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KungFuFerret

How many saber forms did the average Jedi know?

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I'm not talking about your Chosen Ones, or your Child Prodigies, etc.  I just mean, your average mook Jedi.  The ones that were nameless extras in that big fight in Attack of the Clones (yes I'm sure there is a 15 page bio on them at wookieepedia, but in the film they were Jedi Mook 27 as far as the audience knows).

So how many forms would you think they would know when becoming a Jedi.   Given they are capable of handling just about any kind of combat situation, it would seem likely that they know at least one melee focused style, as well as a second style that is about ranged combat/defense.   Given the different styles in the FFG tend to trend towards one or the other, it would seem likely that a "rounded Jedi" would probably know at least 2.  

Thoughts?

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6 forms. Apprentices Jedi are taught all forms except Juyo at the Academy before they become Padawan. It's said that only a handful of selected few are taught Juyo because of the risk of falling to the Darkside. That left only 6 forms that all younglings must know at least the basic to pretend becoming a padawan.

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Jedi apprentices Learn Shii-Cho before advancing into any one of the six main forms, usually being taught only the basics of each in order to gauge which suits them best. This often depends upon their individual strengths and weaknesses, though, as in the case of Obi-Wan, learning the flaws in one style the hard way, and taking up a different style that better covers the weaknesses of the previous style. Some Jedi will diversify even further mastering  more than one form. Only a small handful of Jedi sword masters will actually master all six of the main forms. 

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39 minutes ago, WolfRider said:

6 forms. Apprentices Jedi are taught all forms except Juyo at the Academy before they become Padawan. It's said that only a handful of selected few are taught Juyo because of the risk of falling to the Darkside. That left only 6 forms that all younglings must know at least the basic to pretend becoming a padawan.

Always keep in mind that knowing the basics of the forms is not the same thing as having the associated Specialization and its talents. Those that do the latter have truly excelled within a particular school. 

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Now how many form trees will a normal Jedi have? Me I think one or two for most with most knights haveing one or more maxed

 

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41 minutes ago, Oldmike1 said:

Now how many form trees will a normal Jedi have? Me I think one or two for most with most knights haveing one or more maxed

 

Typically one, maybe two. This is because, except for Niman, none of the lightsaber form specs have an Increased Force Rating talent, so it’s a trade off: the more forms you’ve mastered, the less capable you’re likely to be with the Force.

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Posted (edited)

I imagine the Jedi have a passing familiarity with most forms, but many only really tend to excel in one. It is common martial arts sense to avoid adopting too many conflicting styles in one form as part of a styles strength is to know how to respond out of muscle memory, introducing potential for conflict and hesitation in action when the time comes. So while I imagine that students were drilled in many forms and received an education in the basic form of Shii-Cho, most would only become a firm practioneer of one or two styles which is what the lightsaber trees represent. A Jedi knowing other forms might be a knowledge check, or be bits and pieces that they pick up from non-specialised trees (Arbiter for example) but practically speaking I feel most Jedi only ever seriously practiced one form in their life time and used lessons learn to tamper their capabilities. I mean, tons of Jedi died in the pit against mere minons and Kit Fisto died almost instantly despite being a Jedi Master with 3 years of war experience under his belt and three other Jedi assisting him, so that indicates to me that most Jedi in the Clone Wars were fairly unexceptional figures who were much more scholars and arbitrary leaders (lack of command structure in Republic) forced to fill a role then genuine warriors, though there were some exceptions to that rule. 

 

Even Obi-Wan who was noted for knowing two styles completely abandoned form 4 to favour a much more defensive style that he maintained for the rest of his life; the only time we really see him bring it out again was to taunt Maul into attacking him, which he then immediately switched stances to receive the charge. Sure, he had the experience and tampering there so even if he never used Saber Swarm or Hawk Bat the extra reflects and parries would bolster the already firm defence and make him a much more formidable opponent then someone who had only specialised in one form. Obi-Wan was head and shoulders above most of the other masters of his era and it really shows what a second lightsaber tree can do to a character. He was only really humbled by people genuinely much more experienced then him (Dooku was his master's master, and the second time Sidious blind sided him.), so it seemed that his tutorage under Qui-Gon had not gone to waste.

 

Practically speaking, PC's could easily become a strong combat character with one tree and good attributes, and become even better with a second tree. However, due to the lack of force talents and general specialised nature of the trees, there are rapidly diminishing returns to learning more trees. There really isn't any point in learning too many ranks of parry and reflect as much of the time about 5 ranks and a decent soak can stop most small arms fire dead anyway. Likewise, I expect the PC's to develop outwards as characters with well defined careers rather then focus on being a hyper efficient combat character.

Edited by LordBritish

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Jedi trained by the Order prior to Order 66 would have been trained in the fundamentals of the six classic Forms during their pre-Padawan days, and would really only begin to specialize/focus in any of them after becoming Padawans.  Though it's probably not unlikely for some particularly adept students (the sorts that would make for PCs in an RPG) to have begun focusing on one particular Form prior to becoming Padawans.  Most of the rank and file Jedi tended to focus on Form VI since the training required to "master" Niman wasn't as intensive and left the student more time for other pursuits.

It also wasn't uncommon (at least in Legends) for Jedi to blend elements of other Forms into their primary Form, though they wouldn't necessarily be considered "masters" of those secondary Forms.  For instance, Anakin's Form V incorporated elements of Form I and  Form IV (the later fitting his hot-headed flashiness), though after becoming Vader he modified his Form V to drop the Ataru aspects and instead incorporated Form I and Form III elements to counter the weaknesses that his lumbering cybernetic form imposed on him.  Obi-Wan used Form I and Form IV during his apprenticeship before shifting to Form III after Qui-Gon's death, having decided that his master's lack of focus on defense in close combat was a serious liability.

Of course, very little of the above is really going to translate well to game mechanics what with each Form being it's own specialization, though it's easy enough to just say that anyone with ranks in Lightsaber has been trained in Shii-Cho, seeing as how Form I is pretty much the basis of all the other Forms.  They just won't have access to any of Shii-Cho's tricks (like Sarlacc Sweep or Multiple Opponents) unless they purchase those talents from Shii-Cho Knight.  Being a master of multiple Forms in this system is going to be ridiculously expensive, and likely force your PC to have a very weak Force Rating simply due to only Niman Disciple offering you a chance to bolster your Force Rating.

Now, I'd say that if your PC's background justifies it, they could narratively just say they're using non-mechanical elements of the Classic Six Forms no matter which Form spec (if any) they've got; if they've got ranks in the Lightsaber skill, then the character has at least been exposed to the Classic Six and might know a few moves from each, not unlike a martial artist that's focused in one specific style but due to experience with other styles of martial arts has chosen to borrow from them to expand their own repertoire (i.e. the driving principle of Jeet Kun Do, in that you take what works for you and discard the rest to create your own personal form of fighting).  A number of MMA fighters do the same, tending to focus on a specific approach (striking, takedowns, grappling) but need to be at least familiar with the other approaches if they want to have any measure of success; the guy that focused exclusively on striking but has little mat experience is gonna be in trouble if his opponent is a grappler and takes the striker to the mat for a submission hold.

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It also depends on the time period. In Clone Wars era, Random Jedi #312 is probably only going to have Soresu or Niman as their sole lightsaber spec, with the underlying Shii-cho fundamentals likely represented by the new Padawan/Knight universal specs. Makashi, Ataru, Shien, or even Shii-cho specialists would be very rare, and probably very warrior-minded "Jedi Guardian" types (in the classic sense, not necessarily the Career).

In the Old Republic eras, things get a lot more loosey-goosey and vary drastically depending on when exactly your game is set. KotOR/SWTOR-era is relatively codified and rigid, albeit not quite as much as the Clone Wars, and you can expect similarly standardized Random Jedi lightsaber proficiency, with only one true spec being the most common. The other standard (non-Juyo) styles would be more common than in Clone Wars, since the Sith are an ever-present, extant threat and a lightsaber dueling ethos is thus more in vogue rather than the complacent Jedi of the Clone Wars. More serious warrior Jedi might have two saber specs, but more than that would probably be reserved for big-time PCs and NPCs, such as lightsaber instructors and the current Battlemaster of the Order (who should have all 7 specs).

Other Old Republic eras (such as New Sith Wars) tend to be less rigid, and you're probably less likely to see any kind of standard form, though I'd still be wary of giving more than one to Average Random Jedi. Though it should be noted that the immediate aftermath of the New Sith Wars resulted in the Jedi Path-style Clone Wars Jedi coming into vogue again, so if your game is set in that era you might want to think about incorporating the seeds of that branch of Jedi philosophy.

More ancient eras, if that's your cup of blue milk, are going to be the most wacky of all, and might not even have more modern forms like Shien and Niman at all. The earlier you go, the more Makashi and increasingly-archaic Shii-cho you'll find, and it's my interpretation that very early Jedi would have been more warrior-like and more focused on their swords and later, lightsabers in clashes with Dark Jedi and the nascent Sith. Random Jedi having both Shii-cho and Makashi specs seems more likely in this era, with Soresu coming into fashion between Sith Wars and Ataru during them. Though I should stress this last paragraph is mostly my own speculation and interpretation, and should perhaps be taken with a grain of salt.

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I disagree for the KOTOR / SWTOR era. KOTOR starts just after the Jedi fought a war against the Mandolarians, they won, and a war against the Sith they lost. SWTOR Starts 20 years after the Jedi lost a war against the returning Sith led by Darth Malak and 300 years after KOTOR 2. In both case the Jedi order needs more warriors than arbiters. That means all jedi will be thoroughly trained in all 7 forms, Juyo isn't restricted access during this period, and many will need to master, not just learn the basics, more than 1 form to survive the constant fighting.

If you take the class in SWTOR as example, Consular doesn't start with a form and Sage and Shadow the two advanced classes don't possess any forms too. Jedi Knight start with Chi-Cho and later Gardian adds Soresu and Shien while Sentinel adds Ataru and Juyo. But it's very difficult to translate a Jedi (or Sith) character from SWTOR with F&D careers and specialisations. I've tried for my 5 Jedi & Sith characters and it doesn't work very well.

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I'd say that the Lightsaber skill encompasses most of the flavor and familiarity of lightsaber forms/styles.

As for what PCs do with respect to playing a Knight, I'd say one Form spec is plenty.  A Knight character has their XP going a lot of different directions to create a well rounded comprehensive character that more than one spec would be the exception rather than the expectation.  Also, deep diving into a Form spec is going to make them a formidable combatant so filling up on Talents from another Form spec isn't as likely to be a high priority.

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Posted (edited)

If I'm right all the lightsaber forms were common amoung the jedi during the clone wars except Makashi though it was available to learn (dueling wasnt a thing though) and Juyo (forbidden to learn).

Edited by Metalghost

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8 hours ago, Metalghost said:

If I'm right all the lightsaber forms were common amoung the jedi during the clone wars except Makashi though it was available to learn (dueling wasnt a thing though) and Juyo (forbidden to learn).

More or less.  While Makashi was available to learn, very few students bothered since it focused on lightsaber vs. lightsaber dueling, and the Jedi Order believed the Sith (the only major faction apart from the Jedi themselves to use lightsabers) was extinct, especially given that other Forms were more practical for the time, such as Shii-Cho*, the Shien aspect of Form V (what Anakin largely used in AotC, adding more of the Djem So aspects after his fateful encounter with Count Dooku), Soresu, Ataru, and even Niman, though the later began to fall by the wayside as it proved to not really be suitable for the larger battlefields.

I don't know that Juyo was expressly forbidden, but more that a Jedi wouldn't really be able to start focusing on it until after they'd become a Knight, or perhaps a Padawan if they had a permissive enough Master.  The Jedi Battlemaster of the time was the one who pretty much decided that none of the initiates would be learning Juyo due to the dark side risks the Form carries and that his students were young children still learning to control their emotions.

*it's probably worth noting that the Jedi Order's version of Shii-Cho at the time of the Clone Wars did include blaster-deflection training; per Sam Stewart the writers made a deliberate decision to go with old-school Shii-Cho for the Shii-Cho Knight and exclude any ranks of Reflect to make it a purely melee-focused spec.  For anyone that's interested, I did create an alternate version of Shii-Cho Knight that incorporated Reflect into the spec tree, which can be found on my blog here along with thoughts on the other Form specs.

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If we're going by the prequel era, and asking how many lightsaber spec trees the average jedi learned, I'd probably say less than one.

Even if we disregard the upcoming Knight/Padawan trees I think the lightsaber spec trees would represent those who focused on lightsaber combat skills above the norm. While all jedi were trained in the use of a lightsaber I'm of the opinion that many were quite unexceptional compared to most PCs. I mean, while we have the exceptionally skilled fighters like Mace Windu, Yoda, Anakin and Obi-wan, we also have high-ranking members that were quite unexceptional in combat, like Jocasta Nu and Coleman Trebor.

Still, in game terms, the very least Jedi would probably still be a rival with something like two skill ranks in lightsaber and one or two ranks each in reflect and parry, which should quite enough to cleave battle droids left and right and carve a good chunk out a squad of clone troopers before going down; either of which should be quite impressive from a diegetic point of view.

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2 hours ago, penpenpen said:

If we're going by the prequel era, and asking how many lightsaber spec trees the average jedi learned, I'd probably say less than one.

Even if we disregard the upcoming Knight/Padawan trees I think the lightsaber spec trees would represent those who focused on lightsaber combat skills above the norm. While all jedi were trained in the use of a lightsaber I'm of the opinion that many were quite unexceptional compared to most PCs. I mean, while we have the exceptionally skilled fighters like Mace Windu, Yoda, Anakin and Obi-wan, we also have high-ranking members that were quite unexceptional in combat, like Jocasta Nu and Coleman Trebor.

Still, in game terms, the very least Jedi would probably still be a rival with something like two skill ranks in lightsaber and one or two ranks each in reflect and parry, which should quite enough to cleave battle droids left and right and carve a good chunk out a squad of clone troopers before going down; either of which should be quite impressive from a diegetic point of view.

I'd agree that GMs can populate their setting with "mook" Jedi along those lines, a Rank or two of Parry and Reflect, a Force Power (Enhance or Move being excellent candidates) with an upgrade or 2, Force Rating 2 and Lightsaber 2 and that'd be fine to flesh out an NPC "average" Jedi Knight.

The thing is that for a PC to pick up ranks in both Parry and Reflect will usually require at least one Lightsaber spec - or at the very least a combat focused lightsaber spec (not all of which are named after the 7 Forms).

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15 hours ago, Jedi Ronin said:

I'd agree that GMs can populate their setting with "mook" Jedi along those lines, a Rank or two of Parry and Reflect, a Force Power (Enhance or Move being excellent candidates) with an upgrade or 2, Force Rating 2 and Lightsaber 2 and that'd be fine to flesh out an NPC "average" Jedi Knight.

The thing is that for a PC to pick up ranks in both Parry and Reflect will usually require at least one Lightsaber spec - or at the very least a combat focused lightsaber spec (not all of which are named after the 7 Forms).

Well, as "lightsaber specs" I counted those based on specific forms, not every spec that includes any lightsaber specific talents such as Armorer, Padawan Survivor, Protector etc... Lightsaber skill is included in their skillset, but it's not central to their theme.

In fact, I'd probably consider the Arbiter spec be a fairly standard Jedi setup for someone passably well versed in Niman with one rank of Parry, two ranks of Reflect and Aggressive Negotiations to de-escalate or defuse a situation. While the Jedi order are, by tradition, warriors, as Mace Windu pointed out, they are keepers of the peace. Their job is, if possible, to stop fights from breaking out rather than joining them.

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9 hours ago, penpenpen said:

Well, as "lightsaber specs" I counted those based on specific forms, not every spec that includes any lightsaber specific talents such as Armorer, Padawan Survivor, Protector etc... Lightsaber skill is included in their skillset, but it's not central to their theme.

In fact, I'd probably consider the Arbiter spec be a fairly standard Jedi setup for someone passably well versed in Niman with one rank of Parry, two ranks of Reflect and Aggressive Negotiations to de-escalate or defuse a situation. While the Jedi order are, by tradition, warriors, as Mace Windu pointed out, they are keepers of the peace. Their job is, if possible, to stop fights from breaking out rather than joining them.

Sounds like we basically agree.  At least one spec (like Arbiter, etc) that gives access to lightsaber based talents, particularly Reflect/Parry.

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3 hours ago, Jedi Ronin said:

Sounds like we basically agree.  At least one spec (like Arbiter, etc) that gives access to lightsaber based talents, particularly Reflect/Parry.

NPCs don't bother with Specifications. They have whatever talents the GM feels fits. If you're making a PC to emulate an NPC, you're doing it... well,  maybe not wrong,  but totally bass ackwards.

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49 minutes ago, HappyDaze said:

NPCs don't bother with Specifications. They have whatever talents the GM feels fits. If you're making a PC to emulate an NPC, you're doing it... well,  maybe not wrong,  but totally bass ackwards.

I addressed that in my original statement.

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On 3/1/2019 at 1:55 PM, WolfRider said:

I disagree for the KOTOR / SWTOR era. KOTOR starts just after the Jedi fought a war against the Mandolarians, they won, and a war against the Sith they lost. SWTOR Starts 20 years after the Jedi lost a war against the returning Sith led by Darth Malak and 300 years after KOTOR 2. In both case the Jedi order needs more warriors than arbiters. That means all jedi will be thoroughly trained in all 7 forms, Juyo isn't restricted access during this period, and many will need to master, not just learn the basics, more than 1 form to survive the constant fighting.

If you take the class in SWTOR as example, Consular doesn't start with a form and Sage and Shadow the two advanced classes don't possess any forms too. Jedi Knight start with Chi-Cho and later Gardian adds Soresu and Shien while Sentinel adds Ataru and Juyo. But it's very difficult to translate a Jedi (or Sith) character from SWTOR with F&D careers and specialisations. I've tried for my 5 Jedi & Sith characters and it doesn't work very well.

First, I should clarify my post. The OP asked about how many forms "Jedi Mook 27" would know, and I answered in a weird, skewed sort of GM's Worldbuilding Mentality that translated everything into a simulated model of the Star Wars galaxy that uses this game's mechanics. So, I should qualify that my post about Jedi Mook 27's lightsaber specs should be taken non-literally, because Jedi Mook 27 would be a Rival NPC and not actually have any spec per se. I wrote from the perspective of a GM building a world populated with NPCs, simulating those NPCs with the available ruleset as accurately as possible, and only then taking the (implied) action of distilling them down into a theoretical NPC statline from there.

As to your point, no, I can't really agree. Whether Juyo is strictly regulated to any degree during this time isn't totally clear, but the Order itself is relatively structured and orderly during this time, including having an official Battlemaster, and that does imply both a more regulated Order as well as tie the Order's practices and orthodoxy pretty closely to the style presented in The Jedi Path (which explicitly states training in Juyo is restricted). So there's wiggle room here that I think mostly comes down to one's GM/table and how you want to run the era, but my interpretation is to veer toward The Jedi Path when in doubt.

As for the other forms, yes, the Sith and other galactic threats have the Jedi on a more war-like footing than they are at the start of the Clone Wars, but that doesn't mean they've abandoned all of their orthodoxy and stricter dogma. Quite the opposite, in fact: fear over mass defections in the wake of Revan made a lot of Jedi (e.g., Master Vrook) very conservative and even reactionary in terms of Jedi teachings and doctrine.

Others have pointed out that most Jedi likely got at least a basic course in how most of the forms work, but that doesn't mean that they have any serious specialization or in-depth training on more than one form. Indeed, such a thing would entirely defeat the purpose of Niman, whose whole existence is predicated on the other forms being too intensive and focused for many Jedi to have time for (ergo, a simplified, practical self-defense martial art in the form of Niman). Remember, the OP asked about Jedi Mook 27 - not your hero and not Mr. Boss NPC. The very existence of Niman at all is proof positive that a huge percentage of the Jedi Mook community practices Niman and nothing else, because that's the whole point of Niman. This fact above all others guarantees that, regardless of era, a lot of Jedi Mooks will only have a serious investment in Niman as their sole lightsaber form of consequence.

Investing in a lightsaber form is a serious undertaking, both from a player's mechanical point of view (buying specs and then investing in them quickly becomes prohibitively expensive) and from an in-universe standpoint of training. While yes, many Jedi hew more toward warrior than consular (and Jedi Mooks of such persuasion would be more likely to train in the more war-like forms), we're still talking about Mooks, not the Big Heroes, and Jedi Mooks tend to get gunned down by battle droids and clonetroopers. I stand by my statement that even in the SWTOR era, most Jedi Mooks probably only seriously specialize in either Niman or the Order's Politburo-Approved Sufficiently Non-Aggressive Soresu, with the more warrior-minded occasionally being seen with Makashi, Ataru, or Shien (or Djem So if one absolutely insists upon differentiating Form V). It takes a lot of work to claim expertise in a martial art at the level of intensity and focus of a Jedi Knight, and almost anyone who is devoting the time and energy into expertise in more than one such art is almost certainly dedicating most of their life to that practice. Hence Niman: Lightsaber Skills for Jedi in a Hurry (or just Jedi who like to do things other than hit other things with a laser sword, which is quite a few of them).

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Posted (edited)
On ‎3‎/‎1‎/‎2019 at 8:55 PM, WolfRider said:

I disagree for the KOTOR / SWTOR era. KOTOR starts just after the Jedi fought a war against the Mandolarians, they won, and a war against the Sith they lost. SWTOR Starts 20 years after the Jedi lost a war against the returning Sith led by Darth Malak and 300 years after KOTOR 2. In both case the Jedi order needs more warriors than arbiters. That means all jedi will be thoroughly trained in all 7 forms, Juyo isn't restricted access during this period, and many will need to master, not just learn the basics, more than 1 form to survive the constant fighting.

If you take the class in SWTOR as example, Consular doesn't start with a form and Sage and Shadow the two advanced classes don't possess any forms too. Jedi Knight start with Chi-Cho and later Gardian adds Soresu and Shien while Sentinel adds Ataru and Juyo. But it's very difficult to translate a Jedi (or Sith) character from SWTOR with F&D careers and specialisations. I've tried for my 5 Jedi & Sith characters and it doesn't work very well.

I think the thing with games is that it will always take some creative liberties with the setting and the lore. Mastering many techniques exists to denote progression and to show that the PC is an exceptional character compared to everyone else in the universe. Both Raven and the Exile were exceptional characters, the former having been a Sith Lord at the height of his power who then became a Jedi at the height of his power and effectively understood everything from living two separate lives, and the Exile who was literally a hole in the force.

That being said, I've always believed the 7 forms has always been surface fluff that has never been of any importance to the star wars lore. It's like animals styles from Kung Fu really, it's a fanciful name of a style that implies some magical Asian qualities that gives some kind of offensive/defensive bonus that is somehow an absolute style for something or other. I treat the forms much in that manner, being more a descriptor for a person's tendencies. Heck, I suspect the entire reason form 7 exists is because of preconceived motions that Samuel J. Jackson is a badass in any setting he is involved in thus he has a free pass for dangerous and fringing forms. I would never have guessed that to be the case from what I've actually seen in the movies.

"Ahah, so I see you mastered the basic Shii-Cho unlike your companions I so easily cut down, but have you mastered the Ataru Hawk that catches the prey?"

"No need, my defence is solid as a rock with form 3"

"That is a pity, because I have also specialised in the form 2 style of duelling, the waves of my blade will crave your foundation"

"Then I will boil the Ocean with Vapaad, my anger and angst is my weapon that will turn my rock to create more Land!"

"Then you also a Closed Fist of the Tempest?"

"No, because I only close my fist when a slap on the wrist isn't enough. I will be sure to administer the Open Palm of the ******* upon you after I have brought you in for the crimes against the republic!"

"Oh no, you are defeating me, but there is one thing I wonder; what are you if you don't have hands?"

"What"

*Hand gets cut off, blasted out of a window."

"Well, I guess he didn't master smouldering stump after all. Isn't that right Anaikin?"


Yeah. To me the styles are largely irrelevant. Obi-Wan was a conformist and thus was conservative and Dooku was a flowing activist that dominated the space his blade could reach, always seeking to exploit reach and distance as a tool. Windu and Vader were powerful warriors so they dominated through strength. Yoda's strength was insignificant so he was agile and so fourth. To me the styles spoke more to their preference as individuals then a hard codifed "rock paper sissors" kind of situation.

 


So yeah, actually agree with Penpenpen with less then one form for most. A good quote is that it's better to be a warrior at peace then a farmer at war. The Jedi had largely become scholar's, skeptics and farmers by the time the clone wars had rolled about, so the title Jedi Master didn't mean much academically. Which isn't to say one wasn't a complete novice, they likely did knew much academically but they lacked muscle memory and tampering to turn it into anything useful. Something that the Nimen practitioners found on geonosis; on principle it's the perfect style with an answer to everything but in practice it was a general "new basics" style that was relatively untested, kinda like some versions of martial arts that are only designed for performance and self harmony. Though I'm sure Yoda could stand up as the only master practioner of this as he literally moved with the force, so he technically fills the fluff for that role.

Edited by LordBritish

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Posted (edited)

I agree with Lord British that too much is made of Lightsaber Forms. It's cool flavor and can add an interesting dimension to story and games but too big a deal can also be made of it.  It's also a bit silly when analyzed too much (as Lord British demonstrated very well in his 'dialogue' above).

I'd disagree somewhat in that I find it unlikely that the Jedi reached a point where they had a Form For Dummies (Niman) that was just the easy Form you took to blow past that part of training to get to the stuff you really cared about like scholarship or ability in the Force etc.  The Jedi were still Knights and they still regularly put themselves into life and death situations.   Sure they hadn't been involved in galaxy spanning wars in a very long time but they still dealt with crime syndicates and got involved in violent conflicts large and small as a course of their duty.  The reality (yeah, I know this is all fiction) is that in such a role if you only had time and to devote to one "Form" (whatever that means, again the more in depth you go into the "Forms" the less sense it makes) and that was something that many or most Jedi were doing then a style/form/school would have developed that was more focused on basic combat effectiveness.  Sure some other "Form" may be more comprehensive and teach more powerful skills but requires more dedication and training so here's the dirty street-fighting style where you're going to do what it takes to survive and protect others (by defeating opponents) - not some watered down practically weak body of skills where you're likely to be killed (in the Kung-fu context that Lord British brought up it's like the comparison between Northern and Southern styles, where Southern styles focus on more immediate effectiveness and practical application and the Northern styles on proper form and honing ability over time etc).  Especially when using a lightsaber to do any of the things the Jedi wanted to be good at (deflecting blaster bolts and dealing with melee opponents) required skill in the using the Force.  In fact it's one of the very first things Old Ben teaches Luke when trying to teach Luke about the Force on a practical level.  Training with a lightsaber and learning how to sense and control the Force are not separate bodies of skill - one teaches the other.  So a Jedi couldn't really get away significantly from lightsaber training (it seems to me).

I'm also not really sure what "less than one form" really means.  You're a full Knight but you cant fight your way out of a paper bag with a lightsaber? They taught you at least one "Form" (because they taught you something) but didn't expect any real level of expertise in using the material?  It seems like they'd expect a lot more than that given the nature of the duties of a Jedi and how long one spends in near constant training before becoming a Knight.

Edited by Jedi Ronin

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Jedi Ronin said:

I'd disagree somewhat in that I find it unlikely that the Jedi reached a point where they had a Form For Dummies (Niman) that was just the easy Form you took to blow past that part of training to get to the stuff you really cared about like scholarship or ability in the Force etc.  The Jedi were still Knights and they still regularly put themselves into life and death situations.   Sure they hadn't been involved in galaxy spanning wars in a very long time but they still dealt with crime syndicates and got involved in violent conflicts large and small as a course of their duty.  The reality (yeah, I know this is all fiction) is that in such a role if you only had time and to devote to one "Form" (whatever that means, again the more in depth you go into the "Forms" the less sense it makes) and that was something that many or most Jedi were doing then a style/form/school would have developed that was more focused on basic combat effectiveness.  Sure some other "Form" may be more comprehensive and teach more powerful skills but requires more dedication and training so here's the dirty street-fighting style where you're going to do what it takes to survive and protect others (by defeating opponents) - not some watered down practically weak body of skills where you're likely to be killed (in the Kung-fu context that Lord British brought up it's like the comparison between Northern and Southern styles, where Southern styles focus on more immediate effectiveness and practical application and the Northern styles on proper form and honing ability over time etc).

I agree with your disagreement. If I return to me comparison with the arbiter spec, it does have most of the stuff needed to go out and be a peacekeeping Jedi pretty effectively. Sure, Parry 1 and Reflect 2 doesn't sound like much, but it is in fact enough to deflect a blaster bolt (well, from a pistol at least, and accounting for personal soak and other such abstractions) and royally mess up whoever fired it (well, minions, anyway... ;)) . Add to that an upgraded difficulty to hit them (from Sense, or Adversary, whichever you prefer) and even a meek freshman Jedi Knight like (Quick! Think of a good Jedi name, like... uhm...Neves-Ytnewt Koom (Nailed it! Lucas would be proud!) is probably someone you wouldn't want to take a shot at. Maybe if you brought a half-dozen friends, and even then, maybe not jumping at the opportunity to go first. Particularly since he's there to basically make a deal with you (which will probably not go your way due to Aggressive negotiations :D).

So even diegetically, a "mook jedi" would probably be enough in most cases.

1 hour ago, Jedi Ronin said:

I'm also not really sure what "less than one form" really means.  You're a full Knight but you cant fight your way out of a paper bag with a lightsaber? They taught you at least one "Form" (because they taught you something) but didn't expect any real level of expertise in using the material?  It seems like they'd expect a lot more than that given the nature of the duties of a Jedi and how long one spends in near constant training before becoming a Knight.

Less than one form to me would indicate some knowledge and skill in it, but not a mastery of it. The martial arts equivalent would be something like not yet a black belt. That means you can still be pretty good, but there's still more stuff to learn.

Edited by penpenpen

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Consider, too, that Jedi rely on their combat instruction to survive actual fights. The 6 forms encompass different strategies or concepts. Jedi recognize that at any time, they might be called upon to use any given strategy. If you look at the 6 forms as various unarmed combat styles in mixed martial arts, you can get a sense of how the forms might be used in practice. 

Jedi likely train in all the forms to some extent, and as they get older, they find strategies that work best for their particular strengths. In combat, its likely a Jedi employs moves from all the various forms seamlessly in their own unique style, just as MMA fighters seamlessly incorporate wrestling, boxing, muay-thai, and brazillian jiu-jitsu in most of their fights. I would presume that strict form purists are rare, relegated to trainers and the occasional prodigy. 

That said, mechanically speaking, in the game, I'd assume most Jedi only take 1-2 forms throughout the life of their PC. The talents unique to each form tend to be a few rows down each tree, and are generally optimized for a single attribute. But narratively, you can certainly describe a good roll as moving between forms and using a variety of strikes or concepts. Just because you take Makashi doesn't mean you can't flip around like an Ataru practitioner on a roll. Just because you take Juyo doesn't mean you can't also deflect blaster fire like a soresu defender narratively if an attack misses etc etc. And narrative description is a big part of this game and what makes it fun. 

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