Created By: Theharbo on February 11, 2017 Last Edited By: Theharbo on March 18, 2017
Troped

Gathering Steam

Unable to give 100% from the get-go.

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trope
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If you're going to fight something employing this trope, do it before it gets to this stage.

"The madder Hulk gets, the stronger Hulk gets! So Hulk will get madder and madder at you, Ravage — and Hulk will get stronger and stronger, and then Hulk will smash you to bits! IT'S CALLED STRAGEDY!note 
The Incredible Hulk explaining just why fighting a prolonged battle with him is a bad idea.

This character, faction, weapon, or otherwise isn't able to give everything they have from the word Go!, and needs to be worked up into a state where they're capable of doing their jobs beyond anything sub-par - if they're even capable of doing it at all before reaching said state.

This is not a case of voluntarily limiting oneself to avoid damage to oneself or one's surroundings - for whatever employs this trope, bringing their full might to bear from the get-go is just outright impossible. If you find this trope on an enemy, it will often have a distinctive sound accompanying it to serve as a non-verbal warning.

The reason for this varies, but Competitive Balance usually ensures that while anyone saddled with this downside takes their time to get going, once they do get going they are a force to be reckoned with. Sometimes this trope is binary, where something or someone has either gathered steam or not, sometimes it has multiple stages, and sometimes it is gradual and may not have any upper limit - in the latter case, expect them to eventually become just as much of (if not more than) a Juggernaut as a literal speeding locomotive usually implies - though if they can't handle their ever-increasing buildup they might eventually succumb to Over Heating and/or Explosive Overclocking.

Compare Magikarp Power which gives everything it has all the time; it's just that 'everything it has' starts out pathetic before repeated training, upgrades, or likewise makes it a force to be reckoned with. Compare Limit Break and Charged Attack which are powerful attacks or techniques which are only available after specific conditions are met and become unavailable again after having been used. Contrast the Gradual Grinder who probably isn't hitting harder in a prolonged engagement as much as they're making you less able to take what they've been hitting you with the entire time and the Pent-Up Power Peril which is the result of naturally building power needing an outlet every so often. Usually has no relation to High-Pressure Emotion, but examples do exist where the act of gathering steam is correlated to an emotion.

The trope is ubiquitous in Real Life through inertia - nothing is able to perform at its best from the word 'go' unless it has been prepared in advance, and overcoming this trope quickly is essential in many fields. Super Trope to Increasingly Lethal Enemy and Sub-Trope to Situational Damage Attack


Examples

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    Anime and Manga 
  • In Bleach, Ikkaku's Empathic Weapon Houzukimaru slowly increases in spiritual power after it's unleashed in combat because, in his words, it's "lazy" and takes time to wake up all the way.
  • Magetta from Dragonball Super is a bipedal living metal volcano whose magma heart grows hotter as fighting progresses. As his attacks draw on this heat for their effect, they grow more and more potent depending on how long he has been fighting.

    Comic Books 
  • The Incredible Hulk. Bruce Banner is an ordinary human and needs to be pissed off to even trigger his transformation into the Incredible Hulk, but even once he has transformed, The Hulk is unable to bring his full strength to bear right away, as it is directly correlated to his anger. The angrier he gets, the stronger he gets, and thus with every injury he takes, he gets gathers more and more steam.
  • Cyclops of X-Men' signature Eye Beams are solar powered - and while he can store solar energy for nighttime battles, his reserves are limited. If he runs out it requires a few hours of sunlight to charge up again before he can fire them at all.

    Film 
  • Back to the Future Part III: In order to get the Delorian time machine up to 88 miles per hour and return to the future, Marty and Doc 'borrow' a steam locomotive. In order to get the train moving fast enough, Doc powers it with homemade Presto Logs made to raise the boiler pressure and speed up the train. Each one is set to ignite in sequence, and by the time the third log ignites, the only way to stop the train would be to run out of tracks.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Shadowrun supplement Street Samurai Catalog. The Vindicator minigun takes one combat turn for its barrels to get up to speed before it can fire.
  • Champions. The Extra Time power limitation causes a power to take longer to activate. The longer the delay, the more the power's cost is decreased.
  • In many Collectible Card Games, a resource is only accumulative at a fixed rate.
    • Magic: The Gathering uses mana, which is generated by Land, you are, under normal circumstances, only allowed to play a single Land card per turn, and your most powerful spells might even take multiple combinations of multiple mana to perform.
    • The Pokémon Trading Card Game limits you to playing one energy card per Pokemon per turn under normal circumstances, and although you can evolve your Pokemon without energy, their evolved forms usually require more than the unevolved form to attack, trading increased time to gather steam for greater power.

    Video Games 
  • The Heavy of Team Fortress 2 has a variety of miniguns as options for his primary weapon. All of them have a need to be spun up before being able to fire at all. And catching a Heavy without his minigun spun up is usually a (relatively) easy opponent.
  • Symmetra of Overwatch has a Photon Projector as her primary weapon. While it is able to do a Charge Attack, its primary mode of fire is a weak photon beam which intensifies as the connection is maintained, doubling the damage twice in discrete jumps if maintained for long enough.
  • FTL: Faster Than Light has a number of weapons which combines this trope with Charged Attacknote . All of them having 'chain' somewhere in their name. The most notable example is the Chain Vulcan, a rotary-barrel laser gun. It starts out with an 11 second charge time per shot, with each shot lowering the charge time by two seconds. After five uninterrupted shots, totalling 35 seconds, it reaches its final state where it spews out lasers each second - singlehandedly overtaxing even the best shielded and most maneuverable ships quickly. It's Awesome, but Impractical in that most fights are usually over by that point, and any damage to the weapon will negate your progress and require you to spin it up again.
  • RTS games in general have this as a necessity, obtaining the very best units and buildings often requires an arbitrarily long upgrade process. You can be safely assured that any faction with a relatively short upgrade process is meant to be rushing the opponent factions before their factions gathers too much steam for them to be beatable. In many cases, this is explained as needing to bring in specific off-map supplies (or constructing the buildings capable of producing them) which are needed to construct the best units.
    • Depending on the patch, Starcraft II's Void Rays can be this. The very first version had them do more damage the longer they stayed on a single target by having their Converging-Stream Weapon use only one, then two, then all three beams (their damage increasing with each one), other patches instead give them a temporary damage bonus against Armored enemies. The versions seen in the single player campaign remain unchanged from the first patch, and so all have this trope built into them.
    • Command & Conquer: Generals: Chinese Gatling guns (both the turrets and the Gatling tank) need to spin up before reaching maximum firing rate.
    • Dawn of War: In the first game, there are several upgrades that exist solely to slow the player down, meant to represent Non-Entity General slowly escalating their engagement in response to other Non Entity Generals doing the same.
      • Orks use a unique third resource that counts how many orks are present and requires a certain amount of orks present to build the more powerful units. This is meant to reflect the In-Universe growth of the Ork Ecosystem to the point it can support the more powerful Ork units - though Gork and Mork knows why it is needed for looted tanks.
      • The Necrons' Greater Summoning Core is a building that produces and researches nothing, but is needed to get their final units.
      • The Eldar, likewise, need to research upgrades which do absolutely nothing before they are able to field their more powerful units. Aptly named 'Mobilization For War' and 'Annihilate the Enemy'
    • In Crusader Kings 2:
      • Adventurers need a year to gather armies and ships, after they stated their conquest goals. Only afterwards can they launch the attack, so a smart ruler will try to assassinate them before they can do so.
      • Similarly to adventurers, Viking invaders can state a conquest goal. Afterwards, soldiers and Viking heroes will join their cause over the next two years. They can attack at any time they want, but since their main targets are powerful Christian and Muslim kingdoms, they should better wait the full two years.
      • The army size of nomads is dependent on their clan's population, which in turn is depending on the size of their territory. So a clan that just conquered a large kingdom will have to wait a couple of years so their population can grow so they can make use of their new land.
      • In some way this applies to all conquests in the game. Getting a full duchy through a holy war is nice, but it will be utterly useless for the first few years, as the peasants will simply refuse to pay taxes or train as soldiers.
    • In Grey Goo, the human faction has access to the Lancer unit which fires a continuous laser beam, growing in power as it draws from more and more auxiliary batteries. This makes it incredibly potent against structures, and because the humans, as the game's Higher-Tech Species, have access to a six-unit teleporter, six lancers can show up in an undefended base instantaneously and turn it into a heap of molten slag before a defense can be mounted
  • In Patapon your patapons will need some good rhythms to dance themselves into a frenzy, the amount of which depends on how on point they are. But once they are in fever they get much higher attack, reach, and/or other useful abilities depending on the class and on the dance.
  • Vehicles in most Driving Games, just like in Real Life, require some time of acceleration to reach their top speed, and how fast they reach said top speed is often an important factor in Competitive Balance.
  • Stardew Valley
    • Plants that grow multiple crops without the need to replant them are this. Like every plant they need to grow to their full size first. But then they regrow their crops every couple of days, until they die at the end of their season (unless planted in a greenhouse, which makes them regrow forever, or if they are fruit trees that only become inactive out of season).
    • Fruit trees produce crops with increasing quality the older the tree is. Bringing one up to iridium quality requires three in-game years.
    • When a new animal is born, or bought from Marnie, it first needs to grow up before it can produce its goods.
  • In Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas, miniguns need a second or two of spinning up before they start firing.
  • Pokémon:
    • Several moves such as Fury Cutter and Ice Ball deal laughable damage at first but deal more damage if used consecutively (and have a less-than-stellar accuracy rate).
    • Regigigas, the progenitor of Hoenn's golem trio is an Olympus Mon with stats on par with the Elemental Embodiment of the oceans and the core's magma, both of which wreak havoc on the weather by merely being awake. Regigigas has been stated in legends to be capable of moving entire continents, but when it is encountered it has slumbered for so long that it takes a while to shake off the rust and moss growing on it, which is reflected in its ability 'Slow Start'; For the first five turns of combat its attack and speed stats are cut in half, which puts it straight into Awesome, but Impractical for battling because most fights are over by then - of course, capturing it is likely to take more than five turns.
  • Like with Collectible Card Games, their electronic equivalent, the Card Battle Game also has instances of accumulating resources at a maximum fixed rate.
    • Hearthstone has mana, which accumulates at one crystal per turn until a maximum of 10 is reached. Druids have ways to accumulate this faster through the use of specific cards.
      • Emperor Tharuissian is a card which reduces the cost to play any cards in your hand by 1 each turn he is in play, effectively reducing the time needed to gather enough steam to play those cards.
  • Elsword: The game contain "buff stacking" passive skills for certain character classes which makes the character stronger the more they hit enemies.
    • Sheath Knight's Cruel Slayer passive gives him additional damage buff that occurs and stacks per 5 hits he does in a normal combo and active skills. The additional damage he can gain is (depending on the passive skill's level) 2% to 10% of his physical attack power, and it can be stacked 5 times. If he spent 10 seconds without adding to the stack (i.e not hitting 5 times), the buff will be gone and he'd need to build it up again.
    • Crimson Rose's Awakening Will passive can activate a special buff that occurs if she uses skills related to chain attacks. Each hit of chain attacks will accumulatively buff her physical attack power and attack speed, up to 25 stacks. The buff stacks will lose by 5 every 3 seconds she isn't attacking with any chain attack, however.
  • Zul'jin of Heroes of the Storm is a downplayed example. While he is no slouch in combat normally, he has a popular early talent which increases his attack speed by 6% every time he kills an enemy, stacking up to five times for a short duration and refreshed with every attack he makes, making him at home in prolonged engagements. Kill him quickly before he has a chance to kill anything and he won't be capable of even gathering steam before he dies. Just be careful of his Taz'Dingo! Heroic, which is dangerous for an altogether different reason.
  • Devil May Cry 4: Nero's sword has the "Exceed" system which combines this trope with Charged Attack; he "revs" the sword's handle which charges up heat energy into the sword; there are 3 units of it in the Exceed meter. If the meter is filled, each of his sword's normal combo strikes will become stronger as they consume one unit per strike, and his special moves with the sword consumes all of the meter. The unique part is how the meter is gained: he can normally rev it (just like how Gatling guns spin up first) to fill the meter, but to fill each unit, the "rev" button must be pressed 3-4 times; it becomes tedious quickly to always rev it before you attack. But, he can also rev it during his sword strikes - called Ex-Act - and doing so will automatically give him one full unit that is immediately spent, making the strike immediately powerful; this can be done in normal sword combo attacks as well as special sword attacks. Even better, if he revs it during a specific frame of each sword strikes - called Max-Act - he will instantly gain 3 units (i.e full meter) with each swing, with one unit immediately being used.

Community Feedback Replies: 51
  • February 12, 2017
    Chabal2

    • RTS games in general have this as a necessity, obtaining the very best units and buildings often requires an arbitrarily long upgrade process.
    • Depending on the patch, Starcraft II's Void Rays can be this. The very first version had them do more damage the longer they stayed on a single target by having their Converging Beam Weapon use only one, then two, then all three beams (their damage increasing with each one), other patches instead give them a temporary damage bonus against Armored enemies.
    • Warcraft III: On melee maps that have mercenary units (Shredders, Zeppelins, dragons...), there's a starting cooldown that lasts longer on the more useful units (zeppelins take a full in-game day, for instance).
    • Command And Conquer Generals:
      • Chinese Gatling guns (both the turrets and the Gatling tank) need to spin up before reaching maximum firing rate. Its tanks start as the slowest, with the upgrade to make them faster requiring a nuclear missile (their superweapon) to be built.
      • The final China mission is particularly difficult, as you start without a base or a steady supply of ressources, requiring the player to get creatve with the local buildings. There's also a hidden trap where the GLA gets a SCUD Storm as soon as funds exceed $5000 (the amount needed to build a nuclear missile).
    • Dawn Of War: In the first game, there are several upgrades that exist solely to slow the player down.
      • Space Marines need an upgrade to get their tanks.
      • Imperial Guard:
        • The Imperial Guard relies on vehicles a lot, so naturally they need to upgrade each individual vehicle factory to get more than the basic transport. In the most outstanding case, they need to build up to their final HQ, then research the All-Out War upgrade, then build a Leman Russ depot on the factory, before they can finally build their trademark tanks.
        • Guardsmen, who are well-known for having laughable weapons and armor, need several upgrades to get their morale above the level of the setting's Butt Monkey Gretchin.
      • Orks need an upgrade that makes their vehicles tougher in order to build their relic unit and artillery. They also use a unique third resource that counts how many orks are present and requires a certain amount of orks present to build the more powerful units.
      • The Necrons' Greater Summoning Core is a building that produes and reasearches nothing, but is needed to get their final units.

  • February 12, 2017
    ZuTheSkunk
    In Fallout 3 and Fallout New Vegas, miniguns need a second or two of spinning up before they start firing.
  • February 13, 2017
    Chabal2
    • Pokemon:
      • Several moves such as Fury Cutter and Ice Ball deal laughable damage at first but deal more damage if used consecutively (and have a less-than stellar accuracy rate).
      • Some moves like Skull Bash have a setup turn, allowing the enemy to dodge or switch out.
      • To prevent the player from getting too far ahead, some moves needed to progress ahead (such as moving on water or breaking/moving rocks) are unavailable for use outside of battle before certain Gym badges are earned.
      • To prevent Twinking, high-level traded Pokemon will only occasionally obey commands until the right Gym badge is won. This is far less effective, as pretty much every move is going to be a One Hit Kill and the foe only deal Scratch Damage, the main drawback is the loss of experience for the native Mons.
  • February 13, 2017
    Arivne
    In my opinion, a weapon/power taking a while to be able to fire and a faction having to wait to be able to fight are two separate tropes.
  • February 13, 2017
    Chabal2
    More like a meta version of the trope.

  • February 13, 2017
    Arivne
    • Capitalized the title.
    • Corrected spelling (voluntarilly, singleplayer, produes, reasearches).
    • Examples section
  • February 13, 2017
    Arivne
    Tabletop Games
    • Shadowrun supplement Street Samurai Catalog. The Vindicator minigun takes one combat turn for its barrels to get up to speed before it can fire.
    • Champions. The Extra Time power limitation causes a power to take longer to activate. The longer the delay, the more the power's cost is decreased.
  • February 13, 2017
    Arivne
    Compare Limit Break, which is a powerful attack or technique that is only available after a delay. It often has to be "charged up" to use.
  • February 16, 2017
    Generality
    See also Charged Attack.
  • February 18, 2017
    Skylite
    • A played with example from Comic Books: Cyclops of X-Men cannot just fire his Eye Beams whenever he wants. They are solar charged. If he's night fighting, he has a limited number of zarks before he is out. Once out it requires a few hours of sunlight to charge him up again before he can fire them at all. This should not true for his brother Alex who can charge day or night.
  • February 19, 2017
    Bisected8
    Compare Increasingly Lethal Enemy, which becomes more dangerous if it's not defeated immediately.
  • February 20, 2017
    CactusFace
    • Overwatch:
      • When Reinhardt activates his charge, he cancells all other animations and makes a little hop for half a second. Savvy players know that this means to get out of his way.
      • A non-offensive example with Roadhog: When he uses his healing ability "Take A Breather" he needs a few moments to attach a jar to his gas mask. While doing so he is unable to move and does not heal yet. This makes him easy prey for other DP Sers.
    • The Hillbilly in Dead By Daylight can perform a chainsaw dash, but befor doing so he needs to start his chainsaw for a second, which slows him down and allert players to his position.
    • In Crusader Kings 2 adventurers need a year to gather armies and ships, after they stated their conquest goals. Only afterwards can they launch the attack, so a smart ruler will try to assassinate them befor they can do so.
  • February 20, 2017
    Skylite
    I should mention in a pinch Cyclops can also charge up with lightning, as a last resort because it's extremely painful and his metabolism had a harder time processing it.
  • February 20, 2017
    Exxolon
    Unlike electric or diesel locomotives, steam locomotives require time to build up a head of steam before they can start moving.
  • February 23, 2017
    Theharbo
    Cactusface: the three first of those four are Charge Attacks. A big component of this trope is that the 'spun up' state is their (new) norm. Reinhart doesn't keep charging for as long as a battle is ongoing, Roadhog doesn't keep healing, etc.

    Exxolon: True, but there are so many Real Life examples because of inertia that the Trope is ubiquitous enough to not list. combustion engines have a sweet spot where they perform best, for instance.
  • February 24, 2017
    intastiel
    • In Bleach, Ikkaku's Empathic Weapon Houzukimaru slowly increases in spiritual power after it's unleashed in combat because, in his words, it's "lazy" and takes time to wake up all the way.
  • February 28, 2017
    sailing101
    I think it's time someone brought up a few things about the name. If someone is not familiar with the use of miniguns in an online fps, then chances are they won't immediately understand what the trope is for. It's a minor case of Trope Namer Syndrome. I'd suggest Slow Start, but, well...
  • February 28, 2017
    Getta
    "Compare Magikarp Power which starts out pathetic, but through repeated training, upgrades, or likewise also becomes a force to be reckoned with,"

    So... how is that any different from this thing?

    We also have Evolving Weapon and Evolving Attack that may also cover this.
  • March 1, 2017
    Theharbo
    ^

    • Evolving Weapon: relies on an external source for its upgrades.
    • Evolving Attack: Same as Evolving Weapon: Relies on external sources for upgrades.
    • Magikarp Power: Brings everything it can to bear whenever it is in a fight, but untill an arbitrary amount of improvements are made, 'everything it can bring to bear' is pitiful. Using the Trope Namer as an example: a Magikarp can't do much in battle, but you can be assured it is giving everything it has despite this.

    Spinning Up / Slow Start / Whatever We Decide To Call It cannot, and never will be, able to perform at its best from the word 'Go!'. It needs time to spin up into a state where it can do so, but once it is spun up this is its (new) norm barring external interruption. (Gatling gun overheating/running out of ammo/voluntarilly spinning down, Hulk getting a Cooldown Hug/being beaten out of Hulk form, your base being destroyed by the enemy/selling off your structures, etc.)

    ^^

    I see your point, and I have been thinking about it. 'Building Steam', 'Battle Momentum', and 'Some Preparation Time Needed' were all alternatives in my mind when I made this launch pad. I settled on 'Spinning Up' because to me - an avid Video Game player - Gatling guns had this as an almost ubiqutous downside to their massive lead-spewing potential. It was snappy, conveyed the idea of 'building up steadilly', and is able to be conjurgated. (Spins Up, Spinning Up, Spun Up).

    If you have an idea for a name, I'm all ears.
  • March 1, 2017
    Getta
    ^ your other problem is that you're so fixated on the gatling gun metaphor that you even added actual gatling gun examples. Which doesn't sound noteworthy beyond being in the description.

    But more importantly, Evolving Weapon and Evolving Attack can - and more often does - come internally rather than externally.

    "(This thing) cannot, and never will be, able to perform at its best from the word 'Go!'."

    Neither could the three tropes I mentioned.
  • March 1, 2017
    sailing101
    ^ "Neither could the three tropes I mentioned" OBJECTION!!!

    Once a Magikarp evolves into Gyrados, it can perform consistently well, without returning to a prior state. Evolving weapons and attacks don't have to return to a prior state either.

    Those tropes all revolve around inherent power levels, this is more about Momentum.
  • March 1, 2017
    Theharbo
    ^^

    Are you saying I shouldn't add example of gatling guns despite them fitting the trope?

    Evolving Weapon has, as its laconic: "Weapons get stronger with use.", and the description goes into painstaking detail about how this is over a longer duration for multiple battles. Evolving Attack is a videogame only trope with no laconic and an extremely vague description which leads to it being a catch-all for 'this ability changes based on external factors'. I'd almost say it's Repair Shop worthy

    For something employing 'Spinning Up', they can't even be used (well) before being worked up into a state, and the spinning up is a requirement on the trope-user's part. No matter how many times you use Symmetra's Photon Projector, it will never start out dealing its maximum damage. No matter how many times you start a game of Command And Conquer Generals, you'll never start out with more than a headquarters and a worker.

    An Evolving Weapon on the other hand, will eventually get to a state where it is baseline more powerful than it was originally. It comes close in the "temporary" part of Evolving Weapon, but even that makes it clear that this Status Buff'd state is dependant on an external factor, and may not last the entire combat.
  • March 1, 2017
    sailing101
    I think Building Steam is the best name for this. The steam engine itself runs on this principle.
  • March 1, 2017
    Getta
    ^^ Evolving Weapon does list stuff that go back to their original state, i.e "unevolving". I'd like to believe it also happens to Evolving Attack and Magikarp Power too.

    ^ as I've stated, "evolving" in those aforementioned tropes' case aren't one way, they can also be used in a "momentum" way like this draft.

    ...unless you decide that they are separate? Some of their examples can be here, then.
  • March 1, 2017
    sailing101
    Here's the rub, tropes can overlap. Not everything that needs to spin up is a weapon. Not every evolving weapon acts like it's spinning up. And most weapons I think of as spinning up don't evolve. Can you apply evolving weapon to tf2' heavy weapons guy? No. Can you apply it to Zyria of Overwatch? No. Neither of their weapons change. They spin up
  • March 1, 2017
    Getta
    ^ so in order to fit this trope, first and foremost they need to have a lengthy "charge/harmless" time before it starts making effect?

    It's the question of "what counts as spinning up" and if that is covered by other tropes.
  • March 1, 2017
    sailing101
    And like I said, there can be overlap. Here's an example of a weapon that can count as Spinning up, Evolving Weapon, Charged Attack and even Magikarp Power:

    The Bubbler/Bubbline from Cave Story is an Evolving Weapon that, at level one, is the absolute weakest gun in the game. At level 2 it becomes a reasonable replacement for the machine gun you can trade your first gun for later. It's final form is very different. Holding down the fire button produces a stream of bubbles that surround the player, and burst after a short amount of time, sending a shockwave in the direction the player is aiming. At any point, the player can release the fire button to manually burst every bubble on the screen, Shotgunning anything in the area. That one weapon fits all of the tropes, but each trope is but one facet of how it works
  • March 1, 2017
    Getta
    ^ too much overlap is a concern, you know.
  • March 1, 2017
    sailing101
    Only when the tropes are indistinguishable.
  • March 1, 2017
    Getta
    ^ And they are, to me.

    I mean, if we're using the "gatling gun spinning up" metaphor, then examples should be "when this thing needs a wind-up time before they can actually attack/be effective". My (personal?) problem is that I never see this concept standing up alone (i.e no overlap) other than in gatling guns themselves.

    There's also Situational Damage Attack to compare to.

    Though, if these examples count (I currently put them under Situational Damage Attack) then I might understand this trope.
    • Elsword: The game contain "buff stacking" passive skills for certain character classes which makes the character stronger the more they hit enemies.
      • Sheath Knight's Cruel Slayer passive gives him additional damage buff that occurs and stacks per 5 hits he does in a normal combo and active skills. The additional damage he can gain is (depending on the passive skill's level) 2% to 10% of his physical attack power, and it can be stacked 5 times. If he spent 10 times without adding to the stack (i.e not hitting 5 times), the buff will be gone and he'd need to build it up again.
      • Crimson Rose's Awakening Will passive can activate a special buff that occurs if she uses skills related to chain attacks. Each hit of chain attacks will accumulatively buff her physical attack power and attack speed, up to 25 stacks. The buff stacks will lose by 5 every 3 seconds she isn't attacking with any chain attack, however.

  • March 2, 2017
    Theharbo
    ^ those two are definitely examples of this trope.
    • Sheath Knight never starts out in his fully stacked state, but once he is there, it's his norm untill he's 'spun down' by not attacking.
    • Likewise with Crimson Rose whenever she is using her chain weapon. (I am not knowledgable about Elsword, but the way you phrased it makes it sound like this is not something that happens when she uses other weapons)

    And Situational Damage Attack is definitely a Super Trope to Spinning Up / Gathering Steam

    Speaking of the name, changing it to 'Gathering Steam' temporailly to get a feel for how it conveys the trope. I chose 'gathering steam' over 'Building Steam' because 'building steam' comes from the unwieldy 'Building up a head of steam' and thus almost always requires an 'up' somewhere in the sentence: 'Building up Steam', 'steam is built up', 'the built up amount of steam', etc.

    On top of that, type 'Gathering Steam' into Google and you get a definition which fits the trope to a tee. Type 'building steam' and you get a bunch of City Builders on Steam

    I still think 'Spinning Up' is just as valid a name, but I'm willing to give the steam an honest shot.
  • March 2, 2017
    Getta
    ^ Minor correction: "If he spent 10 times" should be "If he spent 10 seconds". And if you wanna know, Crimson Rose is an advanced class that gains chains (specifically, gun-sickles attached to chains) as new method of attacking.

    I'm not a native English speaker so this might not mean much coming from me, but "gathering steam" seems to be a familiar phrase especially referring to old-timey steam engines. I don't know what other people will say though.

    Does this count as well?
    • Devil May Cry 4: Nero's sword has the "Exceed" system where he "revs" the sword's handle which charges up heat energy into the sword; there are 3 units of it in the Exceed meter. If the meter is filled, each of his sword's normal combo strikes will become stronger as they consume one unit per strike, and his special moves with the sword consumes all of the meter. The unique part is how the meter is gained: he can normally rev it (just like how gatling guns spin up first) to fill the meter, but to fill each unit, the "rev" button must be pressed 3-4 times; it becomes tedious quickly to always rev it before you attack. But, he can also rev it during his sword strikes - called Ex-Act - and doing so will automatically give him one full unit that is immediately spent, making the strike immediately powerful; this can be done in normal sword combo attacks as well as special sword attacks. Even better, if he revs it during a specific frame of each sword strikes - called Max-Act - he will instantly gain 3 units (i.e full meter) with each swing, with one unit immediately being used.
  • March 2, 2017
    Theharbo
    ^

    Looks like a combination of borderline Gathering Steam / Limit Break to me. He definitely has to rev it up, but then it sounds like he needs to continually rev it to maintain the functionality at all - it's not his norm.

    Feel free to correct me if I am not understanding it correctly.
  • March 2, 2017
    Getta
    ^ The game doesn't treat it as a Limit Break, at any rate. But still, it's a "strengthening" mechanic that helps during fights; just that it also depends on your input.
  • March 2, 2017
    sailing101
    I think I've thought of a page image. I have no idea how to post it though. I'd probably break everything. What do you think of the Firebox Pressure Gauge from Back To The Future Part Three?

    Perhaps we could also get the quote from that scene.

    Also, related:

    Back To The Future Part III: In order to get the Delorian time machine up to 88 miles per hour and return to the future, Marty and Doc 'borrow' a steam locomotive. In order to get the train moving fast enough, Doc powers it with homemade Presto Logs made to raise the boiler pressure and speed up the train. Each one is set to ignite in sequence, and by the time the third log ignites, the only way to stop the train would be to run out of tracks.
  • March 3, 2017
    Theharbo
    ^ A pressure gauge-like image would definitely convey the spirit of the trope. I'm not too keen on that exact image because it's a little small, but it's definitely a good idea. Also added the example you provided, thanks. Maybe Back to the future could provide a quote for the page? something to ponder when I am not at work.

    ^^ I'd be more inclined to call it a Charged Attack then. He gathers energy which is then (partially) unleashed when he attacks. (still not sure I understand it correctly, feel free to correct me)
  • March 3, 2017
    Getta
    ^ Well, it'd be both Charged Attack and this trope.
  • March 5, 2017
    Theharbo
    ^ Yeah, a combination of the two does fit.
  • March 5, 2017
    CactusFace
    Video Games
    • Crusader Kings 2
      • Similarly to adventurers, viking invaders can state a conquest goal. Afterwards, soldiers and viking heros will join their cause over the next two years. They can attack at any time they want, but since their main targets are powerful christian and muslim kingdoms, they should better wait the full two years.
      • The army size of normads is dependant on their clans population, which in turn is depending on the size of their territory. So a clan that just conquered a large kingdom will have to wait a couple of years so their population can grow so they can make use of their new land.
      • In some way this aplies to all conquests in the game. Getting a full duchy through a holy war is nice, but it will be utterly useless for the first few years, as the peasants will simply refuse to pay taxes or train as soldiers.
    • In Patapon your patapons will need some good rythems to dance themself into a frenzy, the amount of which depends on how on point they are. But once they are in fever they get much higher attack, reach, and/or other usefull abilities depending on the class and on the dance.
    • Vehicles in most Driving Games, just like in Real Life, require some time of acceleration to reach their top speed.
    • Stardew Valley
      • Plants that grow multiple crops without the need to replant them are this. Like every plant they need to grow to their full size first. But then they regrow their crops every couple of days, until they die at the end of their season (unless planted in a greenhouse, which makes them regrow forever, or if they are fruit trees that only become inactive out of season).
      • Fruit trees produce crops with increasing quality the older the tree is. Bringing one up to iridium quality requires three in-game years.
      • When a new animal is born, or bought from Marnie, it first needs to grow up befor it can produce its goods.

    Real Life
    • Cars and other vehicles require a constant feed of power over a period of time that exceeds the amount needed to hold the curent speed in order to reach their top speed. This process is called acceleration.

    I somehow don't like the way RTS games are sorted in the example section. Examples that don't fall under the "build certain stuff to unlock other stuff" example should get their own entries (like Starcrafts Void Rays, CK 2 and Grey Goos Lancers).
  • March 5, 2017
    Getta
    Please add the Devil May Cry example?
  • March 6, 2017
    Theharbo
    ^^ Example Indentation In Trope Lists says it's the right way though.

    • Overarching genre in the first bulletin level
      • Specific games in the second bulletin level.
        • If a specific game has more than one example, add a third bulletin level for each example

    The alternative would be to have two first-level bulletins, but I agree the entire concept of 'starting with little and gathering steam' could be consolidated in the first point, leaving the trope for specific instances which aren't covered by it. (Like the Ork example. Since that doesn't really require technology as much as it requires you to get a big old mob going). - I'll look into that later.

    Also, not adding the real life example. Because once you add Acceleration, you add inertia, and inertia is an Omnipresent Trope in real life.

    ^ Added, but you don't need me to add examples. I don't own this launch pad and people can edit it without permission. Just don't be a dick about it :)
  • March 9, 2017
    Theharbo
    Bumping this. I still think it needs a better quote. Anyone have any ideas?
  • March 9, 2017
    Getta
    Compare Over Heating (where, instead of power, it's harmful heat that builds up) and Pent Up Power Peril (where built-up power causes harm if it's gone far enough)
  • March 11, 2017
    Theharbo
    ^ Added to description.
  • March 11, 2017
    Getta
    I don't think it needed a quote. Not for now at least.
  • March 12, 2017
    DustSnitch
    I think the quote helps get the idea across quickly. Another way to keep the article to the point is to delete everything in the description before "this character, faction, weapon". Everything before that point serves only to give an Example As A Thesis.
  • March 12, 2017
    Theharbo
    ^ Thanks, had no idea Example As A Thesis was thing. Live and learn :)
  • March 16, 2017
    Theharbo
    Bumping this for the final time. Launching tomorrow.

    Speak now, or forever hold your peice.
  • March 17, 2017
    DustSnitch
    What's the Trope Codifier and Ur Example for this?
  • March 17, 2017
    Bisected8
    Hard to say; something that takes a while to get going is a pretty timeless concept (even the earliest fires probably took a while to start).
  • March 18, 2017
    Theharbo
    Indeed. Inertia has been around literally since the dawn of the universe.
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