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    Cresco, Iowa, United States
  1. For a surprise attack, I believe the core rules state that the person doing the surprising rolls a Cool check for Initiative, while the surprised person rolls Vigilance. Essentially, what they're trying to simulate is someone with a level head and steel nerves versus someone's overall sense of alertness. Think a sniper versus Spider-Man. Having said that, there are some things you can do to modify the rolls. I might have had the gunslinger make a Stealth check with the difficulty being Brynn's Perception. If the gunslinger succeeds, he could add Boost dice to his Cool roll equal to the amount of successes, or even an upgrade to his Cool dice pool if. Triumph is rolled. Advantages might be used to give Brynn one or two Setback dice to his Vigilance roll.
  2. Okay, I would love to hear how you reduced your oath Obligation down to 5. That's always been one of the hardest bits for me--figuring out how to reduce an Obligation that is either self-imposed or a character trait, like Obsession or Adrenaline Junkie.
  3. Okay...that's a good point. Darn... Here's the thing--it's a mixed group that has about 400xp, with a force-sensitive PC that has really not had a ton of situations that could generate conflict. I was thinking that in this situation, the PCs can take the slavers on and win, but fighting will incur some collateral damage that they could otherwise avoid. I wasn't thinking "screw over the PC with morality," more "present them with a difficult choice the rule books are always suggesting we do.
  4. Maybe...I think it's where Obi-wan kenobi taped his fists and made sure Michaels lost the next match he was supposed to, but I'm not sure.
  5. Whew...there's a lot of good questions here, and I have to admit I haven't thought of all the answers. I'd like to reply to everyone personally, but I think it's best if I just provide all the details in one post: The basic plan of the slavers is to get the PCs to disarm, lock them up in their own ship with the slaves and transport them to a rendevous where the slaves will be taken to one location and the ship will be flown to a chop shop somewhere else. Which definitely will make the PCs want to fight back. I added the slaves as hostages so the PCs would have a moral dilemma on their hands--do they fight the slavers directly and risk slaves getting hurt or killed, or do they play along until the slavers are onboard their ship, retake their gear, and then fight? The slavers have already announced that at the first sign of resistance the enforcer droids should start firing on the slaves, and their demands have steadily gotten higher and higher until they asked the PCs to turn over their weapons, which was the breaking point. Also, to answer BCGaius, this was supposed to be one part roadblock one part moral challenge. They're pretty experienced characters right now, so I want them to have correspondingly difficult challenges.
  6. In my current adventure, my PCs have discovered that the mystery cargo they've been contracted to haul is a group of slaves. The slavers have instructed the droid enforcers surrounding the group of slaves to start killing the slaves if the PCs don't comply with their demands. I was thinking this would give the Force-sensitives in our group some pause, but they've decided to rush the slavers instead and try to kill them all before they have a chance to kill the slaves. I won't say their plan can't succeed, but there is a high chance that at least one slave will get injured or killed. This leads to a problem--how much conflict should the Force-sensitives get for this kind of collateral damage? I'm not really sure if I should give out conflict on a per-slave basis, say 3 points of conflict if a slave is injured, 4 points for a death, or if I should give them a significant amount of conflict, say 7-8 points, and go from there. Any thoughts from other gamemasters about the best way to handle this? Thanks.
  7. I'd also like to suggest that you as the GM can have a lot of impact on where the battle can lead. I don't have the book with me right now, but Inquisitors do have a special ability that lets them move people around. I think that this can be used by the GM to help bring interesting set pieces into play. What if the Inquisitor could force the PC back onto a bridge? What if he attacks and moves back, daring the PC to press forward and attack? What if he just uses Move to fling the PC so that they're hanging on for dear life on the bridge and have to spend an action to pull themselves up while the bad guy comes around to them?
  8. I'm actually going for straight-up Cthulhu.
  9. I'm running a campaign, and at the climax the group is going to come face-to-face with a giant monster. specifically the Terror From Beyond (http://starwars.wikia.com/wiki/Lotek'k). This thing is a massive monster, and I want its stats to reflect that. I'm not entirely sure how to stat it out, though. I was considering making it planetary scale (since in the game it attacks with tentacles first from a distance), but I think that might make it too overpowered. Has anyone tried to make stats for a creature like this? I'd want to dissuade my players from killing it directly, but I also want to have the option to fight it if they so choose. Of course, if they choose they're going to learn in about a round they made the wrong choice, but still...
  10. It kind of depends on how much time I have...usually, I write out an outline of where I want the story to go. I'm currently using OneNote, which is my online note system of choice. This at least helps get my thoughts in place, and also helps me solidify the description of the areas the players investigate in my mind. I think description is one of my weak points, so I want to be sure to get that down. I'm sure enough about my improv abilities that if needs be I can run just based on a quick outline. More often, though, I'm more on my game, which means I have more time. I put up the NPC wounds, strain and soak on a spreadsheet that I can consult, and then roll up Initiative for each combatant NPC. I also make sure that the Obligation that I rolled comes into play somehow, and I also have a secondary and tertiary Obligation rolled just in case one or two players make a no-show. I also try to make sure the adventure has a moment where all of my players can shine. I also usually try to have a map or two ready for the players. These can either be a pre-made map or one I put together. I make sure there are tokens to represent the bad guys, If I'm really, really on my game, I'll be thinking about how the players can throw the adventure off-track, and try to have some contingency plans in place for when they do. What happens if they don't try to steal that Imperial ship and instead decide to hold the director of the spaceport hostage until they get a ship? Stuff like that. I try to let them have free will, but provide a very good reason for them going in the direction that I want.
  11. I have to agree that FaD characters don't tend to outshine those in EotE or AoR. Where I think Force-users do shine is when they've finally invested enough experience to utilize some of the more all-purpose Force skills, like Move and Sense. And yet, even those have to be used in the right way. Crushing battle droids beneath a Heavy Object ? That's fine. Crushing stormtroopers beneath a Heavy Object ? That's probably grounds for Conflict points to be awarded.
  12. How do GMs handle players taking actions that might give them conflict? Do you let them know about it beforehand or let them take their actions and give them conflict afterwards? I usually let my players know what actions they might take that will give them conflict, but as a result my players really aren't tempted to do anything even slightly off the beaten path. Do other GMs face this problem, or am I just not giving my players the kind of difficult situations they need to be placed into as Force-users?
  13. I think there's a lot of good ideas here. Desslok, as always, does a great job of choreographing the fight. Personally, I'm a more by-the-book GM than Desslok, which has its good and bad points. I'd probably go with the idea that Dooku, as a Nemesis, has the option of attacking twice in a round. So my version of the fight would start with Obi-wan, Anakin and Dooku confronting each other. Threats are exchanged and Anakin's player decides to get the party started with what looks like a Hawk Bat Swoop. However, Dooku has the initiative, and proceeds to blast Anakin into the far wall. Anakin is staggered and can't act, which allows Dooku to overpower Obi-wan. I'd say he takes down Obi-wan in two rounds, critting him with the Hamstrung result in the first round, and the second round scoring a Crippled result. Technically, he could have gotten two Crippled results, but let's be realistic. Then there's Anakin's turn, which I think goes about how Desslok thinks it would. For the Yoda fight, most of it is between two really powerful NPCs. However, I would say that if a player was playing Yoda, I'd let them spend a Destiny Point to use the Move power to prevent the column from crushing Obi-wan and Anakin. However, that would be their next action. They could take a maneuver or two when their turn came up, but definitely no more than that. It fits in with Yoda not being able to stop Dooku as he escapes, and more importantly provides a nice framework to present a PC with a hard choice--sacrifice two friends to stop the bad guy, or burn a Destiny Point and let the bad guy escape?
  14. The Imperial sourcebook is a definite must-read if you're trying to run a game from the Imp's point of view, but I think the more helpful book would be Heroes & Rogues. It's mostly a ton of character archetypes complete with supporting examples of said archetypes, but in a break from tradition it also addressed playing Imperials. I would highly recommend it for the amount of ideas it could generate. Also, and it must be said, there are some archetypes in there that are worth the price of the book (like new, not in the collector's market). The Rodian Pacifist and Snivvian Playwright stand out, but I think anyone will get a kick out of it.
  15. Then why have the rules at all? If the GM has to step in then the rules have failed. Okay, I'd like to point out that part of the GM's duty is not just the person who creates the adventure, but also the person who makes sure the adventure runs smoothly. That includes rule judgment and rule arbitration from time to time. The GM has to step in and arbitrate the rules in ANY role-playing game, from the Hero system to, say, Everyone is John. If you want a rules system where the GM doesn't have to arbitrate any rules, then it's time to retire from role-playing and switch to board games instead. I'm not trying to be snarky here, as there are a lot of great board games out there. What I'm saying is that a role-playing game gives players the chance to do anything they want in any way they want, and it's just human nature to want to game the system, even a little bit. So developers have the same problem GMs do, only exponentially harder. They're trying to create a system of rules that can't be exploited or broken, but they're trying to out think hundreds, if not thousands, of players. I appreciate FFG stepping up and saying that the GM does need to use his or her best judgment and not let a player steamroll their way through the system. It's an admission that lets the GM know the kind of decisions he or she will have to make over the course of a campaign.
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