But first, I want to talk about how the hunter’s dataslates will be made available. Each dataslate will be included in the rulebook itself, as well as made available as a free PDF for easy printing. For those who prefer owning such components as sturdy physical objects, we’re going to put them on sale at DriveThru Cards as 6x6-inch tiles.
With that out of the way, let’s get on with it.
Today, good ol’ Crazy Joe Hacker will serve as our example.
Take a look at Joe’s dataslate. Aside from perhaps the illustration, the most prominent element is the collection of six attributes.
These stats dictate how good (or bad) the hunter is in certain areas and are generally rated from 1 to 6, with 3 being more or less average. Ratings of 6 are pretty rare, because they can be serious game-changers.
The first column contains the three primary combat attributes: Fight (prowess in melee combat), Shoot (ranged combat skill) and Defense (the ability to avoid attacks). As you can see, Joe is scrappy in a fight and can keep many attacks from hitting him, but he’s not going to win any marksmanship contests anytime soon.
The second column is filled with the abilities that aren’t directly tied to a hunter’s combat proficiency: Athletics (strength, agility, stealth and deftness), Mind (intellect, perception and willpower) and Pizzazz (charisma, flashiness and persuasiveness). Believe me when I say that Pizzazz isn’t a dump stat in Urban Manhunt. It can help you earn bonus points for spectacular and creative eliminations.
Height and Wound Maximum
The game uses height levels wherein one inch roughly equates to one level. A hunter’s Height simply lets us know how tall they are.
The Wound Maximum mandates how many Wound Tokens the hunter has to take before being removed from the match. With a Wound Maximum of 6, Joe can take a great deal of damage!
Special rules give us our first clue as to what makes the hunter unique. Some are “always in effect”, while others are triggered by something that happens during the game. The dataslate contains a full description of each special rule possessed by the hunter, eliminating needless in-game page flipping and rules-referencing.
Joe has only two special rules, which is less than most hunters. However, his first special rule—The Best Defense is a Strong Offense—is a real doozie! If the diec are particularly kind to him, he can actually deal damage to a crim when said crim attacks him. Moreover, this damage is completely unavoidable, ignoring even the heaviest of armor. It essentially represents Joe blocking incoming melee attacks with his chainsaw or utilizing a wicked counterattack.
His other special ability is useful as well. He’s always so amped up and ready to get at the crims that he gets to start the match a bit closer to the nearest crim.
Want to know how the hunter is going to deal out the pain? This section of the dataslate gives you everything you need to know about their various offensive methods. Each hunter has at least two attacks in their arsenal and each one is detailed in the write-up.
As in most games, Range lets us know how far away the attack can affect a foe from, Accuracy makes it easier or harder to make an attack successfully and Damage indicates how much of a punch the attack packs if it hits. Extra Rules is where we find rules that are specific to that attack. Lastly, we have keywords that don’t usually come into play unless referenced by a card effect or special rule. They help define the attack in a specific manner.
As you can tell, Crazy Joe hacker’s main attack is his Custom Chainsaw… and for good reason. This thing is a beast, capable of ripping through armored crims and dealing a LOT of damage to them (a Damage rating of 4 is almost unheard of!). It does, however, have the “depletable” keyword, which means that it can run out of gas during a match if luck isn’t on his player’s side.
As a match continues, hunters gain Momentum, a spendable resource that represents exactly what the name implies: momentum! This is common to many tabletop games. However, where Urban Manhunt takes a different turn is how Momentum can be spent. Instead of having a universal list of things it can be spent on, each hunter has their own customized list, making every hunter vastly different. This allows us to insert options that bolster that hunter’s attacks or otherwise give the hunter its own play style.
For example, Joe’s Momentum Options cater primarily to his offense, because that’s the kind of guy Joe is. He’s not much for subtlety and tends to go full bore into his enemies. His Momentum Options reinforce that. In fact, only one of his Options isn’t strictly combat-oriented (“Re-roll”). The other three won’t help him in non-attacking situations at all, which serves as a distinct limitation. But when it comes to causing carnage, nobody is better! He can even use his chainsaw to tear through walls and other narrow terrain features to get at a crim!
There you have it! When the game is released, you’ll already understand the basics of the information found on a hunter’s dataslate. Stay tuned for more details about the game right here on Notes from the Zone!