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Conversion - Import Only War Mechanics to Dark Heresy


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#1 sanguinemetaldawn

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 06:48 PM

Hello.

This set of conversion notes is different from Plushy's; the emphasis of his laudable efforts is on importing DH characters into Only War. The purpose of this adaptation is to import the character advancement mechanics from Only War into Dark Heresy (eliminating 50 pages of class advancement tables), and also to achieve a rough equivalency between the classes of Only War that show major disparities in comparison to each other.

 

The notes can be found here:

http://www.scribd.co...-to-Dark-Heresy

If that doesn't work for some reason, you can email me on yahoo, user ID seraphic8x.

 

This set of Conversion notes is premised upon two positions: First, that there is major disparity between the costs of advancement for different classes within Only War, and Second, between the same classes in Only War and in Dark Heresy.  Obviously, if you disagree with these positions, the utility of these notes is diminished.  As always, criticism improves a work, so it is always welcome.

Arguments follow…

Only War: Class versus Class Relative Comparison

An example of this is the grotesquely unfair disparity between the Operator and the Stormtrooper:

OPERATOR
                                 Simple    Intermediate    Trained    Expert
Weapon Skill         500          750                    1000    2500
Ballistic Skill          250          500                    750    1000

Strength                 500          750                     1000    2500
Toughness           500           750                     1000    2500

Agility                     250           500                     750    1000
Intelligence          250           500                     750    1000

Perception           250           500                     750    1000
Willpower             500          750                     1000    2500

Fellowship          250           500                      750    1000

STORMTROOPER
                                 Simple    Intermediate    Trained    Expert
Weapon Skill         250          500                    750    1000
Ballistic Skill          100          250                    500    750    

Strength                  250          500                   750    1000
Toughness            250          500                   750    1000

Agility                      100          250                   500    750
Intelligence           500          750                   1000    2500

Perception            250          500                    750    1000
Willpower              500         750                    1000    2500

Fellowship            500        750                     1000    2500

The formatting didn't really carry over; hopefully it is clear enough.
Here we see the Stormtrooper has 2 simple characteristic advances costing 100, while the Operator has 0.  Furthermore, wise choice of redundant Characteristic Aptitudes during character creation enables the Stormtrooper to acquire 4 different Simple characteristic advances for 100 XP, while, even with intelligent choices, the Operator will have only 1 Characteristic Simple Advance at 100 XP (Perception), at best.  


Furthermore, by choosing Intelligence as one of his extra Aptitudes, the Stormtrooper will be able to Operate and Navigate any vehicle as well as an Operator.  At this point, Tech and a 300 starting XP difference is intended to serve as inducement to select the Operator class.  The problem with this reasoning is that the Tech Aptitude applies to only 2 skills and 11 talents (and 0 Characteristics).  Even then, 7 of those 11 talents are useless without Mechanicus Implants, meaning: it’s really 4 talents and 2 skills.  So our Stormtrooper starts out with Tech-Use from Siege Infantry, and now has one matching Aptitude for all Tech based talents and skills except Orthoproxy.  The result is a character that pays slightly more for a few Tech talents and skills, and is superior to the Operator in every other way, from starting equipment and Wounds to Characteristic increase costs.


Adding insult to injury, the Stormtrooper has lower XP costs for raising the primary Characteristic for Operators (Agility), than an Operator does.  The upshot: the Stormtrooper is a better Operator than the Operator is.  And the same is true of the Medic; just substitute Knowledge for Tech (though the array of possible Forbidden and Scholastic Lores is greater than Tech skills).  Aside from the Lores, the best argument in favor of the medic is probably the Mastery talent, but even that is just 200 XP per instance more than the Medic's cost for our Intelligent Stormtrooper.  

If the Stormtrooper spends his starting 300 XP on: Medicae, Navigate (Surface), Operate (Surface) and starts with Tech-Use as described above, the result is a Stormtrooper who is simultaneously a decent field medic, and pilots as well as an Operator, while possessing a formidable offense neither of the other two classes can even hope to challenge.  The next 400 XP earned will be spent on Trade (Chymistry), C.L. (Tech), and S.L. (Chymistry), which will complete the starting packages for the Medic and Operator.  Meanwhile, the armor, Wounds, weapons and offensive abilities of the Stormtrooper assure that the character will live long enough to learn them.

This massive imbalance is no doubt a large part of the reason there is a massive preference in the community for the Stormtrooper class: its just plain better.
So this clearly demonstrates the disparity between some different core classes in Only War.

Next, Dark Heresy classes versus Only War classes…



#2 sanguinemetaldawn

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 07:01 PM

Matching Dark Heresy Class versus Only War Class Comparison

Next, lets consider the disparity between identical classes in Only War versus Dark Heresy.  First up, Cleric versus Ministrorum Priest.  The following assumes two redundant primary aptitudes are assigned so as to make the two classes as identical as possible.


MINISTRORUM PRIEST
                                  Simple    Intermediate    Trained    Expert
Weapon Skill          250          500                    750    1000
Ballistic Skill           250          500                    750    1000    

Strength                  250          500                    750    1000
Toughness            250           500                    750    1000

Agility                      500           750                   1000    2500
Intelligence           500           750                   1000    2500

Perception            250            500                  750    1000
Willpower              250           500                  750    1000

Fellowship            100           250                  500    750
    …Versus…
CLERIC
                                 Simple    Intermediate    Trained    Expert
Weapon Skill         250          500                     750    1000
Ballistic Skill          100         250                      500    750    

Strength                  250         500                     750    1000
Toughness             250        500                     750    1000

Agility                       250        500                     750    1000
Intelligence            250        500                     750    1000

Perception             250        500                     750    1000
Willpower              100        250                     500    750

Fellowship            100        250                    500    750

The difference is massive and obvious.  The Cleric has 3 simple advances at 100 XP, while the Ministrorum Priest has only 1.  Likewise, the Ministrorum Priest has 2 Simple advances at 500 XP, while the Cleric has 0.


Now, I can already hear you saying, "Well, the Dark Heresy Cleric is broken".  OK, lets look at another example then: the Tech-Priest Enginseer.

TECH-PRIEST ENGINSEER    (assuming 2 redundant primary Aptitudes, assigned to Agility and Perception)
                                 Simple    Intermediate    Trained    Expert
Weapon Skill         250         500                     750    1000
Ballistic Skill         250         500                      750    1000    

Strength                250         500                       750    1000
Toughness           250         500                       750    1000

Agility                     250        500                        750    1000
Intelligence          100        250                        500    750

Perception            250       500                        750    1000
Willpower             250        500                        750    1000

Fellowship           500       750                       1000    2500
    …Versus…
TECH-PRIEST
                                 Simple    Intermediate    Trained    Expert
Weapon Skill         250         500                      750    1000
Ballistic Skill          250         500                     750    1000    

Strength                500          750                   1000    2500
Toughness          100          250                     500    750

Agility                     500         750                   1000    2500
Intelligence          100         250                    500    750

Perception          250         500                      750    1000
Willpower            100         250                      500    750

Fellowship         N/A          N/A                      N/A    N/A

This ends up being even scrweier than the Cleric.  We see the Enginseer has a single Characteristic with a simple advance cost of 100 XP, while the Tech Priest has 3.  More strangely, the Enginseer can end up with ALL primary Aptitudes (Characteristics) but one (including Fellowship), making him like the Cleric of Dark Heresy: someone who is pretty good at everything.  Even stranger still, the Enginseer ends up rather poor at operating vehicles and Navigation, which is especially odd when you consider that the Tech-priest was one of the best at it in Dark Heresy (not to mention that it fits with the nature of the class).

In addition to these basic class problems, there are a multitude of problems with examples like Strong-Minded being cheaper/easier to access for Heavy Gunners and Ogryns (with the WP Aptitude) than for a Psyker.  And Tech-Priests and Psykers who are inferior to a Stormtrooper at Medicae (if the ST has the Intelligence Aptitude).  The list goes on.

These are some of the disparities and absurdities these conversion notes are intended to address.  As a result of these conversions, several classes (particularly the weakest) vanish: the Medic and Operator are subsumed into the Dark Heresy Adept; meanwhile, the Assassin is considered an option of the Stormtrooper class.  Likewise, the Dark Heresy Guardsman is gone, replaced by options including Specialist, Ogryn, Ratling, and Commissar.  Those looking for the Sergeant should be directed to the Cleric, the Commissar, or the Stormtrooper (Officer branch).


In some cases (such as the Commissar), the Only War basic class has been beefed up slightly, to make up for its blatant inferiority to other classes, and still keep it in the game.  In several other cases, the proper choice in the event of a redundant Aptitude (see Aptitudes, page 100 of Only War) will end up with a Characteristic advance scheme that exactly matches that given for the class in the Dark Heresy core rulebook.  Generally, with a single primary Aptitude choice, any class listed both here and in the DH core can exactly match the Characteristic advance scheme with that given in the DH core.  A second such choice will apply a slightly superior Characteristic advance scheme to that given in the DH core.  In no case was any class made weaker, whether from Dark Heresy or Only War.


This is not true for the Cleric.  Many regard that DH class as broken (and with the Only War advancement scheme, that may well be true).  However, if the GM wishes to restore the DH Cleric Characteristic advance scheme, that can be accomplished by adding the Perception, Strength, and Intelligence or Toughness primary Aptitudes (whichever of the two is missing, based on player choice).  Keep in mind, the PC may have the option of choosing two of these anyway, so assuming restoring the Characteristic advance scheme from the DH core is a priority, the most of these Aptitudes that can be recommended would be any one of them.  With this, and two additional choices during character creation by the player, the character can have a Characteristic advance scheme that exactly matches that of the Cleric in the DH core, giving it the best Characteristic advance scheme in the game.  This explanation is not a recommendation.

 

Anyway, the notes are available if you want them…have fun.



#3 Plushy

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 07:38 PM

This is some really interesting work you've done! Sad to see the faulty math behind the Specializations. I wish they had at least had a standard number of Aptitudes among all of them.

It's certainly inspiration for me to go back and tweak my Enforcer specialization; apparently his Aptitudes are all sorts of screwy compared to what his DH equivalent can buy. I'll have to steal these notes and do something with them maybe.

Either way, thank you for all this.


My apologies to anyone I offend; FFG staff, playtesters, and forum users alike. 

 

Please check out my Dark Heresy to Only War conversion! You can find it on the main Only War forum. I'm always looking for more people to playtest it!


#4 HappyDaze

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 08:44 PM

Running the numbers is interesting, but the Stormtrooper gives up having a Comrade. Does this factor into the "Stormtrooper as Operator" comparison?


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#5 sanguinemetaldawn

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 10:39 PM

@HappyDaze No, it doesn't, and that is a good point. These rules discount completely the utility of the comrade; whether its the Heavy Gunner's Loader increasing his RoF, the Operator's buddy extinguishing fires, or just plain having someone to lug the ammo pack for your MP Las cannon around, Comrade's are entirely neglected. However, this adaptation was intended to be as modular as possible; no assumption was made regarding the status of Comrades. Any GM could, of course, allow Comrades as they see fit (would the Adept have a choice of the Operator's or Medic's Comrade? Both? Probably neither?) Ultimately this is intended for a Dark Heresy campaign; my operating assumption was that the GM may well want to disallow all Comrades, yet still permit Ogryns and Ratlings into his/her game. Come to think of it, I probably should have posted this in the Dark Heresy forum first. Nonetheless, while the Comrade's ability to die for the character via the Commissar's Summary Execution is probably the most dramatic illustration a Comrade can give, the actual utility of a Comrade doesn't quite compare, at least to my mind. I mean you have a Stormtrooper with faster advancement of Agility than an Operator, and Agility is the Operator's prime stat. I mean, you are talking about a ST that does as good or better a job Operating an Operator. Again, before we look at double starting Wounds, a pitifully broken Characteristic advance table, etc. Generally speaking, the prime utility of a Comrade is in the extra actions he offers. But they typically cost XP to access (which every character could find another use for, guaranteed), and some of them are just bad. Take for example the Operator's second Comrade ability: Gunner. So the Comrade can shoot while the Operator drives…why can't the Operator drive and torso-twist to shoot at the same time? I know this isn't Mechwarrior, but come on: even present day tanks can drive one direction and turn their turret to fire another. Anyway, compared to the ST's, Ogryn's or Ratling's options (if you like playing a social type), I think offering up the Comrade is pretty thin gruel. I could easily see an all ST, Ratling and Tech-Priest Armored Regiment. And the Ratlings get Comrades and the Tech-Priests get Servitors! Gotta love it. The fundamental problem here is the way FF designed their secondary Aptitudes, especially Offense, Finesse, and Fieldcraft. Fieldcraft for skills, and all 3 for combat (and other) Talents and Characteristic Advances.

#6 sanguinemetaldawn

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 10:40 PM

Apologies for the text block; it didn't format the way I intended.

#7 AtoMaki

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 10:50 PM

HappyDaze said:

Running the numbers is interesting, but the Stormtrooper gives up having a Comrade. Does this factor into the "Stormtrooper as Operator" comparison?

 

In short: in their current incarnation, Comrades worth crap. If you saw my rampage in the Comrades thread, then you can imagine why (interesting fact: in that debate, everyone defended the Cormades on the basis of "respecting the rules" and "fluff" - noone (IIRC) tried to defend the Comrades on the basis of their usefulness). If I could swap my worthless Comrade for two (or even one!) cheap Characteristic Advancements, then I would do it without giving it a second thought. 



#8 sanguinemetaldawn

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 11:37 PM

@ Plushy

Yeah, and I mean the fundamental problem is those secondary Aptitudes.  Characters have substantial flexibility in the primary Aptitudes, and zero in the secondary Aptitudes.  That means specific classes (the only source of secondary Aptitudes) are king.  Some secondary Aptitudes (like Offense and Finesse) are worth 2 Characteristic advances and a multitude of Talents, whilst some are worth zero Characteristic advances (Leadership, Tech) and a spare handful of talents.  Secondary Aptitudes are not created equal; not even close.

 

This is the source of the broken Characteristic Advance tables.  By OW core, the ST can have 4 different Simple Characteristic advances at 100 XP!  That is a brokenness even the DH Cleric never had.  The ST is literally spoiled for choice when it comes to his 2 discretionary Characteristic Aptitudes.  Though his other Characteristic advances can't really compete with the Cleric (but who needs to?).

Then you look at the Sergeant, the Operator and the Tech-Priest, with their maximum of one Simple advance at 100 XP.  It really is sickening.  I guess the Tech Priest has his Mechanicus Implants to sell him, what about the Sergeant and Operator?  Defense?  Tech?

The ST can do:

Intelligence for Medicae, Navigate, Linguistics and Trades (to complement Operate and Stealth) + 10 talents

Perception for Awareness, Scrutiny and Survival + 5 Talents

Strength + WS to go all in Melee and Ranged combat talents

Willpower to boost mental toughness and defenses

This is why you can have 3 Stormtroopers in the group, and each substantially different from the others (and all with Carapaces, 12+ Wounds, blah, blah, blah).

FWIW, in my conversion notes, this array of choices was a dynamic I tried to recapture for the other classes.  For some (like Ogyrn and Commissars), I couldn't make it work.  I mean an Ogryn is an Ogryn; its hard to do much to change it.  But for some of the other classes it works quite well.  In the end, some classes were eliminated or turned into subclasses because they ended up nearly identical.  The one thing that concerns me is the Adept; it is the only class that can have both full Psyker and Finesse (thus the 4000 XP brake).

Anyway, I hope the notes are useful to you.



#9 AtoMaki

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 11:59 PM

sanguinemetaldawn said:

Then you look at the Sergeant, the Operator and the Tech-Priest, with their maximum of one Simple advance at 100 XP.  It really is sickening.  I guess the Tech Priest has his Mechanicus Implants to sell him, what about the Sergeant and Operator?  Defense?  Tech?

 

No salvation to the poor Sarge, but the Operator is quite cool. Each of our two Squads were led by an Operator and he was suprisingly good. The player focused on tech (Tech-Use, Common Lore (Tech), Security and Trade (Armourer)) and even though he missed the Knowledge aptitude (for cheap Int Advancements) and he was like "WTF is this, I don't even…" about the Fellowship Aptitude (that aptitude is just soooo random) he still proved himself invaluable. And the +5 Agility (a boost to the most important Characteristic is always nice), the Technical Knock (useful starting Talent is useful) and the Auspex (this single starting item saved the party from certain death many times) are all cool things too for the Operator. Really, as we saw it, the only bad thing with this specialization is its Fellowship Aptitude what should be either a Finesse, Perception or Knowledge. 



#10 sanguinemetaldawn

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Posted 01 February 2013 - 12:39 AM

@AtoMaki

Yeah, that was the fundamental calculation I made.  The Comrades are OK, but so what?  The best one I can think of is the "take the hit" Comrade…can't remember what class that was.  In the end, there simply isn't enough there, though they are nice.

RE: Operator

I see what you you are saying, but how much of it was the actual vehicle?

The big thing about vehicles is the ability to use their armor and toughness, etc, not to mention the cannons.

And beyond that, especially Tech-Use, I wonder how a ST with the Intelligence Aptitude (and thus both optimal Navigate and Operate) plus a Tech Priest with his Tech to repair the wagon, use the Auspex (not to mention the crushing possibilities with his servitor) would have compared.  For example, ST piloting and navigating, and TP using Auspex, plus a third (and fourth) guy on the guns.  The thing thats so pitiful about this Operator, is of his 11 Talents accessed by Tech, he can only use four, while the TP gets them all.  Heck, with the Agility and Intelligence Aptitudes, the TP won't be a bad back-up driver/pilot either.

Hey, there is no mechanical engineering for good play, and it sounds like, from your description, that you guys have some great play at your table.  Which is excellent, and I am not trying to tear it down.

RE: the Fellowship Aptitude, the problem here, I think, is you are mixing a Primary Aptitude (Fellowship - matches a Characteristic) with secondary Aptitudes (Finesse and Knowledge).  Secondary Aptitudes, especially those matching to a Characteristic, are the most important quality in the game.  Everything else, XP, weapons, armor, etc. can be acquired, replaced, or otherwise gained  in play.  This is not true for Aptitudes with a name matching a Characteristic, but there is a modicum of choice, during character creation.

 

For secondary Aptitudes, there is nothing.  Start with it; live with it.

 



#11 AtoMaki

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Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:02 AM

sanguinemetaldawn said:

r

I see what you you are saying, but how much of it was the actual vehicle?

 

Well, there was no vehicle :). We had an Operator for an all-infantry Squad, and he was quite useful there. He had the best Tech-Use (other squad members: Heavy Gunner, Weapon Specialsit, Medic, Ogryn/ST), so we had to rely on him to use explosives, manipulate machines, breach doors  and set up traps (with Security, what is also Int/Tech). And later he also gained some ranks in Medicae (the Operator has both aptitudes for it) to serve as a secondary medic. So yeah, he was cool.

The aptitudes change is just wish-listing. Buf if you insist, make it Perception instead of Fellowship then. That would be also good, because it would "unlock" Awareness as a cheap Skill and Perception as a cheap Characteristic. 



#12 sanguinemetaldawn

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Posted 01 February 2013 - 03:46 AM

AtoMaki said:

sanguinemetaldawn said:

r

 

I see what you you are saying, but how much of it was the actual vehicle?

Well, there was no vehicle :). We had an Operator for an all-infantry Squad, and he was quite useful there. He had the best Tech-Use (other squad members: Heavy Gunner, Weapon Specialist, Medic, Ogryn/ST)

The aptitudes change is just wish-listing. Buf if you insist, make it Perception instead of Fellowship then. That would be also good, because it would "unlock" Awareness as a cheap Skill and Perception as a cheap Characteristic. 

Got it, so basically he had a monopoly on Tech-Use, in terms of optimal Aptitudes, etc.  If there was no vehicle, how did he do in the combats?  What was your starting kit?  Armor, in particular?

And yeah, the Cheap perception is correct; by OW core rules, Perception is the only characteristic the Operator can possibly have as a Simple advance costing 100 XP.  Did the character not have any redundant assigned primary Aptitudes?  Not a single free choice?



#13 AtoMaki

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Posted 01 February 2013 - 04:13 AM

sanguinemetaldawn said:

Got it, so basically he had a monopoly on Tech-Use, in terms of optimal Aptitudes, etc.  If there was no vehicle, how did he do in the combats?  What was your starting kit?  Armor, in particular?

And yeah, the Cheap perception is correct; by OW core rules, Perception is the only characteristic the Operator can possibly have as a Simple advance costing 100 XP.  Did the character not have any redundant assigned primary Aptitudes?  Not a single free choice?

 

Only tow specialist classes could take Tech-Use effectively: the Operator and the Tech-Priest. So when you need a tech savvy character, you have these two to choose from. And while the Tech-Priest is better, the Operator is far more versatile (that Fieldcraft means a lot) and has a much better social/roleplaying integrity.

He sucked in combat, but luckily we were death worlders, and that +3 Toughness and +2 Wounds helped him a lot (he rolled 18 for starting Toughness… lucky bastard :D). He also took Armour Monger and he was the one who discovered the "Portable Meat Shield" Comrade Order, so he was fine even though he had zero real defensive aptitudes. Our starting kit was the standard Line Infantry kit with Targeter and Micro-Bead. Everyone had normal IG flak armour. 

Yes, he gained the Perception aptitude (that's how we know that it would be awesome) as we took the Sharpshooters doctrine (and thus our Operator had BS/BS) but he had to sacrifice Toughness for this, so he was one sad player when he made his decision. 



#14 Plushy

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Posted 01 February 2013 - 05:35 AM

One houserule I came up with for my Dark Heresy hack and have used in my Only War games might solve the Aptitude problems:

"Each player may swap out one primary aptitude for another and one secondary aptitude for another." I might limit it to just one or the other if the player is especially tricky, but otherwise it seems to work well.


My apologies to anyone I offend; FFG staff, playtesters, and forum users alike. 

 

Please check out my Dark Heresy to Only War conversion! You can find it on the main Only War forum. I'm always looking for more people to playtest it!


#15 Gokerz

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Posted 01 February 2013 - 10:08 AM

AtoMaki said:

sanguinemetaldawn said:

 

Got it, so basically he had a monopoly on Tech-Use, in terms of optimal Aptitudes, etc.  If there was no vehicle, how did he do in the combats?  What was your starting kit?  Armor, in particular?

And yeah, the Cheap perception is correct; by OW core rules, Perception is the only characteristic the Operator can possibly have as a Simple advance costing 100 XP.  Did the character not have any redundant assigned primary Aptitudes?  Not a single free choice?

 

 

 

Only tow specialist classes could take Tech-Use effectively: the Operator and the Tech-Priest. So when you need a tech savvy character, you have these two to choose from. And while the Tech-Priest is better, the Operator is far more versatile (that Fieldcraft means a lot) and has a much better social/roleplaying integrity.

From looking at it, it does feel to me like the Tech-Priest gives up too much of what you might call spotlight potential over the Operator, just to be a bit better in Tech Use and white room combat situations. Basically, by spotlight potential I mean the ability of a character to be one of the characters that are able to contritbute in any given situation.

In social situations, it will be much easier for an operator to be able to contribute and not feel left out. Add Perception for scrutiny, awareness and cheap perception, and the Operator becomes really valuable here (you can never have enough people rolling Scrutiny or Awareness).

Fieldcraft + Agility means stealth + acrobatics, which makes him the premiere choice to lay bombs, hack doors and set traps. Because not being shot at at all is much preferrable to being able to take a few more shots in these situations.

Intelligence + Fieldcraft + Tech+Perception means most Operator can have access to all the main three crafting skills of Survival, Tech-Use and Medicae. Meaning the character can contribute no matter which one is required. This nor only makes him extremely flexible, but also allows him to combine all three for devastating effects. Lacking supplies, an Enginseer might modify a grenade to have a proximity trigger. An Operator will modify the grenades, build a bow and arrow equivalent with which to shoot it farther out of the bones and sinews of animals he hunted and make sure the grenade's shrapnel is poisoned. An Enginseer that finds a destroyed tank with only the main weapon left halfway intact and some time to prepare might be able to repair said gun and use it against the enemy horde. An Operator in the same situation might salvage the main gun, attach it to a Grox that he tracked, pacified with selfmade drugs, wrangled into obedience, and armoured with the tank's leftovers and will probably greet the oncoming horde smoking selfmade Cigars. (Total hyberbole, but I hope you see the point)

Adding Perception also means the Operator can combine Navigate, Security, Stealth, Survival, Scrutiny, Tech-Use (demolitions), Acrobatics and Awareness to be the best all around Infiltrator bar none. With not too expensive access to Deceive and Charm to fall back on if stealth fails (in which case scrutiny will also help in keeping the enemy from rolling for initiative). Giving another area where the Operator can be part of the spotlight while the Tech-Priest sits far away watching a documentary headtubes.

There are probably a lot more situations that others might think of. Point is, an Operator allows the player able to participate and contribute in a large number of situations. Often not as the best at it, but always more than good enough to feel useful. The Tech-Priest feels much more limited in that regard.



#16 sanguinemetaldawn

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 12:58 PM

Gokerz said:

There are probably a lot more situations that others might think of. Point is, an Operator allows the player able to participate and contribute in a large number of situations. Often not as the best at it, but always more than good enough to feel useful. The Tech-Priest feels much more limited in that regard.

 

At this point you are basically selling the Fieldcraft + Tech combination. And yes, by OW core, the only class offering that combination is the Operator.  But I fundamentally disagree iwth your conclusion.

The thing is, in play, I would always choose the ST over the Operator and select the Intelligence Aptitude, if I wanted to play an Operator.

 

RE the Tech Priest you are omitting the Tech Priests' massive Knowledges list, all of his cybernetics, implants and mechadendrites, and his MIU to communicate directly with the machine spirits of the vehicles, not to mention all of the TP only talents. And that is the part that I think is the kookiest. You have a guy here who can commune with machine spirits of a vehicle and is half-machine himself, yet a ST with the Intelligence Aptitude is better at Navigating the machine and Piloting it, than a Tech Priest or a Operator is, when the whole point of an Operator is to be good at piloting machines. The only thing the Op has to sell him is his +5 Ag, which is not nearly enough, especially if he doesn't roll well for that stat, and an ST rolls better.

But hey, if you play OW core only, and you really like that combination in one character, then I am glad you like it.



#17 AtoMaki

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 10:41 PM

sanguinemetaldawn said:

RE the Tech Priest you are omitting the Tech Priests' massive Knowledges list, all of his cybernetics, implants and mechadendrites, and his MIU to communicate directly with the machine spirits of the vehicles, 

 

The Operator also has a MIU amongst his starting equipment. And again, yes, the Tech Priest is better with Tech-Use, but the Operator don't suck in a stealthy Squad. Really, the Operator only loses usefulness when you play with an armoured regiment…. What is kinda' weird if you ask me :D.



#18 Gokerz

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Posted 03 February 2013 - 02:23 AM

sanguinemetaldawn said:

 

The thing is, in play, I would always choose the ST over the Operator and select the Intelligence Aptitude, if I wanted to play an Operator.

 

That is your prefference. But the ST with Intelligence comes with a marked decrease in ability to participate meaningfully in social scenes, doesn't have the complete set of Infiltrator abilities (though he comes close and could do in a pinch), and can't drive and fire boardweapons at the same time.

I'd also reserve judgement on the usefulness of Comrades until Hammer of the Emperor has been released. As Into the Storm and Inquisitor's Handbook have shown well enough, the gamelines aren't really complete uintil these kinds of book are out. A few more Advances and special rules for Comrades may well lead to a massive difference in their usefulness before and after release.

I just disagree with the assertion that the ST's pros you mention make him objectively better than the Operator. They just make him better at certain things, which depending on preferred playstile may not be enough to make up for the positive sides of the Operator. That some of those things are ones you might think the Operator should be best at is actually unimportant.

 

 

sanguinemetaldawn said:

 

RE the Tech Priest you are omitting the Tech Priests' massive Knowledges list, all of his cybernetics, implants and mechadendrites, and his MIU to communicate directly with the machine spirits of the vehicles, not to mention all of the TP only talents. And that is the part that I think is the kookiest. You have a guy here who can commune with machine spirits of a vehicle and is half-machine himself, yet a ST with the Intelligence Aptitude is better at Navigating the machine and Piloting it, than a Tech Priest or a Operator is, when the whole point of an Operator is to be good at piloting machines.

 

I am omitting them quite on purpose, because they don't matter for the argument I was making. They help the Techpriest be better at some things, but do not help him be better at the things I that was pointing out at the Operator's strengths. The Mechadentrites will not help the Techpriest realize the guy in front of him is lying to him and is about to draw a weapon. The ability to communicate with machine spirits will not help him calm down a Catachan Barking Toad. None of the TP only talents will help him sneak into an enemy encampment, or allow him to then both drive the freshly hijacked Hellhound and fire its mainweapon without another PC present.

 

Note: I do really like you analysis, so please don't take my critique personal. Some people, especially on these forum, seem contractually obliged to critizise any thread about looking at the numbers involved in the game as powergaming, min-maxing, 'rollplaying', and done by obvious WoW players. I don't want to seem like one of them to you!

If one had to chose between ST and Operator, I would say the ST is the better choice, unless one really prefers the strengths of the Operator. Just, as soon as there are enough players interested in them that both being in the group is a choice, ST + Operator seems a much better choice than ST + ST.

If the ST is Jason Bourne, the Operator is Macguyver. Because Only War is so much about combat, Bourne will normally be the better choice than Macguyver.



#19 Musclewizard

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Posted 03 February 2013 - 01:56 PM

If I weren't playing an Operator with roughly 10k experience in an Only War game I would probably agree that the Stormtrooper is in every way superior to the Operator after reading this thread.

However the one advance that saves the Operator from being overshadowed by the Stormtrooper is "Gunner". While the Operator may only be an allrounder that is inferior to the Stromtrooper in most ways when inside a Vehicle an Operator literally counts for 1.5 Stormtroopers. Sure that Stormtrooper might have some slightly higher skills and characteristics (if we're going by Characteristics and Skills only while ignoring gear) but the Operators Comrade can fire the vehicles weapon(s) while the Stormtrooper doesn't even get a Comrade.

Of course if the GM ignores Comrades or gives everyone a Comrade this advantages gets removed. The sames goes for single-passenger Vehicles such as Sentinels. At the same time the Stormtrooper usally has to spend EXP on weapon training and dodge while the Operator can operate all "his" weapons simply by virtue of Operate(Surface). Furthermore a ST will want all kinds of gadgets to perform his ST duties while the Operator can focus on those more specific to vehicles, like a good quality MIU which easily cancel out the cheaper advances the ST gets).

So yeah, a Stormtrooper that trys to outperform an Operator can do so when it comes to single-passenger vehicles. Even with multi-passenger vehicles the Stormtrooper will be equal or superior when it comes to operating a single position inside that vehicle but an Operator will be able to operate two positions at the same time while also having the superior starting gear for it. Furthermore there are things that the ST should focus on instead of operating vehicles so an ST that does try to outperform an Operator is wasting his potential.



#20 sanguinemetaldawn

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 04:15 AM

Gokerz said:

If the ST is Jason Bourne, the Operator is Macguyver. Because Only War is so much about combat, Bourne will normally be the better choice than Macguyver.

My argument isn't so much that, its about the fact that it is a party based game.  What I am saying is if you have a party with Stormtroopers and at least 1 Tech Priest (which is likely, given the two are among the best classes in the game), the Operator ends up kind of like a fifth wheel, with no chance to shine.  The reason for this is the way the specialty (and others) is structured.

Basically, with one Int-ST and one Techpriest, you get - Stormtrooper, Techpriest, Operator, and Medic.  Thats the real issue with it.  The TP gives you all the TP stuff, plus the Operator's Tech (but better), plus the Medic's Knowledge.  The ST meanwhile gives the Operator's Piloting and Navigation/Fieldcraft, as well as the Medic's Medicae.  This is in addition to the standard stuff for ST and TP specialties.  The Tech-Priest's crippled Piloting is the most absurd part of the core specialty.

And that is the point of the conversion: to create Operators/Medics that can't be rendered completely redundant by a choice of TP and ST by other party members .  In view of the Psyker and Offense secondary Aptitudes, and Mechanicus Implant trait, this is assured.  This also makes the Adept a better medic than the Medic; having all of the Medic's skills and talents, and access to the Endurance psyker power.

Of course, yes, with a Psyker also in the detatchment/party, you do achieve redundancy.  But requiring 3 classes to achieve that is significant; requiring 3 classes to make 1 redundant is massively different from requiring 2 classes to cover 2.  Additionally, with the breadth of low cost advances made available by the conversion, the choice of how experience is spent will distinguish the character, in the end.  This is a far better outcome than relying on 2 or 3 skills to distinguish a Specialty. 

Really, that part of the Specialty chapter felt to me like an attempt to fluff or bulk up the number of Specialties.

 

 






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