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Vondy

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Everything posted by Vondy

  1. If its painful and not-funny to watch in the real world, why would it be otherwise on the big screen?
  2. I would second Nameless Ronin's point: what kind of scene is it? Also, what kind of NPC is it? Some scenes and characters can benefit from, or be enhanced by, a little humor. However, in some cases, it is beneath the gravitas and dignity of the moment or role to crack-wise and make fun. There is also a question of "what kind of humor is it?" Are we talking madcap or farsical? Or just a quip, noted irony, or the well-formed pun? referenced between serious moments and not in the middle of them? A running gag that is only mentioned in low-tension moments. I thought the game of telephone Poe played with Hux in the opening of TLJ, while amusing and executed well by the actors, was not appropriate to the moment and served to diminish a primary antagonist. I also felt Vader's pun in Rogue One fell flat and did not do Vader a service. Timing and touch, and respect for the sensibility of scene and subject are key.s Are your players capable of being subtle and sophisticated, or is it madcap and campy? The former is less "intrusive" than the latter. Our game revolves around three jedi survivors eight years after Order 66 in an AU where Padme survived and shot-calling intelligence ops for Bail Organa's nascent rebel network. She's been known to make wry quips that lampshade tropes, etc, and we have a running gag in which she travels with a ton of luggage that leaves rebel flight-deck crews grumbling because she's a clothes horse. Its never brought up in serious moments, but as an example, when they were undercover at a casino the train of beleaguered porters was noticed, and even used as a sort of "shell game," distraction by the players.
  3. Where is this Admirer tree? I'm fascinated!
  4. This last session we decided that the player characters had entered their "Iconic Stage." They are "mechanically complete" and will gain no further experience. They will likely star in future adventures, but the goals and rewards will have to change.
  5. One is Seek and any crit optimized saber / spec combo. The bottom-right-most upgrade allows the player to "tag" an opponent for an automatic triumph on all combat checks against one target for three force points. You don't have to commit the dice for the effect. You pay the three force points once and the effect lasts for the rest of the encounter. Now, one mitigating factor is that it requires a force action at the beginning of combat, but the Sage and Seer specs have The Force is My Ally, which allows you to burn 2 strain to perform a force action as a maneuver. We have a seer-makashi-niman Jedi in our group. He wears armored robes and has a superior quality duelist hilt and fully modded dantari crystal. Its not uncommon for him to draw and ignite his saber (maneuver), suffer four strain to "tag" his opponent with Seek (second maneuver), and then open with his Makashi Finish with 3 of his 4 force dice applied knowing that any given hit is automatically a crit because of the auto-Triump. He also has Defensive Training-3 and will commit his fourth force die to Sense to upgrade the difficulty of 2 incoming attacks per turn by 2. This makes Improved Parry much more reliable, and against tough foes who pump negative dice into his attack pool, Feint remains useful. But, a character with Lightsaber-4, duelist's training, a garunteed triumph on every attack, and 3 force dice committed to one Makashi Finish after another? He treats most inquisitors like they are grist of the mill. Now, he does burn strain like its going out of style, but between using advantages he no longer has to pay for crits, the Dantari Crystal, Intense Presence, and Makashi Flourish he seldom uses so much that he worries. Now, you may say, why not Presence 5, Lightsaber 5, etc? The answer is that we intentionally plateud to stay in the playable zone, but this combo does make him a a lethal headhunter. Now, this isn't very useful against minions, especially minion groups, but... he also has Draw Closer. Against minions he skips the Makashi Finish and dumps those three Force Dice into Draw Closer for added successes instead of improved critical results. Also, a crit automatically removes a minion irrespective of damage done and he only needs one advantage for a crit with his saber. Its not uncommon, since minions don't typically wear cortosis, for him to take down 3+ members of a minion group in one turn. Its not impossible to challenge him, but... he's a Bombad Jedi. The scene from Rogue One with Vader slicing-and-dicing his way through the rebel troopers? He can, and has, done that to a hallway filled with Stormtroopers. The trick is to force him onto the defensive, but he is seldom alone, and rolls with two other Jedi. As a group... Gott in Himmel.
  6. Niman and Makashi together? Defensive Training-3. Pure joy.
  7. Arguing subjective interpretations of force use as seen in the films is completely irrelevant in terms of whether or not move can be used to move people in the game. The devs made a ruling to end this very debate. The debate is over. The practical differences between Bind and Move from a system perspective, and which one best represents what you are trying to accomplish, are a matter of taste and prefered mechanical outcome. That's the thing about roleplaying games. They provide an approximate model of "reality" for adjudicating uncertain or opposed outcomes. That's it. This is a narrative system and the force powers are flexible enough to be molded to good narrative description on the fly. If you, personally, prefer bind for a particular application, use it. But move is also valid. Why waste time arguing a point that has already been decided?
  8. We really aren't supposed to objectify people, but let's be honest, it happens. ?
  9. I will say that I would have preferred to see the force rating in Juyo, but overall the specs are really good. And, in terms of being scary, the left side of the aAgressor tree and Juyo synergize extremely well. You end up with Fearsome-3, Intimidating-4, Terrify and Improved Terrify. Draws and ignites lightsaber: "Say HELLO to my LITTLE FRIEND!"
  10. If you have Niman disciple you can use Draw Nearer to pull opponents closer or Force Assault to take a Move action as a follow-on maneuver for a failed lightsaber attack roll. So, to push someone away with Force Assault you would need the Move power with the right upgrades. Or, as noted, you can do it with Bind and the right upgrades.
  11. We're pretty deep in a FaD game, but I really want to play in an EotE game where the character's are rebel sympathizing scum (or even scoundrels who make great agents). The character I have in mind is a charmer-gunslinger. "Hey, hey now," he said with a disarming smile. "Don't shoot!" Fastdraw: BAM! BAM! BAM! BAM! BAM! "Sorry about the mess."
  12. I mostly agree with what you are saying, especially vis-a-vis AoE and EotE. And you can scale the opposition fairly well even for high-experience characters. My experience with FAD, however, has been that the synergy of several force powers and saber-specs can lead some some some sublte exploits that can have unforseen tectonic effects on a character's combat effectiveness in play. This is why we decided to plateu in our game. We wanted to make sure opponents didn't have to be powerful force users to remain interesting. On the other hand, because most saber specs don't have force ratings, force users typically need at least 3 specs, whereas a AoE and EotE characters can usually become pros from dover on 2.
  13. Actually, it can. You may not like that answer, but telling me I'm not accurately representing my own opinions is not your place. I'm aware Abrams didn't direct TLJ, but he created the context it emerged from, was still involved at the creative and production level with the film, and will be directing the follow up. For me, TFA was a spectacular film, which is to be expected from Abrams, but spectacular doesn't mean meaningful or good. Elsewhere I've mentioned that I felt TLJ was more hit than miss, but that I felt it was an uneven film, and it did have some serious story and presentation flaws. A significant contributing factor to that was, in my estimation, a result of having to follow on the heels of TFA and to deal with (or actively not deal with) with all of Abrams unresolved BS enigmas and troperism. We are not merely going to have to disagree about what my problem with the movies are because, quite frankly, the only person who can speak authoritatively on my mind is, gosh, you guessed it, me.
  14. Its tainted mine, too. But, I should be clear: I loved Alias and enjoyed Almost Human. I'm sure what he did on Lost was excellent, too. Abrams is an excellent director for a certain kind of story and there is a reason Hollywood loves him. But he's not versatile and his style doesn't translate to everything. I have the same issue with Samuel L Jackson and a lot of other A-List actors. I absolutely love Jackson in Quentin Tarantino films and he is a great choice a lot of roles, but the truth is, he only plays one character: Samuel L Jackson. He had no business running SHIELD or being cast the head of the Jedi Council. Some idiot said: hey, how do we jam this super-popular A-Lister into the mix?! Its dissonant and leaves you wondering... how the heck did David Hasselhoff end up doing a better job at being Nick Fury? But, like I said, back to Knights of Fate.
  15. I didn't say there was a way to please us all. But, your argument amounts to a dismissal of a criticism rather than an engagement with it. Why bother saying anything at all? What underlying psychological motive drives that? For me, none of the things you mention really set me off. In fact, overall, the production values of the new movies has been superb. Sure, I have some modest criticicisms of some of those things in the new movies, but for me, the thing that has left me cold has been the director. If I see "Directed by JJ Abrams" on a movie I am inclined to walk away. He's a one trick pony who makes a style of film I don't care for irrespective of whether its Star Wars or not. The new movies are spectacular, but not particuliarly meaningful. And the blame for that rests fairly squarely on Mr. Abram's shoulders. But, enough of this. Back to Knights of Fate! Which, blessedly, does not say "Edited by JJ Abrams"...
  16. From reading this thread, the book looks like it will be tres awesome. I plan to pick mine up from the gaming store today. I was mildly disappointed to see the warrior still has no relfect, but the sheer amount of toughness and durability in these specs, as well as the dodge options, effectively makes up for it.
  17. My main bone of contention with the new films isn't the Mouse. My problem is JJ Abrams. The man thinks every franchise will benefit from the rapid frenetic-kinetic pacing and style of a superhero movie. His technique is to hit the beats, quips, and topes at 100+ mph and not bother with anything else. This cheeky action blockbuster zeitgeist has done a disservice to both Star Wars and Star Trek, IMO. Both franchises require pacing that allows the story to breath, the characters to resonate, and the mythology to build because, while they have a lot of action, there is more to them than that. But, that's just me, and I confess to being a culture and literature snob.
  18. This is more difficult when high XP characters are highly-specialized "Pro From Dover" types who have maxed out their signature niche. A group of those kinds of characters will eventually outclass all reasonable opposition. On the other hand, a group of generalists built for breadth can often be used indefinately. They will be impressive and effective without dominating every single situation. Our group made a conscious decision to plateu and then switch to breadth over depth so that the characters would remain in the "playable zone." They all have three specs, but only force ratings, key stats, and signature skills were pushed to 4. I would ask the players to "distill" their character concepts down to an agreed upon "playable zone." It will require some hard choices, but you may need to make a few exceptions. For instance, not being able to force leap as an incidental because that's too deep into a force power chart. That sounds silly, but when we started at knight-level play that was the one thing all of my players sunk points into right away. I would be very conservative about exceptions, but talk to the players about whether there is that one force power schtick that really makes the difference in conceptualizing the character.
  19. Something else that occurs to me is that RAW typically allows you to try something whether you have a skill or not. Having ranks in a skill just means you get to roll proficiency dice (Y) instead of ability dice (G). As such, if a character doesn't have a skill there is (generally speaking) no reason to allow a player to substitute a related skill. A character with Agility-3 and no piloting skill still gets to roll 3G for their piloting checks. You can always be liberal with boost dice if the circumstances warrant it. And if the skill is highly technical, you can add setback dice for not having the skill. An honest mistake by a new / inexperienced GM is is to be expected, but applying proficiency dice from the wrong skill is not a fudge I would intentionally allow. Rules mastery takes time, both in terms of reading and experience. Players should be patient and tolerant as a new gamemaster is learning the ropes. But, rules mastery is nontheless in the gamemaster's job description. The effort has to be made.
  20. I will say that what people are saying about Feint doesn't really line up with our group's experience. Feint does lose utility as you become more powerful if your opposition doesn't become more powerful with you. Remember: Makashi is a dueling style for one on one lightsaber combat. If you are a master and you are fighting chumps, then Feint isn't likely to be useful or come into play. That is true. But, if you are up against a more substantial foe who is pumping negative dice into your pool, Feint remains useful. It can even prove decisive. It all boils down to dice pool composition.
  21. Oh, I use "verisimilitude" all the time. I just don't nitpick when I hear other people use the term "realistic" because I know what they mean. As for "unecessary exposition" this is why I prefer to stick to "live action film canon" and treat everything else as apochryphal / optional. I find "less is more" really does apply when running a game that flows. Too much backstory, detail, and information dilutes the "high concept." I'm open to including elements from the cartoons / comics / novels / whatever if they serve the story or a player really loves it, but I'm not going to chain myself to it, either. Its too much work and not enough fun.
  22. Yaaaaaaawn! I do "films only canon" and regard all the rest of it apochryphal. The Mouse may say its all canon now, but The Mouse doesn't get to tell me jack about what I do and don't like or use or include in my lifelong fandom. For them its all a marketing cash grab. The Mouse has neither art nor passion. I grew up on the OT, tolerated the PT, and have found the new trilogy films to date hyper-frenetic-kinetic and, for the most part, not particuliarly good cinema, though enjoyable as popcorn films. From a film criticism perspective, Solo is better than either of them. Film Vader is as I said he was, and you even agreed with that, so let it go. I'm into Star Wars as films because that's their native media as well as being the medium I consume Star Wars in. Comic? Video Games? Cartoons? If that's how you consume Star Wars then more power to you and have at it! But, for those of use who relate to Star Wars as a a coherent and concise cinema-experience that does nothing. After all, I can't afford the mass-marketed cross-platform Disney Star Wars. I work for a living!
  23. @Shlambate I find your faith unappealing. The ability to construct a nonsensical fan-**** villian cult is insignificant in comparison to the power of a sober assessment of the actual film canon. I ignore all comics and video games when evaluating character builds. Those mediums are often patently ridiculous and frequently do a disservice to the source material. That said, even with the PT casting Anakin as "force jesus" he doesn't actually do anything on screen that merits the sheer volumes of fan-**** and mythologized reverence commonly attributed to them. He doesn't live up to the fanboy hype. Nor, even with that premise, does it change what we see Luke is capable of on screen, which doesn't merit more than a force rating of 2-3, lightsaber-3, the shien tree, and some modest force powers.
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