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hencook

Where mah Scholars at?

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Like DanteRotterdam says, if the GM adds in the benefits you can make a lot of use of Knowledge skills.

 

Make a Streetwise or Knowledge (Underworld) check to find a fence to sell your goods. A more successful check can find a fence who will pay more or be more discreet.

 

In Dante's example with the Gorax, you could possibly gain Boosts on checks against the Gorax if you're trying to fight it or trap it. If you know where it's going to be because you know its feeding habits, you can trap it more easily.

 

I've designed an encounter where the PCs are fighting Aqualish thugs in a town square with food vendors. A Xenology check could tell them details about Aqualish biology. "If you can knock over this food cart, the smoke will irritate the eyes of the Aqualish and blind them."

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In Dante's example with the Gorax, you could possibly gain Boosts on checks against the Gorax if you're trying to fight it or trap it. If you know where it's going to be because you know its feeding habits, you can trap it more easily.

 

Oh, yeah definitely. In our game the NPC scholar supplied bonusses all the time. He couldn't fight worth a **** but he could tell you exactly how to best hurt that Nexu or what part of that year's build of stormtrooper armor was particularly weak (example 1 supplied a boost die, example two took away 1 point of soak.)

Edited by DanteRotterdam

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The main problem I have with Knowledge based specs is precisely how hard is a Knowledge check to begin with ever?  Does it require Triumphs ever?  It seems to me any player with a good Intellect is going to be able to just make a base dice check and succeed.  

 

Well, it's all situational. Mongo the Hutt doesn't advertise his Wookiee Fur Sweater fetish, so I'd call that 4 purples. However Mongo is always having Rocky Road ice cream flown in special from Nar Shadaa, so that's pretty common knowledge (at least after his week long Ice Cream Social bender), so I'd call it 2 purples. Getting a triumph isn't necessary, but it does mean that not only do you know he has a Wookiee Fur Sweater Fetish, but you know that the Kashyyyk branch of Locks of Love is going out of business and you can get a screaming deal on all their stock!

 

I get people saying it's about concept and such, but in that case there is nothing that requires a smart character to have the skill.

 

You're too mono-focused. Sure there's nothing saying that my Scholar and your smuggler having Underworld at the same skill level are not comparable. However it's taken me less points to get there and I have awesome talents that let me pull off black die and add blues - making me a better negotiator when dealing with Mongo than you.

 

I don't need a whole spec though to just know his ice cream and clothing habits.  A soldier with 2 skill points in Knowledge skill and a 4 intellect is essentially going to know that as well.

 

In regards to Smugglers, they have Underworld so that's probably not a good example, but again, that's my point, lots of classes have Knowledge skills and will do just as well.  Adding the need for more successes for more information on a knowledge check is just artificially inflating the value of the skill.  There is a quantifiable reason for rolling more successes in combat or a medical check.

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2P51, then Scholar might not be the career for you.

 

I just want to assert again that I think it depends more on the play style of the PLAYER and the campaign you're in. 

 

If, as a player, I wanted to run C3P0, or Giles the Watcher from Buffy, or any kind of a wise, knowledgeable, educated character, then Scholar would be a great specialization for that.

 

There'd be a lot of opportunities to support the party and accomplish things. Removing Setback dice from Knowledge checks or codebreaking, doing research with educational institutions, and so on.

 

In the hands of a player who was interested in this type of play style AND in the right campaign, these kinds of skills could be really beneficial. They could help a party learn a lot of valuable information about the people and institutions they're dealing with.

 

If a player is not interested in this style of play, then this probably would not be the specialization for them.

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Again, creating uses for the successes and Triumphs is just that, it's creative and commendable but a GM could just as easily say pass a Knowledge check and you know what you know.

 

Yeah, this makes no sense to me whatsoever. This seems like a metagaming thing if anything. A player has no idea what his character knows a certain thing or how deep that knowledge goes.

 

 

Honestly, generally I am only telling players what I want them to know regardless of skills.  

 

I would really hate that as a player. Of course this would be reasonable for things that are common knowledge but otherwise I would really think this took away from me playing the character.

 

They will inflict the damage or heal the wounds they roll though.

 

Hey, it's your game. I just don't see such a big difference between mental checks and physical checks. Especially considering we don't do an awfull lot of fighting anyway.

 

Many other skills have tangible benefits to more success and Triumphs rolled.  Knowledge spec takes Triumphs and converts them into successes.  Which again, doesn't really have a fixed point to it. I can generate successes with green dice, and I can spend a point on a Knowledge skill as a non career for Triumphs.  

No idea what you mean here...

 

Asking players to invent reasons to use their skills seems to me just more proof that there isn't much need. Kind of like a solution looking for a problem.

 

So not what I said. I said: "I think a player that choses a Scholar needs to be highly proactive and suggest rolling on his knowledge skills quite often" this is a reasonable thing to do, people "inventing reasons to use their skill" (whatever that may precisely mean) isn't.

 

I have no issue with Knowledge skills perse, it's just the specs that are heavily into them are again, the solution looking for a problem imo.

 

Again, no idea what you mean...

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I don't need a whole spec though to just know his ice cream and clothing habits.  A soldier with 2 skill points in Knowledge skill and a 4 intellect is essentially going to know that as well.

 

 

But at 10 more experience points for the cost (plus, potentially more black dice because he doesn't have the "make black dice go away" talents from the tree).

 

In regards to Smugglers, they have Underworld so that's probably not a good example,

 

 

Eh, fair point about the smugglers and underworld - that's what I get for pulling examples out of the air without a book when I really should be working.

 

Adding the need for more successes for more information on a knowledge check is just artificially inflating the value of the skill.

 

That's not a new development. All the way back to the early days of WEG, there's always been gradations of knowledge levels. Several of their canned games had moments of the better you roll, the more you know about a thing. The more you know about a thing, the easier it was to deal with that thing. Thus - value in being smart.

Edited by Desslok

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The main problem I have with Knowledge based specs is precisely how hard is a Knowledge check to begin with ever?  Does it require Triumphs ever?  It seems to me any player with a good Intellect is going to be able to just make a base dice check and succeed.  

 

Well, it's all situational. Mongo the Hutt doesn't advertise his Wookiee Fur Sweater fetish, so I'd call that 4 purples. However Mongo is always having Rocky Road ice cream flown in special from Nar Shadaa, so that's pretty common knowledge (at least after his week long Ice Cream Social bender), so I'd call it 2 purples. Getting a triumph isn't necessary, but it does mean that not only do you know he has a Wookiee Fur Sweater Fetish, but you know that the Kashyyyk branch of Locks of Love is going out of business and you can get a screaming deal on all their stock!

 

I get people saying it's about concept and such, but in that case there is nothing that requires a smart character to have the skill.

 

You're too mono-focused. Sure there's nothing saying that my Scholar and your smuggler having Underworld at the same skill level are not comparable. However it's taken me less points to get there and I have awesome talents that let me pull off black die and add blues - making me a better negotiator when dealing with Mongo than you.

 

I don't need a whole spec though to just know his ice cream and clothing habits.

Exagerate much?

 

A soldier with 2 skill points in Knowledge skill and a 4 intellect is essentially going to know that as well.

 

Just like a pilot with agility 4 and 2 ranged heavy would make a soldier obsolete?

 

In regards to Smugglers, they have Underworld so that's probably not a good example, but again, that's my point, lots of classes have Knowledge skills and will do just as well.

It's not about being succesful at one knowledge skill. It is about being a well of information on numerous subjects.

 

Adding the need for more successes for more information on a knowledge check is just artificially inflating the value of the skill.  There is a quantifiable reason for rolling more successes in combat or a medical check.

I guess that is only limited by your imagination.

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Everything in this hobby is kinda "A solution looking for a problem", though, isn't it?

 

If I play an Archaeologist, doesn't that imply I want to be doing exploration of relics or tombs, or researching ancient things?

 

If I play a Hired Gun, doesn't that mean the 'problem' I am looking for is something I can shoot, a base to assault, a client to defend?

 

If I play a Pilot, I'm probably hoping there will be some space combat.

 

As a Scholar, I'd be looking for situations to use knowledge skills.

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In the hands of a player who was interested in this type of play style AND in the right campaign, these kinds of skills could be really beneficial. They could help a party learn a lot of valuable information about the people and institutions they're dealing with.

 

Support the team? Bah! How about saving the day! Stepping out of the universe for a moment, without Egon and his "We could reverse the particle flow through the gate" moment of inspiration, Gozer would have torn up New York. Smart Characters think about crossing the streams. Dumb characters just stand there and blast Mr Stay Puft.

 

(And that's not getting into the Real Ghostbusters, where being Smart with Smart Skills saved the day several times)

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Absolutely Desslok! Great examples.

 

If you have a GM and a group of players that want to focus more on some other aspect of Star Wars, then go with it.

 

You can have a campaign focused on combat with a team of Hired Guns or Bounty Hunters, you could have a Smuggler-centered team, there are lots of options.

 

With the right GM and players, the Scholar can really shine.

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Eh, I'm going to once again throw out my disdain for when threads break down into the whole, "don't use this, its useful, choose something else" pattern. I don't think its fair to say that knowledge skills are useless or underrated. Underutilized? Yes. Underrated? No.

 

Some skills are used less in games because players and GMs simply don't know how to implement the skill concepts in a meaningful way that helps supplement the adventure that their running, which is fine, but that doesn't mean a skill or skills is useless - they are only as useless as we let them be.

 

Realistically, Knowledge skills are a bit daunting to implement outside of giving boost dice, but in more open games, they come in handy. I do generally believe that, if as a GM, you've got a set idea of what you want to happen, when you want it to happen and how you want it to happen, skills like Knowledge or Astrogation lose effectiveness. On the other hand, if you give players an objective and allow them to go off the rails and complete the objectives in any way they'd like, Knowledge skills come in handy.

 

An example would be, the players take a job to find some type of rare resource or relic - as a GM you can either simply tell the players you need to find this resource/relic on this planet. Or, another option is have the PCs take the job with no idea of where to begin and say, "Yup, that's all the info you're getting," then wrap the adventure around how the players go about finding this resource. Now Knowledge comes into play - perhaps they succeed on checks, getting to the resource/relic quickly, or perhaps they fail and you feed them false information, or they go on a wild goose hunt that proves to be a couple of sessions long. These are the instances when something like knowledge skills come into play. If situations aren't presented to the player providing opportunities to use certain skills, then they will be useless. It does take a degree of GM patience to allow this type of adventure, but it can be rewarding in its own light. Similar scenarios are the use of Astrogation beyond the group quickly trying to jump out of a fight - where as a failed Astrogation check lands the group in a region of space, of which they have no clue where their at and would require research and knowledge to get their bearings.

 

A way to start incorporating knowledge skills, even with on rails adventures, is taking the group to planets that harsh atmospheres; if the players don't run a knowledge check on the planet, they obviously they wouldn't be prepared for the planet's conditions and add setback dice to their resilience checks.

 

Knowledge skills (like Astrogation, Computers, Resilience and Athletics) all have certain niches that require implementation of scenarios to be properly used. They aren't useless, perhaps a better thought is that they're misunderstood.

Edited by MosesofWar

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Part of the value of a Knowledge based character will unfortunately be tied to your GM.  If the GM doesn't give you the opportunity to use your scholarly abilities, then yes, it's a useless spec.  If you have a versatile GM who regularly creates situations where some knowledge will be helpful then it will be useful.

 

If your whole campaign is based around getting to the combat as fast as possible it's not going to be very useful, but then again, neither will the thief, scoundrel, or a variety of other classes I can't think of because I'm at work and don't have my books. 

 

A lot of the fun I've seen with the Star Wars universe and EotE is that it's huge.  There is so much knowledge out there that having somebody who can pull it in at a whim can be very handy.

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Ok let me try a different approach because clearly some are getting wound up and emotional and it is just a game fellas.

 

I don't use Knowledge checks as a plot tool or as a way of passing information to the players about the story.  The main reason being if they screw a roll up royally what do you do, if the answer is tell them anyway, then there is just proof as far as I'm concerned that using Knowledge for that is a bad idea.  

 

I use Knowledge checks for tangible things that can be measured.  Use Knowledge to locate buyers/sellers then in the form of a boost die on a Negotiation/Streetwise check as representative of having located the best source/buyer as a result of the Knowledge check, that sort of thing.

 

The problem with Scholar is there is nothing that really particularly makes the spec overwhelmingly necessary.  A pilot with a decent intellect and some Knowledge(X) will essentially be for practical realistic purposes just as useful as a Scholar that has the same Knowledge(x).  A Scholar with a decent Agility and Piloting though won't be anywhere near as cross useful as a Pilot at ship combat.  That's my point huge numbers of successes aren't necessary to get the bulk of the utility you need from the Knowledge skills.  For a Knowledge based spec to be worth the xp expenditure that's what needs to change imo.

 

I'd like to bid everyone good gaming and again, it's a game fellas.

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2P51 are you thinking someone in the thread is getting worked up about something?

 

Why does there need to be something that makes the spec "necessary"?

 

I feel like I and others have laid out pretty well cases where WE might want to use it in our own games, and the benefit we feel it can provide.

 

RPGs like Edge of the Empire are not tactical mechanics operations where the efficiency of the character's dice rolls is the only important factor. It's not like making a PVP build in an online game or playing a tactical miniatures game like X-Wing. If I want to play Darth Vader in X-Wing, of course I'm able to, but the miniature and pilot itself are not likely to make me competitive in tournaments or on a national level.

 

EOTE isn't like that. You just kinda pick what career or specialization you want to play because you think it might be fun. There are plenty of options for how playing a Scholar could be fun in the right campaign with the right players.

 

If you don't agree, maybe just don't use it in your game?

 

They already put it in the Core book so I'm not sure there's much to be done about it beyond that.

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I don't use Knowledge checks as a plot tool or as a way of passing information to the players about the story.  The main reason being if they screw a roll up royally what do you do, if the answer is tell them anyway, then there is just proof as far as I'm concerned that using Knowledge for that is a bad idea.  

 

Not necessarily. If I'm GMing - oh, lets say a dinner party where the players have to get in contact with a weapon dealing host (to steal a scenario from Long Arm of the Hutt). The fact that Duke Piddok is a Geonosian Arms Dealer is built into the script, right there for all to see. Boom, all characters get it, free of charge. No roll necessary. However rolling against a Rim Worlds or Xenology would just be more information for the players to use in actually talking to him, removing potential social faux pas and making the transaction go smoother. Failure in this case means that the get the wrong information ("What - I thought all Geonosians like being called Mr Bug Eyes!") or are crude and tactless in some way.

 

Failure does not necessarily mean the game grinds to a halt. It just means that things get tougher down the road or that the eventual rewards are reduced.

 

 

I use Knowledge checks for tangible things that can be measured.  Use Knowledge to locate buyers/sellers then in the form of a boost die on a Negotiation/Streetwise check as representative of having located the best source/buyer as a result of the Knowledge check, that sort of thing.

 

Oh I don't know, the ability to butter up a contact because you know a weakness in their psychological armor seems pretty tangible to me. Those blues could be mighty tasty at the right moment.

 

 

The problem with Scholar is there is nothing that really particularly makes the spec overwhelmingly necessary.  A pilot with a decent intellect and some Knowledge(X) will essentially be for practical realistic purposes just as useful as a Scholar that has the same Knowledge(x).  A Scholar with a decent Agility and Piloting though won't be anywhere near as cross useful as a Pilot at ship combat.  That's my point huge numbers of successes aren't necessary to get the bulk of the utility you need from the Knowledge skills.  For a Knowledge based spec to be worth the xp expenditure that's what needs to change imo.

 

 

Again, you're too mono-focused. Skills are only half of a character - all the juicy bits are in the talent tree. Those two ranks of Researcher (Where researching a subject takes half the time) and Codebreaker (decrease difficulty of checks to break codes by 1) is going to look really important when the characters are trapped in a room with a descending spiked ceiling and the only way of unlocking the door is by deciphering the ancient Sith runes on the wall.

 

Lets see your smuggler do that.

Edited by Desslok

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As i don't value knowledge skills, due to them be largely irrelevant in the majority of games.

 

Going back and thinking on this, I have to comment - Man, ignorance is dumb! If I was your GM, I would SO be exploiting your characters willful unfamiliarity of the universe around them!

 

Underworld not important? Then how are you going to get bonus blue dice for your charm check against Mongo the Hutt if you don't know anything about his fetish for wookiee fur sweaters? Warfare not important? Then your hidden base is going to get curbstomped when walkers show up and roll right over your non-existent defenses. Core Worlds not important? Good luck making a deal with Baron Oslo from Residia when you just accidentally insulted his mother with a innocent looking hand gesture. Outer Rim not important? Then you're going to come off as a stuck-up city slicker when trying to talk to the local moisture farmers.

 

Problems I see with this:

 

(1) Making it be ALL on the players to think of these scenarios isn't completely fair IMO though I'll admit there is a tricky balance to be found between GM "try this skill" prompting and player inventiveness to use it. But,r early, the worst case in "being ignorant" with most checks is likely Setback Dice. And also your examples fall under other skills too, so a player may not make the Knowledge check, but would be able to pass it off with Cool or Streetwise. 

(2) Not like you need to be trained in the Knowledge Skill to attempt it. Straight Int. Not gonna get Triumphs but sometimes that doesn't matter.

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I don't know anything about that. All I see is people enthusiastic about sharing information about the game.

 

What's your objective though? It sounded like you were trying to convince people that Scholar wasn't useful in the game or that it shouldn't be there.

 

We were sharing the ways that WE have found it useful or can imagine it being used in a game.

 

Obviously if you don't agree you should play the game however you want to. But I don't think you'll be successful at convincing us "Oh yeah, all the fun I can imagine having with Scholar is wrong. It .. uh .. shouldn't be in the book which is already published."

 

What does that accomplish?

 

If you don't like it, don't use it.

 

Personally I'm happy to have seen Desslok and others sharing examples of how they use it, because now I have some more ideas for my own campaign.

 

Sorry if you feel piled on, I think we were just having fun sharing stuff about the game we love.

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(1) Making it be ALL on the players to think of these scenarios isn't completely fair IMO though I'll admit there is a tricky balance to be found between GM "try this skill" prompting and player inventiveness to use it. But,r early, the worst case in "being ignorant" with most checks is likely Setback Dice. And also your examples fall under other skills too, so a player may not make the Knowledge check, but would be able to pass it off with Cool or Streetwise. 

(2) Not like you need to be trained in the Knowledge Skill to attempt it. Straight Int. Not gonna get Triumphs but sometimes that doesn't matter.

 

 

Your point goes back to the whole "If you can justify it, you can roll it" mentality mentioned earlier. If you can convince me that this skill is relevant, then go for it. There might be a higher (or lower) difficulty assigned to it, but go ahead and try!

 

As for the "Worst case is ignorance means black dice" - that's a case by case, isn't it. If you don't have blues for your charm, you may not get paid as well. If you blow your warfare roll, that's a more meta failure, isn't it - your years of hard work gathering supplies and setting up that secret base are shot out from under you as the walkers roll right over your poor defenses. No personal loss, but the Rebellion suffers a major blow in the Big Picture.

 

 

 

Personally I'm happy to have seen Desslok and others sharing examples of how they use it, because now I have some more ideas for my own campaign.

 

Well, even if we never convince 2P, some good has come out of this thread at least. . . .

Edited by Desslok

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I don't know anything about that. All I see is people enthusiastic about sharing information about the game.

 

What's your objective though? It sounded like you were trying to convince people that Scholar wasn't useful in the game or that it shouldn't be there.

 

We were sharing the ways that WE have found it useful or can imagine it being used in a game.

 

Obviously if you don't agree you should play the game however you want to. But I don't think you'll be successful at convincing us "Oh yeah, all the fun I can imagine having with Scholar is wrong. It .. uh .. shouldn't be in the book which is already published."

 

What does that accomplish?

 

If you don't like it, don't use it.

 

Personally I'm happy to have seen Desslok and others sharing examples of how they use it, because now I have some more ideas for my own campaign.

 

Sorry if you feel piled on, I think we were just having fun sharing stuff about the game we love.

I was just pointing out there is little benefit to the Scholar tree that does much for someone who just has a decent intellect and a point or two in the skill.

 

In regards to comments, phrases like mono-focused, telling someone they lack imagination or repeatedly telling someone they are close minded is not just sharing positive enthusiasm.  That stuff seems to go on more and more. The whole dog piling thing occurs here at times and is precisely why Maelora doesn't post anymore, so it isn't just my imagination.  People need to breath, read out loud what they typed, and ask themselves what they would think about someone saying that to them before they press 'post'.  Being passionate about the game is fine, being aggressive in saying you don't or do like a portion of the game is fine, directing labels at other people is not.

 

I've got pretty thick skin so I'll survive.

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I'm not angry, and believe you me, there will be no doubt in your mind should I become angry. As for the piling on - well, you're the only one on that side of the debate. It's kind of hard to debate Dante or Progressions when they agree with me.

 

As for the mono-focused, well - you kind of are. You're paying attention to only one aspect of the archetype - the skills - when the skills are only 50 percent of the character (and, in my opinion, skills are the boring bits. Talents are where the fun parts are). A scholar is two things - the ability to buy Outer Rim, Underworld, Xenology, and Perception cheaper, and the Speaks Binary, Researcher and Respected Scholar talents.

 

Yes, my scholar can have the same number or skill ranks in Outer Rim as your smuggler or his Hired Gun or her Outlaw Tech. Big deal. I'm the only one who can look up ancient runes in that copy of "Learn Sith For Dummies" in half the time and at only one Purple.

Edited by Desslok

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As for the mono-focused, well - you kind of are. 

 

Precisely how does typing that to someone lend any level of civility or maturity to a discussion?  To say nothing of how does it validate and support a point?

Edited by 2P51

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There's the problem - you see it as an insult. I'm using it as a description - mono (singular) focus (the center of interest or activity). Okay, so replace it with . . . I don't know, Non-Multi Minded? Myopic attention nexus?

 

How does it support my point? It's a descriptor for you completely ignoring 50 percent of the character build to the exclusion of the other 50. Skills are only one facet of the character. Talents are the other.

Edited by Desslok

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The problem is I'm not entitled to my opinion in your opinion, or put another way, you don't care if you're viewed as being insulting or not, and don't care what someone else thinks or feels.  In that case there really isn't any point on my part to continue trying to explain so I won't.  Again, good gaming to all.

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