Distortion is a supernatural power, it probably interacts differently when used against someone with a protective supernatural power. Painless, Diamond Will, and/or Strike are powers that keep the target’s body bound together with mental and supernatural power despite the sheer physical power that is being forced against them, but with Strike, which is the target’s soul keeping the body around for a while, they are on a definitive timer instead of a “how fast can the medic heal your critical wounds to escape death condition” timer. How I think they’d interact is that Distortion would struggle against the power keeping the target from atomizing instantly, only having partial effect atomizing. After the power sustaining their atoms wears off and there hasn’t been a way to save them from death, the atomization goes through and they are reduced to particles, and in the case of Strike, their soul is no longer able to keep their body together completely and become particles.

Also, Don’t pay any attention the Neural Filter Implant, or just ignore it and let the Cyber become dust.