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wraith428

Resisting Force Powers

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I love the design of the force die in this game. Lots of force powers got slung around in our game last night, (it was just that kind of encounter), and so many dark side points came up. My FS:Em did a good job RPing how he was drawing from the dark side, and did a really good job tying it to the current part of the story.

 

We had an NPC try and hold off the inquisitor who was advancing on the party. with a Force Rating of 3 he still managed to only generate 3 darkside pips which he refused to convert. That was just before the inquisitor force chocked him in one single turn. (using the injure power from DonovanMorningfire's Ways of the Force suppliant with 4 darkside points to burn. She rolled an 80 on the critical injury chart and turned around and finished him off with the second roll.)

 

Unless the user doesn't mind tapping to the dark side, those white pips may not be as easy to come by.

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I agree, brawn, agility, all these things should add to the check or add setback dice.

 

 

That also goes with the rip this off supports, so now force sensitive players have easy access to all vault/safe doors and such....

 

Do you actually know what it takes to rip a vault door off its hinges? Say the vault door is silhouette 2 (due to size and bulk). In order to move it with a Force Rating of 1, you need to roll 2 LS pips on your die (that's only a 25% chance) or roll two dark sid pips (8.33333% change) and spend a Destiny Point. And you only get one roll at it (if you have unlimited time to do it, you shouldn't be rolling in the first place—say yes or roll the dice, right?)

 

Ok, so that seems easy enough, right? No really. In order to do all that with only a FR of 1, you need to spend the following XP:

  • 20 XP (or more) to access the FSEx spec
  • 10 XP for the basic Move power
  • 20 XP to purchase two Strength upgrades, allowing you to move silhouette 2 objects

That's 50 XP! That's roughly half of a starting character's total!

 

Now, the GM could easily say that the vault door is silhouette 3 because it's not just the door: it's integrated into the wall, and the support structure of the vault itself. So now you need to shell out another 10 XP.

 

Or I could just spend some credits on blaster power packs (at 25CR each) and improvise an explosive device.

 

If you're worried about Force users throwing silhouette 2 items around to cause 20 damage to their target, there are plenty of ways to avoid this:

 

  • Adversary talent (EotE132)
  • Dodge talent (EotE135)
  • Sidestep talent (EotE142)
  • Cover (the Move power is a ranged attack, so cover and armour still apply) (EotE202)
  • Concealment (EotE213)

Not to mention range. The default range for the Move power is Short. So if the target is beyond short range, it's going to take a second LS pip to successfully activate the power (again, back to a 25% chance!). And that's after spending 45+ XP! Oh, and that 45 XP is only for silhouette 0 objects, doing 5 damage. If you want to do 10 damage, that's another 10 XP and requires 3 LS pips. That's means a Force Rating of 2, which is an additional 95 XP!

 

So no, I don't think Force Powers are over powered or anything. They're good for tricks here and there, but takes a lot of XP to get to the point where they outshine a blaster pistol.

 

-EF

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Wow, I just realised I made a error in my readings.

 

Each upgrade is only one pip for all upgrades purchased. So three strength upgrades only cost 1 pip.

 

I was reading the rules about using the upgrade multiple times for the pip cost as each upgrade cost a pip. I thought it was weird that I`d have to roll a double white pip twice to get to the top of the upgrade trees. Now I get it, i think I was lost in the verbage. A little better than I thought but still don`t think it is over powered. Chances of rolling even two white pips with two force die are low.

        I still do not believe any additional resistances are necessary, numbers for success are still far worse than just pulling a blaster with a few ranks. 

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No it's not OP. Lots of people seem concerned with F&D coming out and the possibility of Force Rating reaching lofty heights but they are missing two control mechanisms.

The first is the Force die. Have you tried rolling six force die? All that power and you still stand a solid chance of getting nothing but dark side pips.

The second Is XP costs. With the ammount of XP it would take to reach force rating six, a non force user could stack lethal blows and other nasty stats for more simple weapons. Then you got to buy powers and upgrades. Then you have to buy relevant skill ranks. It gets expensive fast.

FFG did an amazing job of making force users seem dangerous and different but not really making them that way so that they can work with a normal group. They have done this so well in fact that some people are convinced that they are going to break the game when F&D comes out.

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This kinda came up in another post (several, I suspect). Force Sensitives have to be pretty darn dedicated if they want the chance of powers actually working be better than a coin toss.

 

1 Force Die
Light   Prob   Cumulative
  2     25.0%     25.0%
  1     16.7%     41.7%

  0     58.3%

 

2 Force Dice
Light   Prob   Cumulative

  4      6.3%      6.3%
  3      8.3%     14.6%
  2     31.9%     46.5%

  1     19.4%     66.0%

  0     34.0%

 

3 Force Dice
Light   Prob   Cumulative

  6      1.6%      1.6%
  5      3.1%      4.7%
  4     13.0%     17.7%
  3     15.0%     32.8%

  2     30.4%     63.1%
  1     17.0%     80.2%

  0     19.8%

Edited by Col. Orange

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You guys clearly don't have munchkins in your group. It's the mid to top end of the force powers that are broken. They are far, far more powerful in this system than we see in any of the movies, by a long shot.

 

Move is absurdly overpowered at knight level play, basically once you get past about 200xp, especially using F&D characters. 

 

Move can kill anyone in a single round with only two pips (maxed strength and control upgrades). Simply lift them up to medium or long range, then drop them. 30+ wounds or insta-death. If you get a third pip, you can do this at extreme range. So long as they are willing to use dark side points (and who lifting and dropping someone 100 feet in the air isn't?) they almost never fail.

 

And there is no way to resist it, even with F&D rules. The only way to deal with it is to build my entire freaking game around it and not do any outdoor combat scenes, ever. Then at least the move check gets turned into a Discipline attack check. Of course, now he's hurling stormtroopers at other stormtroopers and doing 20 total damage in a single action (10 to target, 10 to hurled baddie), far more damage than you'll consistently get with any other weapon. Only a heavy auto-fire weapon or a double-bladed lightsaber comes close, and both require advantage upgrades to trigger.

 

Misdirect is nearly as bad. These are direct attacks on an individual's mind, even the default "make me disappear" action, yet there is absolutely no way to resist them, no matter how strong their mind is. Except to say, as a GM, "No, your power that you've spent all those points on just doesn't work at all right when you want it to the most". It's BS. That's not fair at all. It ruined one of my games recently when a clever player used misdirect during a chase to get the target to think he'd lost two of the players. That's fine, it's a clever move. However the target, a force user even, had no recourse. Even though the player was messing with his head and he was a strong willed force user himself, the mechanics give no defense at all. That's not what we see in the movies. Passive stuff like sensing emotions is there, but direct influence isn't. Misdirect is only ever used on stormtroopers, when disappearing in the middle of a lightsaber duel would be pretty freaking powerful wouldn't it? 

 

These should all be opposed checks. Every one of them. Players will spend the 20xp to make sure that 90% of the time their power works against the weak-willed, and the tough adversaries that you NEVER SEE JEDI DO THIS STUFF TO IN THE MOVIES (even though it makes the most sense to use it on them) are very difficult to trick or simply influence away or just toss the adversary 3 baddie into the air and kill them. Not impossible, mind you, these things should still be potential options, just hard. And if a player wants to spend the 50-100xp it would take to mentally dominate nearly any opponent? I'm fine with that. But it should not be possible for a 2 willpower padawan with no ranks in discipline to force move a Sith Lord 30 feet in the air and drop him to his death, not 25% of the time (which it is under current rules), not 1% of the time.

 

I'm changing the rules at my table to deal with this, but I shouldn't have to, and I'm a little ticked about it. The game gets stupid and boring when it turns into a series of "I pick him up and drop him, he's dead" and "Joey disappears, then runs him through". Of course I could do it back at the players, but that only makes the game worse, not better. 

 

And don't blame my players for this. It's only smart to use the rules as written to the best of your advantage. It's just the rules as written are broken, and with F&D out it's worse than ever (At least with AoR and EotE a guy had to spend almost 300xp to pull this crap, now it's practically easy).

 

I'm thinking an opposed force power + discipline check for any physical force power use directed at another character (must have at least FR 1 to oppose), and opposed discipline + force check (attacker may add pips from force dice) to any overt mental influence, including misdirection but not passive sensing. This way most force powers just work on most NPCs so long as they activate, but against other force users it's a bit more difficult. This also gives a nice way to deal with misdirect, treating it more like influence.

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Just a couple of choice notes to make.

 

Ripping an object out of someones hands is an action; they are spending their only action in this turn to do this and still have two manvoers. What is stopping the player from simply drawing another weapon? Sunk all your money into that weapon? Then if you are the dedicated combat character you prepared poorly by putting your eggs in one basket.

 

I for one am fine with how it is; giving up an action to disarm a player is a reasonable use of an action and is actually fairly suboptimal use of an action. Giving the other player an apposed athletics check to respond; assuming they have any idea what the force can do or otherwise have the item strapped on (in which case, there would be no opposing check) would actually put the force user at a even greater handicap for using that move, which is unfair considering they likely sank 40/50 exp into it.

 

What about that scene where the villian used move object to pick up and drop player characters repeatively? Thats right, it never happened in the movies. Both the DM and the Players need to think of it as a climatic, abstract story telling event rather then "lol I win" otherwise everyone would have picked up and slammed people repeatively within star wars. No one should be doing that.

 

Skimming minds? In the movies there was no defence for this thus it's only fitting that thats the case. Sense isn't a instant info application; it only works if the person is thinking about the subject that your interested in, thus you are only really likely to figure it out if you catch them doing the deed (in which case, you don't really need sense for you to know that most times) or you need to catch them with a leading question that makes them think about the subject. It's very hard to do that without revealing your hand. Thus making you/party engineer a situation on which they think about it, every time it was used in the movie, the main characters were forced to think about it every time they were mind read.

 

 

Plus for all the perks of being a force user; theres a billion downsides. In edge of the empire a force senstive is most probably worth a instant 5 bounty obligation, potential Jedi is easily worth a 10/15 obligation if the empire at large catch wind of it.


Other skills already have built in defences for it and; baring players using skills against one another is perfectly fine as it is. Sometimes players need to be used, manhandled or lose in ways that they feel confortable because the characters in a drama based setting need to face an adversity in order to survive. If anything, the force usage in here is the most balienced interpretation I have ever seen in a dice based system.

Edited by Lordbiscuit

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Plus for all the perks of being a force user; theres a billion downsides. In edge of the empire a force senstive is most probably worth a instant 5 bounty obligation, potential Jedi is easily worth a 10/15 obligation if the empire at large catch wind of it.

Other skills already have built in defences for it and; baring players using skills against one another is perfectly fine as it is. Sometimes players need to be used, manhandled or lose in ways that they feel confortable because the characters in a drama based setting need to face an adversity in order to survive. If anything, the force usage in here is the most balienced interpretation I have ever seen in a dice based system.

 

This is the problem "crunch" players have with this narrative system. The only balance on a lot of things in this game is that things should be handled through the narrative. That the only reason why a force user isn't killing everybody with a mere thought is because the narrative (Read: Imperial Law) will correct those behaviors.

 

Is that good or bad for the system? I don't know. What I do know is that it's not to my tastes. I prefer a bit more crunch to my rules to enforce balance.

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