Marvel Plot Points

A fan site for the Marvel Heroic Roleplaying Game by Margaret Weis Productions

Item Power Set: The Casket of Ancient Winters

This was the big McGuffin of last year’s Thor movie, and it’s now in the hands of your heroes! The Casket of Ancient Winters introduces two new SFX. Powerful is an SFX I’m particularly proud of, especially since it’ll be appearing on Item Power Sets I’m creating for the future. What could those Power Sets be? You’ll have to check back in and find out!


About Mark

Mark is a military veteran, game designer, a believer in the oxford comma, and an all-around nerd.

11 comments on “Item Power Set: The Casket of Ancient Winters

  1. Evan Franke
    April 19, 2012

    Interesting interpretation. Certainly very consistent with the movie presentation. I think when it was originally introduced in Walt Simonson’s run on Thor (back in Thor 345-353), the focus was on having an item which trapped the winters that would be equivalent of and accelerated Fimbulwinter to bring on Ragnarok. Malekith actually shatters the cask to release its power and Johnny Storm and a character named Roger Willis work together to recover the pieces and Willis superglues them together to recapture the winter powers which had been holding Odin in check. Then Thor, Loki and Odin defeat Surtur, at the cost of losing Odin. It is a slightly different and less dynamic take on the artefact, but there is no reason they are mutually exclusive. Thanks for the writeup!

  2. craggle
    April 19, 2012

    Interesting SFX in Powerful, although I’m a little confused: is it intended to only remove the possibility of opportunities from the d4 as part of the Cosmic Frigidity? Or is it meant to remove all d4 opportunities in a roll including a Casket die? The way the SFX is phrased, it seems to me like the former.

    In either case, the extra d4 in the Cosmic Frigidity trait seems rather redundant: you don’t get a PP for rolling it, unlike with a distinction, and now you don’t get one on a roll of 1. As a result, it rather removes the purpose of adding a d4, as you really don’t want to be relying on them to give a highest value. I might even say that an alternative Powerful trait may be to have it remove any d4s from your pool.

    • Mark
      April 19, 2012

      D4s are considered a “bad” die, due to the 1 in 4 chance of rolling an opportunity and giving the Watcher Doom Pool dice. This basically negates the negative side of rolling a d4. I understand that it also gives a Plot Point, but players always groan when a 1 comes up.

      • craggle
        April 19, 2012

        I understand as far as that goes, but is there really enough of a positive to rolling a d4 to be worth adding one if there is no chance of getting a PP through rolling a 1?

        Also, as I say, the way it’s worded in the post almost makes it sound like it ONLY applies to the d4 from the Cosmic Frigidity trait, but from your reply, I’m guessing it means all d4s in the pool? In either case, it seems strange to have Cosmic Frigidity be d12 + d4 given that the d4 isn’t going to be generating any PP.

        Maybe another alternative SFX might be to allow you to reroll 1 die for each opportunity you roll; some players may opt for the chance to remove those complications, but some may prefer to risk trying to roll a higher number on dome d12s. That might be particularly useful for Cosmic Frigidity.

  3. felipenerdcore
    April 19, 2012

    A d4 that does not generate opportunities is good, not great.

    • Colin
      May 6, 2012

      Don’t you mean ‘Good (8), not Excellent (16)’? đŸ˜‰
      Gods I feel old…

  4. matt
    April 22, 2012

    It’s the CASK of Ancient Winters, not CASKET.

    • Andrew Gatlin
      April 22, 2012
      • matt
        April 23, 2012

        Yes. Go read the original comics. Forget your secondhand source.

      • Mark
        April 23, 2012

        I’m sorry, I hate to get in a disagreement with a reader, especially over something so incredibly trivial, but which “secondhand” source are you referring to? The one at, Marvel’s official website?

        Names change for things in the comics all the time. Look at the original version of SHIELD’s name. It’s changed over the years.

  5. Dave Porta
    August 12, 2013

    Ancient old Jonathan Winters’ Cask of Amontillado.

    Cask of Ancient Winters.

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This entry was posted on April 19, 2012 by in Item Power Set.

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