In M&M 2e, Is there anything against a character with Adaptation having multiple pre-set forms he uses in response to regular threats, and if so can these forms include some offensive capabilities in addition to defensive ones? For example, could you count "melee combat" as a "hostile environment" for someone with Reactive adaptation and gain powers like Super Strength in response to an attack?

If context would help any, my hero's powers come from an alien life-support/survival suit that he found and somehow managed to get bonded to (probably wouldn't count as a Device since he can't take it off(or at least doesn't know how)). Thing is, though, it was brand new when he found it and hadn't been properly calibrated, so the onboard AI is essentially Clippy from the old Windows: it can do nearly anything for its user that he would need, but it's on all the time and is very bad at determining when exactly its needed and what its user wants. In short, the suit springs to life when it detects any sort of strenuous activity or adrenaline spike and tries to provide "assistance" however it thinks is necessary, so even something like moving heavy objects or working out on a punching bag could provoke a response ("You appear to be [engaged] in [physical combat]. Do you require [assistance with] [physical combat] ?"). Consequently, he would probably have been able to customize some of the suit's responses to certain situations, which could include a physical combat mode.

So in short my question is this: can Adaptation have pre-made power sets, or is that just the domain of, say, Morph; and/or can Adaptation include offense-oriented powers like Super Strength, or is it mostly limited to defense/movement powers with adaptive offense being more Nemesis' domain?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Are you discussing M&M 2E or M&M 3E (aka DC Adventures)? It's important, as there are significant differences in powers between the editions. \$\endgroup\$
    – Jeff
    Aug 15, 2013 at 13:19
  • \$\begingroup\$ I just said in the title that it's 2e... \$\endgroup\$
    – Cobalt
    Aug 15, 2013 at 17:14
  • \$\begingroup\$ Didn't realize HTML brackets worked here and that they had made some text invisible. Fixed that problem posthaste. \$\endgroup\$
    – Cobalt
    Aug 16, 2013 at 12:53

1 Answer 1


I don't have the books with me but as far as I remember Adaptation is a reaction power that allows you to survive and endure. It may by extension give you some possibly offensive powers (like Super-Strength) but it shouldn't give you Blast or Strike. Remember that Super-strength is mostly useful in grappling situations and throwing cars.

There's nothing wrong with having a couple of possible "forms" at hand. It's just helpful. But remember that Adaptation is a really flexible power so it will adapts to the best solution everytime. It's not gonna rotate between the various forms you have and stay limited to that (unless you have some limitations built-in). So if you have a form with Density 8 that "could" protect you in the situation but there's a better option (like Immunity Fire) you will get Immunity Fire even if it's not part of your list of forms.

So yeah, you're totally right by saying that Adaptation is defensive (and remember that it's always in reaction to a specific environment. You can't voluntarely turn into one of your defensive form. Nemesis is for offense. The combination of the two is really powerful.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Ok that's good. I was mostly planning this character to be a melee bruiser/tank, but if I have enough points left I might invest some in Nemesis, too. Heck, I might even get the "uncontrolled" flaw and just use pre-made forms as a guideline for our GM as quick references to the stuff he could be switching me into. \$\endgroup\$
    – Cobalt
    Aug 16, 2013 at 17:11
  • \$\begingroup\$ Oh, another thing: does Adaptation allow for a 'default form' set of powers, or do you not get any powers from it until you go somewhere or get hit by something that warrants protection? \$\endgroup\$
    – Cobalt
    Aug 19, 2013 at 1:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ You never get any power from adaptation unless you're in contact with hostile environment. \$\endgroup\$
    – user4000
    Aug 19, 2013 at 13:04
  • \$\begingroup\$ Ah, ok. That just saved me a good number of power points... \$\endgroup\$
    – Cobalt
    Aug 19, 2013 at 21:25
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Cobalt: I'm pretty sure Nemesis and Adaptation essentially are already Uncontrolled. You don't get to pick your powers. Instead, the GM tells you what you get as a result of your power reacting. \$\endgroup\$ Jun 27, 2014 at 19:56

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .