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Jacob Lewis

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Everything posted by Jacob Lewis

  1. Oh, fun! This is my favorite part of the game! I think you're on the right track, reflecting their surroundings and the kind of problems most likely to find in a shadow port. The droid made some very open inquiries to find illicit and probably expensive items. People overhear such questions find a) a droid running around unsupervised b) with a lot of credits to spend c) on illegal stuff. Who might take an interest in this? A) Someone who can make an easy profit selling stolen droids for parts or reprogramming. B) Anybody who is looking for an easy to mark to steal, trick, or otherwise take their credits. C) A seller of said products who sees a rival dealer in their area and starts trouble. Have fun with that, and please let me know what happens next!
  2. Thanks for sharing! One thing I have done to lessen my own mental burdens as a referee and game master is stop worrying about cheaters. I even tell players upfront, "I won't care if you cheat if that's what it takes for you to have fun." Especially in a game like this. For most people, this is enough of a deterrent. I am focused on telling a story with the players, not keep score and hunt down abstract rules. Besides, cheating at cards is just another cliche of playing cards. It should be expected. In fact, using it as a thematic part of the setting (i.e. a substitute for Sabaac), I think I may include a rule about cheating and getting caught to encourage more cheating! Thanks for the inspiration! There is nothing wrong with the initiative systems as written, obviously. They work. But I'm not trying to improve or replace them because they are lacking or ineffective. I just want to try something different and come up with adifferent way that will enhance the process in a different way. I will let you know how it works out when I get to actually playtest it with a group. Also, isn't it ironic that we also hear "excessively complex and time consuming" as a common complaint about this particular RPG by people who haven't really tried it yet? That, and the "funky dice" defense always baffles me when coming from veteran gamers who have collected "funky" dice for years!
  3. I'm actually using Onar Koma as a companion for one of my players in an Edge of the Empire PbP game. He has some anger issues. LINK
  4. Yeah, that makes sense. I've updated the rules. Thanks! Also, I don't think I mentioned anything about speeding up play. That wasn't my goal with this. I'm fine taking the time to engage the mechanics that are such a strength of this system. But I would like to make it more entertaining and fun, if possible.
  5. Jacob Lewis

    Cargo

    Off the top of my head, how about animals or livestock? Live plants might be more feasible and practical. Rich people want to decorate their homes and buildings with exotic plants from other worlds. Medical patients require a supply of off-world herbs or plant extracts. And of course, black-market items like drugs and poisons may be farmed from lived specimens and cultures. And never underestimate the eccentricities of people with too much money to spend. A rare and valuable piece of art might not need air, but a self-absorbed collector would rather burn out his eyes than leave a priceless statue rolling around in a crate. He would insist on a full-sized container with a full compliment of guards surrounding it at all times until it arrives safely and untarnished. To be clear, the air is for the help since they can't do their job dead.
  6. EDIT: I felt the original writing wasn't very clear so I touched it up. I hope its an improvement! Since I've been coming here for years and picking up tons of excellent advice and resources, I thought I would share an idea I had. I want to do something different with Initiative to make combat a little more fun and a little less predictable. My original thought was to introduce a mini-game for a variant of sabaac, but quickly discarded that idea in favor of a standard deck of playing cards. Not only are they are easier (and cheaper) to obtain, they're also simple, familiar, and perfectly balanced (as the Force will it) with the division of colors, suits, and values. I just need to figure out a way to incorporate it into this system that adds to the fun without ignoring existing mechanics or options. I also want to ensure that it doesn't distract or otherwise take away from the game itself. I think I have a solution, but I want to bring it here to where the most experienced players and GMs can poke holes in it and find any potential blindspots. BASIC RULES: When determining initiative, each player is dealt two cards from a standard deck of playing cards. Each player then gets an additional card depending on which skill they would normally use during their check for initiative (i.e. usually Vigilance or Cool). For every Ability or Proficiency die they would normally add to their dice pool for initiative, they receive one additional card. For example, a character with 2 Presence and 3 ranks of Cool would receive 3 more cards (2 Proficiency dice and 1 Ability dice), plus their original 2 cards for 5 cards total. Next, each character chooses to keep a number of cards in his hand and discards the rest. Each character can hold 1 card, plus an additional card for every Proficiency die he would normally use for the skill chosen earlier. Using the same example before, the player would choose 2 cards to discard and keep the other three in his hand. Once the players are ready, the GM shuffles all of the discarded cards into the deck and then draws the top card and displays it for the group. This represents the first initiative spot of the combat round. Players must now compare their cards to the one showing in order to see if they can act during that initiative spot. In order to do so, they must show a card that matches or exceeds the value showing. If a player has more than one card in the same suit, they may combine their totals. If they do, then they can take their turn at that time. As normal, only one character or adversary (or groups) can act at a time. Thus, if more than one character can go, the players can choose which one will act at that time while the others wait for another opportunity to act. Once the player completes his action for that round, the hand is discarded and the player must wait for the next round to be dealt a new hand. If none of the characters are able to beat the card currently showing, then the GM chooses an adversary (or groups) take their turn. This process continues until all of the characters and adversaries have taken a turn, which signifies the end of a combat round. Once completed, the GM shuffles all of the cards into the deck and repeats the process for every round of combat as necessary. Notes: Anything that would normally add a Success or Advantage to a character's initiative result (such as a talent or piece of equipment), increases the value of a card played by 1 for each Success or Advantage the character would normally receive. If the character would normally receive a Boost for their initiative check, they may draw another card before the round begins and decide to keep or discard it. A Setback forces a player to discard one of his cards randomly before selecting which cards to keep. If the player is left with no cards in his hand, he must draw one and keep it. Summary: My goal is to keep players more involved during the slower pace of a turn-based combat system so they don't distract themselves while waiting for their turn. Since no one knows who might go next, it should add a little more tension and excitement. And while the card game is only a minor distraction, it distracts enough to keep players focused and engaged. At least, that is the hope. I will be testing this idea in my own game soon, but I wanted to get some feedback first. Maybe there is something I'm not seeing that could be a problem, or somebody might have other ideas that might work better. And if you try it out, let me know how it goes! Thanks.
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