A tabletop RPG from GreenRonin Publishing, ''{{Mutants}} [[MagicAmpersand &]] [[DiabolicalMastermind Masterminds]]'', also known as ''[[FanNickname M&M]]'', describes itself as "The World's Greatest [[SuperHero Superhero]] [[TabletopGames Role-Playing Game]]." DCComics sure seemed to think so. The game uses a heavily modified version[[note]]So heavily modified that it is now legally ''not'' a version[[/note]] of the TabletopGame/D20System from ''[[DungeonsAndDragons Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Edition]]'', and its [[PointBuildSystem point-buy character creation system]] is designed to allow players to create just about any character they can think of. In fact, the "Roll Call" section of [[http://www.atomicthinktank.com the Atomic Think Tank]], the official ''Mutants & Masterminds'' forum, contains fan-submitted stats for [[UltimateShowdownOfUltimateDestiny pretty much every fictional character that's ever existed]], from Comicbook/{{Superman}} to ''Franchise/SailorMoon'' to [[ScoobyDoo Shaggy Rogers]][[note]]Even JustForFun/TropeTan[[/note]].

GreenRonin has recently published ''DC Adventures'', a licensed [[TabletopGames RPG]] based on TheDCU and using the 3rd edition of the ''M&M'' rules.

The FreedomCity [[TheVerse 'verse]] is the default setting for ''M&M'' (and the place for FC-specific tropes).
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!! This game provides examples of:
* AcceptableBreaksFromReality: the core book even points out how many things like [[RequiredSecondaryPowers realistic consequences of certain powers]] or [[RealityEnsues logistical concerns like keeping track of ammo, vehicle fuel, or monetary cost of equipment]] are often [[HandWave HandWaved]] in favor of having [[RuleOfFun fun]] in a setting that runs on SuperheroTropes and RuleOfCool.
* TheAgesOfSuperHeroComics: The core book actually has a historical summary of every major age, encouraging [[GameMaster GMs]] to use them as a guide for the tone of a campaign.
** TheBronzeAgeOfComicBooks: This is one of several "historic supers" settings, sharing a sourcebook with TheSilverAgeOfComicBooks.
** [[TheDarkAgeOfComicBooks The Iron Age Of Comic Books]]: The game assumes a default setting of the present, but there is a sourcebook dealing with this era.
** TheGoldenAgeOfComicBooks: The game assumes a default setting of the present, but there is a sourcebook dealing with this era.
** TheModernAgeOfComicBooks: The tone and setting assumed by default for the game. A modern day supers [[TheVerse 'verse]] where the DarkerAndEdgier excesses of the [[TheDarkAgeOfComicBooks Iron Age]] are over, and there's a bit of [[TheSilverAgeOfComicBooks Silver Age]] idealism returning to the world.
** TheSilverAgeOfComicBooks: Another "historic supers" setting, sharing a sourcebook with TheBronzeAgeOfComicBooks.
** {{Manga}}: Not actually an "Age" per-se, but there is a 2E sourcebook that lets players build everything from {{Sentai}} and [[MagicalGirl Magical Girls]] to {{Mecha}} and {{Mons}} Trainers.
* AsLethalAsItNeedsToBe / AlmostLethalWeapons: Sometimes the lethal weapon is lethal, sometimes not depending on drama. The former covers the minion rule in that whether you get killed depends on who you are.
* AlternateCompanyEquivalent / CaptainErsatz / {{Expy}}: The default setting, {{Freedom City}}, is filled to overflowing with these. Players would be hard-pressed to create a character who ''isn't'' very similar to one or more existing comic book superheroes. And [[TropesAreNotBad that isn't a bad thing]].
* BadassNormal: The system is designed to ensure that these can compete. It comes from making the game mechanics generic. So your ranged damage +10 ability could be described as heat vision or an electrified batarang. The system doesn't care.
* TheBadGuyWins: The book "Crooks" has rules for if this happens, which basically allows the villain to spend "villain points" to make the world DarkerAndEdgier
* ChangingClothesIsAFreeAction: If you have the right feat or power.
* CharacterLevel: "Power Level" (not to be confused with PowerLevels), though they don't mean quite the same thing as in other [[TabletopGame/D20System d20-derived]] games. "Power Points" are what actually increase your character's abilities -- Power Level only restrict how you can spend your points (e.g., the total amount of damage you do per attack cannot exceed your power level without trading off from your attack bonus).
* CharmPerson: Essentially the effect of using the Love aspect of Emotion Control.
* ClassAndLevelSystem: [[AvertedTrope Averted]]. Both the core rulebook and most of the supplements include templates for popular character archetypes, but they are only suggestions.
* ComicBookTropes: Most of these are assumed to be in effect by default.
* CompetitiveBalance: The tradeoff mechanic allows for characters of the same Power Level to perform differently, sacrificing, for example, accuracy for damage, or vice versa.
** FragileSpeedster: A character who sacrifices toughness for defense, and/or damage for accuracy.
** GlassCannon / SquishyWizard / StoneWall: Mostly [[AvertedTrope averted]]. The overwhelming majority of M&M character builds have equivalent offensive and defensive ability, or at least have relatively small tradeoffs compared to Power Level.
** LightningBruiser: Speed is not considered to be part of the tradeoff system, so it's not difficult to have a very fast hero who also hits hard.
** JackOfAllStats: A default character, with no tradeoffs between accuracy and damage or defense and resistance.
** MightyGlacier: A character who sacrifices defense for resistance, and/or accuracy for damage.
* CriticalHit: M&M has them, as one of the holdovers from its D20 roots.
* DarkerAndEdgier / LighterAndSofter: The 2nd edition core rulebook includes variant rules for both of these variant playstyles.
* DamageTyping: "Lethal" and "Nonlethal." Under the default rules, all damage is assumed to be the latter unless specifically stated otherwise, but all attacks can inflict either type.
* DumpStat: Every Ability score except Constitution (see OneStatToRuleThemAll below) can fall into this trap, depending on the character concept. Most of the Abilities exist only to fuel Skills, and maybe Saving Throws, so if there aren't enough of either that your character cares about investing in, then they're not an efficient purchase. And Strength only matters if you care about heavy lifting or melee damage.
** Charisma in 1E/2E, and its 3E successor, Presence, are the best examples by far.
** Constitution can be a dump stat. Constitution is mostly good for raising Toughness & Fortitude[[note]](It also handles recovery checks, which are nothing to sneeze at, but are more of a "downtime" factor than a combat one.)[[/note]], and it costs exactly the same to buy them both up directly. In fact, robot or undead heroes dump their Constitution all the way down to zero and buy immunities and protection[[note]](and regeneration)[[/note]] to compensate.
* ExperiencePoints: "Power Points." In a refreshing change of pace from most [[TabletopGames [=RPGs=]]], they function identically to the [[PointBuildSystem points]] characters receive at character generation.
* FantasyKitchenSink: The superhero universes this game is based off of tend to be this way, so the rules support the necessary flexibility to build anything from [[OurVampiresAreDifferent vampires]] to [[EverythingsBetterWithDinosaurs dinosaurs]] to [[InstantAwesomeJustAddNinja ninjas]] to [[LordOfTheRings ringwraiths]].
** The default Mecha and Manga setting is explicitly intended as an anime-genre kitchen sink: there's martial artists, mech pilots, sorcerers, {{Mons}} trainers and [[MagicalGirl Magical Girls]].
* GameSystem: A derivative of the d20 mechanic from [=D&D3E=], though with a completely different character creation system (a PointBuildSystem instead of a ClassAndLevelSystem).
* TheGMIsACheatingBastard: Some uses of "GM fiat", where things happen to the [=PCs=] with them getting a chance to respond, are allowed, but give the affected players a Hero Point in compensation.
* GrapplingWithGrapplingRules:
** In 2E, about as bad as any other d20 game with the caveat that particular powersets have grapple bonuses that can guarantee success.
** The system was changed for 3E/DCA to reduce the ridiculous levels of grapple bonuses at the expense of making it very difficult for even an optimized grappling build to secure a hold.
* GunsAreWorthless: May or may not be in play, depending on the characters' power level. At low levels, they're a legit threat; by mid level it would take a really terrible roll (or a really fragile character) to even cause a bruise, and at high level it's almost impossible to hurt someone with a normal gun.
* HeroicSpirit: Represented by the Extra Effort and Hero Point rules, which allow [[PlayerCharacter PCs]] to, for example, get a HeroicSecondWind or temporarily gain NewPowersAsThePlotDemands.
* HitPoints: {{Averted}} completely and replaced by damage saving throws. Characters are knocked out/killed by failing the save by a large enough margin, and narrower failures penalize subsequent saves until the character is healed, making this gradually more likely.
* HomingProjectile: A power feat called Homing can allow many powers to work like this.
* {{Immortality}}: All the various subtropes can be purchased even as a starting character though some of them are pretty expensive.
* LinearWarriorsQuadraticWizards: [[AvertedTrope Averted,]] since there are no [[ClassAndLevelSystem character classes]]. True {{Badass Normal}}s, lacking any powers or devices which give them powers, are at something of a disadvantage in combat and raw power. But they can make up for it in [[WeakButSkilled other ways]].
* MinMaxersDelight: Since the system favors CharacterCustomization, in order to best reflect [[SuperHero the source material]], character creation requires more GameMaster oversight than most [=RPGs=].
** Attacks with Perception as their range can hit anyone the character can perceive with an accurate sense (sight, touch, or some super-sense alternative), at any range, without requiring an attack roll. There are only minor disadvantages such as the modest cost increase, the inability to aim blind, and no ability to boost damage through critical hits or combat maneuvers. Some groups use HouseRules to ban or mitigate it by forcing such attacks to allow an additional saving throw instead or by stipulating that Perception range attacks be at a rank below PL.
* NewPowersAsThePlotDemands: This ability is built into the core mechanics of the system, for all characters. A mechanic called Extra Effort allows a PC to temporarily gain a new power at the cost of becoming fatigued (though a Hero Point can negate that penalty).
** Variable Powers, such as "Nemesis" and "Shapeshift," allow characters to gain new traits as the situation demands ''without'' the need for Extra Effort or Hero Points. But they are ''very'' expensive, so the character pays a high premium for the flexibility. Further, when using "Nemesis" the GM picks what powers you get.
* NinjaPirateZombieRobot: You can make just about any character you like with this system. Examples can be found in [[http://atomicthinktank.com/viewforum.php?f=14 Roll Call,]] the character thread area of [[http://atomicthinktank.com/ the Atomic Think Tank.]]
* NonLethalKO: Even with super-strength, no matter how high the damage, the worst that can happen to a target is being [=KOed=] when using non-lethal damage.
* OmnidisciplinaryScientist: Made the rule in 3E where there's one skill, Technology, for all inventors and one skill, Expertise: Science, for all scientists. Even in 1E and 2E, since most skills dealing with science and technology are based on the Intelligence stat, building one of these is both easy and cost-effective.
* {{Omniglot}}: Achievable with 6PP of the Comprehend power (for reference, a default starting superhero gets allotted 150PP).
* OneHitKill: The system separates all characters into two types, "Heroes/Villains" and "Minions." When "Heroic" characters fail a saving throw against an attack, the degree of harm they suffer is directly proportional to the margin by which they failed the roll. If a Minion fails a save, they automatically suffer the worst possible result of the attack.
* OneStatToRuleThemAll: Mostly {{averted}} from 2E up, though it's been noted that high-Strength/Toughness builds are statistically more likely to win a fight than high-Defense/Accuracy builds, even if they're at the same Power Level. Constitution/Stamina is as close as it comes. Every 2PP you spend on it gives you +1 to 3 different values, which would each cost 1PP per +1 to purchase independently. It's the only Ability that's cost-effective no matter what.
* PlayByPostGames: There are several on the Internet, hosted on both the official M&M forums and third-party sites. FreedomCityPlayByPost is the [[ShamelessSelfPromotion largest, most active, and longest-running]].
* PlayerMooks: sidekicks and minions.
* PointBuildSystem: Necessary in order to accurately reflect the source material -- you can mix-n-match powers, abilities, and skills to make anything from a FlyingBrick to a BadassNormal.
* {{Polyglot}}: Notoriously expensive to build. It's generally cheaper to simply pay to become an {{Omniglot}} then roleplay it as limited to whatever languages you would have taken.
* PowerCreepPowerSeep: When converting existing characters to the game, interpretations of their level of power vary ''widely''. A common pastime on the official forums is to try and stat godlike characters such as Galactus as playable, rules-legal starting characters.
** Of course, now that DC Adventures is here, characters are receiving official stats.
** In addition, canonically, heroes receive 1-2PP per arc of the adventure and every 10-20PP, gain a new PowerLevel. Each Power Level essentially doubles your power.
* RandomNumberGod: The game uses the roll of a single 20-sided die and the application of static bonuses to resolve ''everything''.
* RuleOfCool: Assumed to be the law of the universe by default.
* RuleZero: Notably, this game some specific mechanics for it. The gamemaster sets the "power level" of the game which caps many key bonuses. Gamemaster fiat allows the gamemaster to arbitrarily create obstacles to prevent players from ruining the adventure in exchange for which the hero earns a hero point they can use later thereby awarding players for initiative and creative thinking.
* SetSwordsToStun: By default, damage is non-lethal in 2E. 3E makes all damage non-lethal.
* TheSixStats: As a game using the TabletopGame/D20System, M&M 1E and 2E had them. 3E changed the names on everything, and added "melee attack bonus" and "ranged attack bonus" as abilities (with attendant skills) instead of being handled by a separate value.
* SolarPoweredMagnifyingGlass: In "High Noon", part of the Lame Mage Evil Genius adventures, Dr. Null [[spoiler:posthumously]] launches a doomsday device that deploys a cloud of small nanotechnology crystals that float around and focus beams of indiscriminate destruction from the sun's rays to destroy major cities.
* StandardStatusEffects: M&M has several of them. Pretty much every non-Damage attack power qualifies -- Confuse, Dazzle, Fatigue, Mind Control, Nauseate, Paralyze, Stun, etc. 3E condenses them all into a single customizable power, Affliction.
* StealthExpert: Quite possible to build, although the way in which skills are capped means that it's just as easy for someone on the other side to have enough Notice bonus to counteract your Stealth bonus, bringing it back to approximately a 50/50 chance. Also, the use of various super-senses like the ability to sniff out enemies or XRayVision means that you [[UselessUsefulStealth may auto-fail according to some GMs]].
* StockSuperpowers: And quite a few non-stock ones too. You'd be hard-pressed to find a character or ability from SuperHero comics that you can't build, in several different ways.
* SuperHero: Although the system can be used to simulate any genre of fiction, this is the assumed default for M&M games.
* SuperReflexes: As with everything else, there are several ways to build this power. Improved Initiative will help your [=PC=] go first in combat. Quickness will let her complete routine tasks quickly. Defensive Roll will help her avoid attacks, as will buying up her Defense bonus and/or Reflex saving throw.
** The Anime-inspired 2E supplement, "Mecha and Manga", added the "Bullet Time" feat which allows for additional standard actions (but only one attack) when combining Extra Effort and a Hero Point.
** The ''Masterminds Manual'' came out with optional rules for extra attacks per round years previously. But in both cases, most [=GMs=] avoid both rules like the plague, for two reasons: First, in an effects-based system like M&M, any "single" attack can be ''described'' as a flurry of multiple blows in rapid succession - which the "Mecha and Manga" system even supports as a melee version of Autofire. Second, being able to force a second consecutive saving throw in a game where every save might be your character's last if she fails it badly enough means something a lot different than a chance to chip away a few more hit points from a big pile.
* SwissArmyHero: One of the [[{{Munchkin}} easy ways]] to pile more abilities into a character is to play one of these by buying Alternate Powers for Alternate Form.
* TalkingIsAFreeAction: Par for the course in a game that has roots in d20 and comic books. The game even alludes to how much chatter happens between characters in the source material, with heroes making witty quips and villains monologuing about their master plans.
* ThouShaltNotKill: A possible complication is a code of honor that prevents a hero from killing his opponents.
* UniversalSystem
* TheVerse: FreedomCity is the default setting and "{{Superhero}}es" is the default genre, but the system works for [[UniversalSystem just about anything]].
* YouAllMeetInAnInn: The two stock adventures from the rule book are "You all meet when supervillains rob a bank [[BruceWayneHeldHostage while you're in line in your secret identity]]" and "You all meet when a benefactor invites you to form a super team".
* YouCantThwartStageOne: If the players look like they'll thwart stage one, the GM is encouraged to [[TheGMIsACheatingBastard cheat]], [[{{Railroading}} put the plot back on the rails]], and give the [=PCs=] some Hero Points in compensation.
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