DC adventures RPG uses the amazing Mutants and masterminds 3e version of the D20 rules. normally the D20 system can be a bit clunky, but here that clunk is gone. Green ronin publishing has taken the D20 engine and distilled it down to the most basic component the D20 as the only dice you roll every in this game is the D20. you roll the D20 and add or subtract modifiers for attack, skills, damage, and well everything. most D20 games have other dice you roll for things like damage and duration, but not here.
this game is also amazing in how it deals with the plethora of superpowers found in comics. for the classic energy attack power all you do is pick the power called damage. then you add modifiers for things like continues damage, area of effect, or which defense is used to resist the attack. then you choose what is called a descriptor such as fire, ice, cosmic rays ect. this descriptor is what makes your damaging cone attack into a fire cone, a magic attack, or a mind blast. this descriptor is also how the power effects other powers. if someone has a shield that protects from fire and you hit them with a flame blast then their protection will help them. this descriptor system helps make a handful of base powers become a myriad of powers.
for game balance the game relies on power levels. power levels give the players and villains a cap on how high their damage, attack, save, skills and defenses can be. typically each aspect of a character is balances by an opposing aspect . for example damage and attack the higher your damage the lower your attack will be based on Power levels and vise versa. using the default power level 10 your combined attack and damage can not be higher then 20. therefore if your attack is 15 your damage can only be 5. this helps make a mixed party of heroes i.e. the justice league feasible.
there are only four books released for this game as Green ronin’s contract was for a set number of books and not a time frame. this allowed Green ronin to pour a lot of quality in the four books without having to worry about loosing the licence before they were finished with the books. though this does mean that there will be no more books in the line in the foreseeable future. luckily this game uses the same system of mutants and masterminds 3e thus you can use those books to enhance this game. the four books by the way are the core book, two volumes detailing the heroes and villains of the DC universe and a DC universe atlas/setting book.
this has to be in my opinion the second best super heroes game I have played the first was WEG DC universe RPG. now of the two this is probably the better system, but I had a ton of enjoyment with the WEG version so happy memories plays a part in putting this as number two.
overall this is a great system and if you want to play superheroes I would go for this game, or Mutants and Masterminds 3e