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12 hours ago, Jedi Ronin said:

I think there is something to the Jedi being complacent regarding the Sith because the Sith were not in there faces as it were (and hadn’t been for a thousand years). Mace Windu seems awfully incredulous that the Sith could have returned without being noticed. 

I don’t think this is related to the “balance” in the Force.

Though if Jedi (like Qui-gon) were wondering- hopeful? - that Anakin would be the chosen one and bring balance what threat were they hoping he’d balance? Maybe that swayed the council to let him be trained (after the Sith were known to be “back”). 

Well there doesn't need to be an immediate, directly known "thing" for a religious belief plus prophecy, to make people certain it's real.  Just look at all the people who are Apocalypse believers, despite evidence directly contrary to their specific flavor of End Time prophecy.   They don't NEED actual evidence to believe something.    So I think it's entirely plausible for someone like Qui-gon to believe they needed the Chosen One to "bring balance to the Force", without any actual evidence that there was an imbalance in the first place.   I mean, that's basically how all religions work.  They convince you of something being real without any evidence that it does exist, and then condition you to accept a set of behaviors and beliefs, predicated on that fabricated model of reality.  

Now, that being said, Star Wars is a bit different, in that they actually DO have a mystic energy out there that directly effects things.  And people can tap into it and cause tangible, repeatable, measurable effects.  So it's also plausible that anyone with enough experience dealing with the Force, might get feelings, or touches of "something bad out there", that keeps getting stronger with time.   

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6 minutes ago, KungFuFerret said:

Well there doesn't need to be an immediate, directly known "thing" for a religious belief plus prophecy, to make people certain it's real.  Just look at all the people who are Apocalypse believers, despite evidence directly contrary to their specific flavor of End Time prophecy.   They don't NEED actual evidence to believe something.    So I think it's entirely plausible for someone like Qui-gon to believe they needed the Chosen One to "bring balance to the Force", without any actual evidence that there was an imbalance in the first place.   I mean, that's basically how all religions work.  They convince you of something being real without any evidence that it does exist, and then condition you to accept a set of behaviors and beliefs, predicated on that fabricated model of reality.  

Now, that being said, Star Wars is a bit different, in that they actually DO have a mystic energy out there that directly effects things.  And people can tap into it and cause tangible, repeatable, measurable effects.  So it's also plausible that anyone with enough experience dealing with the Force, might get feelings, or touches of "something bad out there", that keeps getting stronger with time.   

Good point about not needing an immediate and know direct thing to be balanced, and you're right it was a prophecy so presumably the prophecy included (directly or in context) that the galaxy would be out of balance (which turned out to be true, just that the Jedi were not aware of it except for the dark side clouding their vision rather late in the game).

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26 minutes ago, Jedi Ronin said:

Good point about not needing an immediate and know direct thing to be balanced, and you're right it was a prophecy so presumably the prophecy included (directly or in context) that the galaxy would be out of balance (which turned out to be true, just that the Jedi were not aware of it except for the dark side clouding their vision rather late in the game).

Eh, I try to give them the benefit of the doubt about what they did/didn't know about the imbalance.  We don't see much of anything of the larger Jedi presence in the prequel trilogy, just the handful immediately involved in the Anakin story.   So it's entirely plausible in a Republic the size of a galaxy, that other Jedi have indeed witnessed dark and ominous stuff, that hints at a Bigger Threat or Imbalance.  And that they reported those findings to the Order.  But just that we, the audience, weren't privy to that scene.   

To me, I always assumed the "Balance to the Force" prophecy thing, was akin to things like the 2012, Apocalypse stuff, the second coming of jesus, etc.  Even if you weren't a believer in that junk, odds are good you still knew about it, just from cultural osmosis and gossip.   I mean I think the number of devout, actual Norse worshipers can probably fit in a small town these days, with room to spare.  But all of us know what Ragnarok is to some degree or other.  It's reasonable to assume the Jedi would be like that too.   Padawans talking to each other about the things their Masters taught them, "Hey did your Master teach you about the Imbalance in the Force?"  "Imbalance? What do you mean?" *cue conversation* Masters sharing theories about what the Imbalance might be, and how it manifested, etc.   

 

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Personally, I prefer the less binary version of the Force, and the dark side being a perversion of it.

However, I do shy away from calling it Good and Evil as those are relative, artificial concepts, rather preferring the slightly more precise definition of Selfless/Selfish.

This ties into my earlier post about the imperfect "light side". It's impossible, and to most people, probably not wanted.

I mean, eating the last cookie is always more selfish than giving it someone else, regardless whether you all the other cookies in the jar or gave them to poor orphans. Perfect selflessness is impossible, yet a worthy goal to strive for.

That's why the dark side is dangerous, because it's ok to be a little selfish. I mean, why shouldn't you have the last cookie? It's your cookie! You deserve that cookie! You should kill anyone between you and that cookie!

...ahem

My point is, the essence of the Force is giving up up everything and flowing with the will of the Force, giving up your wants, your love, your pleasures and becoming one with the Force. The dark side is applying your will to the Force to make it do what you want it to do. 

Paradoxically, that means a desire to help others would be an imperfection in the force. It might even be better to do nothing than allowing yourself that little self indulgence, from a strict "Force-point-of-view". Still, selfless acts with selfish motivations would be better than selfish acts with selfish motivations.

The alternative is of course to just go throw your hands up in frustration, concentrate on the here and now and focus on making the world a better place, taking the odd well-earned reward now and then, even if it's only a sense self-satisfaction, joy in customizing your own lightsaber, pride in rising through the ranks of the order, and perhaps... just having that last cookie. What's the worst that could happen?

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22 hours ago, Jedi Ronin said:

I think there is something to the Jedi being complacent regarding the Sith because the Sith were not in there faces as it were (and hadn’t been for a thousand years). Mace Windu seems awfully incredulous that the Sith could have returned without being noticed. 

I don’t think this is related to the “balance” in the Force.

Though if Jedi (like Qui-gon) were wondering- hopeful? - that Anakin would be the chosen one and bring balance what threat were they hoping he’d balance? Maybe that swayed the council to let him be trained (after the Sith were known to be “back”). 

They were complacent about the Sith because they believed that the Sith had been completely destroyed at the Battle of Ruusan.

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9 hours ago, Tramp Graphics said:

They were complacent about the Sith because they believed that the Sith had been completely destroyed at the Battle of Ruusan.

That doesn't really jibe with the discussion between Yoda and Mace Windu at the end of Phantom Menace. Yoda states that there are always two Sith, a master and an apprentice, so clearly the Jedi Council were at least aware of the Rule of Two, which wasn't put in place until after the final battle at Ruusan.

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Posted (edited)
13 hours ago, Tramp Graphics said:

They were complacent about the Sith because they believed that the Sith had been completely destroyed at the Battle of Ruusan.

So you basically agree with me (complacent because Sith were not detected) - you provided a reason (with flaws) why they weren't.  But I think it's a bit deeper than that - Windu doesn't say the Sith could not have returned because they were all wiped out but because surely the Jedi would have noticed if they had returned.

4 hours ago, Dafydd said:

That doesn't really jibe with the discussion between Yoda and Mace Windu at the end of Phantom Menace. Yoda states that there are always two Sith, a master and an apprentice, so clearly the Jedi Council were at least aware of the Rule of Two, which wasn't put in place until after the final battle at Ruusan.

Good point. Though it seems the Jedi had a good if false reason to believe the Sith were wiped out some time after Ruusan (assuming that was George Lucas canon or that he thought about the timing of all this as much as fans).

Windu also declared that Dooku couldn't be a Sith because it's not in his nature.  So maybe Windu is just way overconfident and one of the Jedi Yoda was referring to when he said even more experienced Jedi were too sure of themselves.

Edited by Jedi Ronin

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On 3/27/2019 at 2:06 PM, Jedi Ronin said:

Yes, real humans aren't in strict control of their emotions but players are in strict control of their characters.  Yes, it's good role-playing for players to play that out. 

No, it's not the GM's role to insist on it (and the GM can't do anything about it really if the player disagrees). 

Yes, a generic GM statement to the party of feeling "overwhelming dread" is barely crossing the line of the GM dictating to the player something about the internal state of their character, but it clearly indicates it's some sort of external thing (Moria), with a Star Wars equivalent with the Fear mechanics that's effecting everyone.

I'd say it's better GMing style to set a mood by describe the setting with "overwhelming dread" language and let the players decide what if anything to do with it.

Most (all?) Emotional Strength/Weaknesses aren't this.  They are a very specific emotional reaction to a specific event typically only targeting that one character in this way.  It still doesn't really solve the problem.  If the player disagrees with the GM about what the character is feeling and to/about what is eliciting the feeling they just wont role-play it out.  "Ok, I guess.  And?".  In fact if they don't engage it by going along with the GM prompt they're more likely to get double Morality gains if their Morality was triggered.  The Morality section in the player and GM section repeatedly says it's something the GM and player do together in agreement.  Maybe the GM and player had a pre-campaign discussion about Morality and they agreed that the GM would prompt this way and the player agreed to respond to it to make the game more immersive.  But that's also not the situation I was responding to.  If you want to presuppose in depth discussion and agreement between GM and players to make Morality work then Morality will work better (assuming everyone is on board).

Not to mention all the Emotional Strengths/Weaknesses that aren't basic emotions like anger and fear, such as Disarray, Dogmatic, Vanity, Guardedness, etc.

TLDR: Ok, a GM can get away with some of that if they're careful but it's still up to the player to respond and run with it and without a Game 0 discussion about how this works at the table it isn't a very good GM tool (it's still mostly a PC tool).

EDIT: Going back to my original statement, I think I'm basically correct, but you do make a good point that the GM has some (a little) leeway in prompting PCs with their emotions.  Sounds like I'm more leery than you are with this, but I think my essential point stands.  The GM cannot do the work of engaging the Morality S/W of the character - that's primarily a players responsibility.  The GM can set up the circumstances and even prompt with emotional cues.  But for many Moralities even if the GM wanted to prompt the player with "your character is feeling X" it would still be very difficult.  I've mentioned some of the Weaknesses above this is true for, it's even more true for many of the Strengths ("You're overcome with a sense of Justice!").  If the players don't take Morality on as THEIR mechanic it's not going to really function, much less shine.

The line in bold is what I have an issue with:

I like to have player agency stay intact, but people need to work with the GM. I feel that Players earn the right to have that agency by being able to show they wont abuse it. When you get players who are not able to express any weakness for their character, it makes the character less interesting and therefore I take them off center stage. It's a situation that needs reciprocity. 

I feel this absolute rule of the Player always getting to decide the internal reactions is often just a lever used to keep from having to acknowledge the tone of situation. I'm not saying that every character should react the same way and that it has to be that every character shows fear all the time, and I'm also not saying they have to show fear in the expected way. One of my players demonstrated fear by simply taking a drink of liquor when the character did not drink. It doesn't have to be a situation where the character pisses themselves. 

The player who stands behind this law as created by the narrative play community is simply saying that they will render the interface between their character and the game world impassable in order to refuse the description the GM has delivered. This begs the question of why did they play with this GM if they weren't willing to go along with the GMs vision? How far does the players ability to veto the situations in the game go?

If the situation is one where the GM is just bad and is abusing the character's concept/mystique then it needs to go to an OOC discussion if this was not discussed in session 0. But I am mainly talking about the opposite case where a player just decides to override the GMs tension with Player Fiat-powered invulnerability. 

 

 

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33 minutes ago, Archlyte said:

The line in bold is what I have an issue with:

I like to have player agency stay intact, but people need to work with the GM. I feel that Players earn the right to have that agency by being able to show they wont abuse it. When you get players who are not able to express any weakness for their character, it makes the character less interesting and therefore I take them off center stage. It's a situation that needs reciprocity. 

I feel this absolute rule of the Player always getting to decide the internal reactions is often just a lever used to keep from having to acknowledge the tone of situation. I'm not saying that every character should react the same way and that it has to be that every character shows fear all the time, and I'm also not saying they have to show fear in the expected way. One of my players demonstrated fear by simply taking a drink of liquor when the character did not drink. It doesn't have to be a situation where the character pisses themselves. 

The player who stands behind this law as created by the narrative play community is simply saying that they will render the interface between their character and the game world impassable in order to refuse the description the GM has delivered. This begs the question of why did they play with this GM if they weren't willing to go along with the GMs vision? How far does the players ability to veto the situations in the game go?

If the situation is one where the GM is just bad and is abusing the character's concept/mystique then it needs to go to an OOC discussion if this was not discussed in session 0. But I am mainly talking about the opposite case where a player just decides to override the GMs tension with Player Fiat-powered invulnerability. 

 

 

I guess I'm not interested in policing the internal role-play experience of my players (and couldn't if I wanted to).  Communication is good but we're all there to have fun and pulling a power play of insisting the player react to a situation isn't really what we're there to do.  And players often break the "tone" of the scene having fun at the table -   stray Monty Python jokes or other cracks.  I've also been gaming with my group for around close to 20 years now so we're comfortable with each other and we do have serious and dramatic moments in play but we also don't take it too seriously.  Some of us aren't really into inhabiting their characters and others are, we just roll with it, most of us do put in effort to engage the scene and play the character.  In short, the people I play with week in and week out don't need tone policing and I guess I assume most groups that play on a regular basis do have a health social contract going and that "problem players" and "problem GMs" is outside the norm.

Power plays between GM and player point to another problem at the table than whatever system or subsystem is being run.  For Morality my point with that line was that it's primarily a player tool to get into their character and bring it out at the table and somewhat of a tool for the GM to work with them in this effort.  If the player doesn't want to engage this mechanic then there's nothing the GM can really do and not turn it into a power play.  You don't need Morality.  It's fun if the players want to engage it and as you say discussion in session 0 is good and ongoing discussion as well but if they don't want to engage it then they don't and that's were my line comes in: it's not the GM's role to insist on it.

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Jedi Ronin said:

  Communication is good but we're all there to have fun and pulling a power play of insisting the player react to a situation isn't really what we're there to do.

Why do you assume it's a "power play"?   That implies I'm trying to be a **** to my players, instead of, you know, just playing the game and informing them of things that are happening to them.  Policing, power play, those are some pretty negatively loaded terms to simply describing something that is happening.

Edited by KungFuFerret

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1 minute ago, KungFuFerret said:

Why do you assume it's a "power play"?   That implies I'm trying to be a **** to my players, instead of, you know, just playing the game and informing them of things that are happening to them.

If you look at the context of my statement I think you will find I was not referring to you. 

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Just now, Jedi Ronin said:

If you look at the context of my statement I think you will find I was not referring to you. 

I know you weren't talking to me specifically, but you implied that doing that is "policing" and making a "power play".  Which implies someone who is trying to be a ****.  Because nobody uses those terms in a positive context.  

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Posted (edited)
25 minutes ago, KungFuFerret said:

I know you weren't talking to me specifically, but you implied that doing that is "policing" and making a "power play".  Which implies someone who is trying to be a ****.  Because nobody uses those terms in a positive context.  

Ok. You’re right it does have a negative connotation. But

 

30 minutes ago, KungFuFerret said:

informing them of things that are happening to them.  Policing, power play, those are some pretty negatively loaded terms to simply describing something that is happening.

is also not the context (as it understood it) of my negative characterization. 

Edited by Jedi Ronin

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3 minutes ago, Jedi Ronin said:

Ok. You’re right it does have a negative connotation. But

 

is also not the context (as it understood it) of my negative characterization. 

Then what is?  I mean those were your words used.   I'm genuinely confused what you were trying to convey, other than a negative impression of that behavior, if that's not what you were trying to convey.    

I mean I get the rest of what you said, about playing with the same people for years, and quipping Monty Python, that's pretty universal.  But I just don't understand (not just you, but in general), the seemingly one sided bias against doing this.  How it's taking away their agency or whatever.  GM's do that all the time.   Every time we subject them to a situation that isn't of their own making or control, we are forcing something on them, "taking away their agency" if you will.  They can react to it however they way, just like they can react to the fact that I told them they are feeling a sense of dread and fear, but it's still a reaction.  But somehow, every other use of forcing stuff on players is ok, but if you even hint at telling them how they feel, that's taboo.

Also, in my experience, while I love Monty as much as the next nerd, I find that players often will totally kill a ******* mood by cracking those old jokes, which is frankly really annoying for me as the GM.  When I'm trying to set a mood and tone, and then someone makes a Holy Grail reference, bursting any dramatic tension I've concocted.  And it's usually (with my friends anyway), always when I'm trying to actually instill some kind of emotion to a scene.  And they apparently don't want to , you know, react like a person actually would in that situation.  So they make fun of it, distance themselves from the setting with OOC humor, and then just casually tell me what their PC is doing.  Without any actual effort to convey ANY emotion.  They've severed their own personal discomfort at being presented with a moment that isn't just rolling dice, and shooting people (because my friends are ridiculously introverted and socially awkward), and that reflexive reaction, bleeds over into their character, also behaving as if "pssh, this is nothing.  Just a random day in the bowels of a pit of torture and despair, where the souls of thousands killed here in misery and anguish coat the very walls with their suffering.  Why should I feel uneasy about this?"    

So yeah, sometimes I tell them how they feel, because frankly if I leave it up to my players to realistically convey their PC's emotions, they simply won't.  At all.

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11 hours ago, KungFuFerret said:

Then what is?  I mean those were your words used.   I'm genuinely confused what you were trying to convey, other than a negative impression of that behavior, if that's not what you were trying to convey.    

I mean I get the rest of what you said, about playing with the same people for years, and quipping Monty Python, that's pretty universal.  But I just don't understand (not just you, but in general), the seemingly one sided bias against doing this.  How it's taking away their agency or whatever.  GM's do that all the time.   Every time we subject them to a situation that isn't of their own making or control, we are forcing something on them, "taking away their agency" if you will.  They can react to it however they way, just like they can react to the fact that I told them they are feeling a sense of dread and fear, but it's still a reaction.  But somehow, every other use of forcing stuff on players is ok, but if you even hint at telling them how they feel, that's taboo.

Also, in my experience, while I love Monty as much as the next nerd, I find that players often will totally kill a ******* mood by cracking those old jokes, which is frankly really annoying for me as the GM.  When I'm trying to set a mood and tone, and then someone makes a Holy Grail reference, bursting any dramatic tension I've concocted.  And it's usually (with my friends anyway), always when I'm trying to actually instill some kind of emotion to a scene.  And they apparently don't want to , you know, react like a person actually would in that situation.  So they make fun of it, distance themselves from the setting with OOC humor, and then just casually tell me what their PC is doing.  Without any actual effort to convey ANY emotion.  They've severed their own personal discomfort at being presented with a moment that isn't just rolling dice, and shooting people (because my friends are ridiculously introverted and socially awkward), and that reflexive reaction, bleeds over into their character, also behaving as if "pssh, this is nothing.  Just a random day in the bowels of a pit of torture and despair, where the souls of thousands killed here in misery and anguish coat the very walls with their suffering.  Why should I feel uneasy about this?"    

So yeah, sometimes I tell them how they feel, because frankly if I leave it up to my players to realistically convey their PC's emotions, they simply won't.  At all.

 

That's the context of our original discussion on this.  And I at that time swung some to your point of view - yes, telling them they are feeling a sense of dread and fear is within the GMs purview but it was as far as I go in telling players how their characters feel and I'd prefer to establish such a scene by just describing it as dreadful/fearful or stating "there's a sense of dread and fear...".  It's a minor tweak.  This latest exchange I was responding to this in particular:

 

16 hours ago, Archlyte said:

I feel that Players earn the right to have that agency by being able to show they wont abuse it. When you get players who are not able to express any weakness for their character, it makes the character less interesting and therefore I take them off center stage. It's a situation that needs reciprocity. 

 

16 hours ago, Archlyte said:

The player who stands behind this law as created by the narrative play community is simply saying that they will render the interface between their character and the game world impassable in order to refuse the description the GM has delivered. This begs the question of why did they play with this GM if they weren't willing to go along with the GMs vision? How far does the players ability to veto the situations in the game go?

 

16 hours ago, Archlyte said:

But I am mainly talking about the opposite case where a player just decides to override the GMs tension with Player Fiat-powered invulnerability. 

As you described, I too can get annoyed when players break the tone or tension in a scene by cracking a joke (it doesn't happen all the time but it's not rare).  I'm guilty of it too sometimes as a player (most players in my group also GM for the group).  I'm with you there. 

But Archlyte's description of the scenario is actually referencing a power play between GM and player: who get's to control the tone at the table, etc?  Players earn the right to have agency? That's why I talked about my particular gaming group - we're all there to have fun but also for somewhat different reasons at different times, at times some us take the drama/character/story more seriously and sometimes not.  We're playing a game and not being directed in a dramatic presentation.  Sometimes players do things that are too disruptive to the game's tone and most everyone's fun is negatively impacted (one player in my group was fond of spending most of his time on his iPad and would often pipe up with "Hey, look at this meme/YouTube clip I just found", and we as a group discussed the issue and set new ground rules as a group to deal with it).  But again, these issues aren't really about "how to make Morality work", it's general social contract at the table type stuff, and I've already written at some length in this thread about the limitations of the Morality mechanic from the GM's role (as I see it).

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Posted (edited)

I'm not up to speed on all the philosophy being thrown around here, but my group had our own houserule of force pip use.

Our problem was that it was too easy to get light paragon, if you were a sane and rational sentient. In order to add more darkside threat and slow the rise to paragon, (in a jedi focused Clone Wars game, where we'd focus more on Duty than morality) we made dark pips more accessable. This increased the relative power of force users, but the campaign could handle that.

Specifically, when you roll force dice, you get ALL the pips automatically and take conflict for the dark pips... unless you take strain to REMOVE dark pips from your pool, turning your back on power to avoid corruption. A destiny flip "purifies" the pips to give you full power with no conflict. (And of course you could always roll LESS dice then your force rating, to minimize your danger)

This gave my character enough leeway that I could start a slow fall through greyness, without acting like a lunatic or burning party resources. I never hit darkside, but like TCW Anakin my character toyed with it more than the rest of the party who took the penalties seriously.

Edited by Rakaydos

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On ‎4‎/‎8‎/‎2019 at 6:33 PM, Absol197 said:

I'll answer your mechanical questions first, and then give some examples!

Conflict:  Conflict does not factor in.  Anything talent or power that grants Conflict counts as "Dark," meaning it can only be used in Dark stance.  But general actions that cause conflict don't do anything.  Although if the action is bad enough, it might cause a flip in stance to Dark.  So for instance, if someone in Light stance decides that the only way to deal with the prisoner they've captured is to kill them, that's probably a reason to flip to Dark stance.
Basically, to translate between the two systems, if it's an action that would generate 4+ Conflict, then the character should probably flip to Dark stance for doing it if they aren't already in it.

I actually remembered that I expressed this a little incorrectly.  Light-stance characters can't use Conflict talents/powers unless they can draw on black pips.  So if they spend a Destiny point to be able to use black pips to generate Force points, they also gain the ability to make use of Conflict talents.  They can also use Conflict talents that don't require a Force power check by spending a Destiny Point in addition to any other cost (although keeping in mind that you can only use one Destiny Point per action, if the talent already requires a Destiny Point to activate, it can't be used like this).

Dark-stance characters can do the same thing with abilities that require you to be Light side, although seeing as this is literally only the Heal power at the moment, this doesn't see much use :) .

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So, typically in my games, I want the PC's to struggle with choices and morality.  I use the no destiny point cost  method, or if they just want to draw.on the dark side, they can use both light and dark.  Dark pips generate 1 conflict per though. After all the dark side is supposed to be "easier" and seductive. 

The best "grey" force user I have seen in my games was a sentinel who consciously made some.very dark and pragmatic choices that cost her dearly.  The player totally played up the consequences, and owned those decisions.  It was great rp fodder.  The switch between their emotional strength and weakness was great  There were several moments in my campaign where the jedi wannabe really felt like he was going to have to do something  (kill) about her.

 

In the end, work with the player.  The darkside has costs, and just explain that the force doesn't care about their motivations.  If they embrace that morality and want to walk that edge, it can be some serious fun. 

Just need to.be prepared for the inevitable conflict and struggle with their morality.

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22 hours ago, Rakaydos said:

my group had our own houserule of force pip use. [. . .] Specifically, when you roll force dice, you get ALL the pips automatically and take conflict for the dark pips... unless you take strain to REMOVE dark pips from your pool, turning your back on power to avoid corruption. A destiny flip "purifies" the pips to give you full power with no conflict. (And of course you could always roll LESS dice then your force rating, to minimize your danger)

Oooh, now that's an idea I like! I'll add that to the list of options I'll present my players with when I see them tonight. Thank you.

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22 hours ago, Rakaydos said:

I'm not up to speed on all the philosophy being thrown around here, but my group had our own houserule of force pip use.

Our problem was that it was too easy to get light paragon, if you were a sane and rational sentient. In order to add more darkside threat and slow the rise to paragon, (in a jedi focused Clone Wars game, where we'd focus more on Duty than morality) we made dark pips more accessable. This increased the relative power of force users, but the campaign could handle that.

Specifically, when you roll force dice, you get ALL the pips automatically and take conflict for the dark pips... unless you take strain to REMOVE dark pips from your pool, turning your back on power to avoid corruption. A destiny flip "purifies" the pips to give you full power with no conflict. (And of course you could always roll LESS dice then your force rating, to minimize your danger)

This gave my character enough leeway that I could start a slow fall through greyness, without acting like a lunatic or burning party resources. I never hit darkside, but like TCW Anakin my character toyed with it more than the rest of the party who took the penalties seriously.

The only problem with this system, is that there are more dark side faces (7) than there are light side faces (5).  So with your system, as people gain more Force die, they will see an almost guaranteed drain on their Strain, as more dice means more dark side pips showing up.  So they will either constantly be spending strain to simply use their powers (a mechanic that FFG wanted to avoid when they built this Force system), or be forced to use dark side pips, (and thus constantly be gaining Conflict), simply to use their abilities.  Which basically just flips the "slow climb to Paragon status" that people dislike, with a "steady slide into the Dark Side status."  

Now this might not be a big issue when you are talking about a PC with 1, maybe 2 Force Rating.  But a LOT of people play their characters for a long time, and power them up to 3+, heck with the right build, you can almost get a FR 3 at character generation, if you're willing to forgo other investments.   

So it seems equally imbalanced to me, and not fair to the players who want to play a Force user (like myself), instead of a lightsaber user (something I find fairly boring honestly), because simply using their powers, will push them steadily to the Dark Side.  Something that is not suggested with the canon material.   

The whole point of the dice face imbalance, was to try and develop a mechanical part to the "quicker, easier, more seductive" line from the films.  When you're starting out, with only 1 Force die, you're more likely to end up with a Dark face, so you know, hey what's the harm in a little conflict here and there right?  The temptation, the "seduction" of it, illustrated through dice design.  BUT, if you actually look at the faces, the Light faces, while smaller in number, are more likely to have 2 pips on their face, than the Dark.   "Is the Dark Side stronger?"  "No (because the dark faces are less likely to get you 2 pips, thus less likely to allow you to activate upgrades), quicker (you will likely get dark pips when you roll, meaning you don't have to refuse to use the power, and waste that turns chance), easier (odds are good the dark face will come up, and it means you will be able to turn on that power now), more seductive (do you really want to not use your Move power this turn?  And instead wait to try again next turn, in the hopes of getting a Light face?  comooooone, you know you want to do that Move power right now!  You just got this PC and it's your first combat encounter!)

Your system ends up actually making the Dark side more powerful, not just more inticing, as trying to not use Dark pips will eventually end up straining out any Light side user within a handful of turns, just from trying to use their powers.

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On 4/9/2019 at 5:11 PM, Tramp Graphics said:

There was still evil and other external threats in the galaxy during the height of the Republic that the Jedi had to deal with. The only thing not visibly active was the Sith. So a "lack of evil" to face was not what caused the Republic to become complacent. 

Secondly, a balance of equal amounts of good and bad organisms is not what results in health and an overall balance of the body. What results in a healthy body is when there are only good organisms within it, and any bad ones are eradicated or, at the very least kept firmly in check and to a minimum so that they don't cause harm. The same is true of evil. Evil must be eradicated, or at least held in check,  to have a healthy society. A parasyte does nothing to benefit its host. It simply destroys it. Evil does nothing to help society. It simply destroys it, and if not constantly fought will destroy all. Thus, the balance is when Evil, be it internal or external, is contained or eliminated, and good maintains a constant vigil against it resurging. 

Actually, a living organism does need a balance of good and bad.  Without a proper infusion of the right amount of bad, the good never learns how to fight the bad (vaccines).  A complete lack of invading pathogens can actually trigger autoimmune diseases and cause the body to start attacking itself.  Horrible, dangerous pathogens in one part of the body are actually a good thing as they serve a purpose there...however if those pathogens get to another part of the body, bad things happen.  A living organism is balanced when everything is in the right place and at the right amount.  A total eradication of all negative, outside pathogens can actually cause problems.

You're not wrong.  Again, what you are stating is the Jedi belief.  But that doesn't mean it's right.  They believed that the eradication of the Sith would bring balance, but balance was achieved when both factions were removed.  One view of this could be that both the Jedi and the Sith were parasites.  If you view the force as a living entity of sorts, then the Sith drawing upon the force (using that entities life force) for their power was certainly parasitic.  But you could also consider the Jedi's use of the force as parasitic then also.  They are drawing upon that same force, just with different intentions.  The Sith used the force for power in order to conquer and control.  The Jedi however were not polar opposites who drew upon the force to protect everyone and be benevolent saviors.  They basically just kept the power to protect themselves while trying to snuff out the Sith.  Anything between them and ridding the galaxy of the Sith was fair game.  So both the Jedi and the Sith were drawing upon the force to irradiate the other power.  That's not exactly white blood cells verses a virus.  It's more of a parasite vs parasite type scenario.

Again, not arguing at all about what the Jedi believed.  Just showing that there are a lot of different interpretations.  The Jedi believed in the prophecy that they believed meant that the Sith would be destroyed to bring balance to the force.  Yoda even admitted that the prophecy could have been misread (hinting that the prophecy is somewhat vague and undefined).  If the prophecy was fulfilled, then balance was the near eradication of both the Jedi and the Sith.  Balance was the near eradication of nearly anyone that made it a point to constantly draw upon the force.

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Posted (edited)
50 minutes ago, kmanweiss said:

Balance was the near eradication of nearly anyone that made it a point to constantly draw upon the force.

Interesting point. It has been stated that the dark side is twisting the force to your will, enslaving it, and the "light side" is to flow freely with it, surrendering to the "will" of the force. Yet the Jedi are quite actively wielding the force to acheive their own goals 

A more "balanced" use of the force would be Chirrut Iwme's last act. Not trying to force (pun intended) the outcome of his actions but accepting that whatever happened would be the will of the force.

So complete balance would be to not use the force at all and instead let the force use you.

Then again, then you might end up being the good person who does nothing in the face of evil, and I think the Jedi tradition is an attempt to walk the line between these two contradictions.

So, if the force has a will, is the force uncaring and amoral? Well, you probably shouldn't read too much into the word "will" and instead consider it like the word "law" as in laws of nature, meaning as it isn't something that is kept from being broken by norms and enforcement. The will of the force doesn't step in and stop the deaths of everyone on Alderaan, because it would be like stopping boiling water from turning into steam, because it's just a transition from one state to another. In the grand scheme of things, there is no death, only the force.

Of course, applying this viewpoint to your daily life can be a little tricky. Finding the elusive mid-point between detachment and working for good in the here and now could very well be the Jedi definition of "balance".

Edited by penpenpen

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7 minutes ago, penpenpen said:

A more "balanced" use of the force would be Chirrut Iwme's last act. Not trying to force (pun intended) the outcome of his actions but accepting that whatever happened would be the will of the force.

Except that interpretation of the Force, makes it out to be a total ****.  That literally just moves people around as puppets, without any personal agency, and is willing to just let them die after they've served their purpose.  Which isn't really traits of a "force of good/light."   And frankly that's a terrible version of the Force, regardless of light or Dark, and in my opinion, makes the entire thing dark based on it's actions.  

Bottom line, the Force is a messy, fuzzy, poorly understood thing, that has traits that change based on the writer, and motivations (or lack of them) based on the writer.  Trying to codify something that is nebulous by design, is an effort in futility.

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1 minute ago, KungFuFerret said:

Except that interpretation of the Force, makes it out to be a total ****.  That literally just moves people around as puppets, without any personal agency, and is willing to just let them die after they've served their purpose.  Which isn't really traits of a "force of good/light."   And frankly that's a terrible version of the Force, regardless of light or Dark, and in my opinion, makes the entire thing dark based on it's actions.  

Bottom line, the Force is a messy, fuzzy, poorly understood thing, that has traits that change based on the writer, and motivations (or lack of them) based on the writer.  Trying to codify something that is nebulous by design, is an effort in futility.

Only if you think of it as a sentient will. Think of it in grander terms. It is the will of the universe, and death is meaningless, because it's simply a transition from one state to another with nothing lost.

My point regarding this is that is of little comfort to those of us who are small beings in the here and now, as Yoda so aptly showed us when giving Anakin the worlds worst peptalk in Revenge of the Sith.

People are small and do small and selfish things. Should we all give up selfish things like love and ambition, well the will of the force might lead us to utopia without needs and wants as we become one with everything at the heat death of the universe.

Which is nice, but of little comfort when your kids are hungry and you can't make rent right now.

The Force might be good on cosmic macroscale, and the Jedi strive to be good on, a microscale. This can be contradictionary.

Using Chirrut as an example of balance was a mistake as I later used the term as possible theorized midpoint between the micro- and macroscale good.

 

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