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Hiemfire

Another of my Illicit slot ideas (And a discussion of the Illicit slot in general)

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Posted (edited)

Rigged Astromech Socket

Upgrade slot: Upgrade illicitUpgrade modification

Restrictions: No Upgrade astromech slot, Small ship only.

Text: You may equip 1 non-limited Upgrade astromech upgrade.

 

I'd like to toss on a price reduction for astromechs equipped via this to offset what ever cost the upgrade would cost (I.E. 1 point for Rigged Astromech Slot, -1 point to the cost for a non-limited astromech), but it feels off from how 2.0 is set up. Means I'm not sure what it should cost. 0 feels off, though I guess it could work as the Illicit version of S-Foils) and a combined cost being anything higher than the cost of the astromech feels off too. The ship size restriction is there as a simple way to block problematic large and medium bases with crew slots from getting cheaper regen (they already have access to GONK or R2D2 crew depending on faction) while opening up the option to the small bases (HWK, Z-95, K-Fighter and so on). R2 Astro Boba = nerp.

Edited by Hiemfire
Changed to ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Illicit+Mod slot and updated title to reflect the current discussion

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4 hours ago, Hiemfire said:

Rigged Astromech Socket

Upgrade slot: Upgrade illicit

Restrictions: No Upgrade astromech slot, Small ship only.

Text: You may equip 1 non-limited Upgrade astromech upgrade.

 

I'd like to toss on a price reduction for astromechs equipped via this to offset what ever cost the upgrade would cost (I.E. 1 point for Rigged Astromech Slot, -1 point to the cost for a non-limited astromech), but it feels off from how 2.0 is set up. Means I'm not sure what it should cost. 0 feels off, though I guess it could work as the Illicit version of S-Foils) and a combined cost being anything higher than the cost of the astromech feels off too. The ship size restriction is there as a simple way to block problematic large and medium bases with crew slots from getting cheaper regen (they already have access to GONK or R2D2 crew depending on faction) while opening up the option to the small bases (HWK, Z-95, K-Fighter and so on). R2 Astro Boba = nerp.

I had an idea for something similar, but it was a crew upgrade instead.

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I appreciate you sharing this concept, and so this seems like a good time to talk about game design.

5 hours ago, Hiemfire said:

Rigged Astromech Socket

Upgrade slot: Upgrade illicit

Restrictions: No Upgrade astromech slot, Small ship only.

Text: You may equip 1 non-limited Upgrade astromech upgrade.

Looks innocent, doesn't it? Consider:

  • When a designer designs an astromech card, now they need to be aware that any illicit-slots small ship could take it.
  • When a designer designs an new ship with an illicit slot, now they need to be aware that it could take any existing or future astromech.

Maybe you think this doesn't seem too dangerous. In practice, these kinds of designs are what open games up to power creep, because they complicate balancing and have open-ended interactions with future cards. I suspect this is why in 2nd Edition slots are assigned on the PDF, so developers can remove and add them at will for balance. The only 2.0 cards that adjust slots are titles and configs, which by definition are restricted to specific ships (and in the case of titles, only one per squad). That type of constraint keeps the design space much more manageable.

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R4 on Khiraxz, would be such good value.

I think from a scum perspective, it should have a drawback/risk.

Maybe if its jurry rigged, it has a slim chance of failure? That might to much if a feel bad moment if it happens. Maybe if you suffer a crit you flip jurry rigged astromech and on the other side it says you can use the astromech, spend an action to repair a crit and flip this card?

 

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Posted (edited)

A general 'slot swap' isn't going to really work, because ships are designed in part for their slots. While some slots are traditionally low value (and their contents need a real rebalancing), astromechs are NOT one of them. While many ships don't have one, the ability to have one has dramatic ramifications on ship design. Illicit is a throw away bonus that mostly gives access to unique toys that can have powerful ramifications on how a ship flies (like contraband cybernetics) but which are never straight upgrades like Astromechs are.

You either would need to limit this in such a way that makes it not really an astromech slot in a standard sense, or associate a huge downside with it (like with what Angled Deflectors did). I could see this being interesting with some other upgrades (Say... Turrets or munitions, with an upside and downside for a 'pop out' weapon for weird attacks rather than  secondary attack mode), it doesn't seem interesting with an Astromech.

Also? Thematically this isn't illicit. Its a modification. Not that this should be a modification either mind, it is just that there isn't anything really more contraband-y about having an astromech on your ship than upgrading your engines or shields. Most of the contraband items are illegal  and/or taboo (Contraband Cybernetics), dangerous and not something any sane millitary would make standard issue (Dead Man's Switch),  or are on the ship for an illegal purpose unrelated to space combat which are misused to help the fight (Rigged Cargo Chutes to dump smuggled goods). Astromechs are pretty legit things and modifying a ship to utilize one wouldn't be that weird if it were doable.

Edited by dezzmont

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Posted (edited)

@QQMoore and @dezzmont make very good points.  But, and please correct me if I'm wrong, I believe @Hiemfire is simply trying to give the illicit slot a reason to exist.  As in most cases illicit upgrades are steaming garbage, if I may dip briefly into hyperbole.  But the Khiraxz, for example, would dearly love the opportunity to be relevant, and the Headhunter would relish the chance to be anything other than weaksauce filler.  Although any honestly useful illicit would help that, right?

edit: I agree that an illicit/astromech swap mechanic is probably just not going to work.  But I absolutely honor the intent and the attempt.

Edited by Kleeg005

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Swapping Illicit for Astromech doesn't work for me, though. It's just kinda boring and not-scummy to me.  Whether or not it's effective at getting ships like the Kihraxz (which suffers if the X-Wing is a 5-per-list ship) or the Z-95, I just don't think it'd be a good idea.  I don't like the concept of an illicit being a small incremental benefit each turn, that feels contrary to the texture of the Illicit slot.

//

Anyhow, let's do a bit of an illicit inventory.

  • Contraband Cybernetics is solid.  Decent card that can go on anyone if you've got a few spare points.
  • Deadman's Switch?  Eh, fine.  Not really great on table, but really fun.
  • Coaxium Hyperfuel is wicked niche, and probably not useful for the cost.
  • Feedback Array has seen some play with bumpmasters, but that was before the Static Discharge Veins nerf.  However, it's also a kinda hated style of gameplay.
  • Cloaking Device, like Deadman's Switch is an interesting tool for all sorts of Jank.  It's more fun than good, but having some upgrades like this is good.
  • Rigged Cargo Chute is also solid, on the right ships.  There's enough stress synergies and obstacle synergies that this card is good, in the right list.
  • Inertial Dampeners was... a bad implementation of a concept that could have been fun.  Being able to nope out of a maneuver and do a stall is pretty neat and was fairly wholesome in 1e, but there were a lot more BS combos that made it too strong.  The difference in design opened it up to a lot more abuse.

So... I guess... fix Inertial Dampeners?  With that revised, there'd be two generally good Illicits (ID, CC), one which is strong on a few ships (RCC), two which are a lot of fun even if not powerful (DMS, CD).

Is there anything to mine from 1e?

  • Might be fun to see some kind of Hotshot Blaster come back.  Rear full-arc attack?  Plain 2-dice attack, but it'd be 3 at Range 1.
  • It'd also be sweet to have Burnout SLAM come back.  It's a worse Black One, pretty much, and that's OK with me.
  • Black Market Slicer Tools should stay dead.  It's an artifact of a different context.
  • EMP Device might be fun.  Unique, single charge, and just Ionize everyone.  It probably will never see competitive play, but that seems acceptable.  It's kind of the epitome of the dirty trick Illicit dream, and it'll be cool whenever anyone pulls it off.
  • Scavenger Crane doesn't seem as vital or interesting in 2e.  I'd leave it gone.
  • Ion Dischargers became Static Discharge Vanes, so it's already in the game.
  • Might be fun to steal Countermeasures from 1e's modifications.  Break a lock, gain a bonus defense die for the round.
  • Glitterstim... I've mostly been in the "let it stay in the past" camp.  Contraband Cybernetics does a lot of what was nice about 1e Glitterstim, in a more fair and 2e sort of way.
    • However, I just had a new thought.  Bring it back exactly like in 1e.  Single use, gives a stress, perma-focus for one turn.  It now costs 8-ish points.  The point shouldn't be to have a cheap action efficiency turn with GS on every ship in the list.  Instead, for the cost of a force crew, you'd have one blaze of glory.
    • If it'd be cheaper than about 8 points, I don't think Glitterstim should be in the game.  I've had thoughts of using it for a single face turn once over the entire game, and maybe, but then it's cheap, and then it's, well, kinda dull.  Making it a big investment, the kind of thing a ship should only take if they're going to gain a lot of use out of it with a specific plan, feels kinda nice to me.

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47 minutes ago, theBitterFig said:

Inertial Dampeners was... a bad implementation of a concept that could have been fun.  Being able to nope out of a maneuver and do a stall is pretty neat and was fairly wholesome in 1e, but there were a lot more BS combos that made it too strong.  The difference in design opened it up to a lot more abuse.

Make it Retrothrusters, or something like that. Small and Medium only. Two charges, same wording except charges instead of shields?

49 minutes ago, theBitterFig said:

Might be fun to see some kind of Hotshot Blaster come back.  Rear full-arc attack?  Plain 2-dice attack, but it'd be 3 at Range 1.

My thought was single charge, side arc only.

50 minutes ago, theBitterFig said:

Might be fun to steal Countermeasures from 1e's modifications.  Break a lock, gain a bonus defense die for the round.

Countermeasures should be fine. Spare Parts Canisters does a similar effect. I'm thinking instead of +1 agility, using the wording that during engagement, all incoming attacks are obstructed. Same effect largely, but trick shot and Scum Han can play with it a little more.

53 minutes ago, theBitterFig said:

Glitterstim... I've mostly been in the "let it stay in the past" camp.  Contraband Cybernetics does a lot of what was nice about 1e Glitterstim, in a more fair and 2e sort of way.

  • However, I just had a new thought.  Bring it back exactly like in 1e.  Single use, gives a stress, perma-focus for one turn.  It now costs 8-ish points.  The point shouldn't be to have a cheap action efficiency turn with GS on every ship in the list.  Instead, for the cost of a force crew, you'd have one blaze of glory.

Still seems kind of strong, no matter how much I want it. Make it Scum only and unique or double limited, and I'm more on board. What would be the timing? Still at the start of combat (engagement) phase?

Burnout SLAM and EMP Device are fine. EMPing a droid swarm would be fun. Scavenger Crane and Slicer Tools are fixes for problems we don't largely have, as you said, so they can stay gone.

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2 minutes ago, 5050Saint said:

Make it Retrothrusters, or something like that. Small and Medium only. Two charges, same wording except charges instead of shields?

I'd leave it at 1 charge like 1e.  That was enough.  I'd probably scale the prices, but non-linearly.  Like, it could probably be 1 point up until Init 4 or something.

3 minutes ago, 5050Saint said:

My thought was single charge, side arc only.

Sides feels strange to me, but maybe it'd work out better. To be sure, single charge only.

4 minutes ago, 5050Saint said:

Still seems kind of strong, no matter how much I want it.

That could be true.  It does feel better, IMHO, recognizing that it'll be wicked strong anyhow, and pricing it like a wicked strong upgrade.

I think folks just kinda want the god-mode upgrade, so give it god-mode prices, rather than trying to come up with a weak Glitterstim that's only worth 2 points.

6 minutes ago, 5050Saint said:

What would be the timing? Still at the start of combat (engagement) phase?

I'd been thinking that.  Another option would be System Phase, and you don't get the stress until the end of your turn.

Other stray thoughts: it should probably require a Focus action, since droids using Glitterstim doesn't make a lot of thematic sense these days. 

16 minutes ago, 5050Saint said:

Make it Scum only and unique or double limited, and I'm more on board.

Another potential limiting factor... maybe it could be cheaper if it was only available to non-limited pilots.  Locking out Boba Fett goes a long way towards this being fair.

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, 5050Saint said:

Burnout SLAM and EMP Device are fine. EMPing a droid swarm would be fun. Scavenger Crane and Slicer Tools are fixes for problems we don't largely have, as you said, so they can stay gone.

I don’t want to see EMP device unless triggering it drops all your shields to set it off, and you have to have active shields to execute it in the status phase. 
 

Edit - you have to balance illicit EMP around knowing that Fireballs are cheap and can SLAM into position for EMPs, FYI. 

Edited by PaulRuddSays

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Posted (edited)
27 minutes ago, PaulRuddSays said:

I don’t want to see EMP device unless triggering it drops all your shields to set it off, and you have to have active shields to execute it in the status phase. 
 

Edit - you have to balance illicit EMP around knowing that Fireballs are cheap and can SLAM into position for EMPs, FYI. 

Hmm. EMP. System phase, costs a disarm and a strain (instead of the shields as you suggest, the strain is mitigatable with a blue maneuver during the activation phase, but makes the ship more predictable for doing so), limits actions of the ship using it during round used to Focus only (similar to being Ionized).

Edited by Hiemfire

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18 minutes ago, PaulRuddSays said:

I don’t want to see EMP device unless triggering it drops all your shields to set it off, and you have to have active shields to execute it in the status phase. 

Edit - you have to balance illicit EMP around knowing that Fireballs are cheap and can SLAM into position for EMPs, FYI. 

Perhaps, make it "before you engage, if you are not disarmed or critically damaged, you may spend one charge and gain one disarm token. If you do, each ship at range 0-1 gains one ion token". It still allows the Fireball to use it, but it cannot do it if it has SLAM'ed since it will either have a disarm token or with have exposed a damage card to remove that token. Certainly, there is a chance that what could be exposed is a Panicked Pilot or a Direct Hit and would unexpose, but you'd be gambling at that point. Using the Fireball title, you could pick Direct Hit, but at that point, you are paying 2 points, an attack, an ion token, and a free damage to pull the trick off.

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, Kleeg005 said:

As in most cases illicit upgrades are steaming garbage

This is because the point of the illicit slot is to do weird things that don't make your just better, but create a new obstacle for your opponent or let you pull off tricks.

The problem with this is that X-wing heavily punishes novel abilities that aren't reposition, action economy, or passive modding.

Dead Man's Switch is basically a crack shot sidegrade: It is 1 extra damage, in exchange for an advantage (It can hit clusters of enemies) and some MAJOR disadvantages (It can hit your own ships, you can't control the timing, your enemy can keep distance, your ship HAS to die for the damage to come out of your list), yet it costs more because there is some potential there to punish aces for doing what they always do and needling small sized ships at range 1 in the rear and never backing off. It isn't so bad its unusable luckily, you aren't dumpstered trying to break it out like you are some other fun but bad upgrades (Snap-Shot anyone?), but it definitely is being artificially held back.

Feedback array is not necessarily overpriced, but loaded up with enough downsides that it just isn't really worth it, it really woulda been fine not giving you the disarm. As is, it is in the bottom 50% of upgrades which may as well mean its not in the game, with how upgrade play rates work.

Rigged Chute is 4 points to set up a new obstacle that, strictly speaking, doesn't do anything unless your opponent is right behind you. It is a very 'slow' effect, and if bombs don't make sense at 4, it very much doesn't either. Its pretty close though and sometimes sees play, but the only reason its priced where it is now is to make it not good on most lists, rather than because it needs to be at 4 to ensure it isn't oppressive.

The 'good' Illicit, not coincidentally, are Contraband Cybernetics, which improves your action economy by letting you delay the impact of a stress, and cloaking device, which gives ships a very strong reposition tool. And Pre-nerf dampeners of course, which were a decent concept ruined by a bad execution (woulda been saved just having charges instead of or even addition too the shield cost).

Basically the slot exists as a combo/jank slot in a game that actively designs to make those elements as bad as possible to ensure they never threaten the 'sanctity' of tournament play. These tools are only allowed to be priced at the point where they require extreme synergy to be useable, instead of synergy making them shine. This is a consistent aspect of X-wing's design philosophy that ensures most upgrades are consistently binder fodder, because upgrades are generally 'overly optimistic' about their usage.

Quote

EMP

I think the big thing with EMP is that its a range 0-1 ion 1, which limits a lot of play around: You end up at range 1 of that ship at any point and suddenly your turn can be destroyed in the systems phase. Some systems phase 'prediction shenanigans' are good, but that seems like it would be annoying.

Perhaps it could be fixed just by making it a range 0 effect, almost a mulligain on a Feedback Array effect? You gotta actively have bumped last turn with the EMP ship, which also helps limit the Fireball from going nuts, but it allows the effect to be less bad for the person firing it off, because generally you wouldn't care too much about your medium getting an ion and maybe losing a shield.

It would be irritating, because your losing perfect control over your ships for 2 turns rather than 1, but you know what? Grief mechanics for sticking too close should exist a bit and be good. Grief mechanics prevent players from just mindlessly applying their optimal strategies, and are important to prevent say... Fighting games from just being mindless Unga Bunga matches, or players in card games just dumping out their hand as fast as they can. Forcing your opponent to play more conservatively than they otherwise would is an important tool to allow people to have access too.

The illicit slot would be a great place to put these sorta mechanics, because the aspect of the scum identity that is 'dirty tricks' is pretty much... non-existent. It is funny to me that Scum is sold on this concept, but in REALITY its entirely about having these doped up superships that basically can't die unless your opponent gets 5 arcs on them at a range of exactly 2.

Edited by dezzmont

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8 hours ago, theBitterFig said:

Coaxium Hyperfuel is wicked niche, and probably not useful for the cost.

 

1 hour ago, svelok said:

putting this in hotshots just to troll scum players was a 10/10 play

Now, if it had been charge-based, small-ship-only, and didn't require you to already have the SLAM action... Blasting through a block(ade) while overloading your engines feels spot-on scummy to me.

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58 minutes ago, dezzmont said:

[snip]

The problem with this is that X-wing heavily punishes novel abilities that aren't reposition, action economy, or passive modding.

[snip]

Basically the slot exists as a combo/jank slot in a game that actively designs to make those elements as bad as possible to ensure they never threaten the 'sanctity' of tournament play. These tools are only allowed to be priced at the point where they require extreme synergy to be useable, instead of synergy making them shine. This is a consistent aspect of X-wing's design philosophy that ensures most upgrades are consistently binder fodder, because upgrades are generally 'overly optimistic' about their usage.

[snip]

The illicit slot would be a great place to put these sorta mechanics, because the aspect of the scum identity that is 'dirty tricks' is pretty much... non-existent. It is funny to me that Scum is sold on this concept, but in REALITY its entirely about having these doped up superships that basically can't die unless your opponent gets 5 arcs on them at a range of exactly 2.

With these points in particular, you have nailed why Scum makes me so sad.  And why I am drifting away from the faction in spite of having heavily invested in it, even in Second Edition.  It is effectively a faction of three competitive PILOTS (not "superships"), a little filler, and a lot of steaming garbage.  About which people still manage to *****.  I raise a pint to you, sir or madam.  Into which I will quietly cry as I go find a distant corner and build an honestly dirty, janky CIS list.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, dezzmont said:

let you pull off tricks.

Tricks only work against fools or the ignorant. The ignorant don't remain so and fools rarely make cut.

Being as X-Wing is effectively an open hand style of game in how it handles the card part of it there is no possibility of true subterfuge against a literate opponent of even a modicum of intelligence beyond "When are they going to use that?"

1 hour ago, dezzmont said:

And Pre-nerf dampeners of course, which were a decent concept ruined by a bad execution (woulda been saved just having charges instead of or even addition too the shield cost).

Limited charges would have been fine. Limited charges at the cost of giving your opponent an advantage is worse than just the shield cost (which already gives your opponent a boat load of control over if you'll even be able to use ID).

 

Back to my OP (the "tangent" of discussing the Illicit slot in general is fine, I'll add it to the title). I wouldn't have an issue with the "Rigged" Astromech Socket taking both a Mod and an Illicit slot (I'll add that too). The main purpose of my suggestion is to expand the utility of the Illicit slot beyond the anemic "tricks" that currently exist for it (CC and CD are anemic "tricks", they're just less so than the others) and to possibly build the viability (heck, baseline playability) of the chassis' that have the slot. The secondary purpose of my Illicit slot ideas in general (IE the Force Sensitive Illicit upgrade I postulated awhile back) is to try and bring in mechanics that S&V has effectively been denied access to using in any playable manner.

Edited by Hiemfire

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Posted (edited)
39 minutes ago, Hiemfire said:

Tricks only work against fools or the ignorant. The ignorant don't remain so and fools rarely make cut.

 

Many games manage to make tricks tricky without requiring your opponent to be illiterate. Simply by making playing around the trick come at a cost, or making timing windows a thing.

Bombs are a good example of a fun trick, because its basically a game of chicken. DMS is a good 'trick' in the sense that it isn't actually deceptive, it just creates an unpleasant situation for your opponent because traditionally being at range 1 of a ship that you likely can kill in one strike is very good. It is a 'trick' because its dastardly and creates strength from weakness.

Subterfuge often is a matter of timing windows, which allow you to act in a manner that hide your true intentions, or effects that create player discomfort due to setting up scenarios where your opponent will obviously be punished but that they want to do normally (AKA control), rather than secret information. Blue is 'tricky' in MTG even when you know every card in your opponent's deck because it does things that deny your opponent traditional high-points and force your opponent to tip toe around you a bit, and 'trap' characters are outright a thing in Fighting Games despite those traditionally being games of completely perfect information, forget about what X-wing can do with dials and the systems phase interaction to force hard reads. In addition, other things that can be tricky include self-sacrificial moves (Black, for example, is considered a tricky color in MTG not just for the kill spells but the ability to suddenly stab itself in the face and become spooky out of nowhere).

CC and CD ARE poor tricks, which is kinda why I am sad they are the two actually good illicit slot items, but they are still kiiiinda tricky at least. It is just not ideal that they represent the illicit slot so hard.

39 minutes ago, Hiemfire said:

I wouldn't have an issue with the "Rigged" Astromech Socket taking both a Mod and an Illicit slot (I'll add that too)

This is a bit better but still is essentially an 'errata card' rather than an actual upgrade card, without any additional effects. Your just soft-buffing most small scum to have the option to take a mod OR a astromech, assuming they don't want illicit, which isn't ideal.

One option is to just make this card not a generic astromech slot, but instead an astromech like effect. Like if the goal is to give scum regen, rather than any ability astromechs have, an illicit card that can repair a ship ("Stolen Repair Nanites? Nanotechnology isn't very prevalant in Star Wars but does exist as a fabulously expensive McGuffin, or 'Tampered backup shields.') at some cost to the ship's ability to fight for a bit other than a mere disarm token. Maybe 'Repair 2 hull/shields, take a crit' or something.

Edited by dezzmont

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Posted (edited)
17 minutes ago, dezzmont said:

One option is to just make this card not a generic astromech slot, but instead an astromech like effect. Like if the goal is to give scum regen, rather than any ability astromechs have, an illicit card that can repair a ship ("Stolen Repair Nanites? Nanotechnology isn't very prevalant in Star Wars but does exist as a fabulously expensive McGuffin) at some cost to the ship's ability to fight for a bit other than a mere disarm token. Maybe 'Repair 2 hull, take a crit' or something.

Regen isn't the goal, though the option would be nice. There are allot more effects locked behind the generic astros than just the R2's and R5's abilities. Though currently with my hypothetical upgrade the limit for S&V would be R4's, R3's, R2's, and R5's since those are the only generic astromechs that S&V has access to. If the factions that have faction specific non-limited astromechs (BB and R4-P currently) ended up getting a astromech slotless small base with the Illicit slot their hypothetical options would include those as well.

More central to the effect you focused on maybe a Salvage & Repair droid pod? They're commonly known as "Buzz droids" but before the CIS repurposed them as the dismantler portion of the Discord Missiles they were actually used to fix ships and other vehicles. Post Clone War they'd probably be considered contraband.

Edited by Hiemfire

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On 7/26/2020 at 1:32 AM, Scum4Life said:

I think from a scum perspective, it should have a drawback/risk.

I love the idea of risk/reward interplay for Scum. Maybe playing in the Strain or Deplete design space could also work.

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1 hour ago, Hiemfire said:

Regen isn't the goal, though the option would be nice. There are allot more effects locked behind the generic astros than just the R2's and R5's abilities. 

 

That is low key what I am worried about, there is risk to an astromech slot because of the R4 and R3 in particular.

I don't think those weird astromech effects on any existant scum ship would be particularly bad (though I could see an argument that the Spacetug might get really annoying with an R4 because it could really easily hold position and subtly turn with it), but it means you can't make certain ships with an illicit at small size to avoid that.

It may be smarter to make these effects as illicit effects, and give them the 'big red button' effect that a lot of illicit cards currently do well so they are 'more powerful' than astromechs but are also limited in some way to make them dangerous, rather than just tying astromechs to the illicit slot, which is a lot less of a restricted slot.

For example, a hypothetical R3 alike effect could be some illegal unlicensed sensor device that either lets you hold infinite target locks and get two a turn, but give enemies firing upon you 1 re-roll per target lock your holding. Or it could let you take a target lock on everyone near you as a charge effect, but everyone near you gets to instantly target lock you without spending an action as well.

By making them specific effects you both avoid the danger of 'well a generic Astromech came out that does something naughty with a wide array of ship types' and 'It is kinda weird that the illicit slot isn't 'ilicit/astromech now.' You can kinda fix the second by making the ugprade come with a secondary 'mixed' effect (Ex: Requires a focus action, lose the ability to focus, but you can always link into a red calculate, meaning the ship now can't modify in a 'normal' way without stress), but it is a bit hazy still. 

I do agree with your ultimate goal of 'make the illicit slot less of a joke' in the end though!

1 hour ago, Hiemfire said:

More central to the effect you focused on maybe a Salvage & Repair droid pod?

Ooo clever! And it fits the 'big red button' thematics of Illicit.

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Posted (edited)
37 minutes ago, dezzmont said:

For example, a hypothetical R3 alike effect could be some illegal unlicensed sensor device that either lets you hold infinite target locks and get two a turn, but give enemies firing upon you 1 re-roll per target lock your holding. Or it could let you take a target lock on everyone near you as a charge effect, but everyone near you gets to instantly target lock you without spending an action as well.

Litmus: Put this on the table. See what happens and how much you like or hate it.

For me just looking at it sums up exactly why most Illicits are not equipped (You're basically giving your opponent arcless Predator+ 2.0 Drea for free in your example). They benefit your opponent way more than you'll ever be able to benefit from them. You pay points for the chance that it'll do something neat but in reality you're just handing the points to the person you're playing against.

37 minutes ago, dezzmont said:

Ooo clever! And it fits the 'big red button' thematics of Illicit.

I'd remove your "take a crit' or something.". See above.

Edited by Hiemfire

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Instead of this contortion why not just make illicit/modification upgrades that do some of the things the non-limited astromechs do? Just make a dual-slot upgrade that gives the astro's ability. Then there is no need to worry about releasing a new astro that breaks a scum ship. 

I think though the illicit/modification idea could make for a interesting design space overall. In the Brian Daley Han Solo adventures books there is the character there to more or less "audit" the Falcon for having a lot of stuff on his ship that shouldn't be on a civilian vessel. I think overall for Scum there isn't enough "hot-rodding" and modifications with the upgrades. And aside from not enough dirty-tricks the illicit upgrades don't tend to seem outside the law and illegal enough. Maybe with a dual slot upgrade there could be illicits that aren't going to backfire on you and your squad. 

I think more "hot-rodding" also sort of fits in with the "villain" or "rogue" notion of the faction or what someone was saying above about you play pilots in the faction not the faction more broadly. I always get the feeling that putting a scum  ship on the board that doesn't have some sort of modification or illicit upgrade is missing a big flavor aspect of the faction. 

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