the Star Brand

The Star Brand is a device that shouldn't exist. It essentially created itself, coming into being after the sum of space-time was compacted into a singular point for the smallest instants of time; in other words, the Star Brand itself is a paradox. A zero point energy collector, for all intents and purposes, the Star Brand draws forth power from the fabric of space itself for its wielder.

And it can draw forth a whole lot of power. Any individual wielding the Star Brand can utilize Amazing (50) ranked Ultimate Power, allowing him or her to do virtually anything they desire. This is the standard rank that power effects will manifest at, though the Brand's wielder can boost this significantly, if they so choose, to a standard and practical limit of Shift Z (500) rank.

While this requires no special FEAT roll or other game mechanic, it is not without difficulty or risk. Using power of this magnitude is rather foolish for a mere mortal to attempt, as there are all kinds of unforeseen consequences that can be caused by such displays of raw energy. Remember: Shift Z (500) is the standard intensity of a nuclear warhead detonation.

The wielder of the Star Brand can wield more than one Ultimate Power effect at once, doing so by passing a Reason FEAT roll based on the number of power effects he or she would like to utilize at once. Operating two powers at once requires a successful Reason FEAT, with each additional power effect desired causing this roll to be made at -1 CS. Thus, the wielder of the Star Brand is only limited by their own intelligence.

And their imagination. For instance, before he went insane, Ken Connell could only wield the Star Brand in such a way that allowed him to fly, be invulnerable, and wield energy emission powers. Jacob Burnsley, on the other hand, could also manufacture environmental pockets and heal injuries, and Quasar even used the thing to teleport himself into the Quantum Zone!

Another interesting thing about the Star Brand is that while it is easily transferable to another person, it never totally goes away from its wielders. Once transferred to another (done by touching the Star Brand to said person and activating the transfer), ninety percent of the Star Brand's power will move to the new wielder, but ten percent of it will remain in the original host.

Since the Star Brand's potential is effectively infinite, this has no effect on the specific ranks and limits described above, for either person. As such, it is conceivable that the Star Brand could eventually perpetuate itself throughout the human race, were it to be given out carelessly, though the world would likely be totally annihilated by the irresponsible use of its power long before that.

One more thing to keep in mind about the Star Brand is that it must have a sentience guiding it at all times; this is why it created Ken Connell in the first place. Transferring the Star Brand into an inanimate object will cause its power to burst forth violently, disintegrating everything within miles and generating a pulse of paradoxical energy potent enough to cause mutations in human beings.

In other words, don't do that. It would be bad, and bad for you. Doing this was what instigated the White Event and the Pitt devastation in the first place, two global events that caused the creation of paranormal beings across the earth. And, as one can guess, the consequences of these events were what caused the New Universe's earth to go totally downhill from that point.

Finally, the Star Brand itself acts as a divinity machine, in that it grants two powers to its wielders that operate outside of the Star Brand itself. The first is immortality. Once a body accepts the Star Brand's power, he or she becomes an immortal being; they can be killed, even atomized, but will eventually return to life. The only thing that can possibly end the wielder's life is old age.

And even this isn't quite a limitation, as the Star Brand also grants its wielders Poor (4) longevity, adding years to one's life per this formula:

standard human life span minus current age, multiplied by the power rank cubed, plus current age

By this point, you can easily see that the Star Brand is a dangerously potent artifact, and that it should be utilized with the greatest of care. Anybody not doing so is inviting disaster to their world and their campaign. As such, it is recommended that the Star Brand appear only in the hands of NPCs or incredibly mature players. However, it's your world, so do what you think is best.

Extra Goodies:

the Star Brand Universal Heroes Text File Download

the Star Brand Imagery

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