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MuttonchopMac

Knight-Level in a Different Light

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A lot of the objection revolving around Knight-level play was that people could make movie Jedi Knights within the +150xp limit... Clearly, making Anakin in Revenge of the Sith is right out.

 

But what about Obi-Wan in Phantom Menace? He's a padawan, yes, but ready to face the trials, and comes out of the film freshly knighted. Not a knight who has been around for years and years.

 

What can Obi-Wan do? Let's see, he pushes a couple droids over with the Force. That's about 35xp sunk into Move (Basic Power + Strength, Range, and Control). He also makes some Force-assisted leaps... That's 30xp sunk into Enhance. Does he use/need Influence? Nope.

 

That leaves him with 110xp from being a human, plus another 85 from Knight-level. He can get some decent ability scores, some nice skills and talents, and maybe drop 20xp on Sense to get Control get an edge in combat.

 

Ta-da! He is a Knight-level Jedi, who merely hasn't got to face his trials yet. He is good with the Force, though not always reliably, but if he sticks to a single specialization, he can be fairly close to, if not have, Force Rating 2.

 

TL;DR Knight-level is for newly-minted Knights or those ready to deal with the trials of Knighthood, not for Knights that have been around the galaxy a few times and are getting close to being Jedi Masters. That's how I see it, and I think FFG nailed it.  :D

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Yeah, I did it too with some minor differences. Its a bigger issue though because not everyone sees the same things. Add in poop like comics, novels, and so on and the water muddies further.

In the end its up to your certain point of view, though well see what the final product looks like in a few months.

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It's a shame the Beta Forum was removed. I think the rule is simple, you play a "XYZ" level game and all players start with 150xp.

 

However, I think this sells the topic short, not because we can argue about what "Knight Level Play" is but because adding xp in say 50xp chunks could create a vastly better experience for players if the rule isn't just a side bar in the core rules. Perhaps by giving this a good page or two in the GM Screen for F&D you could end up with a richer description and game mechanics that give the GM running the game a better idea of what he would like to do.

 

I would also note that the main issue with "Knight Level Play" wasn't so much the starting XP as the starting money. Light Sabre (attachments and Mods?), Ship, Holocrons and Mentors. Just what should the GM do with a party with all their goodies.

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The beta forums are still around.  ;)

 

A broader view could really help things along. I agree with you there. Obviously, it will vary game to game, but if they specified that in their ideal world / game, Knighthood is about at such-and-such xp, +/- for GM preference, and what it looks like as you garner more xp from there. Is it expected that players shoot for Force Rating 4, or is 2 fine for most Jedi Knights in their minds?

 

A really good option could be like Legend of the Five Rings' wound flavor sidebar. It offers something like 5 different ways to calculate wounds and healing to reflect a spectrum of games, from gritty realism on up to pure anime and legend style games. For Star Wars, this could be explaining the different views on Force users, ranging from low-power like the original trilogy to high-power like the prequels and the borderline absurd featured in some comic books and New Jedi Order novels, and how those play into the game mechanics, suggested xp totals, etc.

 

My guff with the money is that for 10,000 or a lightsaber, I can buy a lightsaber hilt and a crystal that is better - say, Mephite - or take a small loan from another player to get a Lorrdian Gemstone. Yay rules abuse! And 10,000 is a lot of money to dump on a character from the get-go. It amounts to some freakishly well modded guns in most of my players' minds.

Edited by MuttonchopMac

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Beta Updates changed the starting funds for a Knight Level PC to "basic lightsaber or 9000" credits.  Personally, I'd have preferred the starting credits to go lower (like say 7500) because while the 9K is equal to the cost of an Ilum 'saber crystal, it's far more flexible in what a PC can do with it, such as starting play with armored clothing that has the Superior quality, or a blaster rifle with the forearm grip and spread barrel attachment (aka blaster shotgun) or a vibro-ax with balanced hilt and mono-molecular edge.

 

As for Knight Level itself, I don't have a beef with the name, and I think it fits as a shorthand for "these are experienced PCs that are going to be far more capable than a regular starting PC."

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Well you gotta make sure it all balances out and meets expectations. A "knight" level mundane that can't start with gear that is somewhat on the level with a  lightsaber is gonna feel off. We'll see what the final rules say soon enough, but I bet we'll still see something in the 7-9k area, that or possibly some equipment sets to choose from kinda like we saw with the inquisitor...

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7,000 credits could be a pretty sweet starting setup for say, a Knight-level Bounty Hunter... My main fear is that instead of buying a variety of useful items, PCs will sink all their credits into a single item with an ungodly number of mods. Which, I guess, just means as GM, I should talk to my players and limit the number of mods they can start with on an item.

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TL;DR Knight-level is for newly-minted Knights or those ready to deal with the trials of Knighthood, not for Knights that have been around the galaxy a few times and are getting close to being Jedi Masters. That's how I see it, and I think FFG nailed it.  :D

 

I wouldn't exactly call this "in a different light", since this exact argument was made on the beta forums.  Doesn't work for me in any case, because I put a value on the things we don't see Obiwan do in the movie that I assume he's capable of because of his status.

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Phantom Menace was a Knight level game.

 

Obi Wan took Paragon Morality, while Quigon took the extra XP for being Grey. Annie was a Starfighter Ace with extra credits from Obligation-Slavery that he spent on a speeder, while the Queen simply took extra Duty at creation. And JarJar could not roll a die without getting at least one triumph or despair.

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TL;DR Knight-level is for newly-minted Knights or those ready to deal with the trials of Knighthood, not for Knights that have been around the galaxy a few times and are getting close to being Jedi Masters. That's how I see it, and I think FFG nailed it.  :D

 

I wouldn't exactly call this "in a different light", since this exact argument was made on the beta forums.  Doesn't work for me in any case, because I put a value on the things we don't see Obiwan do in the movie that I assume he's capable of because of his status.

 

 

Fair enough. I could make a case for OT Luke Skywalker or ask what else Obi-Wan really needs, but I'll pass. I only made it about 4 pages into the heated debate when it was brought up on the Beta forums and decided to ignore the rants thereafter.

 

If your vision of a newly minted Jedi Knight is more powerful, then you're welcome to add more xp and call it "whafrog's vision of what a Jedi Knight should be"... I like the RAW because not all Jedi will have the same powers, so it keeps the flavor of each PC in an all Jedi game more unique, but you're fine to disagree and I won't object.

 

I suggested elsewhere that FFG should do a sidebar on Jedi power levels and how it relates to the game. You could have a spectrum of levels that aren't hard and fast, "150 xp is a knight. 300 is a master, etc." Instead, things like, "150 xp can build a character similar to Obi-Wan in Phantom Menace. Jedi Knights more on par with later prequel films deserve 250-350 xp to reflect access to almost all Force powers and greater combat survivability. IF the GM is looking to emulate some of the wilder things seen in Star Wars comics, such as the Legacy or Knights of the Old Republic series, more xp is appropriate. Note that this will make non-Jedi PCs in the game more powerful as well... yada yada..."

 

You get the gist. Legend of the Five Rings had a spectrum of options for wounds and recovery that allowed the GM to pick a flavor ranging from gritty realism to anime characters, and it worked great. FFG needs to borrow a page out of that book with the "Knight-level play" section.

Edited by MuttonchopMac

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If your vision of a newly minted Jedi Knight is more powerful...

 

Good post, but this is the rub.  No, not more powerful.  Unfortunately most people take my objection and assume it's a power thing, when it's really a breadth thing.  I presume that, in addition to being capable with the Force, Jedi are also good scholars, and learn a considerable array of interpersonal skills.  Otherwise all they are are thugs with lightsabers.  In a game there is far more detail and level of nuance than in the movies, and all those other skills would come into play at some point.  It would be pretty disappointing as a player, I think, to be told "you're starting at Knight level, like late-Padawan Obiwan" and then discover you can't negotiate a deal, can't find Coruscant on a galactic map, or fix a leaking hyperdrive.  I'm not saying a Knight needs to be great at all these things, but they should be capable in a couple and familiar with many.  I'm not sure there's room for that with all the Force stuff too, within 150XP.

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Yeah I try and avoid any comparisons to main characters in the movies as a standard, to me Knight Level play would be Knight level when compared to one of the numerous no name jedi knight characters we see arriving to save Obi-Wan and Anikan at the end of Attack of the Clones on Geonosis., ultimately though its just a name settled as another way of saying more advanced starting character.

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If your vision of a newly minted Jedi Knight is more powerful...

 

Good post, but this is the rub.  No, not more powerful.  Unfortunately most people take my objection and assume it's a power thing, when it's really a breadth thing.  I presume that, in addition to being capable with the Force, Jedi are also good scholars, and learn a considerable array of interpersonal skills.  Otherwise all they are are thugs with lightsabers.  In a game there is far more detail and level of nuance than in the movies, and all those other skills would come into play at some point.  It would be pretty disappointing as a player, I think, to be told "you're starting at Knight level, like late-Padawan Obiwan" and then discover you can't negotiate a deal, can't find Coruscant on a galactic map, or fix a leaking hyperdrive.  I'm not saying a Knight needs to be great at all these things, but they should be capable in a couple and familiar with many.  I'm not sure there's room for that with all the Force stuff too, within 150XP.

 

 

A well trained Jedi should have a breadth of knowledge.  I don't think Anakin had such a wide grasp of knowledge so it makes me wonder how many others are out there like him.

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Much like the thread/rant over in the Beta forum, it really comes down to one's perception, to their point of view you might say.

 

I've run some set-ups with the players being told "you're making Knight Level characters" and not a single one of them had visions of being a full blown Jedi Knight on par with Kenobi as we see him during the Clone Wars.  Ghostofman and Awayputyrwpn did builds of TPM!Kenobi and Spark of Rebellion!Kanan at Knight Level that were able to do what we saw them do, with the sole provision that they spent XP along the way to purchase additional skill ranks and Force power upgrades as their respective stories progressed.  But neither of them were what the old Jedi Order would traditionally consider to be a Jedi Knight.  Luke's New Jedi Order from the EU/Legends probably would, but then Luke couldn't afford to be quite as picky and was looking more at the person's mindset rather than what they could do; from where Luke sat, he probably didn't see himself as being a valid Jedi Knight for sometime after RotJ, much less a Jedi Master suited to teaching others.  So by the somewhat lower standards of the NJO, you could make a Jedi Knight with that 150 XP, since Luke's crop of Jedi Knights weren't required to be as broadly skilled as the old Jedi Order required.

 

The FFG design team had their vision that "Knight Level = advanced play," not that "Knight Level = Jedi Knights."  The Beta book made it pretty clear that the PCs are not going to be starting out as Jedi at either level.  Yes, there are specs that allow you to become pretty skilled with a lightsaber, but those specs alone do not a Jedi make.

 

Plus, with the way the dice system works, as long as you're rolling at least the same number of ability dice as you are difficulty dice, odds are generally in your favor that you're going to succeed at a task, though it may not be a clean success (i.e. you're probably going to have some Threat to deal with).  In that light, I'd say having at least one Proficiency die (which the section on the dice mechanics pretty much lays out represents a great deal of training) in Discipline, Negotiation, Lightsaber, and Knowledge: Lore would make someone good enough that they could handle most routine negotiations, keep a level head, be knowledgeable about the Force, and be a capable combatant.  They wouldn't be the galaxy's leading experts in those fields, but they'd be far more capable than the average galactic citizen, who's likely only rolling 2 ability dice.

 

To re-iterate a point that was brought up in the Beta thread/rantfest, most people's barometer of what a Jedi Knight should be capable of is skewed because the prequels focused largely on the shining stars of the Jedi Order.  It'd be like expecting a basketball team comprised solely of high school kids to consistently be capable of performing at the same level that most Olympic teams do.

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If your vision of a newly minted Jedi Knight is more powerful...

 

Good post, but this is the rub.  No, not more powerful.  Unfortunately most people take my objection and assume it's a power thing, when it's really a breadth thing.  I presume that, in addition to being capable with the Force, Jedi are also good scholars, and learn a considerable array of interpersonal skills.  Otherwise all they are are thugs with lightsabers.  In a game there is far more detail and level of nuance than in the movies, and all those other skills would come into play at some point.  It would be pretty disappointing as a player, I think, to be told "you're starting at Knight level, like late-Padawan Obiwan" and then discover you can't negotiate a deal, can't find Coruscant on a galactic map, or fix a leaking hyperdrive.  I'm not saying a Knight needs to be great at all these things, but they should be capable in a couple and familiar with many.  I'm not sure there's room for that with all the Force stuff too, within 150XP.

Astrogation is a stretch. FFG is pretty clear about any Proficency dice representing specific training. I feel like most anyone would be lost without a navicomputer. Otherwise it's a fair point.

One could, however, make two arguments. The first is that Jedi, prior to the Clone Wars, enjoyed a lot of peace and gravitated towards Consular and Mystic. The other is that FFG has yet to touch the Prequel trilogy at all, which may be the reason for their skill choices. Old Ben negotiates with the Force... Luke's only negotiations / social checks amount to interacting with Jabba and Vader. Both of which lead to pulling weapons and combat.

That's just my take. Views may vary.

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Yeah I'm still waiting for Droideka stat lines to show why a Droideka's shields render them effectively immune to Jedi TK powers in addition to energy weapons

That's from being a Nemisis, not from the shield. At one point I statted up a Droidika using the Inquisitor rules, using Parry/Reflect for the shield.

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Yeah I'm still waiting for Droideka stat lines to show why a Droideka's shields render them effectively immune to Jedi TK powers in addition to energy weapons

That's from being a Nemisis, not from the shield. At one point I statted up a Droidika using the Inquisitor rules, using Parry/Reflect for the shield.

 

 

Do they perhaps use cleats or some such to secure themselves into the ground?

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Probably just a case of the Droidekas laying down so much fire that the Jedi are too busy defending themselves from getting ripped to pieces that they generally don't have time to use a Force push or similar attack to fling the Destroyer droids away.

 

Going by size comparison, I'd call them Silhouette 1 and they've like got a pretty high soak value, so using Move to deal damage wouldn't do much to them, to say nothing of having at least one rank in Adversary if not two (I personally see them as being Rivals instead of Nemesis).  Their shields are probably best covered as a high amount of ranged defense, at least 2 if not 3 or 4 setback dice, meaning using Move becomes even more problematic since you've gone from 1 purple to at least 1 challenge and 2 setback dice.

 

Or in terms of the films, it's a special effect shot in a trio of films already overloaded with CGI and effects shots, so they didn't see a need to bother.  Or maybe even Lucas didn't want his Jedi (as opposed to the EU's Jedi) to be too overwhelmingly powerful.

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Yeah I'm still waiting for Droideka stat lines to show why a Droideka's shields render them effectively immune to Jedi TK powers in addition to energy weapons

 For the record, in The Clone Wars TV show on numerous occasions they use Move on Droidekas. It never instantly defeats them though, so I'll agree with the "Nemesis" opinion! 

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But neither of them were what the old Jedi Order would traditionally consider to be a Jedi Knight.  Luke's New Jedi Order from the EU/Legends probably would, but then Luke couldn't afford to be quite as picky and was looking more at the person's mindset rather than what they could do; from where Luke sat, he probably didn't see himself as being a valid Jedi Knight for sometime after RotJ, much less a Jedi Master suited to teaching others.  So by the somewhat lower standards of the NJO, you could make a Jedi Knight with that 150 XP, since Luke's crop of Jedi Knights weren't required to be as broadly skilled as the old Jedi Order required.

I think part of the thing was that back before the prequel films mindset seemed to be more important than ability. There seemed to be a more spiritual element to being a Jedi Knight, rather than it being a matter of power. Luke finally becomes a Jedi because he refuses to fall to his anger and take the life of the helpless Vader, not because he has reached a certain power threshold. This applies as much to the post-RotJ in the EU as well, as while he was a Jedi (which in my mind was synonymous with Jedi Knight), he didn't feel he had the authority and experience to be a teacher or Master, not that he wasn't powerful enough. 

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I agree with borithan. I feel that being knighted has more to do with facing the darkness and coming out pure than being at a certain skill level. In contrast, Knights are required to pass the Trial of Skill (testing by combat), among other things, so a minimum skill is required.

 

That said, in a Knight-level game, I would make the game about Jedi on the brink of knighthood, and have the campaign itself be about the spiritual trials more than acquiring more xp.

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