Note: This is different to What happens when you use a continuous power in an array and then switch to a different power? as that covers 2nd edition, and I'm focused on 3rd.
Say you have an array with two powers: one is a Create effect with Increased Duration (Continuous) extra, the other is an attack of some kind. You use the former to create a box, and then switch to the other. Does the box remain, or does it vanish?
The rules are ambiguous on this point, and there is a strong argument for either position from both a rules and a thematic perspective
The description for Alternate Effect states:
Alternate Effects cannot be used or maintained at the same time as other Alternates in the same array; they are mutually exclusive
The description for the Continuous duration states:
The effect lasts as long as you wish, without any action required on your part. Once active, it stays that way until you choose to deactivate it
From a rules perspective, one could argue that since one is not maintaining the effect, one would be permitted to swap between powers without dismissing the effect. On the other hand, one could argue that the effect being in place at all counts as the power being 'used'.
From a thematic perspective, one could argue for effects remaining with the following example: Imagine a superhero, let's call her Sue. Sue has the power to fire Ice Beams, with two applications: as an attack, or to build ice constructs. Since both rely on her firing Ice Beams, and she can only use the beams for one at a time, it makes sense that they would be an array. In addition, once her constructs are created, she doesn't need to sustain them (ignoring ice melting for this example). As such, it would make sense for the constructs to be Continuous. If she were to build a construct one round, then attack with her beams the next, it would make little sense for the construct to suddenly disappear, as they were not reliant on her in any way. However, one could argue that the two effects being able to be applicable at the same time violates the concept of an array.
I've checked the forums, and there is a solid 3 pages of discussion there with no consensus, so I'm looking for an official ruling on this if there is one at all. Thanks in advance.