How To Play

Although the Basic Set sheet contains all the instructions needed to play Strange Powers, a written instruction set might be appriciated by some who may desire a more in depth manual.


Strange Powers is a puzzle game which centers around a group of superheroes training inside a battle simulator. The simulator, called the Hazard Chamber, is run by the Superhero University of California, and is open to all enrolled students, or can be used for training by professional superheroes for a fee. Many superheroes and superhero teams buy time in the Hazard Chamber, and this supports the University.

The primary instructors for the classes held in the Hazard Chamber are a semi-retired superhero team called The Castigation Camarilla. Too educated for their own good, they never caught on with the public, in part because their team name was too hard to pronounce, especially in emergencies when under stress. As they say, those that can, do, and those that cannot, teach.

The Harvard and Princeton educated members of the Castigation Camarilla set out to teach, with a vengeance! They are MUSCLEMAN, possessed of Ultimate Strength, CHRONOGAL, who has the power to reverse time on a small scale, TELEPORTO, gifted with the power to teleport surprizing amounts of mass, and FORCEFRAN, who can use her mind to make perfectly round bubbles of impenetrable force.

The S.U.C. Professors Of Superherology formerly known as The Castigation Camarilla are the basic team for the puzzles in Strange Powers, but additional fun can be had by adapting classic comic book heroes and trying to solve the same puzzles with any combination then placed upon the starting locations provided. It is also possible, and encouraged to make your own puzzles to share.

The Game Board

Strange Powers takes place in the Hazard Chamber, which is represented by a 5 X 5 arrangement of squares. The squares may be set up with Hero Start Locations, Heavy Devices, Deadly Pits, Mr. Cutout dummies to protect, Robo-Monsters, and even SPANKER attack Missiles. The player is encouraged to create their own unique traps and dangers too, if they like.

A training session, or Battle, consists of EXACTLY three rounds.

Within a round, each Hero gets one Turn, and each monster gets one Turn. Weapons, like missiles, may be set to launch on any one of the three Rounds.

During a Round, on their Turn , a Hero may perform any combination of TWO Actions.

The possible Hero Actions  are:

The Hero may use their unique power once.

The Hero may move any number of squares in a straight line only. The Hero cannot normally move diagonally, and moves on cardinal directions only, unless the Hero has a Power or Ability that voids this rule.

The Hero can flip switches, disable traps, operate devices, or any other such simple action, if such things exist in the puzzle. A Hero can normally only USE directly and cardinally adjacent to their own square, unless the Hero has a Power or Ability that voids this rule.

All Heroes can fight, unless specifically noted otherwise, and Heroes ALWAYS beat MONSTERS. A Hero can normally only attack a target directly and cardinally adjacent to their own square, unless the Hero has a Power or Ability that voids this rule.

The Hero may pass a turn and do nothing, waiting that Round out.



Heroes ALWAYS move FIRST, followed by MONSTERS, and then lastly, by WEAPONS, such as the Missiles.

After the Heroes have made their move, next comes the Monsters, such as the provided Robo-Monster of the basic set.

Monsters, in a Round, on their Turn may

A Monster may move any number of squares in a straight line only. A Monster cannot normally move diagonally, and moves on cardinal directions only. A Monster MUST always move to approach, and to attack, MR. CUTOUT.

A Monster can normally only attack a target directly and cardinally adjacent to it's own square. Monsters always attempt to attack Mr. Cutout. A Monster ALWAYS destroys the Mr. Cutout dummy, if the Monster manages to Attack it.


A weapon, such as the Missile, will always launch (or take effect) AFTER both Heroes and Monsters have had their Turns. A Weapon may be set to activate on a specific Round, such as on the second or last Rounds. The default is to activate on the first Round. A small number in the upper corner of the Weapon defines the Round the Weapon is set to activate on.

The Goal: Winning and Losing

The goal of the Heroes, and thus of the player, is to accomplish two tasks:

1.   Protect any and all MR. CUTOUT dummies in the chamber!
Mr. Cutout represents the innocent that must be protected, the purpose of any Hero. If any MR. CUTOUT is destroyed, by Enemy, or by Weapon, or by any other means, at the end of the three Rounds, the heroes LOSE. Always protect Mr. Cutout!

2.   Neutralize all threats in the Chamber!
All ENEMIES must all be vanquished, or otherwise held, trapped, and generally rendered unable to take action. All WEAPONS must be prevented from destroying either MR. CUTOUT, or 'killing' any Hero at the end of the three Rounds. If this happens, the heroes LOSE.

If, however, the Heroes can successfully protect any and all Mr. Cutouts, beat or neutralize any and all Enemies, and avoid allowing any Weapon from harming either themselves, or any Mr. Cutout at the end of the third Round, then the Heroes WIN.

Before that last moment, however, anything can happen. Heroes can be killed and brought back from the dead, Mr. Cutouts can be destroyed and time reversed before their own obliteration, or whatever the various Strange Powers may allow. The only thing that matters is that at the end of the three Rounds (or less) that all the Heroes are still alive, all the Mr. Cutouts are in perfect condition, and all the Enemies are somehow rendered incapable of attacking. Nothing other that these three points matter to achieve victory.

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Copyright  © 2000 by Jennifer Diane Reitz

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