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DaverWattra

Where does Knowledge (Core Worlds) end and Knowledge (Outer Rim) begin?

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The galaxy isn't neatly divided into the Core Worlds and the Outer Rim.  There are a bunch of other regions as well.  Where do we draw the line when it comes to the regional knowledge skills?

The books are not very specific on this.  I can think of a couple of ways to demarcate:

(1) Core Worlds covers everything out to and including the Expansion Region, Outer Rim covers everything farther out.

(2) Alternately, count everything outside the Core and Deep Core as "Outer"

(3) Here's the one that makes the most sense to me: Knowledge (Core Worlds) actually covers knowledge of the most "civilized" and politically powerful worlds; Outer Rim covers the less civilized and more powerless ones, wherever they are located on the map.  It seems a bit odd to me that Knowledge (Outer Rim) would cover Malastare or Sluis Van, which I think of as urbanized planets rather than frontier outposts, or that Core Worlds would cover Byss and Tython, for example.

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2 hours ago, DaverWattra said:

(3) Here's the one that makes the most sense to me: Knowledge (Core Worlds) actually covers knowledge of the most "civilized" and politically powerful worlds; Outer Rim covers the less civilized and more powerless ones, wherever they are located on the map.  It seems a bit odd to me that Knowledge (Outer Rim) would cover Malastare or Sluis Van, which I think of as urbanized planets rather than frontier outposts, or that Core Worlds would cover Byss and Tython, for example.

If you take this approach, which I happen to like, I'd suggest that worlds like Byss and Tython might not be covered by either K(CW) or K(OR) and would instead be under K(Lore) just as many shadowports should be under K(Underworld) regardless of where in the galaxy they sit.

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4 minutes ago, Darzil said:

I’d let players use either if uncertain, or stuff like underworld for shadowports. Don’t sweat it too much!

One reason to "sweat it" is that these skills cost just as much as skills like Perception and Lightsaber, so they need to be useful and being defined helps to ensure that they are useful. If they are not defined, then it's more likely that people will invest less in Knowledge skills overall and just sink points into one or two that they will try to push into every situation. It makes careers that have multiple Knowledge class skills (or the Cerean species) slightly less appealing. Neither of these are huge dealbreakers, but I feel like those that invest in Knowledge skills--especially multiple Knowledge skills--deserve to have bone thrown to them.

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I currently have the separation set between the Inner Rim and the Expansion Region; but given how much bigger the outer bands are, I've been contemplating moving it to between the Expansion Region and the Mid Rim. 

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This has been a tough demarcation for me too, as a GM but the metric that I use is, what would a person from either of these "general" regions be reasonably knowledgeable about.

As an example, I had the PC's run into Ahsoka Tano recently, but Ahsoka's been "off the radar" for a bit.  But as a GM I felt that Ahsoka was a public enough figure that the PC's might recognize her.

I decided that since she spent most of the time during the Clone Wars in the Core systems as a "hero" of the Republic (YES I COULD BE WRONG) I figured that her presence was more likely to be recognized by Core Worlders, and so I asked the PC's to make a K(CW) check vs 3 purple.

The players thought those skills would NEVER be important in game so they were rolling based on defaults.  But I digress.

 

Oooo!  Other cool example.  So the PC's are asked to smuggle in a controlled substance onto a planet, and to figure out HOW to approach the smuggling they try to figure out WHAT they were smuggling.  No their employer didn't tell them what they were shipping and they didn't ask!

I had two PC's studying this stuff while an Imperial Shuttle was inbound with the customs team.  I had a (former) Black Sun associate and I made them make a Knowledge Underworld check, but the other player was the ship's Doctor and I required a Medicine Check for that character.

I made up a cocktail and I'm calling it Saleucami Brandi.  It's a liquor that includes a number of highly controlled substances that ship through Saleucami.  It's a mild narcotic, but its highly addictive.  However, I decided that under the supervision of a physician, that this stuff could double natural healing rate.  (Not quite the awesome properties like Bacta, but still.  Nice if you're a desperate medic).   But it's also highly addictive, and it's expensive.  Something for someone with discriminating tastes and the credits to spend.

So this is an example where different skills could be used to check the same subject.

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12 hours ago, DaverWattra said:

(3) Here's the one that makes the most sense to me: Knowledge (Core Worlds) actually covers knowledge of the most "civilized" and politically powerful worlds; Outer Rim covers the less civilized and more powerless ones, wherever they are located on the map. 

^ This. Add in Underworld or Lore as alternatives as mentioned above for things like shadow ports or lost worlds. 

Also in general if a player can make case to me why another skill could be used in context I allow that too; eg, survival for a famous hunting planet, astrogation for location in the galaxy, or something like that. Just be careful not to be too lenient or players will never take some skills. I have a player (bothan) who constantly tries to use his talent "black market contacts" to try to find out information they need; dude invest in knowledge underworld or streetwise, ugh.

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I'd agree with the geographic location being only part of the picture. A system or set of systems that form a political group, and that sit somewhere in the middle geographically, might cross into either category based on their galactic significance/clout as well as their accessibility. (You might be closer to the core than to the rim, but if the only viable hyperlane access requires going way out toward the rim and doubling back, then you're effectively an outer rim location.)

That said, it isn't an issue if the PCs can opt for either skill in a case like this. There are a lot of skills with deliberate overlap and that are frequently listed together as options in published material, and someone who is familiar with the core or the rim is probably going to have a reasonable idea about the (overlapping) boundary regions as well.

Edited by Garran

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*draws line in metaphorical galactic sand* On this side use core, On the other side use outer rim.

*promptly watches as hyperlane backwash erases line*

*starts to draw new line*

 

Repeat ad infinitum.

 

In other words. There's no right answer. Everything is relative to the situation you're needing the information.

Could someone versed in core worlds knowledge obtain info about the outer rim. Sure. It might be vague, outdated or prejudiced. It might even be harder to get but all things are possible in a narrative system.

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On 7/12/2018 at 12:58 AM, HappyDaze said:

One reason to "sweat it" is that these skills cost just as much as skills like Perception and Lightsaber, so they need to be useful and being defined helps to ensure that they are useful. If they are not defined, then it's more likely that people will invest less in Knowledge skills overall and just sink points into one or two that they will try to push into every situation. It makes careers that have multiple Knowledge class skills (or the Cerean species) slightly less appealing. 

And this is exactly why, in my game, I've thrown out most of the Knowledge skills.  Core Worlds and Outer Rim are largely covered by Astrogation and Education.  Xenology is covered by Medicine and Education, and Underworld is just rolled right into Streetwise.  Out of four characters in my group, exactly one rank of a knowledge skill has been putchased, which tells me they're just not appealing.  So now, if you want to play "the smart one," just grab decent intellect and Education.  That will cover almost any question that would come up on Space Jeopardy.  

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