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You know, the Addiction Obligation gives the GM full permission to give the player 1 to 3 Setbacks for lack of concentration during withdrawal. Here's another approach to Morality and Emotional Strengths / Weaknesses...

 

-Players' Strengths go on a chart, just like Duty. When the end-of-session conflict roll yields an increase in Morality, decrease their Weakness and increase that player's Strength by that same amount. If it's rolled on a session (like Duty), then the player may claim one Boost die per scene where it applies. If this Boost die isn't used in a given scene, then it doesn't carry over to the next. If the party hits 100 overall Strength, then they get an XP bonus and reset both their values to the base.

 

-Players' Weaknesses go on a chart, just like Obligation. When the end-of-session conflict roll yields a decrease in Morality, decrease their Strength and increase that player's Weakness by that same amount. If it's rolled on a session (like Obligation), then the other players may call for one Discipline check to avoid making a poor decision related to the Weakness, adding up to three Setbacks. If the party hits 100 Weakness overall, then the player with the most Weakness should have a dramatic clash with temptation, possibly falling to the Dark Side. Afterwards, reset that player's Weakness and Strength to the base values.

 

This gives you two values that ebb and flow together, with direct influence on the narrative and the dice. Set starting party values for being about 60 or so, meaning that when one value hits 100, the other will be at about 20.

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Funny thing is how they do avoid it, as was said. Other systems, occasionally, made real ramifications for "going dark". In some editions, several Force powers became unavailable to you, as if the Dark Side said "you, you aren't trained in this, and you are bathed in the light, but I'll still let you do this, to tempt you", but once you do, the Light Side shuts a door, if you will. You needed to decide if such powers were of interest to you. Revised, I believe, had the heinous mechanic of making you roll against it, when you leveled up, some way, vs your Dark Side score, and if you failed, which a high number almost assured, you permanently lost a point in a physical ability score, and it had to be one other than the one you picked the last time. In this way, they justified how Palpatine's physical stats were crap (this was before he was made into a lightsaber god, using Yoda-like Force puppetry, and kept impressive stats.

 

In this game, though, they don't really feel like a detriment, overall. I'm not aware of a bunch of powers, or abilities, that target your Dark Side/Morality/Conflict, and I'm not sure if there are many sensing powers to feel it, nor rules on your body being sapped by it. If you go WAY down, you lose some Strain, and gain some Wounds, but you sort of have to try to fall that far. Without much to sense, or target, how badly you've behaved, I'm not sure what the huge detraction is, to being all Light, and out of how you might otherwise behave. Oh well.

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So tonight was a perfect example of the weakness of the system.

 

I rolled at the beginning of the game for our group of Jedi working for the Rebels and had both the Duty (Personnel) and Morality (Bravery/Anger) trigger. They were sneaking onto Kessel to rescue a friend, and it turned out to be a trap set by the Inquisitors to capture the group. The Personnel I instantly thought "Well, what if there were a bunch of rebel agents that were captured and brought in for processing that the players can rescue at the same time?" - and that spun out into a pretty solid B Mission subplot.

 

I though that the Bravery/Anger would come up when the one who's Morality that was is confronted by the Inquisitor laying the trap - okay, this should work. But by the time they had infiltrated the mine, gotten down to the friend and ran afoul of a couple other distractions, the morality simply got forgotten about. It wasn't a lack of player buy-in - there were plenty of good roleplaying moments throughout the evening. It just simply got overlooked - on both sides of the GM Screen

 

And I was actively trying to keep an eye on conflict worthy moments, but I got busy doing other things like coming up with the plot when the original story went off the rails. If it comes down to keeping the story moving (and tell a good story) or micromanaging 2 conflict here or there - I'll go story every time.

 

Oh well, we have a couple of weeks off to consider what to do, if we want to rework things, ignore the system, if I have to improve my game or whatever. . . .

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Good luck, Desslok. I sympathise.

 

The game is a strange beast - it has largely a narrative focus, but there are a number of weird little rules and mini-games that actively seem to take away from the narrative, an obsession with numbers and 'Edge of the Spreadsheet' style play.

 

I find it easy to ignore this stuff to be honest, but people trying to play everything as RAW are going to bump into this.

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My most important question is why are you still rolling to trigger O/D/M at the start of the session? Planning the effects are so much easier if you roll at the end so you can incorporate it into the story properly. It also cuts a heap of wasted prep time. Sam and Andrew have basically admitted they wish they had written the rules that way from the start.

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The PC engaging their Morality doesn't have to be a specific choice between (in this case) doing something Brave OR doing something in Anger. It could be:

Doing something Brave.

Getting Angry about something or acting in Anger.

Anger causing an act of Bravery.

Deliberately avoiding a chance to be Brave.

Not letting something make you Angry.

Bravery while not allowing yourself to get Angry

Your Anger preventing you from being Brave

Note that none of these are directly Conflict worthy, the actual action is what guides Conflict. I probably have more to say but I'm too tired right now!

Edited by Richardbuxton

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I though that the Bravery/Anger would come up when the one who's Morality that was is confronted by the Inquisitor laying the trap - okay, this should work. But by the time they had infiltrated the mine, gotten down to the friend and ran afoul of a couple other distractions, the morality simply got forgotten about. It wasn't a lack of player buy-in - there were plenty of good roleplaying moments throughout the evening. It just simply got overlooked - on both sides of the GM Screen

 

This kind of thing is going to vary from table to table, I guess some people really enjoy having that kind of predefined script for their character to follow.

 

I think it's a crutch, I have no use for it, at least in a mechanical sense.  At chargen it can help inform how to role-play the character and imagine how they might feel in a particular moment, but I find the reliance on the mechanical feedback loop turns what could be an organic experience into something more like a board or card game.  The experience shifts from enjoying the storytelling moment to "oh no, I missed an opportunity to gather more tokens".

 

Basically, you shouldn't feel any compunction to follow Obligation, Duty, or Morality as written.  One thing though:

 

So tonight was a perfect example of the weakness of the system.

 

 

I wouldn't call it a weakness of the system.  Your objections seem to be with the concept itself, that in the heat of actual play and enjoyment you don't need to be distracted by such things, just let the game flow.

 

But for those who like the concept, the strength/weakness system is pretty decent, as far as systems like this go.

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Extremely good thread folks.

 

I am an old gamer (started RPGs before Star Wars was released) but relatively new to the system. I have started with a F&D campaign and so the morality mechanic is the only one I have used.

 

Our game is influence-mechanics heavy and gun-play light so places for the morality to come up are actually quite frequent, especially around honesty and deceit. The first couple of games I simply would ask as the players attempted something "what is your morality spectrum again?" It brought it into everyone's mind even it had no other effect on play. Just asking about it a couple of times has led the players to bring it forward into their roleplay choices. Now the fact that none of us has experience with the obligation/duty mechanic may be a factor in the ease of this happening.

 

Another way it has come in is through interpretation of advantage and threat. I have explained player advantage in terms of reducing conflict inherent in actions, especially social ones, by framing the encounter in terms of their moral strength. On the other hand I have used conflict to explain threat in terms of their moral weakness. This may not really match the underlying thinking behind advantage/threat but it works at our table.

 

I was also able to use the morality mechanic to encourage the use of force points even when they raise conflict. Players who want be light sided get so jittery about using dark force points that they can treat a FP roll without a light side point as a failure. One particular character has a strong motivation to learn about the light side with the morality of discipline opposed to obsession. At the end of a session I pointed out his repeated refusal to consider using even a single dark force point and gave him conflict based on his obsession. He is still reluctant, but at least he considers it. As well, that means every time the player rolls for force points and a black comes up he gets a little moral conflict going on inside that is quite delicious from both a narrative and GM point of view.

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I wonder if changing the pacing of the morality system might help it along. A lot of the objection is that it's easy to slide to paragon, and many people suggest fixing that by dishing out more conflict. Here's an alternative idea to mess with the pace.

 

Players no longer roll against conflict once per session, but roll when the second player in the group (or the first player, supposing you only have one player) reaches or exceeds 6 Conflict. Conflict is retained from session to session and awarded as the GM remembers and sees fit. So, how does this help? Well, it means the party has to struggle with the Dark Side to get anywhere towards the Light. And there will probably be some variation in party morality / conflict. See, the first time a player reaches 6 Conflict, nothing happens. Life goes on, until another player hits that same point. Then you roll against Conflict. This ensures that one player will have a pretty neutral roll, and one player, assuming he's gain more conflict, will be hard pressed not to drift toward the Dark Side, since his Conflict doesn't reset until someone else hits 6.

 

This is purely mechanical, and could be abused by the players, mind you, but it might help with making sure the players have at least some conflict before rolling.

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I personally loved the hey player got sucked out of the ship and is not in a space suit please take conflict to save him, because your force dice all came up black pips at the wrong time. 7 conflict in two dice rolls where my options were take the conflict and strain like a man for heroically rescuing a comrade while standing in a hanger bay that is explosively decompressing into vaccum. Although I do admit that he was almost killed when I hurled him into the space ship:)

Edited by Decorus

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All of my players kept doing evil stuff and getting conflict, but they would always roll higher than the 1 or 2 points they gained and ended up going up in morality. Is this the way it is supposed to be?

 

They were maxed after 6 sessions.

 

It seems nearly impossible to go down in morality. You perform a few bad deeds and generate 3 conflict in a session. You have to roll a 1 or 2 on a d10 to go down 1 or 2 points.

 

You take conflict to flip a single dark force result, and the d10 roll at the end of the session has a 90% chance of raising your morality, and a 0% chance of you losing any.

Edited by Vulf

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Due to the fact that our group's game sessions are relatively short, rolling against Conflict every session would result in the PCs shooting to Paragon by the end of the first adventure, unless they really went for it being 'evil'. I decided to change 'roll per session' to rolling Conflict at the end of an adventure. I also keep Conflict secret, my players are mature enough to have a grasp of morality and do not need me to warn them of their more questionable actions.

 

I have just finished running an intro adventure (leading into Lure of The Lost) which lasted around 6 sessions, the highest Conflict earned by the end was 4 (Despair on a Fear check and bit of dodgy thievery involved), other's total ranged around 1-2. This seems to be ok at the moment and doesn't require me to include morally questionable events into every session in order to justify an end of session Conflict check. Though if an adventure is going to be a bit of an epic, I may move Conflict check to end of an Episode (Chapter, Act, whatever you want to call it) instead of waiting until the end of the adventure.

 

I haven't concentrated on PC's emotional strengths/weaknesses to specifically 'trigger' them yet with character related story/plot, I may well stick with double Conflict for that session and see how that affects the total score at the end of an adventure.

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2 of my players became paragons pretty quickly, the other one didn't only because he missed a session.

 

It is a really bad mechanic, all it means is each game starts with extra white side destiny tokens and each Jedi has 2 extra strain.

Meanwhile the people using obligation have a chance to take strain at the beginning of each session. I am thinking of dumping morality.

 

Or I'm going to start penalizing Paragons, such as accepting a reward instead of just being satisfied with the good deed will generate conflict. Does this make me a ****? But even if I hit them with 5 conflict, they still have a 60% chance of not going down.

 

Maybe I can switch to duty.

Edited by Vulf

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All of my players kept doing evil stuff and getting conflict, but they would always roll higher than the 1 or 2 points they gained and ended up going up in morality. Is this the way it is supposed to be?

 

They were maxed after 6 sessions.

 

It seems nearly impossible to go down in morality. You perform a few bad deeds and generate 3 conflict in a session. You have to roll a 1 or 2 on a d10 to go down 1 or 2 points.

 

You take conflict to flip a single dark force result, and the d10 roll at the end of the session has a 90% chance of raising your morality, and a 0% chance of you losing any.

I would say the number should be 5-6 or better if they regularly do things so terrible.

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If the players do "evil stuff" and only have 1-2 Conflict at the end of the session, then the GM isn't doing his job properly. "Evil stuff" should be netting you 10+ Conflict per session (unless your interpretation of evil is very, very different from mine) so they should be on the express Morality elevator, going down.

 

1-2 Conflict is stuff like telling a lie, or threatening someone (without actually following up on the threat, which would net additional Conflict). That's at the chump change end of the evil scale. If that's the worst thing your players do in a session then I'd say that overall they deserve to have high Morality. Plenty of people go through their daily, everyday lives doing way worse stuff than that.

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Vulf, on 16 May 2016 - 06:04 AM, said:Vulf, on 16 May 2016 - 06:04 AM, said:

All of my players kept doing evil stuff and getting conflict, but they would always roll higher than the 1 or 2 points they gained and ended up going up in morality. Is this the way it is supposed to be?

 

They were maxed after 6 sessions.

 

It seems nearly impossible to go down in morality. You perform a few bad deeds and generate 3 conflict in a session. You have to roll a 1 or 2 on a d10 to go down 1 or 2 points.

 

You take conflict to flip a single dark force result, and the d10 roll at the end of the session has a 90% chance of raising your morality, and a 0% chance of you losing any.

 

I would say if your players only gain 1-2 conflict each session, they deserve to be a paragon. I found out that GM in that system are not hard enought when handling morality. Let be honest one minute. The jedi code is in direct opposition with real life. That is why jedi hide in their temple most of the time. Just walking in an imperial world should give them lot of conflicts

Edited by vilainn6

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MDR101, on 16 May 2016 - 06:06 AM, said:

Due to the fact that our group's game sessions are relatively short, rolling against Conflict every session would result in the PCs shooting to Paragon by the end of the first adventure, unless they really went for it being 'evil'. I decided to change 'roll per session' to rolling Conflict at the end of an adventure. I also keep Conflict secret, my players are mature enough to have a grasp of morality and do not need me to warn them of their more questionable actions.

 

I have just finished running an intro adventure (leading into Lure of The Lost) which lasted around 6 sessions, the highest Conflict earned by the end was 4 (Despair on a Fear check and bit of dodgy thievery involved), other's total ranged around 1-2. This seems to be ok at the moment and doesn't require me to include morally questionable events into every session in order to justify an end of session Conflict check. Though if an adventure is going to be a bit of an epic, I may move Conflict check to end of an Episode (Chapter, Act, whatever you want to call it) instead of waiting until the end of the adventure.

 

 

Let not forget that it is commonly accepted to not make players roll for their morality if they do nothing Worth during a session.

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All of my players kept doing evil stuff and getting conflict, but they would always roll higher than the 1 or 2 points they gained and ended up going up in morality. Is this the way it is supposed to be?

 

They were maxed after 6 sessions.

 

It seems nearly impossible to go down in morality. You perform a few bad deeds and generate 3 conflict in a session. You have to roll a 1 or 2 on a d10 to go down 1 or 2 points.

 

You take conflict to flip a single dark force result, and the d10 roll at the end of the session has a 90% chance of raising your morality, and a 0% chance of you losing any.

 

Erm yeah. A definition of "evil" is required here. Because the morally evil stuff, torture, reckless destruction and what not should warrant 6 conflict or greater for that incident. Telling lies (that solely benefit the player) and using Darkside pips isn't evil; in the later case it's actively pushing against the force to receive a desired result.

 

In this case it either sounds like these guys are avoiding any chance at doing anything evil, or that the consequences aren't being applied, or alternatively the players haven't been given enough easy routes or avenues to do a task in a easy, if morally abigious manner.

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MDR101, on 16 May 2016 - 06:06 AM, said:

Due to the fact that our group's game sessions are relatively short, rolling against Conflict every session would result in the PCs shooting to Paragon by the end of the first adventure, unless they really went for it being 'evil'. I decided to change 'roll per session' to rolling Conflict at the end of an adventure. I also keep Conflict secret, my players are mature enough to have a grasp of morality and do not need me to warn them of their more questionable actions.

 

I have just finished running an intro adventure (leading into Lure of The Lost) which lasted around 6 sessions, the highest Conflict earned by the end was 4 (Despair on a Fear check and bit of dodgy thievery involved), other's total ranged around 1-2. This seems to be ok at the moment and doesn't require me to include morally questionable events into every session in order to justify an end of session Conflict check. Though if an adventure is going to be a bit of an epic, I may move Conflict check to end of an Episode (Chapter, Act, whatever you want to call it) instead of waiting until the end of the adventure.

 

 

Let not forget that it is commonly accepted to not make players roll for their morality if they do nothing Worth during a session.

 

 

Yes, I saw that under Dev notes, and for most part makes sense.

 

But (and I should add my players wouldn't be so manipulative of the system), someone wanting to fast-track to Paragon could every other session, do something a little naughty to earn them a point of Conflict or two to justify a roll at the end of the session and increase their Morality. I guess it really does come down to individual groups...

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All of my players kept doing evil stuff and getting conflict, but they would always roll higher than the 1 or 2 points they gained and ended up going up in morality. Is this the way it is supposed to be?

 

They were maxed after 6 sessions.

 

It seems nearly impossible to go down in morality. You perform a few bad deeds and generate 3 conflict in a session. You have to roll a 1 or 2 on a d10 to go down 1 or 2 points.

 

You take conflict to flip a single dark force result, and the d10 roll at the end of the session has a 90% chance of raising your morality, and a 0% chance of you losing any.

 

2 of my players became paragons pretty quickly, the other one didn't only because he missed a session.

 

It is a really bad mechanic, all it means is each game starts with extra white side destiny tokens and each Jedi has 2 extra strain.

Meanwhile the people using obligation have a chance to take strain at the beginning of each session. I am thinking of dumping morality.

 

Or I'm going to start penalizing Paragons, such as accepting a reward instead of just being satisfied with the good deed will generate conflict. Does this make me a ****? But even if I hit them with 5 conflict, they still have a 60% chance of not going down.

 

Maybe I can switch to duty.

 

I suggested above that you only roll against Conflict when a second player reaches or exceeds 6 Conflict, keeping Conflict totals from session to session. Conflict is only reset after a roll against it. This ensures that at best, two players have a 50-50 chance of going down Morality-wise, but since it takes a second player reaching this point, the first player to break 6 Conflict will probably have accumulated more.

 

This means that the pacing of the mechanic is adapts automatically to your GMing style and pacing, rather than you having to adapt your GMing style and pacing to the mechanic. It also means that players only become Paragons by facing evil (in themselves or in other players), not by being perfect saints at all times.

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I've abandoned the morality system and and gone with a kotor like system. Where player actions determine whether they achieve a light side point or a dark side point.

During character creation I gave every one a pool of 100 force alignment. The starting 100 begins in a neutral pool. In order to place force alignment points into the light side they need to do something extraordinarily selfless. Dark side however is much easier to gain because it's based on selfishness.

For my players who wish to use the morality chart, they can but certain personalities will be more inclined to fall to the dark side. While some "good" personalities will either find them selves being more neutral and slowly gaining light side alignment. But their alignment is completely based on actions/motives and in some rare cases outcome. 

Edited by Tweek87

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My most important question is why are you still rolling to trigger O/D/M at the start of the session? 

 

Eh, mostly it was because I forgot at the end of the previous session. Mind you, the problem was not necessarily that I didnt have an idea on how to fit in the rolled Duty & Morality - that was pretty easy, all things considered. The problem was more that I forgot about the Morality in the process of keeping the game going.

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So looking back through, to me at least it seems more of Desslok's problem isn't with Morality as a whole (though being scared of accepting Conflict is a factor), but more specifically with getting the players to engage their Emotional Strengths and Weaknesses.

 

Personally, I don't bother with "triggered Moralities" and just simply treat those as being roleplaying hooks.  If I think a PC did a good job of playing to their Emotional Strength or especially their Emotional Weakness during a session, I toss them an extra 5 XP simply for good role-playing.

 

As I've stated elsewhere in past threads, I'm very much of the "don't warn the PCs ahead of time about earning Conflict" school of thought.  Granted, might be that I generally game with reasonably mature adults who understand that in this setting, acting a certain way is going to have consequences, but that those consequences are only as dire as the severity of the act; roughing up some local thugs won't carry nearly as bad a consequence as deliberately crippling an innocent bystander, or that stealing a credit pouch from a local noble just for giggles isn't quite as bad as mugging a pack of street kids for their pocket money.  So if my players do something that I honestly feel warrants them earning Conflict, then I assign it after the fact.

 

That and I hold to the old mindset I had under prior Star Wars RPGs that the more a player tries to justify why a certain course of action wasn't worthy of a dark side point, the more they deserved that dark side point.  Granted, Conflict isn't nearly so bad, unless the PCs are taking actions that would warrant 5 or more Conflict, but any reasonably mature and mentally well-adjusted individual is going to be aware that such types of actions fall into the realm of "bad."

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That and I hold to the old mindset I had under prior Star Wars RPGs that the more a player tries to justify why a certain course of action wasn't worthy of a dark side point, the more they deserved that dark side point. 

 

This. If it looks so bad that you have to justify it to the GM, then it's bad enough to earn Conflict.

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