I am trying to work out a "mystically seductive" sort of character, for M&M 3E. She already has extremely high Persuasion and Deception, and I am trying to work out a sort of mind control affliction.

My issue is, I am trying to find a way to cause targets to rationalize everything they did while Controlled, so that it does not feel like they were controlled in the first place--because she is not truly controlling them. They feel like following her commands is "right". They may realize later that it was a stupid decision, but not that they were mind controlled into doing it.

How could I make this happen? Insidious, from what I understand, is not exactly what I'm looking for. It seems like Subtle, except that you can't apply two ranks--and in a PL10 game, targets getting a 20 on Perception is not even remotely hard.

How can she make targets think that they were acting entirely on their own will?

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    \$\begingroup\$ Is this a PC or an NPC? \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Mar 9 '19 at 17:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ It is a PC. I'm aiming for a sort of siren build--subtle hypnosis more than real mind control. \$\endgroup\$ – Energy Magick Mar 9 '19 at 17:22
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    \$\begingroup\$ (For an NPC, this could be largely handwaved: many normal NPCs won't succeed on the Perception check so she'd be dangerously subtle with regard to normal folks, but supers would easily recognize her powers.) Okay. Cool. So the PC is supposed to use this ability in combat? For example, you want the PC to persuade inobtrusively Mashface and Blastatron to fight each other instead of her yet have the pair go to jail thinking the fight was all their bad idea? Is that accurate? (That doesn't sound like a deception that'll last for many encounters!) \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Mar 9 '19 at 17:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ That is pretty correct, yes. Instead of controlling them directly though, I'm aiming for a more, Jedi-Mind-Trick sort of thing. And the point of the character is that she is not a combatant. Let me just, example --- Instead of "persuading" Mashface and Blastatron into fighting one another, she'd cower on the floor begging "Please, don't hurt me.", trying to make him uncertain of himself by screwing with his mind. Mashface fails his will save and becomes Compelled. Suddenly, pangs of guilt fill his head, about what he is doing... Looking to Blastatron, he asks "Is this really needed, Blast?" \$\endgroup\$ – Energy Magick Mar 9 '19 at 18:09
  • \$\begingroup\$ And yeah. I don't expect it to last long--but I don't want people being like "hey lol I felt that mind control you just did on me". I don't mind them figuring it out naturally ("that girl is always there whenever this happens to me... maybe she's messing with my mind, somehow?"), I just don't want them to just magically "detect" it. \$\endgroup\$ – Energy Magick Mar 9 '19 at 18:12

Multiple Options Exist

You can do "mystically seductive" several ways. You've already noted the raw power of Deception and Persuasion so I'll skip over those.


Several Advantages can cover the concept. Notably the under-appreciated Fascinate advantage for out-of-combat distraction and manipulation. In combat Dazed is powerful. And multiple ranks of Set Up to share with allies is worth considering.

Affliction Powers

Affliction is an incredibly flexible power. Fascinate, Compelled, Controlled is a good progression for "persuasive commands" but specific concepts may want a different progression.
Extras to consider are Subtle and Insidious. Subtle makes it difficult to detect that the attacker activated a power. Insidious makes it difficult to realize that the victim was affected by a power.
Your description wants both extras. One rank of Subtle to require a special sense - or a high Perception result - to notice that the character is using a power. You want Insidious so that the victims never question that their actions were their own choices. It is possible that a victim could be revealed as having been affected by your power, but they're very unlikely to question it themselves.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you very kindly! I entirely missed Fascinate. I doubtlessly expect that I'm grabbing two ranks of that. This actually brought up another question, though. Am I mistaken, that a creature automatically gets to make a check against Insidious? You said they'd never question that their actions were theirs. What sort of conditions would cause them to check vs insidious? I was under the impression that it was automatic, every time the effect occurs. \$\endgroup\$ – Energy Magick Mar 9 '19 at 18:39
  • \$\begingroup\$ @EnergyMagick Like Subtle, Insidious can either allow a DC 20 check to determine if something was done or a special sense to automatically detect it. However, the check isn't automatic, it requires some intent and investigation. But, combined with a Subtle power, "no power was used and nothing happened to them" so it's very unlikely that they'll be checked for power effects. \$\endgroup\$ – ValhallaGH Mar 10 '19 at 5:00

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