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Darkvalkyrie

Researcher talent

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I noticed some talents like Researcher and some knowledge based talents from the Consular: Sage and other trees say to remove 1 setback die per rank.  When would a setback die be put into a Knowledge based roll as it is not normally an opposition based skill? The rules mostly show a setback die is used in combat, not in other situations. I would think such a talent would give a boost to add to a roll.

 

We were playing the scenario in the Force and Destiny book and as my Jedi Consular: Sage was checking out the artefacts, my Researcher Talent seemed to be useless.

 

Just not understanding the setback die rule in non-combat situations.

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A very important lesson for GM's running this system is the balancing of dice pools. Learning to make the base check slightly easier than initially thought, but throwing in a couple of setbacks is the key. Almost every single roll should have setback, it just encourages players to take these Talents. Encounter planning is where the GM will need to think about these things and add them into their session noted

The difficulty of a check is supposed to represent how hard the task would be in perfect conditions (all the time in the world). Setbacks are for the things that are making the task harder than normal.

Challenge dice are mostly (IMHO) for when the stakes of failure are high, or when the Force is against them.

So looking at your example I would say there would be a couple of reasons:

1. Time, your trying to get the job done under pressure, "we need those answers yesterday", or "this place will be flooded in 5min"

2. Environment, are you in the middle of the jungle baking hot, sweaty and mosquitos everywhere? Or inside a dark ancient ruin with poor light?

3. Distractions, annoying NPC, in the middle of a firefight, beasts lurking in the dark, in an erratically moving vehicle.

4. Equipment, if you're completely without any tool useful to studying the artefacts, or working with far out of date or misleading reference material.

5. Access to Artifact, are you trying to make an assessment of the artefact over holovid? Or just looking at photos?

6. Bad information, a previous interaction with an NPC results in them giving you bad/wrong/misleading information about the Artefact (You rolled Threat or they rolled Advantage).

7. An unfortunate roll by another PC which resulted in Threat the GM used to pass Setback on to you.

There are many ways as you can see, and if your GM isn't offering them then try to yourself, you have a talent so help them come up with ways for you to use it.

Now of course there are GM's that start to think "oh I won't add setback because the players just remove them anyway" but that's bad GMing, it's better for everyone to be happy to reward the players for their XP investment.

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Setback dice are added when you are at a disadvantage, in this case, knowing obscure things.

 

Not really, that would affect the difficulty of the check, I think.

 

Black dice are situational modifiers to a check that aren't anything to do with the base difficulty.

 

Kael has it right, I think.  Black dice would apply if the character was tired, injured, rushed, in a bad environmental condition, or if authorities have made an effort to cover the information up, maybe.

 

And yes, some 'black dice remover' Talents are better than others. 

Edited by MTaylor

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Setback dice due to poor resources, that is poor data, poor interfacing, poor archiving and file structure... a temperamental computer system... having access only to limited data... stress of course, level of noise or nosy or unhelpful employees that the public library... stuff like that :ph34r:

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Yeah, setback dice are meant to be applied on non-combat skill checks anytime the conditions the PC is in are less than ideal for making that check.

 

And that has been one of the great stumbling blocks for GMs in this system, is remembering that the way to make a check harder isn't always increasing the number of difficulty dice, but to instead make liberal use of setback dice, with challenge dice only hitting the table if the task at hand is not only hard but carries a huge risk for failure (i.e. Despair result).

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A very important lesson for GM's running this system is the balancing of dice pools. Learning to make the base check slightly easier than initially thought, but throwing in a couple of setbacks is the key. Almost every single roll should have setback, it just encourages players to take these Talents. Encounter planning is where the GM will need to think about these things and add them into their session noted

The difficulty of a check is supposed to represent how hard the task would be in perfect conditions (all the time in the world). Setbacks are for the things that are making the task harder than normal.

Challenge dice are mostly (IMHO) for when the stakes of failure are high, or when the Force is against them.

So looking at your example I would say there would be a couple of reasons:

1. Time, your trying to get the job done under pressure, "we need those answers yesterday", or "this place will be flooded in 5min"

2. Environment, are you in the middle of the jungle baking hot, sweaty and mosquitos everywhere? Or inside a dark ancient ruin with poor light?

3. Distractions, annoying NPC, in the middle of a firefight, beasts lurking in the dark, in an erratically moving vehicle.

4. Equipment, if you're completely without any tool useful to studying the artefacts, or working with far out of date or misleading reference material.

5. Access to Artifact, are you trying to make an assessment of the artefact over holovid? Or just looking at photos?

6. Bad information, a previous interaction with an NPC results in them giving you bad/wrong/misleading information about the Artefact (You rolled Threat or they rolled Advantage).

7. An unfortunate roll by another PC which resulted in Threat the GM used to pass Setback on to you.

There are many ways as you can see, and if your GM isn't offering them then try to yourself, you have a talent so help them come up with ways for you to use it.

Now of course there are GM's that start to think "oh I won't add setback because the players just remove them anyway" but that's bad GMing, it's better for everyone to be happy to reward the players for their XP investment.

And a GM should be adding set back in most situations. as there are always problems. IE for example a public library or even a private on the book you need might be checked out etc. 

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Yeah, setback dice are meant to be applied on non-combat skill checks anytime the conditions the PC is in are less than ideal for making that check.

 

And that has been one of the great stumbling blocks for GMs in this system, is remembering that the way to make a check harder isn't always increasing the number of difficulty dice, but to instead make liberal use of setback dice, with challenge dice only hitting the table if the task at hand is not only hard but carries a huge risk for failure (i.e. Despair result).

exactly. What is the point of all these talents if the GM does not throw in setback liberally. Being able to say hah I can ignore that set back is part of the fun.

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