Ken Clarke

The hero Rifts Earth needs, but not the one it deserves


NAME: Ken Clarke
OTHER ALIASES: Superman, The Man of Steel
O.C.C.: Superhuman Vagabond
LEVEL: First
EXPERIENCE: 1,000 out of 1875
HEIGHT: 6’3”
WEIGHT: 225 lbs
AGE: 21
ALIGNMENT: Principled
FAMILY ORIGIN: Earth native (?)

DISPOSITION: All around good person/Peacemaker. Kind, generous, compassionate, and positive. The glass is usually half full. Hates discord between friends, family, and co-workers and likes to help others mend fences.


IQ: 13
ME: 15
MA: 22 (70% Trust/Intimidate)
PS: 69 (+54 S.D.C. damage)
PP: 13
PE: 15
PB: 11
SPD (running): 360 (240 mph)
SPD (flying): 1129 (770 m.p.h./Mach 1)

(NOTE: Without his powers, his P.S. is 28, P.E. is 12, running Spd is 21 and flying Spd is 0)

M.D.C.: 750
S.D.C.: 433
H.P.: 156

P.P.E: 25
I.S.P: 0
Chi: 15

(NOTE: Without his powers, his M.D.C. is 0, S.D.C. is 83, H.P. is 18, and Chi is 12)

1. General: Survive w/o food 4× longer than normal. Can hold breath for 20 minutes, +80 seconds/level. Eagle-like vision 10× better than normal (a two foot object at two miles away is perfectly clear). Nightvision 1,000 feet. Unaffected by thin air, high altitudes or G-forces under 10. Can tolerate cold temperatures as low as freezing without discomfort.

2. Invulnerability: Most physical attacks do no damage. Magic and Psionic attacks do full damage if “pure,” no damage if they’re fire, electricity, etc.. Magic Weapons and Supernatural Strength attacks do half damage. Gasses, drugs, chemicals, poisons, toxins, disease are at half potency and cannot kill. Bio-Regenerates 1D6×10 M.D.C. per minute.

3. Sonic Flight: Fly at a speed of up to Mach 1/770 m.p.h.. Can go from 0 to full speed within four seconds (1 attack), creating a sonic boom. Maximum altitude is 45,000 feet. Can stop quickly, make sharp turns and hover at will.

4. Supernatural Strength: Able to carry 64,170 lbs (32 tons) and can dead lift 106,950 lbs (53.4 tons). Can hold maximum weight for 150 minutes (2½ hours) without tiring. Fatigues at 1/10th the normal rate (can exert himself for 10× longer).

5. Energy Expulsion: Light: Fire laser beams from eyes for 3D6 M.D., +1D6 M.D. per level after first, to a range of 600 feet. Radiate up to 100 watts of light, +25 per level. Blinding flash within 10 feet automatically blinds opponents for one melee round. Radiation resistant (only ¼ effect) and it cannot kill. Note: This is not true sunlight and has no additional effect against those weak to sunlight.

6. Extraordinary Speed: Run at 240 m.p.h., plus 20 m.p.h. per each level after first. +4 to S.D.C. damage per 20 m.p.h.

7. Heightened Sense of Hearing: At 75 feet can hear sounds as quiet as 1dB. At 150 feet can hear sounds as quiet as 10dB (a light whisper). At 360 feet can hear sounds as quiet as 30dB (a normal conversation).

8. Super Vision: X Ray: Can see through all materials except lead with concentration and time. Fabric/Paper up to 4 inches thick is penetrated instantly. Wood, plaster, fabric, paper or vegetation requires one melee per foot thickness to penetrate. Brick, stone, concrete or metal requires two melee rounds per six inches to penetrate.


BONUSES (NORMAL): +9 to Initiative, +2 ( +3) to Strike (in Flight), +6 ( +8) to Parry (in Flight), +10 ( +16) to Dodge (in Flight), +2 to Autododge, +7 to Pull Punch, +7 to Roll with Impact, +1 to Disarm, +4 to Perception, +1 versus Posession/Psionics, +3 versus Horror Factor

BONUSES WITHOUT POWERS: +2 to Parry, +2 to Dodge, +3 to Pull Punch, +3 to Roll with Impact, +1 to Disarm, +4 to Perception, +1 versus Posession/Psionics, +3 versus Horror Factor

COMBAT MOVES/MANEUVERS: Punch, Elbow, Kick, Knee, Disarm, Dodge, Entangle, Body Block/Tackle, Roll with Impact, Power Punch, Power Kick, Pull Punch, Automatic KO on a natural 20, Supernatural P.S. (2D6 M.D. restrained, 1D6×10+10 M.D. full strength, 2D6×10+20 M.D. power strike), +1D6 M.D. to punches, +2D6 M.D. to kicks, Flying Body Block/Ram at 400 m.p.h. or greater causes those under 400 lbs to be knocked off their feet and tumble for 2D6 yards (they lose initiative and two attacks, counts as two attacks and does +4D6 M.D.)

Eyeball a Fella 56% + 3%
Estimate Distance of Sound 60% + 5%
Estimate Speed & Direction of Sound 50% + 5%
Recognize a Voice or Sound: 40% + 5%
Imitate a Voice 30% + 5%
Barter 56% + 4%
Creative Writing 25% + 5%
Language: American 88% + 1%
Language: Dragonese 65% + 3%
Language: Demogogian 65% + 3%
Literacy: American 40% + 5%
Public Speaking 30% + 5%
Radio: Basic 50% + 5%
Cook (professional quality) 50% + 5%
Gardening (professional quality) 51% + 5%
Sewing (professional quality) 55% + 5%
Animal Husbandry 35% + 5%
Hand to Hand: Expert
Aerobic Athletics/Sense of Balance 30% + 5%
Physical Labor
Pilot: Automobile 70% + 2%
I.D. Undercover Agent 50% + 4%
Streetwise 30% + 4%
Astronomy & Navigation 35% + 5%
Mathematics: Basic 50% + 5%
Begging 40% + 3%
General Repair and Maintenance 45% + 5%
Research 50% + 5%
WP: Blunt ( +1 strike, +1 parry)
WP: Energy Rifle
Identify Plants & Fruits 25% + 5%
Land Navigation 36% + 4%


MAGIC: None.

AVAILABLE MONEY: 400 credits, 700 credits in Black Market salable goods (well-read Superman comics)


MISC. EQUIPMENT: Suit of Bushman M.D.C. body armor (RUE pg 268, looks beaten and battered), the clothes on his back and an extra set, baseball cap, jacket, knife, energy rifle with one extra e-clip, flashlight, backpack, sleeping bag, small duffle bag, wallet with I.D., a couple bandages, pack of aspirin, comb, toothbrush and paste, a bar of soap, several pieces of candy, a sturdy plastic bag for extra stuff, canteen, a pair of sunglasses, and an old, rusty junker of a pickup truck (Main Body M.D.C.: 60, Tire M.D.C. (4): 3, Top speed: 90 m.p.h., Range: 200 miles).

WEAPONS: Some sort of energy rifle probably.

Environment Growing Up: Agricultural; farm or ranch
Sentiments toward the Coalition: Respectful but wary. Knows the CS is capable of greatness and ruthless savagery. Has heard a great many things about the Coalition, but doesn’t have any strong feelings about them one way or the other.
Sentiments toward Non-Humans: Treats all sentient beings with the utmost respect and courtesy until they prove underserving of it. Has a high regard for life and personal freedom.
Initial Reason for Adventuring: Sense of duty.


Ken was raised on a small farm, where he worked with his mother. His father was a Rogue Scholar who spent just as much time away on adventures as he did at home. Early in Ken’s life, his father brought back a collection of pre-rifts Superman comics, and Ken read them to the point of memorization. Ken’s father was happy to see his son reading and would answer his questions about those comics and the time before the rifts as best he could. Not once did Ken’s father ever think to mention that Superman was a fictional character, and the events in the comic books were just stories – Ken’s father would have laughed at the idea that he needed to explain that.

And thus Ken grew up believing that in the Time Before Rifts, in the Age of the Superhuman, these Super Heroes in the comics were actually real. That Superman was real. He idolized Superman’s belief in Truth, Justice, and the American Way. Hearing the stories his father told him of the rifts, the dark ages, and the modern world out beyond their farm, Ken desperately believed that this world needed a Superman more than ever before.

Ken’s father left one day and failed to return, leaving just Ken and his mother to handle the farm. In his adolescence Ken started to discover he was developing powers which set him apart from ordinary men. Little things were noticed at first that weren’t thought much of, but after some time and a couple innocent mishaps he realized he was developing powers similar to The Superman from before the Cataclysm!

While what he manifested wasn’t exactly the same as what the comics he loved led him to believe, the powers were close, and Ken believes very strongly that these powers were a result of his desire/wish that there was a Superman in this time and place – to fight back the evils that plague mortals and serve as inspiration to all. He’s even allowed himself to dream that perhaps, somehow, he’s a descendant of the man himself!

His mother became ill almost a year ago and held on until this past month when she finally passed on. Ken grieved for a while but realized that there was nothing to keep him here now, nothing to prevent him from bringing Superman back into the world. He started by fashioning a costume similar to and inspired by the one Superman wore in the comics. Ken packed his things and loaded them all into the family’s work truck. The morning he left he made sure all the animals were set free and then bid farewell to his parents at their gravestones. That done, he got in the truck and left his empty home behind him, to go forward bringing justice and hope to a world Ken knew was desperately in need of it.

Farm house in morning light by esperimenti

Front page article of Lazlo’s new Daily Planet circulation, penned by newcomer Ken Clarke:

“Look, up in the sky!”
“It’s a bird!”
“It’s a plane!”

For centuries the world has unknowingly longed for the return of a hero that would protect, inspire and help those in need. I’m here to tell you that such a hero has returned to us. His job will not be easy as his long absence has been sorely felt. It will be a tough path for this hero to travel. It will take a Man of Steel to brave it.

But when you look to the sky know that it is not a bird up there. It is not a plane. It is not even just a Superman.

It is hope. For all of us. Finally returned to a world desperately in need of it.

Ken Clarke

Ladies in Hades and the Dyval Wears Prada Tokobauzsos