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fog1234

Enemy Without Expansion

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Just to avoid going too negative I will say that for the most part I really like this book. The new talents and armoury stuff are cool. I like some of the small touches like the tau weapons leading to confusion about the kroot's technical abilities and how the necron stuff and the tyranid enemies aren't given their normal in-setting names but ones more like what a human discovering one for the first time might call them. As I'm playing an Intelligence character the Explication system has me excited as well.

People seem unhappy that the Ace doesn't have Fieldcraft. but I've seen nobody complain that the Warrior doesn't get Finesse (linked to many shooty and dodge-y things).

Because warriors are a very generalist combat role. They are not described in a way that would suggest they should be great at any particular skill. The role is for being a generalist fighter and that's what it does by making most combat stuff middle of the road price with a few things cheaper. Their role ability is not tied to a specific skill or set of skills. Everything about Ace indicates that operate, survival and to a lesser degree maybe navigate should be their main skills and yet they lack the one aptitude needed for all of them.

A better comparison might be chirurgeon having Strength instead of willpower. Chirurgeons are stated as being the doctors and the interrogators so not having either aptitude for interrogation is kinda weird. It's just not as big a deal for them because really medicae is their primary thing and they get everything they need for that.

For the record I don't particularly like warriors but not because I think it has the wrong aptitudes for what it is. In my opinion combat specialists tend to feel much cooler than generalist combat characters and having nothing to do in investigation or social situations can get dull. So basically I feel warriors never get time in the spotlight because they are rarely going to be the most impressive combat character in any particular situation, always being outdone by the more focused characters, and can't contribute much in non-combat sections either. I think the role's aptitudes are correct for what the role is trying to represent I just don't think it creates a very interesting character is all.

Since the homeworlds in this book have thrown out the aptitude pattern for character creation anyway I feel like they could have perhaps removed perception and replaced it with fieldcraft. Would keep most of the skills that are bothering Lynata (survival mostly I guess) the same price as they are now but would fix the cost for operate.

Lynata, if you read the character example ace gives at the end I'd say fieldcraft fits very well with that little story, it would probably require stealth to steal an eldar vehicle, pretty crazy high operate to pilot it, maybe medicae to patch up after the crash etc.  Also the second ace sample path example of a mounted scout would also fit with survival. I think you are thinking too hard about Ace being tied to navy and/or aircraft specifically, which it isn't. Its a vehicle class, everything from horses and bikes up to starships and everything in between. In fact part of the reason I don't like the role is how bad it fits with navy mechanically because navy aces are much worse pilots than several other character creation combinations. 

 

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Regarding Weapon Training, nope, you need the talents. 'Vehicle' class weapons are vehicle weapons which, like Basic and Pistol weapons, don't also require proficiency in Heavy Weapons, on top of Las, Bolt or whatever. However, most weapons on vehicles aren't Vehicle class... they're mostly Heavy.

 

Actually, if you look at page 253 of the core rulebook in the vehicle attacks section you can read:

 

 

 A character with the appropriate Operate skill for a vehicle does not need specific weapon proficiencies to fire any weapons mounted on that type of vehicle without penalty. It is assumed that his expertise covers weapon use as well.

 

Thanks! I was looking all over for this!

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It would help, I think, if Skills had alternative Aptitudes like they do alternate Characteristics. It would only work right if applied to Specialist Skills, but would fix the issue of flying voidships requiring the same Aptitudes as riding a horse or driving a car. 

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True. I noticed that a lot of complaints seem to be based on the assumption that having both Aptitudes for an advance should be the default, when it's really more like an exception, reserved for special affinity.

Seems to me that Aces having a special affinity for driving/piloting is the whole point of the role in the first place and so should be one of those exceptions.

 

It would help, I think, if Skills had alternative Aptitudes like they do alternate Characteristics. It would only work right if applied to Specialist Skills, but would fix the issue of flying voidships requiring the same Aptitudes as riding a horse or driving a car. 

Another good fix would be to change how aptitude double up exchanges work. If you could either trade out a doubled up aptitude for any other aptitude or if it allowed you to take a non-characteristic aptitude when the double up is a non-characteristic aptitude. So for example it would allow navy to take tech which would double up with tech in ace then could be exchanged for fieldcraft.

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Lynata, if you read the character example ace gives at the end I'd say fieldcraft fits very well with that little story, it would probably require stealth to steal an eldar vehicle, pretty crazy high operate to pilot it, maybe medicae to patch up after the crash etc.  Also the second ace sample path example of a mounted scout would also fit with survival. I think you are thinking too hard about Ace being tied to navy and/or aircraft specifically, which it isn't. Its a vehicle class, everything from horses and bikes up to starships and everything in between. In fact part of the reason I don't like the role is how bad it fits with navy mechanically because navy aces are much worse pilots than several other character creation combinations. 

 

I actually don't have the book (yet) and tend to rely on my GM for taking a peek. But yeah, I was under the impression that it was a Navy-focused role. If it's a general Operator kind of thing, I'd implement a choice between aptitudes that reflect the proposed different Operate ground/space skills.

 

Or, better yet, take Fieldcraft out of Operate entirely, for the more I think about it, the less it makes sense. I think the skill should be all about how much control you have over the vehicle, and environmental adaptability (what Fieldcraft represents) at best is a peripheral subject there. Certainly there are situations where familiarity with the environs would improve one's handling, but I believe this would be better represented with a Navigate check; that's what it is there for.

 

I just can't wrap my head about the idea that someone whose second nature is driving or flying must automatically be better at surviving outside their vehicle, too. As such, I think I'd rather see Operate connected to Agility + Tech.

 

 

As for the stories you mentioned: while they may make use of Fieldcraft, it hardly has to do with actually steering the vehicle. And the "mounted scout" doesn't even make any sense at all here, because riding beasts is a Survival check (see page 116); Operate is reserved entirely for mechanical rides.

 

Seems to me that Aces having a special affinity for driving/piloting is the whole point of the role in the first place and so should be one of those exceptions.

 

Oh, yes, that remark was referring to criticism against the aptitude system in general. I've seen a lot of posts in other threads slamming it, or even proposing to give characters more aptitudes as if the majority of skills should be attainable for the lowest cost.

 

Another good fix would be to change how aptitude double up exchanges work. If you could either trade out a doubled up aptitude for any other aptitude or if it allowed you to take a non-characteristic aptitude when the double up is a non-characteristic aptitude. So for example it would allow navy to take tech which would double up with tech in ace then could be exchanged for fieldcraft.

 

Given how I didn't even notice the limitation, I'd be in favour of the second option. :P

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That's exactly what I meant earlier. I don't get why so many Skills or Talents have to have the cheapest cost to have fun in the game. All it does is speed up your progression and make the characters feel more samey by making them equally gifted at stuff.

 

That being said .. eh, matter of preferences. For someone convinced that the system really is that restrictive, I suppose it does represent an "easy fix".

Edited by Lynata

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I think this might be a psychological trick. It's big numbers, but if we look at DH1, it's pretty normal that XP cost can differ by two or sometimes even three times the cheapest advance on the same level. DH2 seems to have kept the same general formula, but made everything more expensive.

 

Perhaps the GM should just award more XP than they did for DH1, then? The book seems to recommend several hundred XP per session, citing 400 as the standard ... twice the amount that was recommended by the 1st edition rulebook.

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I actually don't have the book (yet) and tend to rely on my GM for taking a peek. But yeah, I was under the impression that it was a Navy-focused role. If it's a general Operator kind of thing, I'd implement a choice between aptitudes that reflect the proposed different Operate ground/space skills.

A line from the ace role indicates its for things like "...lightning strike fighter pilots of the imperial navy, to imperial guardsmen racing their leman russ tanks into the heart of enemy forces, to bike-mounted gangers in the depths of hive cities, to noble feudal warriors mounted atop reptilian beasts barded in plate". So, just like all the roles, its meant to encompass a variety of character types. It's obviously no coincidence that its in the same book as the imperial navy but its description leaves it open to plenty more than that and in fact, guard and outcast backgrounds work way better with it since they both can have fieldcraft.

 

Or, better yet, take Fieldcraft out of Operate entirely, for the more I think about it, the less it makes sense. I think the skill should be all about how much control you have over the vehicle, and environmental adaptability (what Fieldcraft represents) at best is a peripheral subject there. Certainly there are situations where familiarity with the environs would improve one's handling, but I believe this would be better represented with a Navigate check; that's what it is there for.

Navigate is also tied to fieldcraft yet is a skill this role should arguably have easy access to.

 

I just can't wrap my head about the idea that someone whose second nature is driving or flying must automatically be better at surviving outside their vehicle, too. As such, I think I'd rather see Operate connected to Agility + Tech.

Then don't buy survival for your tank commander or voidborn pilot...Having fieldcraft doesn't require that you buy a skill that doesn't fit the particular character. However since taming and riding beasts is described as being a character type covered by this role (and is even included in its role bonus) it should probably be able to take survival cheaply.

 

As for the stories you mentioned: while they may make use of Fieldcraft, it hardly has to do with actually steering the vehicle. And the "mounted scout" doesn't even make any sense at all here, because riding beasts is a Survival check (see page 116); Operate is reserved entirely for mechanical rides.

It gives multiple examples of Aces being characters riding living mounts and therefore requiring survival (another skill that requires fieldcraft) further supporting my point that this role should have that aptitude. The role special ability and several of the new related talents even include survival alongside operate in their descriptions when used for the purposes of riding mounts. The mounted scout example actually says "this type of character can be found mounted on one-man bikes or steeds he has personally broken in". So this role's primary skills seem to be operate and survival (at least for the purposes of riding) and arguably navigate all of which require fieldcraft. The skills tied to fieldcraft are: Awareness, Medicae, Navigate, Operate, Stealth, and survival. 3 of those (operate, survival and navigate) are pretty obviously important to the role so that's already half without even breaking them down into the specialties and awareness could easily be added to the list since most pilots/drivers/scouts need to be pretty aware of their surroundings especially in a combat zone.

Edit: text color adjusted so responses stand out better.

 

That's exactly what I meant earlier. I don't get why so many Skills or Talents have to have the cheapest cost to have fun in the game. All it does is speed up your progression and make the characters feel more samey by making them equally gifted at stuff.

 

That being said .. eh, matter of preferences. For someone convinced that the system really is that restrictive, I suppose it does represent an "easy fix".

I agree not everything should be cheap and I don't particularly like the idea of just giving everyone an extra aptitude. On my current character I've bought zero aptitude characteristics and several 1 aptitude talents and plan on picking up some zero aptitude skills soon. Although zero aptitude talents may be a little too expensive. As long as everyone in the group occasionally picks up something non-optimal there shouldn't be an huge discrepancies between characters.

The only reason I think this is a problem with Ace is that they don't even get the stuff that is meant to make their role special for as cheap as one of the other roles (assassins), therefore what is the point of this role.

Edited by Skarsnik38

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I have to say, I grow more disappointed by the Ace the more I read. Now it sounds like too much of a mishmash -- there's worlds (pun not intended) between being a space fighter ace and a mounted survival expert. An Elite Advance that attempts to squish them both into a single package just doesn't sound very appealing to me.

 

Then don't buy survival for your tank commander or voidborn pilot...Having fieldcraft doesn't require that you buy a skill that doesn't fit the particular character.

 

Of course, by the same token we could just as well excuse having to buy Operate at a higher XP cost. After all, if it's not important that our character is a natural talent at stuff that doesn't make any sense, why would it be different if they do not have affinity for things that would?

 

I remain convinced this is a weakness in Skill distribution. These things have nothing to do with each other, yet they were lumped into the same aptitude combination.

 

Which runs into a problem of GMs who don't like to give out lots of XP....

 

Worth bringing it up with the GM ... did they already give out fewer XP in DH1? Or did they just not "upgrade" to DH2's recommendations?

 

In case of the former, the problem was already present in DH1. In case of the latter, the GM should perhaps re-read that part of the book. In all likelihood, they might be entirely unaware of this discrepancy!

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What is it with pilots and getting worked over by Fantasy Flight? :P  I mean, at least DH2 Aces don't have to deal with the nightmare initiative rush rocket tag that is dogfighting in the Star Wars RPG, but not giving them Fieldcraft is a massive oversight. I'd swap out something else, probably Tech, for it.

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What is it with pilots and getting worked over by Fantasy Flight? :P  I mean, at least DH2 Aces don't have to deal with the nightmare initiative rush rocket tag that is dogfighting in the Star Wars RPG, but not giving them Fieldcraft is a massive oversight. I'd swap out something else, probably Tech, for it.

 

Aces don't have Fieldcraft, we never get a Valkyrie....

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What do you guys think of the idea to make a houserule stating that Aces could choose between Fieldcraft and Tech, to better differentiate between beastriders and fighter pilots?

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The sad thing is, Tech isn't of much use to a fighter pilot. The only Skills connected to it are Tech-Use and Security.

 

Perhaps in addition to your suggestion, I'd change Operate to use Agility+Tech. Now pilots and vehicle drivers need to understand their ride, whereas beastriders would continue to use Survival (Perception+Fieldcraft) to interact with their mount.

 

From the core rulebook, the Tech aptitude represents "characters who might not understand the inner workings of machines, but can easily learn to commune with the machine spirit and seem to get results where others gain only frustration". Sounds fitting.

 

Even Tech-Use, the most prominent skill connected to this Aptitude, comes with two examples that sound remarkably similar to what a pilot might do in a game:

  • "wishes to push a piece of technology beyond its normal capabilities or operating parameters" (like doing a particularly tight turn with a fighter?)
  • "trying to determine how a piece of unknown or unfamiliar technology works" (like driving a xeno speeder?)

Not to mention that Operate also yields the weapon proficiency for anything the vehicle is equipped with. That sounds very Tech-nical, too.

Edited by Lynata

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After thinking about a bit, I think I'm leaning more towards Lynata's idea of leaving Ace alone and changing Operate to Agility + Tech.  

 

Ace does have Tech, right?

Edited by Vorzakk

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Re: your discussion of Inquisitor related games. Have you guys heard about Eisenhorn: Xenos? http://www.pocketgamer.co.uk/r/iPhone/Eisenhorn%3A+Xenos/news.asp?c=64138

I know it's a mobile game, not exactly what I was hoping for, but it looks alright.

 

Sorry, I know it's OT. Let me fix it: Hey, I also got the book! It's okay, not exactly what I was looking for, just a retread of aliens we've heard about in the other settings a berjillion times, no alien races unique to the Askellon Sector that provoke terror like the Slaugth (that said, I haven't bothered taking my games out of the Calixis Sector.)

 

 

I've said this before, but GW's route to mainstream recognition is licensing 40k to DICE to make Battlefield 41,942. Tau/Orcs vs Guard? Who wouldn't buy that?

 

Well, they're sort of doing that with Eternal Crusade, but needless to say, for now that's Space Marines vs differently coloured Space Marines. They've been planning to add Orks and Eldar, at least.

 

They also said that eventually they want to do all factions, but personally I'm not going to hold my breath.

 

Similarly, a Dark Heresy/Inquisitor-based Mass Effect-style game done by Bioware would be amazing.

 

That would be the best. Sadly too good to become true.

 

I think GW is deliberately avoiding licensing with big studios nowadays, probably because they are having some ridiculous clause in their contracts that established developers would shy away from. Every videogame you see in development right now is being done by small studios with little to no prior experience in this sector, with the sole exception being WH Total War, and this is only because Sega got the license via Relic.

 

Fortunately, that doesn't entirely preclude a few gems being among the trash. Personally, I don't have a problem with Vermintide being a L4D clone (you could argue Dawn of War and Space Marine were clones, too, they just had more depth and detail), and Mordheim .. well, I can see how it won't appeal to everyone, but I think it has its charm. Still believe that a Necromunda version would be better tho. :P

 

Edited by khimaera

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I finally got this (as a Christmas present). Haven't read through it thoroughly yet, but my initial impression is: visually very impressive, and it looks like there will be a lot of useful new rule stuff, but I'm pretty disappointed that there were no new sector-specific xenos. Considering how popular the Slaught, Rak'Gol, and other made-for-the-game xenos have proven, this feels like a major missed opportunity...

Edited by Adeptus-B

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I finally got this (as a Christmas present). Haven't read through it thoroughly yet, but my initial impression is: visually very impressive, and it looks like there will be a lot of useful new rule stuff, but I'm pretty disappointed that there were no new sector-specific xenos. Considering how popular the Slaught, Rak'Gol, and other made-for-the-game xenos have proven, this feels like a major missed opportunity...

 

100% Agreement, local Aliens would be amazing to have. Hopefully it's a sign that we will be getting an "Askellon Bestiary" a short way around the bend.

 

As is I think they did an excellent job translating the existing Xenos into the setting that they are building.

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