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Lord Dust

Signature Abilities Opinions

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Let's start out with the premise that all of the abilities are a bit OP. This is by design, and that's why I use the phrase "too OP" when I think it is over the top or gamebreaking.

I will also state for the record that I am of the opinion that any Signature Ability is on the table for the character as long as it makes narrative sense. Unmatched Ingenuity [Engineer] for a Bounty Hunter: Gadgeteer, for example. This is especially important when you have multiple characters in the same career or character who are playing builds that (intentionally) don't line up with their actual job description (Colonist: Politico who is just a really socially skilled bounty hunter who doesn't go in for weapons all that much taking Always Get My Mark, for example).

The thread on Always Get My Mark has my thoughts on that ability in far more detail than I'd go into here, so I'll skip it.

Combat:

Unmatched Devastation (Bounty Hunter) is a fun one. It goes really well with my Mandalorian Vambrace houserules (possibly too well), but it is balanced aside from that. It isn't too OP against Nemeses since it increases the difficulty once for each successful check and a decent Adversary rank can pretty quickly get that to Impossible difficulty, and it isn't too OP against crowds since it isn't an auto-takedown like certain other abilities. I like the flavor of this ability, and it is mechanically sound.

On that note, Last One Standing (Hired Gun) can be gamebreaking if you don't properly prepare for it. The only issue I have with it is that you can take out two Rivals as well as the minions, which can put you into a situation of leaving only the Nemesis when he prior had a decently large escort. Unless you plan for it, this can screw up your plans big time. Fortunately, the tree does not have any Frequency upgrades. This can narratively be a very fun ability to work with, but does come with the above warnings. Some people have referred to it as an "I win." button, so judiciousness should be applied on the part of the player in an attempt to avoid messing things up too much.

Unmatched Protection (Hired Gun) is a really good (as in fulfilling its purpose well) Sig in my opinion. It allows you to halve all incoming damage before applying Soak. The defensive ones are less likely to cause serious problems and can make the character feel epic. The drawback to the ability is that a "mean" GM can just choose not to target the character. I do not recommend this at all. If anything, I'd target the character more as it would tend to be narrated as a "beserker beastmode" rather than avoidance. With a Marauder character, this is especially true. This ability would be excellent for a Vanguard if it applied (see stipulation #2).

Unmatched Courage (Soldier) is of a similar vein, allowing you to ignore the effects of Critical Injuries. This is also quite good (again for fulfilling its telos), but not as powerful as Unmatched Protection except in rare circumstances. It does have the potential to save your life though, and that should never be taken lightly. Pretty much everything I said about Unmatched Protection applies here.

The Bigger They Are... (Soldier) is a very good and very powerful ability (allowing you to ignore armor), but it can be gamebreaking since it can be applied to regular ol' nemeses. I would have preferred that it stipulate a minimum of Silhouette 2 rather than Sil 2 or smaller. This is a reasonable houserule if you share the concern.

Its counterpart is The Harder They Fall (Engineer) and they go together quite well. The Harder They Fall allows you to automatically crit vehicles and droids, ignoring some Defense as you do so. Very very good for the Clone Wars. I have a clone trooper who started with Droid Specialist for the two ranks in Design Flaw and this signature ability. Excellent for fighting Droidekas.

Unmatched Ingenuity (Engineer) is fun and a decent Sig, but it isn't outstanding. Allowing the addition of an Item Quality can be extremely potent in the right circumstances, but is unlikely to be particularly useful under most circumstances. Not gamebreaking, so a pretty safe choice.

This One is Mine (Ace) is an awesome ability. No complaints here, and narratively awesome. Locked in a one-on-one duel with a hated nemesis, comming back and forth trying to get into each other's heads as you weave through the battle with singular focus.. Awesome.

Unmatched Survivability (Ace) is a bit odd. It works though, and as a defensive ability I can't complain too much. The narrative justification side of it is a bit wonky though. How does your ship get more durable once it's disabled?

Peerless Interception (Jedi) is a really cool ability and is also another defensive ability, which I like. It makes Parry/Reflect more powerful, but my only objection is Effortless Counter which allows them to once per ROUND activate Improved Parry/Reflect without spending Threat/Despair. This isn't that bad, but I can see it getting out of hand in the right circumstances.

 

Social:

Rousing Oratory (Commander) is an ability I haven't spent much time thinking about. I don't tend to play social characters or think about them all that much. It's a decent ability, but since its focus isn't mechanical, I can't say all that much about it.

Unmatched Authority (Commander) is quite interesting, and fits very well for a frontline leader. It allows you to modify an ally's dice pool and can even affect Mass Combat checks. Helpful, and not gamebreaking.

Unmatched Teamwork (Clone Soldier) is of a similar vein, changing Assistance to an Incidental (once per round) and modifying its effects. It really isn't that great. The effects are decent and it makes some thematic sense for clones, but the ability is pretty lackluster all things considered.

 

Now for the ones that don't really fit into your categories:

Inventive Creation (Technician) is a great ability. It allows you to make a device to help you in the current circumstance, which can cause problems sometimes but is generally okay. BUT WHY DOES IT LET YOU MAKE A VEHICLE!?!?
Can be gamebreaking if used injudiciously, but okay otherwise.

Unmatched Calibration (Technician) breaks crafting. Other than that it's okay. It isn't as bad for crafting as Unmatched Fortune would be, but it can seriously mess up what balance crafting has achieved. I like crafting, but too many rerolls or forced result changes undermines the chance inherent in the process. I have no objections to this ability outside of crafting though.

 

Hope this helps!

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