I have a character who exists in a world where superpowers are a thing and common. Her ability is to absorb and reflect back energy and force she receives and even amplify that force (kinda like Black Panther's suit) but still takes the hits and the force from expending the force.

I want to add some realism to this and I'm wondering what drawbacks and limitations would come with this power and what sort of gear she could use that would assist her.

I have already given her a jacket made of an visco-elastic material that helps soften the blows of hits and I was wondering if equipment like compression gloves would help as well.


Right now, while it sounds cool, her powers don't offer anything that an ordinary person with a little boxing training couldn't do. Why not? Because you've neglected something known as:

Required secondary powers

She gets hit by a truck, she's a stain on the ground. You've given her the ability to react like a rubber ball to impact, but even a rubber ball has a breaking strain and in practice it's not all that high. You haven't given her a breaking strain any higher than an ordinary human. Punch her with a force sufficient to break her wrist and if she tries to return that force she'll break her own wrist.

Practical physical limits

She has a power, but it only becomes a superpower when the required secondary powers are allowed for. Define them, start with strength, healing, resilience, then limit them. Those are her limitations, she can stop a car, but not a truck, if she takes a beating she's down for a few days, etc. These become her practical physical limits.

The real benefit of her power now lies in combat efficiency, she's expending the power of the impacts she's received rather than burning her own energy, but to do that she has to take a bit of a beating. Her combat complexity lies in knowing when to take a hit to get that boost rather than dodging or blocking everything.

In terms of superpowers, as long as you keep the secondary powers under control you shouldn't have a balance problem here.


With the above allowed for, gear is stylistic and tells you what sort of hero you're after. Captain America has a shield and punches people, lethal force is not his schtick. Deadpool has guns and swords and all the toys, lethal force is very much his thing. Gear becomes about how your hero presents to the world, to kill or not to kill. Weapons or fists.


1. Stick. If you are storing up energy from being walloped on and thrown from cars, and then you are going to expend that energy but you

still take the hits and the force from expending the force

(more realistic than Black Panther!) it would be nice for your poor fist not to feel all the force of your mass being thrown from a car. Instead, a stick can feel it. It can have a cushiony handle. She can whack people with it, should the need arise.

2. Rocks. Even better than whacking people with a stick would be stuff she can throw. Her stored force is exerted over a short period as she accelerates the rock. The sudden deceleration of the rock on its target happens without her fist or foot being involved.

This might be even better with a bat and balls. She can use her softball skills. She can use bat, throw balls or hit a ball with the bat at 250 mph. These are custom softballs and she will go collect them later when things cool down. .

Maybe her hero squad has a softball team. That would be a good way to sort out differences with other heroes.


Start the fight fully charged

In the Dresden Files, Harry Dresden has rings that absorb kinetic energy which he can release at a later time. Before going into battle he spends time hitting a punching bag to make sure his rings are fully charged.

If your hero hit something or spent an hour in a foam hamster wheel before a fight, they could hit first and not wait to absorb energy.


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