Friday, July 27, 2012

Comic Book Physics: Superspeed and the speed of light

One of the joys and pains of playing superhero RPGs is dealing with physics, chemistry, and science in general. Superpowers tend to violate so many laws of physics; incorporating them into gameplay tends to make you realize exactly where your lack of knowledge begins and ends.

A post from the "What If?" blog (not related to the Marvel Comics series by the same name) by that dude behind xkcd answering the question "What would happen if you tried to hit a baseball pitched at 90% the speed of light?" shows us the kind of game-stopping answer we'd likely get to similar questions about superpowers.

Thank goodness for the Speed Force and the 'frictionless aura' of the DC Universe speedsters who do tend to approach the speed of light.


  1. In any supers game, suspension of disbelief seems to be given, as any explanation of how the powers can work in a universe ruled by physical laws, will be just as daft as the super powers themselves. But, they're ruddy good fun!

  2. I agree -- though the players & GM must work together to generate some kind of 'internal consistency' when playing. Like in the comics (haha)!


That's my side of things. Let me know what you think, my friend.

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