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Duros 2.0 (and a poll!)
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Which version of Starship Intuition best fits Duros?
v1.00 as presented in WEG's GG4
22%
 22%  [ 2 ]
v2.00 excellent pilot/navigators, well traveled through the galaxy
0%
 0%  [ 0 ]
v2.01 excellent pilot/navigators+
66%
 66%  [ 6 ]
v2.02 excellent pilot/navigators
11%
 11%  [ 1 ]
Total Votes : 9

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Naaman
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PostPosted: Wed May 17, 2017 7:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actuay, Bren, I find that the moredetail a character has, the EASIER it is to splice character connections into it. The farther back in life the story goes,the more opportunities there are to insert additional characters. Also, its no problem to modify the backgroud a bit (say, change Courescant to Alderaan or create a connection through one of the characters in the background, etc).
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Naaman
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PostPosted: Wed May 17, 2017 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Alao, Bren, my reference to 12D in bureaucracy was somewhat rhetorical: we could insert any number that a GM thinks is "too high" for a starting skill, and see if the argument for balance holds up. I propose that it doesnt, which means that the skills themselves are unbalanced... OR that the value of a a skill is directly related to its frequency of use. How often a skill gets used is largely up to the GM: without taking control of the character, the GM dictates how often scenarios develop that are best solved using any given skill.


Does that make sense?
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Bren
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PostPosted: Wed May 17, 2017 9:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Naaman wrote:
I'll give you an example how I self regulate my characters: the character mentioned above was a Jedi with anger issues who was a former professional athlete at the pinnacle of her sport (litterally the female in the entire galaxy who had more athletic potential than any sentient being). But due to background (which included a nemesis that theGM could use for character arc development), the character BEGAN PLAY with 1D3 DSPs (ended up rolling a 1). In ADDITION, due to the bloodline, she was always at risk for accumulating DSPs against her "will." Any time she spent a FP, she first had to make a willpower check (difficulty basedon current number of DSPs). Failure meant that sheinstead called on the darkside (gaining another DSP.

First, I’m going to go out on a limb and suggest that if you are in the habit of having characters who are already (before play even commences) the very best being in the galaxy at virtually anything you probably aren’t playing the same kind of game as I play or run. So we already have a major disconnect and your best-in-the-galaxy character isn’t going to fit in well with the rest of the group of lesser heroes – and vice versa.

Naaman wrote:
Actuay, Bren, I find that the moredetail a character has, the EASIER it is to splice character connections into it. The farther back in life the story goes,the more opportunities there are to insert additional characters. Also, its no problem to modify the backgroud a bit (say, change Courescant to Alderaan or create a connection through one of the characters in the background, etc).
Detail is helpful if it acts as inspiration or a thought trigger and if the creator is willing to change details to accommodate the ideas of the others at the table. If the detail is a straightjacket that limits what ideas other people can implement then I find the detail creates restrictions that impede creating character connections.

The more wedded a player is to a specific and detailed character concept and back story the more unwilling that player is to changing their detailed back story to accommodate conflicting ideas from the other players and the GM. And if one player flat out refuses to change any bit of their back story that back story can become a straight jacket for everyone else. Rather than being co-authors they become minor actors in a story that one player wrote. There’s nothing automatically wrong with that if everyone is on board with the idea. But that’s not what I want as a player. It’s not what I want to run as a GM. What I want is a shared story where everyone at the table gets to help create the group, the challenges, and the story that gets played out. What that means in practice is the only person who is entitled to a veto during character creation is the GM. And even the GM should be careful about when and why he or she exercises that veto.
Naaman wrote:
Alao, Bren, my reference to 12D in bureaucracy was somewhat rhetorical: we could insert any number that a GM thinks is "too high" for a starting skill, and see if the argument for balance holds up. I propose that it doesnt, which means that the skills themselves are unbalanced... OR that the value of a a skill is directly related to its frequency of use. How often a skill gets used is largely up to the GM: without taking control of the character, the GM dictates how often scenarios develop that are best solved using any given skill.

Does that make sense?
Sure. Skills aren’t supposed to be balanced. They are just skills.

A 9D Blaster skill is useless if the situation is identifying and valuing artwork from the period of Xim the Despot and Scholar: Art History 8D and Value (s) Pre-Republic Artwork 10D are worthless in a blaster fight. That’s one of the reasons that I like creating characters as a group. One player may want to play their version of Wedge Antilles, but being a great starfighter pilot with a phenomenal starship gunnery skill is irrelevant if the campaign is about a bunch of gritty PIs solving mysteries on Coruscant and nobody ever sets foot inside a starship. In that case the players ought to be creating characters that will fit the campaign and that will fit together.

And skills aren’t the only possible problem of solo character creation. If one player wants to run a sociopathic killer bounty hunter and the other players all want to run we’re the nice guy Rebels and we are here to help it doesn’t matter what the skill levels are as it seems that there is a fundamental conflict between what sort of game the killer bounty hunter wants to play and what the other players want to play. In that case, either everyone else needs to get on board with playing the Star Wars version of The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly or that one player needs to get with the playing a Star Wars version of…well…A New Hope. And to be clear, the same thing happens if everyone else wants to play tough bounty hunters except that one guy who wants to play the trusting Young Jedi. They all need to get on the same page.

I’m not arguing for skill balance. I’m advocating for a level of group fit and harmony. That is not something that can be achieved in isolation from the other players. It can only be achieved in the group and among the group.
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Naaman
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PostPosted: Wed May 17, 2017 11:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

All excellent points and I dont disagree.

I think you misunderstand one of the issues. The character mentioned above isnt the best in galaxy, but has the most athletic potential in the galaxy.

If the PCs aren't the stars of the show, if they can't or shouldnt be the best in the galaxy, then they are just supporting characters in someon else's story. Not my kind of game. As for the specifics of this particular character, again,how much does it really matter that that a character is the best at sports when sports arent the focus of the campaign? What difference does it make to anyone else in the game (how does it diminish the fun) if a character has a boat load of skill in a bunch of peripheral skills?

On the other hand, if you are running a PI campaign, what value is added if all the character's have a bunch of dice in the investigation skill, but none are crack shots? Who's going to save the day when the PCs get too close to Jabba's operation and find a hoard of bounty hunters on their trail?

Anywhooo, if the point is to have fun, there may be some give and take required. But if the player is supposed to choose what he plays, then it makes sense to me that the GM would want to be as permissive as possible, or else just prefab a bunch of characters and pass them out at the first session.

As I said, its one of my quirks as an RPer... I ONLY play as a means to express a concept that I've developed. Short of that, I have little if any interest. GM gets control over the whole universe. Player is supposed to be in control of his character.
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Bren
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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 12:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Naaman wrote:
I think you misunderstand one of the issues. The character mentioned above isnt the best in galaxy, but has the most athletic potential in the galaxy.
Po-tay-toe...poe-tah-toe. I don't know what the mechanical difference between the two is supposed to be.
Quote:
If the PCs aren't the stars of the show, if they can't or shouldnt be the best in the galaxy, then they are just supporting characters in someon else's story.
This: "If the PCs aren't the stars of the show" does not equal this: "if they can't or shouldnt be the best in the galaxy."

In every game I've ever run, played in, or seen the PCs are the stars of the show because, when we play, that is the show. They don't have to be the bestest in the galaxy to be the stars. They only need to be the best in the galaxy to be the stars of a certain kind of show. And that's a show I'm not especially interested in seeing at the table. That's not my kind of game. It's fine if that's your game. But, that's why I said "you probably aren’t playing the same kind of game as I play or run. "

Quote:
As for the specifics of this particular character, again,how much does it really matter that that a character is the best at sports when sports arent the focus of the campaign? What difference does it make to anyone else in the game (how does it diminish the fun) if a character has a boat load of skill in a bunch of peripheral skills?
I honestly don't know how much it really matters. This is all pretty hypothetical, but it seems to matter a lot to you. If it isn't ever going to matter in the game, I'm left wondering why it matters so much to you. But as a GM I'd expect that you would want your character's background to matter in play, else why go to the trouble of creating it. so I'd be skeptical about the high skills not mattering. And if it does matter in play we are back to the inordinately high skills having the potential to impact how much fun the other people at the table are having.

Quote:
On the other hand, if you are running a PI campaign, what value is added if all the character's have a bunch of dice in the investigation skill, but none are crack shots? Who's going to save the day when the PCs get too close to Jabba's operation and find a hoard of bounty hunters on their trail?
All of them working together? We played Star Wars for 10 years with the same set of characters. Depending on what one means by crack shots we either had no crack shots at all or we started the game with a few 6D crack shots.

Quote:
Anywhooo, if the point is to have fun, there may be some give and take required.
I agree. This is exactly what I am saying. If fact having fun is my understanding of the most basic and fundamental point of playing an RPG. It is for the group to have fun together within the constraints of the game (and by game I mean the rules, the setting, the characters, and the social dynamics of the table).
Quote:
But if the player is supposed to choose what he plays, then it makes sense to me that the GM would want to be as permissive as possible, or else just prefab a bunch of characters and pass them out at the first session.
Of course players get to choose, but I don't want their choice to be unconstrained. Their choice has to fit with my setting as the GM and with the other characters that the other people at the table are going to play.

Quote:
As I said, its one of my quirks as an RPer... I ONLY play as a means to express a concept that I've developed. Short of that, I have little if any interest. GM gets control over the whole universe. Player is supposed to be in control of his character.
As long as the people you play with are fine with the way you play have at it. I'm not trying to tell you how you should play. I think your style of character creation in isolation and ahead of play might result in a you wanting to run a character that wouldn't work for the people I play with or for me as a GM. But then you aren't in my group and I'm not GMing anything for you so whether you are or are not a good fit for me and mine or whether I and they are a good fit for you is all hypothetical.
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Naaman
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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 4:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes. And playing someone else's idea of a character isn't FUN for me.

The issue here is over focus. Not relative power level. In theory, characters who have been awarded the same amount of CPs or starting resources should all be equally "powerful."

Why micromanage how a player spends his character-development resources?[/i]
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garhkal
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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 7:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Naaman wrote:
Yes. And playing someone else's idea of a character isn't FUN for me.

The issue here is over focus. Not relative power level. In theory, characters who have been awarded the same amount of CPs or starting resources should all be equally "powerful."

Why micromanage how a player spends his character-development resources?[/i]


The only time i have managed where they spend CP, is when they have not used it or have no trainer to teach them when they are LEARNING the skilll
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Bren
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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 7:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Naaman wrote:
Yes. And playing someone else's idea of a character isn't FUN for me.
I think we got that. Wink And you are fully entitled to like what you like and so long as the people you play with are cool with it you are entitled to play the way you want to play. It's irrelevant if some guy on the forum (like me) doesn't want to play pretend to be a Jedi games the exact same way that you do.

Quote:
The issue here is over focus. Not relative power level. In theory, characters who have been awarded the same amount of CPs or starting resources should all be equally "powerful."
I disagree.

Mechanically all skills cost the same regardless of general or specific utility. In practice some skills will always be more useful in any given campaign and will allow a character to be more powerful than will other skills. Aside from giving starting characters the same 18D in attributes and +7D to skills, I don't think the designers had any intention to make starting or developing characters equally anything.

Quote:
Why micromanage how a player spends his character-development resources?[/i]
Has anyone argued for micromanaging?

I don't want to completely nit pick your points to death so I'm going to assume that you mean character development resources broadly so as to include character creation under that label because I don't think we've even talked much about character development as opposed to character creation. That said, the rules do already include training times, the need to find a teacher, or to use the skill in an adventure. These are all things in the rules that limit and channel how and what the character development resource of CPs are used for. So a player shouldn't expect that they have free rein to spend CPs to increase anything they want at any time they want.

And while I don't consider it micromanaging, there are many reasons why I prefer a campaign where the player(s) and GM discuss and agree on what improvements are to be made to the character. You may consider that sort of interaction to be micromanaging. I don't.
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Naaman
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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 10:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bren wrote:
I think we got that. Wink


Then my mission is complete. Very Happy

Though Ill admit I still don't understand y'all's philosophy.
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Bren
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PostPosted: Fri May 19, 2017 3:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Naaman wrote:
Though Ill admit I still don't understand y'all's philosophy.
I can't speak for others, but I'm not sure I can explain it differently. Perhaps for you this will just be one of the great mysteries of life. Wink However I'm happy to try to clarify if there is something specific that is unclear of if you have specific questions.
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Naaman
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PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2017 2:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

No biggie.


Suppose a player like me ended up in your group, and then just wasnt having fun for reasons similar to the ones I'd given? What do you think would be a good way to handle it?

For me, its a respect thing. Especially if the GM is also the host. I'd rather not cause problems, but will hangout just for the sake of the like-minded company, even if I dont play (maybe run the friendly NPCs or whatever).
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Bren
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PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2017 2:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Naaman wrote:
Suppose a player like me ended up in your group, and then just wasnt having fun for reasons similar to the ones I'd given? What do you think would be a good way to handle it?

For me, its a respect thing. Especially if the GM is also the host. I'd rather not cause problems, but will hangout just for the sake of the like-minded company, even if I dont play (maybe run the friendly NPCs or whatever).
Hard to say what's the best approach without specific cases. I think it is helpful to set expectations about the campaign up front.

For example, I'm contemplating running Star Wars again. I'd like to run a campaign for a bunch of Rebels. I'd thought about using the Brak Sector (Flashpoint! Brak Sector) but looking at that it presumes the PCs are established Special Mission types which in my mind means they are above basic +7D skill characters. Because most of my players have never played Star Wars or Star Wars D6 and one is very unfamiliar with rules in general I'd prefer to start them out with beginning rather than more advanced characters since they are simpler for new players to run.

So now I'm considering using the Longshot Campaign from the Classic Campaigns. That presumes these are new recruits and less established characters. I think that will be a better fit for the PCs. So for the PCs I want to see a number of things.

1) Starting characters. I don't expect PCs who are going to be able to go toe to toe with Luke, Han, Leia, or Darth frickin' Vader.
2) Characters who have a reason to be Rebels and PCs who will fit in a campaign where the PCs are mostly good guys. I'm not interested in running a band of fanatical, homicidal terrorists.
3) Characters who have links to each other. Every character should be linked to at least one other character. They should have someone they trust or respect and someone who trusts or respects them. I don't mind some intraparty friction, but I want solid reasons why the PCs work together when it matters. And I expect that each player is going to contribute to coming up with connections for themselves and others. Everybody should be able to answer the question: "Why are you with these other PCs?" with something better than "Command told me to."
4) Characters who can contribute in a variety of situations. At a minimum each character should have something they can do in a firefight, something they can do during a space battle, some non-combat skills they can contribute when no one is shooting at them.

For all this to work, it requires some flexibility during the character creation process.

For example, let's suppose player A wants to run a Wookiee First Mate. Then at least one player needs to be willing to run a PC who understands Wookiees and the Wookiee language and has the background to support that. If player B then wants to run a Trandoshan ex-bounty hunter unless both player A and B can work through the sort of friction that will occur during play without blowing up the party (and many players have trouble with that sort of conflict in my experience) one or both of those players needs to change their PC concept.
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Naaman
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PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2017 3:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you are interested in a special missions type deal, you may consider starting the campaign in basic training, and then advancing the PCs through a SpecForce selection process (make it all role play with the challenges involving training milestones, tests of endurance, courage, integrity, etc). Throw them i.t some live combat every once in a while as the empire tracks down their training base or some of their fellow recruits turn out to be spies or just end up in a machismo brawl from time to time, etc).
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Bren
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PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2017 5:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Naaman wrote:
If you are interested in a special missions type deal, you may consider starting the campaign in basic training, and then advancing the PCs through a SpecForce selection process (make it all role play with the challenges involving training milestones, tests of endurance, courage, integrity, etc). Throw them i.t some live combat every once in a while as the empire tracks down their training base or some of their fellow recruits turn out to be spies or just end up in a machismo brawl from time to time, etc).
Good idea. We did that with a previous campaign. It was fun. Originally I had planned on doing that when I was thinking of a Brak Sector campaign as a buildup and a chance to get to know the NPCs back at the base.

However, my assessment is that 2/3 of the players I foresee playing in this campaign aren't interested in military history, military fiction, or military sci fi. So I'm probably going to steer away from anything very militarily focused. After creating characters and their connections I plan to just dump them right into the action.
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garhkal
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PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2017 6:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bren wrote:

For example, let's suppose player A wants to run a Wookiee First Mate. Then at least one player needs to be willing to run a PC who understands Wookiees and the Wookiee language and has the background to support that. If player B then wants to run a Trandoshan ex-bounty hunter unless both player A and B can work through the sort of friction that will occur during play without blowing up the party (and many players have trouble with that sort of conflict in my experience) one or both of those players needs to change their PC concept.


Especially if the DM doesn't let the players gloss over the racial hatred between Trandoshans and wookies..

Naaman wrote:
If you are interested in a special missions type deal, you may consider starting the campaign in basic training, and then advancing the PCs through a SpecForce selection process (make it all role play with the challenges involving training milestones, tests of endurance, courage, integrity, etc). Throw them i.t some live combat every once in a while as the empire tracks down their training base or some of their fellow recruits turn out to be spies or just end up in a machismo brawl from time to time, etc).


That might work.
Basic boot. 3-4 sessions. 2-3cp awarded per session.
Advanced boot. 4-6 more sessions, 3-4cp per session awarded
Training mission 1. 2-3 sessions 3-5cp awarded
Training mission 2. Similar
Finals (inc imperial raid ON training facility) 2-3 more sessions, 3-5cp per session..

On the low side, that makes for 13 sessions with a possible award of 36cp, where as on the high side that makes for a possible 19 sessions with a potential award of 81cp..

That way they build INTO being experienced spec force operatives..
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