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Semi-related to Does the target of a grab-based power remain grabbed after the attack?, there are a few different ways in which the Grab-based Flaw can work. One is that you have to make the attack roll for grabbing the person, they make their resistance roll against the grab, and then they save against the DC of the Grab-based power. One is that it works as an option to replace the Strength Damage as a Standard action against someone who you're grabbing. And, honestly, both cases might apply depending on how you interpret the rules text.

If it's the first case, it's got a clear trade-off, much like the Grab itself. The attack bonus to Grab, and the rank of either Strength or the grabbing effect, can't exceed PL*2 just like any attack, so similarly, a power that just adds an additional resistance check would be similarly PL-limited.

If it's the second case, then we're in more ambiguous waters, since the Standard action to inflict damage in a Grab doesn't mention an attack roll, and in prior editions explicitly didn't require a Strength check, basically modeling that someone who has a hold on you just squeezes it tighter. Thus, it could be argued that this should be limited to campaign PL, just like other attacks that lack an attack roll.

So, is a Grab-based power limited by the attack bonus or the Campaign PL?

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After discussing this with people on the M&M Subreddit, I have come to the decision that Grab DC, and thereby the power of grab-based effects are limited based on the attack bonus of the Grab. This makes immediate sense for the "Grab-based attack as Resistable" construct since it's a simple "attack bonus and ranks of effect" balance. For attacking someone already in a Grab, it might initially seem a little unbalancing to allow someone to perhaps use a tradeoff to increase their attack bonus to achieve the grab, and then switch to a more powerful Grab-based attack, or more powerful Strength damage, but essentially, this is not much different from the Concentration extra, where after initially hitting, you can maintain the effect with a Standard action. The target still needs to fail that check against the Grab DC to determine if they're grabbed, and the check to escape the Grab still continues to be that initial DC unless the person doing the Grab spends an action to "improve their hold" and thereby forcing the base Grab DC (for the which, I'd argue that it's their regular Grab DC, whatever that is, since there is nothing to trade off against).

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I'm perfectly open to later answers, but as this question doesn't seem to be garnering a ton of interest, I figure on accepting what I find the most helpful answer, even if it's my own. \$\endgroup\$ May 20, 2021 at 18:51

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