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Some rules questions answered by Sam Stewart

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Because I am total nerd with absolutely nothing better to do, I gave a second listened to the recent Order 66 podcast that featured a lengthy interview with Edge of the Empire Lead Designer Jay Little and Lead Developer Sam Stewart. In addition to making me hungry for both chili and pie, the show featured a lot of answers to player questions.

 

Some of these answers were good, specific, targeted answers to rules questions, and I wanted to collect those here for reference. 

 

Many other questions were more about design theory, asking why the devs did things a certain why. They were all interesting (especially the one about pie), and I totally recommend you listen to the podcast, which I've linked below. However, the purpose of this thread is just to clarify some of the rules questions that have caused confusion among the players.

 

So, without further ado, here are the questions by category:

 

Source: http://ia801901.us.archive.org/23/items/Episode14_20130724/episode14.mp3

 

ITEMS

 

Q: Do missile tubes come preloaded with 6 missiles?

 

A: Yes, all the weapons come preloaded with ammo.

 

Q: How much do missiles cost? (Referring to buying reloads for the missile tubes.)

 

A: 100 to 200 credits, depending. The missiles should all be highly illegal, however.

 

Q: If a droid with cybernetic enhancements is hit with an ion weapon, do the cybernetics stop working as described on page 173? Or do they simply suffer the normal droid effects of such attacks?

 

A: Per the RAW, the cybernetic would stop working, as well as the other effects that the ion

weapon would have.

 

Q: How do jetpacks work exactly? Does a character flying a jetpack operate at the planetary scale for movement speed, or at the personal scale?

 

A: It depends on the situation. In personal combat a character moving via a jetpack will operate at personal scale. Because of the jetpack's great speed, in personal scale it might allow a character to get from extreme range all the way to short range in possibly one maneuver, if the GM thinks that makes sense. If that same jetpack-flying character is chasing a vehicle such as a speeder, however, then it might operate at planetary scale. It basically takes GM adjudication. No pilot check is necessary if the player is simply moving from point A to point B and there are no consequences for failure. A check might be warranted if there's terrain or other risks involved in flying the jetpack.

 

Q: Why does the weighted head attachment, which is the only attachment for bludgeoning weapons, require two hard points when none of the bludgeoning weapons in the book have any hard points?

 

A: Per Sam: "Some of the things we did in the book, we did... with forward compatibility in mind. Just because the attachment may not work with any of the weapons we have right now, that's definitely not going to be the case later on."

 

Q: The Inventor talent grants a benefit "When constructing new items...." Where can I find the rules for item construction? They don't appear to be in the core rulebook.

 

A: Basically, see previous answer. This is more forward-compatibility stuff.

 

CHARACTER CREATION

 

Q: If I buy a rank in a non-career skill and it later becomes a career skill, do I get refunded the additional "out of career" cost I paid when I purchased that rank?

 

A: No, you do not get a refund. You are better off buying the specialization first and then putting ranks into its skills afterward.

 

Q: [insert question about whether the talent tree layouts, including specific link placements, have any errors, or is everything in the book as intended.]

 

A: The talent tree layouts you see in the core rulebook are all as intended. There are no layout errors or incorrectly-placed links. This includes the Slicer specialization tree.

 

Q: [insert question about whether a change from the final beta update to the release of the core rulebook was in error, or was intended, such as the change to the Twi'lek's starting wounds value .]

 

A: Where there are conflicts between the final beta update and the core rulebook, the core rulebook is correct in all such cases. Mentions of the Surveillance skill, however, are errors and not intended.

 

COMBAT

 

Q: Since initiative checks are Simple (i.e., no difficulty) skill checks, can Advantage and Triumph (or Threat and Despair, if the GM upgrades the check's difficulty somehow) generated by initiative checks be spent as normal?

 

A: Yes, but with the caveat that since Advantage is the tiebreaker for initiative, it's best to leave it as is. Triumph could be spent to maybe get the drop on someone or get in a free maneuver either before combat begins or during the first round.

 

Q: By rule, the benefit of the Aim maneuver is lost if the character takes damage. If a character voluntarily suffers strain to take an additional maneuver on his turn, would the strain loss count as damage that cancels the bonus from Aim?

 

A: When a character voluntarily suffers strain to take an additional maneuver, that is not considered "taking damage." Therefore the answer is no, this does not nullify the bonus for aiming.

 

Q: Can you hold an action in Edge of the Empire?

 

A: There is no rule as such for this. A character who wishes to act later should simply take a later slot in the initiative, but there is no rule for acting "just before" an enemy does something. The GM might call for an opposed roll in such a circumstance if he deems it appropriate, perhaps using Cool to resolve a pistol duel, for example.

 

Q: The rulebook states that different sources of defense don't stack. Is this referring to different sources of personal defense, such as multiple layers of armor, or to any sources of defense, such as armor and cover.

 

A: Unless a source of defense specifically states that it stacks with other sources of defense, then it does not stack. Armor and cover, for example, do not stack; a character can only benefit from one of these sources of defense at a time.

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Thanks Venthrac, this is really good information...

 

 

[...]

 

 

Q: Why does the weighted head attachment, which is the only attachment for bludgeoning weapons, require two hard points when none of the bludgeoning weapons in the book have any hard points?

 

A: Per Sam: "Some of the things we did in the book, we did... with forward compatibility in mind. Just because the attachment may not work with any of the weapons we have right now, that's definitely not going to be the case later on."

 

Q: The Inventor talent grants a benefit "When constructing new items...." Where can I find the rules for item construction? They don't appear to be in the core rulebook.

 

A: Basically, see previous answer. This is more forward-compatibility stuff.

 

[...]

 

But i get disappointed when i read those two answers. Everything that is included in the Rulebook should be fully usable without being forced to buy additional supplements.

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Thanks Venthrac, this is really good information...

 

 

[...]

 

 

Q: Why does the weighted head attachment, which is the only attachment for bludgeoning weapons, require two hard points when none of the bludgeoning weapons in the book have any hard points?

 

A: Per Sam: "Some of the things we did in the book, we did... with forward compatibility in mind. Just because the attachment may not work with any of the weapons we have right now, that's definitely not going to be the case later on."

 

Q: The Inventor talent grants a benefit "When constructing new items...." Where can I find the rules for item construction? They don't appear to be in the core rulebook.

 

A: Basically, see previous answer. This is more forward-compatibility stuff.

 

[...]

 

But i get disappointed when i read those two answers. Everything that is included in the Rulebook should be fully usable without being forced to buy additional supplements.

 

I agree 100% with this. It's simply a bit of poor design choice for the sake of "having something there" (or it was left in after editing content). The book should work as a cohesive whole and not with "loose ends". However, I didn't write the book so it's a small thing to live with in a book that is largely wonderfully designed and produced.

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Thanks Venthrac, this is really good information...

 

 

[...]

 

 

Q: Why does the weighted head attachment, which is the only attachment for bludgeoning weapons, require two hard points when none of the bludgeoning weapons in the book have any hard points?

 

A: Per Sam: "Some of the things we did in the book, we did... with forward compatibility in mind. Just because the attachment may not work with any of the weapons we have right now, that's definitely not going to be the case later on."

 

Q: The Inventor talent grants a benefit "When constructing new items...." Where can I find the rules for item construction? They don't appear to be in the core rulebook.

 

A: Basically, see previous answer. This is more forward-compatibility stuff.

 

[...]

 

But i get disappointed when i read those two answers. Everything that is included in the Rulebook should be fully usable without being forced to buy additional supplements.

I agree, it's the "Core" rule book, it should contain the all the rules. I can understand them leaving setting/age specific information and even rules specific to those settings but not non-setting specific rules. Now we know that we're going to have to reference more than one book to get "Core" rules. Disappointing.

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Ok, although this wasn't asked/answered on the order 66podcast I have just had a couple of clarifications from Sam Stewart. Questions and answers below if you feel they should be added to the list;

Q. You said the sniper shot talent doesn't work in starship/vehicle combat, however the Advanced Targeting Array attachment has Innate Talent (Sniper Shot) as a Modification Option, is this correct?

"To answer your other questions; generally the Sniper Shot Talent shouldn't be used in Starship combat, but in that particular instance, it can be. I apologize that it's not called out, though, I can certainly see the confusion. However, yes, the idea is that in general, the Sniper Shot Talent shouldn't be used with starship scale weapons (because the ranges are that much bigger) but that mod should let you if you get it. I should add, if you'd like your players to use Sniper Shot in Starship Combat, it shouldn't break the game to let them do so. It does decrease the viability of starfighter dogfights, however (when the PC can shoot their opponents before they get in range, it may take some of the challenge out of dogfighting), so just be aware."

Q. On page 213 the rules for cover state they you increase a characters defense by 1, however pg 202 states that cover grants ranged defense of 1, which is correct?

"The cover action (page 202) is correct"

Q. Do you mind if I ask why the change from the Beta?

"The reason we changed defense slightly is we wanted to balance defense with, on the one hand, being useful to the players and allowing them to increase it, with, on the other hand, avoiding really bloated dice pools. We ret-conned the change in the Beta after we decided (post-Beta) to make Sixth Sense and Superior Reflexes not Force talents (leaving them potentially open to more characters in the future). Now armor and cover don't stack, but the "defensive" talents do."

Q. You answered a question about slow ships and long range but it still isn't clear how many manuevers it would take a slow ship to move toward something that is at long range (so from long to medium) or away from something?

"If you're talking about a Speed 1 ship, it's going to take them 2 maneuvers to move to short range with whatever's in short range. At that point, the long range target is now in medium range of them. Next turn, they can continue to slog slowly forward, spending two maneuvers to move one range band, and now the target's in short range. Finally, the next turn allows them to close the distance. The same principle holds true with faster ships, they just take less time to close the distance."

Q. Sorry but I'm still a bit confused about the ship range, so it basically takes a speed 1 ship 2 Maneuvers to cover one range band?

"Glad to hear that clears things up a bit. In regards to your confusion of ship range, yes, it does take a speed 1 ship (or a ship moving at speed 1) 2 maneuvers to cover one range band. It's a really simple way of looking at it. If you were speed 2-4, it would take you two maneuvers to move to medium in one turn, then you'd be within short range, and it would take you one maneuver next turn to move to short. (Or you could spend one maneuver that turn to close one range band, one maneuver next turn to close one range band, and one maneuver in the third turn to close one range band). "

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Outstanding, thank you lupex. Did you talk to him in person at an event? I'm hoping to get a few moments of Sam's time at GenCon just to clear up a few things I'm confused about with regard to out-of-combat healing.

 

I'll tackle part 2 of the O66 podcast this weekend and add the update to my second post in this thread.

Edited by Venthrac

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Not at event, I sent a rules question off to FFG and I was lucky enough to have an answer by Sam and he was gracious enough to answer a few follow-up questions for me, which was nice of him.

f you have any specific questions it might be worth sending a message to FFG as all the answers I have seen are from people that know the game and not just admin bods.

Edited by lupex

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I sent a PM to Sam a while back but didn't get an answer. How did you send your message?

You'll probably want to use the "Rules Question" option under Customer Service on the toolbar at the top of the page.  There's no guarantee that it will be Sam that replies, but at least you'll get a knowledgeable response rather than the crapshoot answers you're likely to get from some of WotC's customer service.

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I sent a PM to Sam a while back but didn't get an answer. How did you send your message?

You'll probably want to use the "Rules Question" option under Customer Service on the toolbar at the top of the page.  There's no guarantee that it will be Sam that replies, but at least you'll get a knowledgeable response rather than the crapshoot answers you're likely to get from some of WotC's customer service.

Oh the memories...

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I sent a PM to Sam a while back but didn't get an answer. How did you send your message?

You'll probably want to use the "Rules Question" option under Customer Service on the toolbar at the top of the page.  There's no guarantee that it will be Sam that replies, but at least you'll get a knowledgeable response rather than the crapshoot answers you're likely to get from some of WotC's customer service.

Yep, that's how it worked for me. It's nice to have a direct (ish) line to find out RAI.

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Not at event, I sent a rules question off to FFG and I was lucky enough to have an answer by Sam and he was gracious enough to answer a few follow-up questions for me, which was nice of him.

f you have any specific questions it might be worth sending a message to FFG as all the answers I have seen are from people that know the game and not just admin bods.

 

Nice.  Even more reason to like the developers.  :-)

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Anyone else slightly confused on the question about silhouette 5+ ships and Pilot only manoeuvres? While page 232 says, as is also mentioned by Sam, that a silhouette 5+ ship can only perform one Pilot only manoeuvre per round, no taking system strain to push it, he did say that multiple pilots could perform a manoeuvre each, or did I misunderstand that?

From page 232 it seems that a starship of silhouette 4 (or smaller) with two pilots, which I assume applies to a pilot and his co-pilot of a modified YT-1300 for instance, one can perform the move, the other accelerate/decelerate, and then one can use an action to gain the advantage (if modified speed to 4) and the other could perform some other action, perhaps attack with some cockpit controlled cannon they've added. Or would you think that this is not the intention?

Underneath this part in it is the specifically stated that a silhouette 5+ starship can only benefit from a single Pilot only manoeuvre per round, as mentioned above and by Sam... yet Sam seems to imply that its only one Pilot Only manoeuvre per pilot? Or is he then back to referring to silhouette 4- starships?

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Thanks Venthrac, this is really good information...

 

 

[...]

 

 

Q: Why does the weighted head attachment, which is the only attachment for bludgeoning weapons, require two hard points when none of the bludgeoning weapons in the book have any hard points?

 

A: Per Sam: "Some of the things we did in the book, we did... with forward compatibility in mind. Just because the attachment may not work with any of the weapons we have right now, that's definitely not going to be the case later on."

 

Q: The Inventor talent grants a benefit "When constructing new items...." Where can I find the rules for item construction? They don't appear to be in the core rulebook.

 

A: Basically, see previous answer. This is more forward-compatibility stuff.

 

[...]

 

But i get disappointed when i read those two answers. Everything that is included in the Rulebook should be fully usable without being forced to buy additional supplements.

 

I agree 100% with this. It's simply a bit of poor design choice for the sake of "having something there" (or it was left in after editing content). The book should work as a cohesive whole and not with "loose ends". However, I didn't write the book so it's a small thing to live with in a book that is largely wonderfully designed and produced.

 

Personally, I think he just said that so that he didn't have to admit to such a mistake.  Ret-conning these mistakes into future content makes the Errata smaller.

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Well first thanks for this really helpful thread, BUT am I being dumb? What about that fricking 'Surveillance check' e. g. concerning active scanning?

I understand that it got dropped in BETA but I didn't participate there and still don't know how to replace it.

 

My first guess (coming from Wizards' Saga Edition) would be to use the computers skill.

 

Can anyone confirm or correct that guess?

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Well first thanks for this really helpful thread, BUT am I being dumb? What about that fricking 'Surveillance check' e. g. concerning active scanning?

I understand that it got dropped in BETA but I didn't participate there and still don't know how to replace it.

 

My first guess (coming from Wizards' Saga Edition) would be to use the computers skill.

 

Can anyone confirm or correct that guess?

I plan on using the computer skill as well, so it sounds good to me.

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