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Dark Eldar - No Origin Path = Underpowered?


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#1 Seeten

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Posted 21 September 2012 - 03:59 AM

I'd be interested in hearing opinions on this, not of the "You are playing it for the roleplaying!" or "Munchkin!" variety, but opinions on the actual mechanics.

A Dark Eldar starts with a 30 Agility, and gets a 2d10 bump, for an average of 41, and all have Matchless Grace, for an Unnatural Agility x2, for an average bump to AB 8.

An RT character starts with a 25 Agility, can bump that to a 44 through Origin Path, gets 2d10 to add for an average of 55, and you can get Unnatural Agility from Disturbing Grace, and other places.

Seems out of place, even without disturbing grace, any effort at all can get you into the 50's on the human character, where you need to roll a 20 to get the Dark Eldar there. Unnatural Agility isn't particularly thrilling, as far as I can tell, as much uses the unmodified bonus, like movement, and few things are determined by the agility bonus itself.

Long story short: Origin path lets you boost Agility to 44 before rolling, or Ballistic Skill to 48 before rolling, or Fellowship to 46, gives a bunch of talents and skills and perks, what do the aliens get to offset it? The pleasure of being an alien?

I hope I am missing something.



#2 N0-1_H3r3

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Posted 21 September 2012 - 04:45 AM

Seeten said:

The pleasure of being an alien?

 

In short, yes.

The intent with all Xenos PCs is that they do not use the Origin Path but instead gain greater bonuses and effects from their race. This was a basic decision made when Into the Storm was being developed (as the first Xenos PCs appear there).

Characteristic scores are not the be-all and end-all of the matter - all so-far-published Xenos have Unnatural Characteristics at start and additional useful traits, as well as access to an array of unique abilities that no other character can obtain.

With specific regards to Dark Eldar, Unnatural Agility, along with Paranoia, a high Perception, Dark Sight and Heightened Senses (Sight and Hearing), makes for characters that are unlikely to be surprised and which are effective stealth and ambush characters. Catfall and Sprint make for particularly mobile characters (Catfall with Unnatural Agility in particular combine to allow a character to leap off tall buildings unharmed with impossible ease… a combination I've seen used to good effect before). The advantage of Power Through Pain - the signature ability of Dark Eldar characters - is also one not to underestimate, particularly in combination with the various talents that key off of it.

Unnatural Agility does suffer by comparison to Unnatural Strength or Toughness in Rogue Trader, admittedly - it's somewhat more effective in Dark Heresy and Deathwatch (where the Trait improves the difficulty of Agility-based Tests in addition to the benefits listed in Rogue Trader) and Black Crusade (where Unnatural Agility does contribute to movement), but it isn't entirely without use. I do personally recommend using the version of Unnatural Characteristics listed in The Inquisitor's Handbook for Dark Heresy, or those in the Deathwatch rulebook, over those in the Rogue Trader rulebook, as that makes Unnatural Characteristics other than Strength or Toughness more broadly useful.


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#3 Seeten

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Posted 21 September 2012 - 05:13 AM

Do you think having access to Tormentor talents and such makes up for lower stats and a severe disadvantage in almost all social situations? I get that the Dark Eldar, for instance, start with 5 traits (only 3 positive, though) and 7 talents, but my last Arch Militant started with 2 positive traits, 9 talents and 4 skills through Origin Path, so it isn't like that's coming out ahead, or anything.

I guess what I am getting at is this. The aliens are mostly good for combat, as they are pretty terrible in social situations, due to disturbing voice, speak not unto, etc, and it seems even for combat, they are worse than a human. At least with the Kroot, they can paste you in melee with Unnatural Strength, which really does have an impact, where Unnatural Agility seems good for Lightning Reflexes and thats about it.

As I rolled up a Wych last night, I was really struck by all the stuff you lose, and you don't seem to gain anything except the license to write "Dark Eldar" on your sheet.

Thanks for the response, No 1, even if this post sounds critical, I appreciate that we have rules at all.



#4 HappyDaze

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Posted 21 September 2012 - 10:29 AM

I *do* allow xenos characters to use the optional Lineage of Renown section of the Origin Path. All of these options require the expenditure of experience points and they are 'free choices' in that they don't require connections to the rest of the Origin Path, so I let xenos characters take them if they can be justified.

As examples: I've seen a Kroot Mercenary pick up Talented (Awareness) for 100 xp by taking A Proud Tradition: Heir Apparent. He was the 'golden child' of his band and was expected to become a Shaper in time. I have a Dark Eldar in the making that will be picking up Air of Authority, Talented (Command) and Talented (Intimidate) for 350 xp by taking Of Extensive Means: A Powerful Legacy. This will represent the power of the Kabal he's from - one closely aligned with Asdrubael Vect.


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#5 Seeten

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Posted 21 September 2012 - 11:35 AM

 Thats pretty cool, Happy. Good suggestions.

We could probably do up some sort of mock up Origin Path for each Alien, too.



#6 JuankiMan

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Posted 21 September 2012 - 10:30 PM

Seeten said:

A Dark Eldar starts with a 30 Agility, and gets a 2d10 bump, for an average of 41, and all have Matchless Grace, for an Unnatural Agility x2, for an average bump to AB 8.

An RT character starts with a 25 Agility, can bump that to a 44 through Origin Path, gets 2d10 to add for an average of 55, and you can get Unnatural Agility from Disturbing Grace, and other places.

Well, you can certainly buff a single stat severely through the Origin Path, but that is if you pick most, if not all, of your choices speciefically geared to up the stat while leaving the rest to suffer. The Origin Path makes humans more versatile, which I think it fits, but I don't think it makes them any more powerful.

And from which book is this "Disturbing Grace and other places" where you can get Unnatural Characteristics at creation? I was under the impression that Unnaturals where hard to come by and often had severe disadvantages.






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