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Vandal Thorne

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  1. This work is in no way meant to detract from the efforts of playtesters and professional developers. Everything here is more of a incubating thought process for home brewing. That said, I'll wrap up my thoughts on the Edge career specializations. While we can have no doubt that things were thoroughly playtested, one of the issues for all games is that what looks perfectly balanced at Time 1 begins to look dated and underwhelming later at Time 2 when a larger number of game components have been produced. Of the original specializations none highlight this issue better than Bodyguard. Between its skills and talents it's definitely more like a Mercenary Soldier than an actual Bodyguard. A tempting fix is to swap the Bodyguard and Vanguard's talent trees; however, while this makes Bodyguard actually good at its named job, it still feels more like a soldier than an actual bodyguard. As part of the problem are the skillset, switching those out for Piloting (Planetary), Ranged (Light), Resilience, and Vigilance goes a long ways towards making your Bodyguard feel like they do that task professionally. Looking at the Talent tree from a Genesys perspective reveals that it has too many Tier 2 talents and not enough Talents at higher Tiers. One approach to Genesys-ifying the Bodyguard's tree then would be to take the following steps (NOTE: this does not use the tree swap I mentioned above): Remove: all 3 ranks of Barrage, 1 rank of Side Step, and Improved Hard Headed. Add: Heroic Fortitude, Improved Toughened, Defensive Driving, Improved Body Guard, and Supreme Body Guard. I'm going to skip illustrating any more trees and instead attach the excel I keep my notes in. The trees are illustrated there. Examining the Marauder from the perspective of Genesys, we can see that it has the problem of way too many Tier 3 talents and not enough talents are lower and higher tiers. One potential Genesys-ification would be to: Remove: 2x Feral Strength, 2x Frenzied Attack, 2x Lethal Blows Add: Bullrush, 1x Durable, Berserk, 2x Fearsome, Death Rage, and Crushing Blow. Ironically(?), the Mercenary Soldier is the most like a Genesys talent tree with regards to numbers of talents per relative tier. It has slightly too many at Tiers 3 and 5 and slightly too few at Tier 1. One possible Genesys-ification would be to: Remove: 1x Point Blank, 1x True Aim Add: 1x Grit, 1x Toughened In Genesys terms, the good old Pilot suffers from too many low Tier talents (and 1 too many at the top) and not enough mid-Tier talents. One potential Genesys-ification would be to: Remove: 1x Grit, Rapid Recovery, Toughened, Supreme Full Throttle Add: 2x Daring Aviator, Hold Together, 1x Shortcut Scoundrel takes the Pilot issue and doubles down on it (3/4 of its talents are Tier 1). One potential Genesys-ification would be to: Remove: 2x Black Market Contacts, 2x Convincing Demeanor, 1x Hidden Storage, Quick Draw, 1x Quick Strike, 1x Rapid Recovery, and 1x Toughened Add: Blackmail, Dirty Tricks, 1x Congenial, Laugh It Off, You Owe Me One, Back-to-Back, Can't We Talk About This?, Improved You Owe Me One, and Just Kidding! Thief is very nearly as bad as Scoundrel from the Genesys perspective (14 Tier 1 talents). One potential Genesys-ification would be to: Remove: 1x Black Market Contacts, 1x Bypass Security, both ranks of Grit, Hidden Storage, Jump Up, Rapid Reaction, and Stalker Add: 1x Confidence, 1x Distracting Behavior, Knows the Ropes, 1x Shortcut, Nimble, Careful Planning, Lose Them, and 1x Moving Target Mechanic is more typical in that it has simply too many Tier 1 talents and not enough at any of the other tiers, at least from the Genesys perspective. One potential Genesys-ification would be to: Remove: Grit, 2x Solid Repairs, 1x Toughened Add: Quick Fix, Eye for Detail, Resourceful Refit, and Master Artisan From the Genesys perspective, Outlaw Tech splits its problem between Tiers 1 and 2 (i.e., there are too many here and not enough at higher tiers). One potential Genesys-ification would be to: Remove: 1x Brace, Defensive Stance, 1x Inventor, Side Step, and 1x Speaks Binary Add: Bad Habit, 1x Dodge, 1x Nobody's Fool, How Convenient!, and Thorough Assessment From the Genesys perspective, Slicer is more like Mechanic. Too many talents at Tier 1 and not enough at any other Tier. One potential Genesys-ification would be to: Remove: 1x Bypass Security, 1x Defensive Slicing, all 3 ranks of Grit, and Mental Fortress Add: 2x Speaks Binary, Distinctive Style, Encoded Communique, Eye for Detail, and Improved Speaks Binary. Revisions_Edge_of_Empire_Specs.xlsx
  2. This is some great home brew. BluSunerize, would you mind if I reuse your Cartel Dealer and Gladiator specializations, along with Sith Career and its specializations, in some homebrew that I'm currently developing? Note for my purposes I'll likely revise the Talent trees as you have them to follow Genesys practices.
  3. Going full Genesys doesn't really remove them. Just think of them as versions of Knack For It with pre-chosen skills. It does mean there are a few more Tier 1 Talents to deal with for Politico and Scholar though since Talents like SW's Plausible Deniability are actually Tier 1 Talents. Quick fixes could be to, for Politico minus Toughened, Dodge, Nobody's Foll, and Steely Nerves. Add Blackmail, Confidence, Haughty Demeanor, and Can't We Talk About This? And for Scholar, which has 10 Tier 1 Talents, minus the following: Brace, Codebreaker, Grit, Toughened, Mental Fortress, and Stroke of Genius. Add Flash of Insight, Know-It-All, Probing Question, Improved Researcher, Nobody's Fool, and Improved Speaks Binary. Moving on the Explorer career's Specializations we can see that this problem hits all-new highs. If Fringer and Trader seem bland, it's because they each have 14 Tier 1 Talents. And Scout is not far behind with 10 Tier 1 Talents. Fringer has the additional problem of Skilled Jockey and Defensive Driving which are Talents for skills it doesn't actually have (partial exception for Piloting [Space] but without Piloting [Planetary]...). A potential Genesys-ification of Fringer which better focuses the specialization on abilities that better model a drifter sort could be as follows: Remove the following Talents: Durable, 1x Grit, Jump Up, 2x Rapid Recovery, Skilled Jockey, 1x Street Smarts, 1x Toughened, and Defensive Driving Add the following Talents: Go Without, Heroic Recovery, Parkour!, Time to Go, Forgot to Count?, Nobody's Fool, Back-to-Back, Defensive, and Savvy Negotiator The resulting tree could look like this: Galaxy Mapper Parkour! Rapid Recovery Street Smarts | | | Go Without --- Galaxy Mapper Time to Go --- Toughened | | | | Dodge --- Nobody's Fool Heroic Recovery Grit | | | Back-to-Back --- Defensive --- Dodge Knockdown | | | Dedication --- Forgot to Count? Master Starhopper --- Savvy Negotiator The Scout specialization not only has 10 Tier 1 Talents, it also has 7 Tier 2 Talents and only 3 Talents at Tiers 3 and 5 (skipping 4 altogether). A potential Genesys-ification might be to: Remove the following Talents: 1x Grit, 1x Quick Strike, 2x Rapid Recovery, Toughened, 1x Disorient, and 1x Stalker Add the following Talents: 1x Outdoorsman, 1x Dodge, Improved Shortcut, 2x Defensive, 1x Enduring, and Indomitable The resulting tree might look like this: Outdoorsman Stalker Grit Familiar Suns | | | | Forager --- Quick Strike --- Disorient --- Shortcut | | | | Let's Ride Natural Hunter Shortcut Dodge | | | | Enduring Heightened Awareness Improved Shortcut Defensive | | | Utility Belt --- Dedication --- Defensive Indomitable Finally Trader is similarly sparse from a Genesys point of view with 14 Tier 1 Talents, 3 Tier 3 Talents, and 3 Tier 5 Talents. One potential Genesys-ification would be to do the following: Remove the following Talents: Convincing Demeanor, Grit, 2x Know Somebody, 1x Smooth Talker, Spare Clip, Toughened, 1x Wheel and Deal, and Steely Nerves Add the following Talents: Counteroffer, Cutting Question, 2x Speaks Binary, Special Use Permit, 1x Congenial, Double-Talk, Improved Speaks Binary, and Savvy Negotiator The resulting tree could look like this: Know Somebody Speaks Binary Wheel and Deal Smooth Talker | Wheel and Deal --- Cutting Question --- Counteroffer --- Black Market Contacts | Speaks Binary --- Nobody's Fool --- Nobody's Fool --- Black Market Contacts | Congenial --- Savvy Negotiator --- Double-Talk --- Improved Speaks Binary | | Special Use Permit --- Natural Negotiator --- Dedication --- Master Merchant
  4. Seems like a matter of interpretation. An issue you're running into is comparative tiers. Grit cannot be kept without sacrificing something else. Ditto Expert Tracker. You could try cutting out a rank of Outdoorsman for something but I personally think it's more important than Expert Tracker or Grit for communicating the idea of Survivalist. Forager has the same problem. The biggest issue when you start converting into Genesys's pyramid is that low-tier talents frequently find themselves on the chopping block. We can see this in more detail when I post my Genesys-ifications for the Explorer specs.
  5. Re: Scholar -- I totally agree regarding putting Improved Researcher in. Not so sure about the others. More to my goal though, Genesys-ification of the Scholar's Talent Tree. An examination reveals that Scholar's Talents are end-loaded with more than the pyramid suggested numbers of both Tier 1 and Tier 5 Talents. It takes relatively little tweaking to reduce these and increase the number of mid-Tier Talents if we make the following substitutions: Brace out --> Flash of Insight in Toughened out --> Improved Researcher in Mental Fortress out --> a rank of Nobody's Fool in Stroke of Genius out --> Improved Speaks Binary in The resulting skill tree looks like: Respected Scholar Speaks Binary Grit Knowledge Specialization | | | | Researcher --- Respected Scholar Knowledge Specialization --- Researcher | | Codebreaker --- Flash of Insight Natural Scholar --- Well Rounded | | Improved Speaks Binary Improved Researcher Confidence --- Resolve | | Resolve --- Intense Focus --- Dedication --- Nobody's Fool I was hoping to post my Genesys-ifications for the three Explorer specs but I'm short on time. Hopefully I'll be able to post them later this afternoon or tonight.
  6. I am persuaded. Also was using the wrong version of the community Expanded Talents doc and didn't realize that Adroitness, and both basic and improved Life or Death had community origins. Regarding the Survivalist, I've revised my swaps to be the following: 1 rank of Expert Tracker out --> Ambush in Another rank of Expert Tracker out --> Cunning Snare in (this got moved to Tier 3 in the move from v. 4.2 to v. 5) Grit out --> Improved Blooded in 1 rank of Toughened out --> Moving Target in 1 rank of Stalker out --> Precise Aim in List of Talents: Expert Tracker, Forager, Outdoorsman x2, Swift, Toughened, Blooded, Hunter x2, Soft Spot, Stalker, Ambush, Cunning Snare, Improved Blooded, Natural Outdoorsman, Enduring, Moving Target, Precise Aim, Dedication, Heroic Fortitude Am also swapping out Adroitness for Haughty Demeanor for the Politico.
  7. Vis a vis Star Wars RPG, I agree with the OP that Politico is pretty much good as it is. However, comparing it to Genesys's Talent Pyramid we can see that like Assassin and Gadgeteer it suffers from havintg too many mid-Tier Talents and too few low-Tier Talents. One potential Genesys-ification might make the following swaps to balance the books: Well Rounded dropped --> another rank of Kill With Kindness added Nobody's Fool dropped --> Adroitness added Dodge dropped --> Blackmail added 1 rank of Plausible Deniability dropped --> 1 rank of Confidence added Steely Nerves dropped --> Can't We Talk About This added The resulting tree might look like: Kill With Kindness Grit Confidence Toughened | | | | Inspiring Rhetoric --- Kill With Kindness Scathing Tirade --- Grit | | Kill With Kindness --- Improved Inspiring Rhetoric Improved Scathing Tirade --- Adroitness | | | | Plausible Deniability Supreme Inspiring Rhetoric Supreme Scathing Tirade Blackmail | | Can't We Talk About This --- Dedication --- Natural Charmer --- Intense Presence
  8. Doctor is an interesting case. Totally agree with the OP regarding Physician and It's Not That Bad. Analyzing the Tier structure in comparison to Genesys's Pyramid scheme reveals that the Doctor is loaded up with lower Tier Talents. This time though it's at the expense of comparatively low-Tier Talents (9x Tier 1 and 1x Tier 2 vs Genesys's 6x Tier 1 and 5x Tier 2). The below Genesys-ification jettisons stamina granting Talents like Grit, Toughened, and Resolve in favor of a more well rounded medical practitioner by making the following swaps: 2 ranks of Grit removed --> 2 ranks of Physician added remaining rank of Grit removed --> 1 rank of Confidence added 1 rank of Surgeon removed --> a second rank of Confidence added Toughened removed --> Flash of Insight added 1 rank of Resolve removed --> 1 rank of Physical Training added Supreme Stim Application removed --> It's Not That Bad added The resulting tree looks something like: Surgeon Bacta Specialist Physician Confidence | | Stim Application --- Physician --- Surgeon --- Physical Training | | | Natural Doctor --- Confidence --- Bacta Specialist Pressure Point | | | | Improved Stim Application Flash of Insight Resolve Anatomy Lessons | | | | It's Not That Bad --- Master Doctor --- Dedication Dodge
  9. Survivalist is the first Talent Tree that probably need a lot of help. Agree with the OP that swapping 1 rank of Expert Tracker for Ambush helps the talent tree alot. However I think the bigger issue is that many of the talents in this tree are simply low power. While stacking them mitigates some of the issues, an open question remains of why there aren't both more powerful talents and more active talents used in the tree. Examining the tree in the context of Genesys showcases the problem nicely. Ten of the talents are Tier 1 Talents and six more of them are Tier 2 Talents. This doesn't leave very much space for Talents at Tiers 3 or 4. Genesys-ifying the talent tree calls for some radical revisions. Obvious first steps are to swap 1 rank of Expert Tracker for Ambush and a 2nd rank of Expert Tracker for Cunning Snare. The following additional swaps remove lower Tier Talents in favor of additional higher Tier ones: Swift dropped --> Improved Blooded gained 1 rank of Hunter dropped --> Life or Death gained 1 rank of Toughened dropped --> Improved Life or Death gained 1 rank of Stalker dropped --> Moving Target gained The resulting tree looks something like: Forager Stalker Outdoorsman Expert Tracker | | | Outdoorsman --- Toughened --- Cunning Snare --- Soft Spot | | | | Grit Hunter Ambush --- Natural Outsdoorsman | | | | Blooded Moving Target Life or Death Enduring | | | Improved Life or Death --- Dedication --- Improved Blooded Heoric Fortitude
  10. I do believe that Star Wars came out several years before Genesys but, it might be good for Edge to consider a Talent tree update in the same manner that Armada is getting an updated cardset. Kind of a soft 1.5 edition for the SW game. Continuing the above meditation, I agree whole-heartedly with the OP that Gadgeteer is pretty much good-to-go. However if we compare it to Genesys's pyramid Talent scheme then it does seem to suffer from mid-Tier bloat, albeit not as badly as Assassin was (and depending of course on how one interprets the relative Tiers of SW Talents). One could Genesys-ify the tree by making the following swaps: Natural Enforcer out --> 1 rank of Grit in 1 rank of Intimidating out --> Redudant Systems in 1 rank of Jury Rigged out --> Jetpack Expertise in The Genesys-ified tree could look like this: Brace Toughened Grit Defensive Stance ↓ ↓ Spare Clip ← Jetpack Expertise → Toughened Disorient ↓ ↓ Redudant Systems ← Armor Master → Point Blank Stunning Blow ↓ ↓ Jury Rigged ← Tinkerer → Deadly Accuracy Improved Stunning Blow ↓ ↓ Intimidating ← Dedication → Improved Armor Master Crippling Blow
  11. Bummer about not being into Star Wars anymore. If you don't mind I'd like to continue contemplating alternative talent trees in this thread. I'm in the process of writing a historical rpg using Genesys and I am finding desconstructing the SW talent trees is helpful for understanding how to build interesting talent trees. Point taken regarding Know the Enemy. Heightened Awareness is in the same Tier and would provide Assassin a talent that directly benefits their allies. However, considering the solo nature of assassins, perhaps a rank of Physical Training might be better.
  12. I'm going to make a series of responses over time that goes specialization by specialization here. Beginning with the Assassin, you might consider swapping out Anatomy Lessons for Genesys's Hamstring Shot. If we compare the Assassin tree's talents to Genesys talents (an imperfect comparison), then depending on your interpretation of what tier which talent should be classified as, the existing assassin tree is thin at Tiers 1 and 2 and bloated at Tiers 3 and 4. If one wanted to putatively Genesys-ify the tree then one might consider making the following swaps: Anatomy Lessons out --> Hamstring Shot in 1x Dodge out --> 1x Grit in 1x Dodge out (the other one) --> Dirty Tricks in 1x Precise Aim out --> Know the Enemy in One manner in which the new selection of Talents could be tree-ified is: Grit Jump Up Stalker Quick Draw ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ Stalker ↔ Grit ↔ Know the Enemy ↔ Quick Strike ↕ ↕ ↕ ↕ Targeted Blow ↔ Stalker ↔ Lethal Blows ↔ Hamstring Shot ↕ ↕ ↓ ↓ Dirty Tricks ↔ Sniper Shot Deadly Accuracy Lethal Blows ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ Precise Aim Lethal Blows Dedication Master of Shadows More on these other trees as my schedule permits.
  13. I've been playing SW RPG for a while now and have grown somewhat frustrated with how overly much the character career options are slanted towards frontier style characters (and outer rim settings). I was wondering if we could expect a SW-RPG based in the heart of the Empire's domain at some point in the future? Something that might make it possible to craft the kinds of highly urban, criminal underworld, corrupt polticos stories that G.L. was contemplating with his prematurely pre-cancelled Star Wars underworld series that's been discussed the past couple of years. I keep wanting to do things with mafia bosses, nobles, and war profiteers or industrialists but there a no really appropriate careers for those (so I keep making house rules to fill the gaps) but, a game centered in the heart of the Galactic Empire, call it Remnants of Republic, would open a world of interesting play possibilities (and also better highlight the differences between the highly urbanized core worlds from the more frontier-oriented and wild rim worlds). Also, is it okay to post house-rules to the forums here? There was a tradition of this for many of FFG's boardgames but I'm not really certain where they would go since the SW RPG is trifurcated into three different games... a general SW RPG forum for cross-game and general posts would be marvelous.
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