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RebelDave

Genelock 'trap' worry

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Demolitions is based on Mechanics in this system, so disarming explosives isn't really out of the question for a tech-oriented PC.

Any attempt to disarm the explosives without first activating the genelock successfully is an identical action to the attempt to use the weapon without deactivating the genelock — and thus detonating the explosives. ;)

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I don't think I would ever run it that way. Your version goes with the "only one way to succeed" path, and that's generally a bad idea. OTOH, there's nothing wrong with upgrading the Mechanics check one or more times for not first defeating the genelock (which might be possible simply by smearing your opponent's blood all over your hand before picking up the weapon).

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If they're making too much money salvaging weapons, make NPCs rely on talents to be effective in combat instead of weapons.

 

Alternatively, give them a very large, dangerous and illegal weapon (of a type they don't use) as loot, and have ISB track them down when they sell it.

 

While I love this idea, I don't have the capability to make something up that would work. I am reliant on pre-written material, as I don't have the talent to write anything decent to 'run' as an encounter like this.

 

Mate, talking about selling yourself short, you are new and lacking in experience. Perhaps finding the idea of DIY adventures as daunting. However, capable you are, teach you I will, yes, yes. Come, come.

 

Start small. I have a three hour session every other week. I have found my players can be expected to get through 2 or 3 of my encounters. So, I only plan 2-3 things, if you listen during your sessions the players will perhaps give you clues or adventure ideas, as will their obligations and motivations.

 

Once you have an idea write it down, put it into Evernote or a binder for your game. One of my players has a love interest, his love interest is a young, naïve college student. I used Knives Murphy from Scott Pilgrim in describing her to myself. Now, her dad is a Moft, now the player is not quite taking the whole love interest as seriously as he should. Which is OK, but I want to use it to create a problem for my players.

 

First session, daddy Moft asks daughter to get the players to help. He needs some help with his home village, his sister has mentioned there was a flood and people need help. He has purchased some food and needs the players to carry it to his village. So for me I need three ideas:

 

  1. When they get to the system there are pirates raiding the planet. So they may have to fight off a small freighter and a fighter or two.
  2. Aunty isn’t exactly a good old bird, the players will perhaps hear from the pirates that she is in cahoots with them.  The players will have to start digging around and gathering evidence against her. If they can’t figure it our have the love interest pipe in and raise the issue.
  3. As the players investigate they may learn that Aunty is indeed ok and the pirates have kidnapped cousin Jim. Our love interest now rushes off to save Jim, so the players will have very limited time to plan a rescue.

 

From there I may add some flesh on the bones. I’ll need a stat line for a few fighter ships, maybe a couple of minion groups, small map of a prate base (although it could be a simple camp fire in a clearing). Jim and Aunty probably don’t need more work, except a line of description for myself. Aunty is a dear old chook that has a good heart and Jim is a bit of a prankster but will cooperate with the players as he knows he is in danger.

 

Now, what if you need an extra hour of game play? Perhaps the local police find out the players are asking a lot of strange questions about their patron. Maybe the players are asked to deliver the food and while doing that a nearby village is hit by a flood and there are people that need help. Maybe as they leave the planet some pirates come in to investigate the delay in their deliveries.  

 

Now once we play through that we could have a few additional hooks for future adventures. Perhaps Aunty/Daddy needs some more help. Perhaps the pirates return. Perhaps Jim runs off. I was thinking I would have Daddy send the players off to assassinate some rebel scum, who has been doing nothing more than transporting food in for needy people on a planet somewhere to really give the players a moral quandary.

 

Now the next session could start with two calls to the players. Aunty needs some help with something and daddy calls them back. If they help daddy then they fail to help Aunty and the slave she wanted returned safely is killed by a bounty hunter.

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Well, you should remember that simply because a player character's WT is exceeded, they don't die - they're knocked out. You have to attain specific high-level critical results to kill them.

 

And remember that just because an NPC enemy that your players face may be reduced to zero wounds, perhaps have their fellows grab them and retreat, rather than just have them all die. They can't loot them if they ran away instead of just conveniently lying down and dying.

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I would use the Obligation system. Basically, there is no such thing as free loot (unless you decide it is a reward for proper adventuring.) The credits they save by picking up stolen weapons come with Obligation (Criminal or Bounty would be good choices.) They can pay off this obligation, or other obligation they might have, by handing in the weapons to the right parties (If they already have a Favor obligation to the Rebel Alliance, they might need weapons; or a Hutt may forgive some of their Debt.)

 

The Rebels Episode featuring the fancy disruptors shows that it is pretty hard to make money if you're peddling in 'hot' merchandise.

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My players almost never loot anything. I don't really get it, since I give the bad guys really sweet guns sometimes. Oh well lol.

 

Mine take a cool item here or there, but thankfully they have avoided the dungeon delving stereotype.  Then again, we usually play modern or sci fi games so looting has been out of their wheelhouse for quite a while.

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I just have to ask (and if it's already been answered before, I apologize), but what is the problem with them stockpiling weapons and armor?  If they're all basic gear and they're selling them for extra credits, what's the big deal?

 

Basic gear is a dime a dozen in most criminal worlds and the actual cost isn't the problem in most core worlds, it's the illegality that's the barrier.  Having a few spares or enough equipment to do a reasonable impersonation of Imperial troopers/soldiers is actually a good thing that allows more interesting stories.

 

Unless characters are getting hundreds of thousands of credits, money tends to go pretty fast.

 

What is the XP level of the party?  If you're running Trouble Brewing, it doesn't sound like they're at a level where they're out-XPing everything and that minions aren't a threat.

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then my tech will declare he can 'remove the genelock'.

 

I'm late to the party and there are lots of great responses in the thread. I'll just add a comment about this. Sure, the tech will probably be able to remove the genelock. Make the difficulty pretty hard, 3-5 dice. Also, upgrade those dice so that some are red. The whole point of red dice is so that Despair represents when something bad happens. If it's rigged to explode, then removing the genelock with a Despair could remove it but still explode anyway. Or cause the gun to fire. Or damage it beyond repair. Or anything else devious you can think of.

 

Without specialized equipment I'd probably set the difficulty at 3 red and 2 purple. I'd also let them go questing for equipment to remove genelocks easier. Once they have that illegal equipment (which an Imperial raid would easily confiscate with large fines and/or jail time) I'd probably make it a 1 red and 2 purple check.

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Don't forget that Bad Motivator can be used to bypass a now-faulty genelock.

 

Bad Motivator would mean the PC can cause the Genelock to fail.

 

Meaning it no longer reads its correct owner as its correct owner... or anyone for that matter.

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My players almost never loot anything. I don't really get it, since I give the bad guys really sweet guns sometimes. Oh well lol.

 

Mine take a cool item here or there, but thankfully they have avoided the dungeon delving stereotype.  Then again, we usually play modern or sci fi games so looting has been out of their wheelhouse for quite a while.

 

My group tend to "steal" downtrodden NPCs and droids, not gear.

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I don't think I would ever run it that way. Your version goes with the "only one way to succeed" path, and that's generally a bad idea. OTOH, there's nothing wrong with upgrading the Mechanics check one or more times for not first defeating the genelock (which might be possible simply by smearing your opponent's blood all over your hand before picking up the weapon).

If you’re going to put a genelock on a weapon, you wouldn’t want it to be easily defeated. You wouldn’t want it to easily get a wrong reading for the legitimate owner, either.

So, if smearing blood on your hands could defeat it, then a legitimate owner who got blood smeared on their hands, or who was wearing gloves, or who had dirt on their hands — they could be mis-recognized as a non-legitimate owner, and in this case a false negative could be fatal.

I guess you could do an Impossible check with five reds plus a lot of setback dice, and see just how good the player can roll.

Or they could go on a side adventure to acquire some highly customized and likely highly illegal equipment to make that check easier, but by the time they’ve done that the cost would probably be higher than just buying their own weapon of equal or superior power with their own genelock.

YMMV.

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I think you greatly overestimate the capability of the genelock. Overcoming it isn't an Impossible task no matter what it's advertising materials might want you to believe.

So, you’ve got a live grenade in your hand, and it’s a few seconds away from blowing up.

Just how long do you spend trying to disarm the thing?

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I think you greatly overestimate the capability of the genelock. Overcoming it isn't an Impossible task no matter what it's advertising materials might want you to believe.

So, you’ve got a live grenade in your hand, and it’s a few seconds away from blowing up.

Just how long do you spend trying to disarm the thing?

 

 

If I have a few seconds, I'll just throw it back...

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For my group it comes down to verisimilitude and breaking the old dungeoncrawl habits.  "Greyhawking" the bodies has it's place in some games, and occasionally the story demands you loot some NPCs.  But in the real world, and likely in Star Wars, guns have serial numbers, other expensive gear does too.

 

Looting the bodies and keeping the gear ties you to a murder (or at least assault) in the eyes of the employer of the goons you just trashed.  Sure you could go out of your way to erase all the serial numbers, but now you have a big pile of guns without registration numbers, maybe that doesn't tie you to a specific event, but you can bet Imperial Justice will hold you indefinitely while they cook up charges.

 

I tend to think of the Imperial Government as a generally evil Police State.  You don't want to keep anything they might use as evidence.

 

Introduce a little "realism".  That should curtail the issue.

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I tend to think of the Imperial Government as a generally evil Police State.  You don't want to keep anything they might use as evidence.

 

 

lol, Evil police state…no such thing as a good police state. I think there's an idea for an new CSI TV show though, CSI Empire

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Without getting into a debate about various real world examples that might fit into the "Police State"category, what I meant was that in addition to heavily policing its populace with police and intelligence forces, the Empire is also capital E Evil (and led by a guy tapped into the universal evil).

 

That aside, CSI Empire are exactly the folks that would be after the OP's group with their crazy loot (evidence) trail.

Edited by WarrenH

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Apologies if I'm way off base here, but it seems to me that you're not really having fun running this game.  If that's the case, I have to ask... why run it?

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...  and then my tech will declare he can 'remove the genelock'.

 

How do you combat that kind of thinking?

 

I ruled that Mods can't be removed once installed.

 

 

I would just have him modify the genelock to include his own genes. Mechanics/Computers check difficulty = an opposed check using the previous owner's Mechanics skill.

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