Jump to content
WickedWicks

Some doubts on Lightsaber Mods

Recommended Posts

All? Nah.
You can approach this in multiple ways, but yeah, WT 30, lots of parry and a few ranks in durable are certainly a way.
But you can hand out just the imperial valor talent and give him a few henchmen, you can trigger fun stuff like fated duel, you can use stealth for fun stuff, just going with cortosis and some soak  and some parry can do wonders as well. In general you just want to reduce the damage below zero for a while. 

Dividing the group and the use of abilities which stagger a target are surprisingly effective as well. And so is just getting out of harm's way and denying that engaged range. But the general idea for lasting saber duells is indeed just having enough ranks of parry. 

Either way, you have plenty of options and don't have to use the same tricks over and over. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@DaverWattra Adversary helps quite a bit, but keep in mind that structured time rounds simulate quite a bit of real time. Two or three rounds doesn't seem like much; not very many dice were rolled and only a few Talents were employed... but three minutes of hand-to-hand combat is a long time, particularly with weapons as dangerous as lightsabers. If your narrative is driving the rolls, not the other way around, you'll find that combat lasts a lot longer and is more cinematic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, DaverWattra said:

Well, I'm the GM.

I like one-on-one lightsaber battles versus dark-siders; I think those are a big part of the feel of the movies, and I want my Jedi PCs to have that experience.

How do you make those last more than a couple rounds if the PCs have fully modded lightsabers? Give all your Nemeses WT 30, ten ranks of Parry and four ranks of Durable?

How about the squad rules from a or gm kit

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/11/2018 at 6:22 PM, WickedWicks said:

And don't get me wrong, I love that  I have to "attune" with the crystal to make it stronger (now that I understand how it works). But I hate that a failure in this test means that I've lost the crystal's full potential. It is a dangerous gamble that is permanent, not quite my cup of tea. 

You're approaching it from a metagame standpoint. To you, the kyber crystal isn't reaching its full potential; whereas according to the narrative, your crystal has reached its full potential in that respect (on a failed check to apply a mod).

It's like any other failed check. There are real consequences for failing, but you keep on going because the failures are part of your character's story. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, awayputurwpn said:

You're approaching it from a metagame standpoint. To you, the kyber crystal isn't reaching its full potential; whereas according to the narrative, your crystal has reached its full potential in that respect (on a failed check to apply a mod).

It's like any other failed check. There are real consequences for failing, but you keep on going because the failures are part of your character's story. 

This reminds me of how I play failures for nearly any roll not in structured time. A skill check represents the best your character can do given the current circumstances. If you failed, your character likely (unless you chose to describe it differently in the narrative) tried their best, but it just wasn't good enough. For my games this is true even if you didn't roll "the best result you could have" on the dice in hand. Your roll could have been better, but your character still tried their best but the task was just too difficult. Try again later when the circumstances have changed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 hours ago, SEApocalypse said:

But you can hand out just the imperial valor talent and give him a few henchmen, you can trigger fun stuff like fated duel, you can use stealth for fun stuff, just going with cortosis and some soak  and some parry can do wonders as well. In general you just want to reduce the damage below zero for a while. 

 

11 hours ago, EliasWindrider said:

How about the squad rules from a or gm kit

These work great in big battles, but not in one-on-one fights.  (Except cortosis armor, which I grant will work, but sometimes you don't want every villain to wear a bunch of armor.  And my PCs are regular Prequel-era Jedi.  It would be goofy for them to go around in cortosis armor rather than ordinary Jedi robes like every other Jedi wears in that period.)

Again, I'm specifically talking about one-on-one lightsaber duels.  When characters are using basic unmodded lightsabers, one-on-one duels can be very fun and strategic.  With fully modded lightsabers doing 10 damage with crit rating 1, on the other hand, whoever gets the first hit is extremely likely to immediately score a battle-winning crit.  (The battle is unlikely to literally end after the first attack, but the first attack is quite likely to decide the outcome of the battle.)  This is especially true if either combatant has Ataru or Executioner.

Basically, fully modified lightsabers turn one-on-one duels into rocket tag, unless everyone wears cortosis or the combatants have so many ranks of parry that a PC would have to complete 3 full lightsaber trees to acquire them.

12 hours ago, SFC Snuffy said:

@DaverWattra Adversary helps quite a bit, but keep in mind that structured time rounds simulate quite a bit of real time. Two or three rounds doesn't seem like much; not very many dice were rolled and only a few Talents were employed... but three minutes of hand-to-hand combat is a long time, particularly with weapons as dangerous as lightsabers. If your narrative is driving the rolls, not the other way around, you'll find that combat lasts a lot longer and is more cinematic.

Absolutely I agree that you can narrate a combat of two rounds as lasting a long time with many cool things going on.  But with rare exceptions, a two-round combat is not very fun to play out.  It's just an initiative contest.  To be really strategic, to give the PCs a chance to use their cool talents and spend dice results on cool outcomes, etc etc, combat should ideally be decided in the third round or later.  That way you have an incentive to do things like commit dice for buffs, take a turn setting up an attack, and so on.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, awayputurwpn said:

You're approaching it from a metagame standpoint. To you, the kyber crystal isn't reaching its full potential; whereas according to the narrative, your crystal has reached its full potential in that respect (on a failed check to apply a mod).

It's like any other failed check. There are real consequences for failing, but you keep on going because the failures are part of your character's story. 

Even if it was purely metagame, am I wrong to feel that this "character progression" doesn't feel like true progress? I red somewhere that the saber would get stronger as my character grows stronger, that would be amazing and a fair way to handle such a legendary weapon in the early levels, but I am definitely not sold on rolling dice to decide that. It feels bad in a gaming way and it doesn't feel like I'm truly customizing my saber (the difference between sabers is which tests each person has failed?).

 

But I also don't think it is that much metagame to feel frustrated by a failure. Yes, that's the max of my crystal, but my character knows what he attempted to do and knows that he has failed. Besides the great opportunity to show his arrogance and blame the crystal itself on that failure, how would he not be pissed?

 

But that's that, I will give the system a fair shot. I just have this feeling that the mod system wasn't the best choice to scale the saber's power, and that more parts could have been used to increase its customizability and lateralise its "raw" power.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As for lightsaber duels (namely one-on-one battles), that's one thing that I keep hoping will get touched upon in a sourcebook, as that is something that is rather difficult to properly work out and set up for both the GM and the player.

Buried in this forum is a thread that Desslok started that took a look at the lightsaber battles from the initial six films, and most of them mechanically only took a handful of rounds.  But the thing with this system as others have noted is that a combat round doesn't have a preset measure of time taken the way that many other RPGs have.  For a player/GM that's coming over from D&D/Pathfinder/d20, there's the notion that a single round of combat only lasts a few seconds, where in this system a round of combat can go from roughly a minute (the generally accepted default) to several minutes if the GM feels it's appropriate.

While I don't fully agree with the approach, GM Chris of the Order 66 podcast came up with an alternate method of running a lightsaber duel, and that was to treat it instead as what amounts to a skill challenge, dispensing with dealing damage and instead tallying up successes until a certain threshold is reached and the duel is "won."  One of the restrictions is that you can't use the same skill twice in a row during the challenge, so a PC can't just be making Lightsaber combat checks round after round.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think lightsaber duels work great in this system, and can be incredibly fun, as long as both combatants have at least a modest amount of Parry ranks, and they're both using basic lightsabers.  It's only once the lightsaber crystals are upgraded that duels become uninteresting rocket-tag matches.

For example: 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, DaverWattra said:

Again, I'm specifically talking about one-on-one lightsaber duels.  When characters are using basic unmodded lightsabers, one-on-one duels can be very fun and strategic.  With fully modded lightsabers doing 10 damage with crit rating 1, on the other hand, whoever gets the first hit is extremely likely to immediately score a battle-winning crit. 

Example math needed, because I can not follow you. Neither on the battle winning critical hit, nor on the fun and strategic part. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, SEApocalypse said:

Example math needed, because I can not follow you. Neither on the battle winning critical hit, nor on the fun and strategic part. 

Sure...

First, lightsaber battles with only basic lightsabers can be fun and strategic.  See the link I posted above.

Second, lightsaber battles with fully modded sabers are rocket tag.  Take a typical mid-to-high-level warrior with a fully modified lightsaber and either Hawk Bat Swoop or Essential kill.  Assume a typical strong but not maxed-out dice pool (3Y 2G) and Force Rating 3.  Let's say you're attacking an opponent with Adversary 3, a high-level nemesis like an Inquisitor.

The most likely outcome is a hit with 2 success, 1 advantage, 2 Light Side pips, 2 Dark Side pips.

Unless your opponent has 10+ ranks of Parry, you will be able to crit.  Spending a DP and 2 strain to use all your Force pips on advantage, and spending all your advantage on critting, you will roll a critical hit with a +60 modifier to the crit roll (Vicious 2 + 5 advantage spent at crit rating 1).  This gives you a 10% chance of outright killing your opponent, a 10% chance of The End Is Nigh, which will kill your opponent in 1 turn, a 5% chance of permanently staggering your opponent (in which case you win), a 5% chance of Winded, which means your opponent can't parry anymore and you will likely kill them next turn, and a 5% chance of making a second attack with Overpowered, which will have an even better chance of killing your opponent.  So a typical hit has better than a 30% chance of guaranteeing a win.  There are also lots of other results you could roll which wouldn't completely guarantee a win, but which would immediately put your opponent at a very severe disadvantage (Bleeding Out, Blinded, Crippled, Compromised).

And that's just a typical roll.  A better than average roll, where you roll more than 1 advantage and/or more than 4 Force pips, and/or a Triumph, could easily end up with a 50% chance of rolling Dead on the critical hit table.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/10/2018 at 11:19 PM, Magnus Arcanus said:

You will never match the damage potential of lightsaber against an autofiring weapon, especially the bigger, heavier ones*. My best recommendation is not to try. Autofire is one of the more contentious mechanics in this game and can very easily be abused.

*the caveat would be perhaps some sick Ataru Striker build that focuses on Saber Swarm.

 

That's why I put a hard cap on the number of times autofire can be triggered equal to brawn as a house rule.   

 

On 1/10/2018 at 9:24 PM, Absol197 said:

You have the mechanics of modifications correct.  However, fret not!  I come bearing a house rule that may save you! 

Instead of INCREASING the difficulty for each mod, I UPGRADE the difficulty, and make it so that you require a Despair to eliminate a mod from your attachment  (crystal or otherwise).

I like this better, as it still makes it hard to get all your modifications, but it's not Impossible (literally; using the normal rules, even on your own personal saber, those last two mods would have an Impossible difficulty to install).

I like the idea of this House Rule!  Thanks Absol!
 

On 1/10/2018 at 10:22 PM, Daeglan said:

force and destiny 196. side bar.

Just a side note, you can only do this with "Crystal" attachments.  For modding other attachments you'll need the manipulate force power and a couple upgrades to add force die to the roll.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another note with difficulty of enemies.  I think most people get into the weeds with mechanical answers while over looking the purpose of encounters. As the GM, you do not have to have hard stats at all, simply let the combat last as long as necessary to achieve the narrative you are telling.  If the PCs are supposed to reasonably be able to defeat the encounter, but not without some potential consequences,  have the fight last until most of the PCs have taken several crits, or one or two have gone unconscious.  If the PCs are not supposed to win, but are supposed to feel like they had a chance, make an environmental change that separates them from the enemies for example.  If the PCs are not supposed to win and to know they are not supposed to win, and engage anyway, have the NPC flatten them and take them prisoner. 

An example of this in practice, if your PCs are cake walking your Force-Sensitive Big Bad which was supposed to be the chapter closing encounter,  Have BB suddenly develop a case of  maxed Heal/Harm, and the life steal ability, and FR 5, and make the encounter a war of attrition.   

The point is that opponents are really nothing more than a narrative vehicle for the story.   If you need opponents to last longer for the STORY to make sense,  make the fight last longer by dynamically scaling that difficulty.  If the enemies are supposed to lose at this junction, let them lose.   If the enemies are supposed to escape, engineer the escape.  Now this is not to say you should circumvent player agency in the combat entirely, but make changes to the encounter to raise the difficulty, but not get caught in the weeds of "well they need x ranks of y ability to do this."  assume they have whatever talent they need.  

Hope this didn't come across as too scathing, I just see these discussions time and again across RP systems and communities, and people just get lost in mechanics limbo.  Star wars, with its narrative dice system, makes this so much easier to tell the story you want without getting into "That monster can't possibly be that strong, it's right there in monster book x and has these stats...." discussions with players.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Old topic, relevant question.

When installing mods: Given that you can't roll on the same modification twice, if something has "4 Damage +1 mods" (like the illum crystal), would you allow a player to roll for additional +1 mods until their first failure OR  would you allow them to try this four times (ie. once for each mod) regardless of failures in between?

ex 1: Roll one (easy) pass- gain +1, Roll two (med) fail. No more attempts allowed for this mod. Cumulative result +1 damage.

ex 2: Roll one (easy) fail so no change, roll 2 (med) pass and gain +1 damage, roll 3 (hard) pass gain +1 damage, roll 4 (daunting) fail so no change. Cumulative result +2 damage.

Also, is there a cap to attempts or number of dice. Could you have a 6 dice roll if say you were rolling for your sixth mod?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, VadersMarchKazoo said:

Old topic, relevant question.

When installing mods: Given that you can't roll on the same modification twice, if something has "4 Damage +1 mods" (like the illum crystal), would you allow a player to roll for additional +1 mods until their first failure OR  would you allow them to try this four times (ie. once for each mod) regardless of failures in between?

ex 1: Roll one (easy) pass- gain +1, Roll two (med) fail. No more attempts allowed for this mod. Cumulative result +1 damage.

ex 2: Roll one (easy) fail so no change, roll 2 (med) pass and gain +1 damage, roll 3 (hard) pass gain +1 damage, roll 4 (daunting) fail so no change. Cumulative result +2 damage.

Also, is there a cap to attempts or number of dice. Could you have a 6 dice roll if say you were rolling for your sixth mod?

The first part of this actually got a dev answer a while back during the EotE days.

Answer is that each mod is considered a separate option.  So in this instance, if you happen to fail one of the +1 damage mods, the failure only locks you out of that specific mod option, with the other three mod options still being available to you.

With the second part (regarding the difficulty)... that's largely up to the GM.  I guess you could go with the default rules on setting difficulties in that anything above five purple falls into the realm of "impossible tasks" and can only be attempted by spending a Destiny Point and then rolling against five purples.

Another common option I've seen GMs using is that once the difficulty reaches 5 purple, any difficultly increases afterwards are instead treated as upgrades.  So in the case of going for a sixth mod on an Ilum crystal, the difficulty would be 1 red and 4 purple.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Donovan Morningfire said:

Answer is that each mod is considered a separate option.  So in this instance, if you happen to fail one of the +1 damage mods, the failure only locks you out of that specific mod option, with the other three mod options still being available to you.

That makes sense. It was also how I was leaning since this option is better for the players. 

2 minutes ago, Donovan Morningfire said:

With the second part (regarding the difficulty)... that's largely up to the GM.  I guess you could go with the default rules on setting difficulties in that anything above five purple falls into the realm of "impossible tasks" and can only be attempted by spending a Destiny Point and then rolling against five purples.

Another common option I've seen GMs using is that once the difficulty reaches 5 purple, any difficultly increases afterwards are instead treated as upgrades.  So in the case of going for a sixth mod on an Ilum crystal, the difficulty would be 1 red and 4 purple.

Cool. I suppose you could combined these two rules as well. Requiring a destiny point and then applying a number of upgrades.

Thanks Sir!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/10/2018 at 7:47 PM, WickedWicks said:

Hello all! I'm back with another noobish question to my fellow Jedi.

 

How exactly do I install modifications to the Ilum Crystal that comes with the standard Lightsaber?

 

If I understand correctly, due to the discount on tests on my own saber, the first mod has a difficulty of 1, the second 2, third 3, and so on. But isn't it a bit ridiculous after some point? I thought I would eventually be fighting with the "complete" saber, but I doubt I will succeed on difficult 4+ and after each failure I can't attempt to install said mod ever again.

 

I thought wielding such elegant weapon would make me unstoppable, but in reality I'm jealous over the Bounty Hunter's Auto Fire insanity!

Your first mod is free as long as you are using it in your personal lightsaber.  Also you get to use for force die on your rolls and using the pips as succeses.  Also understand it should take a while to fully mod out an ilum crystal with you having probably 4 force die if not more by then.  Also by then you will have a decent lore check or mechanics, most likely lore.  So rolling on the last 3 mods your probably pretty far along with at least 4 force die and 3 yellow and 2 green in lore. 

 

Remember the crystal gets stronger as you grow and get stronger take it slow.  Also you don't want to role a despair cause that will destroy the crystal, and when you fail a check to mod the crystal you permanently lose that mod for good on that crystal. (Yes these rules are accurate and in the book)  Those rules are probably hints from devs that they designed crystals to slowly get stronger with you over time as you get stronger.  Remember you making a story out of your character, as you start young and weak eventually you will be strong it will come in time.  Illum crystal is a great crystal for this type of story telling the mods on the crystal tell the story of how strong your character has gotten over time.  Don't approach the lightsaber as a number's game like it is in dnd.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/10/2018 at 7:03 PM, WickedWicks said:

Yes, I agree. My main grip with it is that my weapon will never be "whole", since I can't possibly use all my mods and such, other weapon choices can hope to see their full potential. I can't even lend my weapon to the team mechanic like the BHunter did.

You can't lend away your weapon for the bonus, but there's nothing saying you can't have said team mechanic assist your mechanics check and retain the bonus. 

It's also easily justified in narrative. Attuning to the crystal is a personal experience, but the refinement of the crystal still requires technical know-how (hence why it's a mechanics check) and the assisting character is providing your character with the knowledge needed to correctly refine the crystal.

On 1/10/2018 at 7:30 PM, awayputurwpn said:

Also, the Difficulty & price increases are per mod, not per attachment.

Actually they FAQ'd that, apparently they screwed up a bit with the wording and the price is not supposed to increase each time. It's just 100 credits per mod.

Edited by DarthHammer

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/13/2018 at 3:13 PM, WickedWicks said:

But I also don't think it is that much metagame to feel frustrated by a failure. Yes, that's the max of my crystal, but my character knows what he attempted to do and knows that he has failed. Besides the great opportunity to show his arrogance and blame the crystal itself on that failure, how would he not be pissed?

Think of it this way - there is no "standard Ilum crystal".  Every crystal is unique, and neither the player nor the GM knows what that crystal's capabilities are (much less the character).  Each time your character tries to modify the crystal, they always succeed in learning something new about it - it's just sometimes they learn it's not quite as good as they had hoped.  Improving your Mechanics score doesn't make modifying the crystal easier, it stacks fate in your favor as to how powerful a crystal you really received.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

What I've done for modding in my Edge game, is if the player(s) succeeds and rolls a triumph with no despair or threats they can keep the difficulty the same for the next mod check, with the exception of the first modding attempted. So say the difficulty is up to 3, and they pull off the success and triumph roll with no despair or threat, they can spend that triumph to keep the difficulty of the next mod at 3. 

This has only ever really gotten out of control one time, with the mechanic in the group getting most of the mods for a rile at 2 diff. 

Anywho, it might be worth trying with the crystal modding if your GM agrees to it. 

Edited by unicornpuncher

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×