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FFG_Sam Stewart

Beta Update 9

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I like that Protect and Unleash soak / cause the same amount of damage, i.e. 1x Willpower. It would seem odd to me that the light side of the power could not counteract the dark side of the power. It would be somehow an unprecedented declaration towards "the Dark Side of the force is more powerful than the Light side".

 

The issue here is that we meet with the game mechanics, the intrinsic SOAK value of characters (to begin with this mechanic should not even exist, but this is not the thread to talk about it). Soak is in favour to Protect, but there is nothing similar for Unleash. Hence people asking that base damage is 2xWillpower. Although, to be 100% fair and equal to Protect, Unleash base damage would have to be Brawn + Willpower, since soak is based on Brawn and not on Willpower, but this won't be elegant at all.

 

Moreover, in order to reflect an attack with Protect, Protect has to reduce its damage to zero. If Unleash base damage would be 2xWillpower, it would be very difficult to reproduce scenes such as the ones were Yoda reflects the lighting attack from Dooku and, also from Sidious in Episode III.

 

Since Protect is not Soak, a different solution to the 2xWillpower would be to give to the basic power Unleash something like Pierce 4 or Breach 1 while keeping the base damage as 1xWillpower.

 

One question, can you maintain Protect by committing 1 Force die?

Edited by Yepesnopes

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One question, can you maintain Protect by committing 1 Force die?

 

No, you cannot, at least not by RAW. As is, Protect lasts until the end of the user's next turn or until it blocks one hit if they don't have the Control upgrade that allows it to block multiple hits. So allowing a character to extend the effects simply by committing 1 or even more force dice, while still being up to GMs to allow, is more than a bit too powerful.

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I do like Lorne's suggestion for the Strength Upgrades of just increasing the base damage/effect.  Although, if it's just increase to the base value and doesn't require a Force Point to activate, then the XP costs should be increased by at least +5 each to balance out the "always on" aspect.

Edited by Donovan Morningfire

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How about simply changing the base of Unleash to 2 or 3 (at most) + Willpower?

 

Personally I don't think it should be identical to Protect (it isn't now either because of Soak, and besides it's the Dark Side way to specialize in destruction, and the Light Side's to contain any desire to destroy).

 

Also I don't think it's like any energy weapon, since no energy weapon requires FR3 (If it were FR1 or even 2, I'd perhaps could see it as starting weak and scaling).

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How about simply changing the base of Unleash to 2 or 3 (at most) + Willpower?

Personally I don't think it should be identical to Protect (it isn't now either because of Soak, and besides it's the Dark Side way to specialize in destruction, and the Light Side's to contain any desire to destroy).

 

This is part of my point, that the mechanics of soak does not make them even. The problem with increasing the damage of Unleash above the damage absorption of Protect is that your are making it significantly more difficult for Mastery Protect to absorb the damage of Unleash and rebound it to the attacker, like we see in the movies. I think in that sense is better to give Unleash the Pierce X or Breach 1 qualities instead of boosting its damage over the damage absorption capabilities of Protect.

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How about simply changing the base of Unleash to 2 or 3 (at most) + Willpower?

Personally I don't think it should be identical to Protect (it isn't now either because of Soak, and besides it's the Dark Side way to specialize in destruction, and the Light Side's to contain any desire to destroy).

 

This is part of my point, that the mechanics of soak does not make them even. The problem with increasing the damage of Unleash above the damage absorption of Protect is that your are making it significantly more difficult for Mastery Protect to absorb the damage of Unleash and rebound it to the attacker, like we see in the movies. I think in that sense is better to give Unleash the Pierce X or Breach 1 qualities instead of boosting its damage over the damage absorption capabilities of Protect.

 

You're right, that would make Protect Mastery problematic. Actually I have a question about Mastery here... You decide to spend the Force pips on it from the pool generated with the original roll (done together with Discipline), right? So you're Reflecting even before the attack roll to hit you has been rolled??? I'm confused as that means you're investing Force in a potentially failed Reflect (in the case damage is higher than expected), unless we assume it sort of requires the Control upgrade to make the power incidental as mandatory. 

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You're right, that would make Protect Mastery problematic. Actually I have a question about Mastery here... You decide to spend the Force pips on it from the pool generated with the original roll (done together with Discipline), right? So you're Reflecting even before the attack roll to hit you has been rolled??? I'm confused as that means you're investing Force in a potentially failed Reflect (in the case damage is higher than expected), unless we assume it sort of requires the Control upgrade to make the power incidental as mandatory. 

 

 

There's two ways of doing Protect. First is the "standard" way given by the base power - you use your action (or maneuver if you've got the appropriate talent) and it stays up until the end of the user's next turn or until it blocks one hit (if you don't have the Control upgrade for using no Dark Side Force Points). Then there's the special once-a-session way given by the bottom left Control upgrade - you spend a Destiny Point and then get to use Protect as an out-of-turn incidental.

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Yes, unless you're using it as an incidental or you're combining it with something (like Soresu's Strategic Form) some/all of Protect's effects could go to waste since it would be used before knowing for sure that you/allies are going to be attacked. But that's just the cost of having a defensive/preventative force power.

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Yes, unless you're using it as an incidental or you're combining it with something (like Soresu's Strategic Form) some/all of Protect's effects could go to waste since it would be used before knowing for sure that you/allies are going to be attacked. But that's just the cost of having a defensive/preventative force power.

And it's a pretty darn powerful effect, even in its current state.

PS: General encouragement; don't be the jerk GM who only attacks other PCs when the one PC uses Protect as an action on himself ;)

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I think Burn damage is the same as the original damage roll, and it continues to apply for a number of rounds equal to the Burn rating of the weapon (or until extinguished with a Coordination check).

 

1) Burn keys off base damage. Page 116.

 

2) The "burn" here would, I think, not be able to be "extinguished" since its source is the power of the dark side :) It is not a flame from combustion, like a flame thrower. Remember Luke rolling in agony on the floor of the death star, even after the Emperor stopped using his lighting for a short while? Although I guess this is pretty much up to the interpretation of the power during play. I could see actual flames resulting from a powerful electrical jolt, and those being extinguishable. 

Edited by awayputurwpn

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That's right, Burn worked off base damage, not the end result. I forgot about that.

 

As for the continuous damage, I pictured it more like your clothes catching fire and you then having to extinguish that. That was just my immediate reaction to the phrasing. You could certainly argue that it represents some "supernatural" DoT effect that can't be extinguished by normal means.

 

As for Unleash being subjected to soak, how about having it bypass armour (but not Brawn)? That way there would be some inherent resistance, but not so much as if someone was wearing power armour with the Armour Master talent.

Edited by Krieger22

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As for Unleash being subjected to soak, how about having it bypass armour (but not Brawn)? That way there would be some inherent resistance, but not so much as if someone was wearing power armour with the Armour Master talent.

 

Yeaahh, that's not a bad idea in theory, but I've found in practice it involved way too much bookkeeping. "Okay, so this guy has Soak 5, and Brawn of 3, and armor...umm...does his armor have soak 2, or does he have the enduring talent? Okay, how much damage did I do again...?" 

 

Better IMO to run it like Yepesnopes suggested, applying a Pierce rating to the attack. The size of the rating could be equal to Willpower, thereby arriving at a similar effect of "unlimited power!" while still be susceptible to Protect's negatation. 

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While I'm not adverse to the idea of Unleash having a Pierce value, basing it off Willpower goes right back to the core problem of using Willpower times two, which Sam Stewart addressed in the latest O66 podcast about why it got changed back and the Strength Upgrades tweaked instead.

 

Although with Burn, perhaps just tweak the wording of the Strength Upgrades as Lorne initially suggested so that when activated, it increases the base damage by 1 per Upgrade.  Thus, even with just a couple of Strength Upgrades you've got the chance for Burn to deal some extra damage to the target.

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How about Strength upgrades adding to Pierce on 1 to 1 basis? And does Burn damage by any chance apply Pierce? 

 

Throwing Pierce (on a 1-to-1 basis at least) on top of the increased damage is a bit overkill. With a single force point to activate all four Strength upgrades, you'd be looking at Pierce 4 and the additional 4 damage; a second force point applied to Strength ups that into Pierce 8 and an additional 8 damage.

 

Burn doesn't get any advantages with Pierce; Pierce only applies to the initial attack. Though, you could maybe argue that Force Lightning's Burn ignores Soak granted by armor since it's less of an exterior fire doing continuous damage and more of electricity still coursing through your body.

Edited by Lathrop

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I got the impression that Wulfherr was suggesting to completely replace the damage boost from the Strength Upgrade with it providing ranks of Pierce instead, not that said upgrades should do both.  Which I agree with Larag that having the Strength Upgrade do both is simply makes them too good for Unleash while jipping the Protect side of the power.

 

Although there's no indication in the rules if passive weapon qualities apply after the initial attack, such as to things like Burn, so the change wouldn't have any meaningful impact on making adding the Burn quality to an Unleash attack worth it.

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Yeah, I meant Pierce only, but now I don't think it's really an improvement. I've also now listened to Sam on O66 and understand why the scaled it back, although I still think that for FR3 (as also I think GM Chris said) I'd want some more power.

I guess we'll see what they do with this next update, if anything. 

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Let's see...Force Rating 3...

 

If you just buy the basic power and start using Unleash, you're likely to be disappointed.  Now, if you invest another 20xp you get 2 Strength Upgrades and a Range Upgrade.

 

Rolling FR3 five times and assuming a Dark-sider with a Willpower of 4 and Discipline of 3 gets me the following results vs an Average Discipline check...

 

  • 1 Success, 2 Triumph, 2 Advantages, 2 Light, 3 Dark = Destiny Point to use 2 Light (2 strain healed by 2 advantage), deals 7 to target at Medium Range or 11 to target at Short range, Crits target with +10 to roll (2 Triumphs)
  • 5 Success, 1 Triumph, 2 Threat, 1 Light, 2 Dark = Destiny Point to use 1 Light, deals 11 to target at Short Range, Crits Target
  • 1 Success, 1 Triumph, 4 Advantage, 2 Light, 2 Dark = Destiny Point to use 2 Light (2 strain healed by 2 advantage), deals 6 to target at Medium Range or 10 to target at Short range, Crits target (+10 if user wants to use 4 advantage instead of heal strain)
  • 2 Success, 1 Advantage, 2 Light, 2 Dark = Destiny Point to use 2 Light (1 strain healed by 1 advantage), deals deals 6 to target at Medium Range or 10 to target at Short range.
  • 4 Success, 1 Triumph, 2 Light, 3 Dark = Destiny Point to use 2 Light, deals 9 to target at Medium Range or 13 to target at Short Range, crits target

I didn't have to spend a Destiny Point with each check to use the Light side points for the check, but it certainly helps get the range and damage up.  Looking at this, Unleash really becomes a devastating Short Range ability that has a good chance to crit a target (simply based on the number of Triumphs you could get) and a solid Minion killer.  This seems to parallel what we see on-screen.  Against minions, the power tears them apart.  Against Rivals/Nemesis/PCs the effects are not as lethal but they are lingering (crits).

 

If you increase all the above damages by 4 (last update's rule of "Willpower x2") the damage does start to get...ridiculous.  Or at least puts it into the point where with just 3 Dark pips you can get Heavy Blaster Rifle damage, and that doesn't feel right.

 

I initially didn't like the dial back on Protect/Unleash to just Willpower.  Now seeing the potential numbers and effects, I like it.

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Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster...

 

Based on movies, yes, Force is really strong, and capable to do awesome things, but, no need to do damage 15 or critical +80, because no "Unleash" killed anyone ever. As general sensations the power are ok (maybe with the exception of move damage and unprecise/cinematic use of Push).

 

The "secondary effects" seems ok to me and enough to emulate almost 100% of the movie/show scenes.

Edited by Josep Maria

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Also good to note is that triggering criticals applies across all affected targets for Unleash. Both Harm's Control to crit and Bind's Mastery cap at one target and require opposed checks, and Move of course follows normal rules of needing to up difficulty to Auto-Fire and the appropriate advantage/Triumphs to crit on more than one target and with each crit having to be increased individually.

 

Probably the reason for the removal of the increased advantages from Strength upgrades since you could otherwise just auto-murder multiple nemeses with enough force rating.

Edited by Lathrop

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Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster...

 

Based on movies, yes, Force is really strong, and capable to do awesome things, but, no need to do damage 15 or critical +80, because no "Unleash" killed anyone ever. As general sensations the power are ok (maybe with the exception of move damage and unprecise/cinematic use of Push).

 

The "secondary effects" seems ok to me and enough to emulate almost 100% of the movie/show scenes.

 

It's true, except for a couple times a Dark Sider electrocutes minions in the Clone Wars (and games like SWTOR/KOTOR and TFU), no named characters are killed by Force Lightning.  it's almost like Force Lightning is specifically used to inflict lingering effects on the target (Crit/Burn).  The only person killed by Force Lightning that is a named character is Vader, and he was grievously injured already (multiple crit injuries & close to Wound Threshold).

 

Luke, Obi Wan, Savage Oppress, Yoda; all blasted by Force Lightning and injured/dazed/stunned, but not killed. 

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