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Passmorebp

Healing strain during combat

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Here's my situation. My Players Wookie charges into combat hacking enemy's up. My enemy's shoot him with their blasters set to stun. The Wookie loses strain and goes over his strain threshold, Wookie is staggered or falls unconscious. My other player is a medic and wants to go heal him, but he has no wounds just strain damage. Does the medic still get to make a medicine check to try and roll advantage enough to heal strain? Or is the also Wookie out the rest of the encounter?

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You should argue for at least an hour, then make a house rule.  
 

Oh, wait - we already did that. ;)

 

FWIW, the problem we ran into was that the medic was capable of healing the Wookie of his strain if he were wounded, but not if he wasn't.  If Medicine can restore strain with advantages on a wounded character, then it must be within the capabilities of a character with Medicine to restore strain.  The way the rules are written, they can only do so when a wound is present.  It created a cockeyed rules situation in which the best choice was to simply stab the Wookie in the foot for a wound, then heal him (we didn't, of course.)  

 

It didn't seem to make sense that someone could be knocked unconscious and could be revived by a doctor if wounded, but not if unwounded.

 

The house rule we came up with, btw, was that strain could be restored on an unwounded character with advantages on  a simple check, or on unconscious and unwounded on an easy check.  Threat still causes strain, and this still counts as the one use per encounter.

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I always assume that the flavor text for healing strain as a side-effect from healing wounds from a medicine check was to show that your "easing the pain" caused by a wound. Obviously the strain suffered is most likely from a different source, but it might be worth noting to your players.

 

I agree with the argument that it doesn't make sense, but allowing a player to heal strain with a medicine check can make a few talents (mentioned above from the politico tree) useless.

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I agree with the argument that it doesn't make sense, but allowing a player to heal strain with a medicine check can make a few talents (mentioned above from the politico tree) useless.

I don't agree that by allowing to heal strain with medicical care (p. 219 rulebook) you make the "inspiring rethoric" talent (p. 137) useless. The prime reason being that medical care can only be attempted once for encounter, whereas there is no such limit on "inspiring rethoric".

Furthermore, as the arguments presented in this thread have shown, I believe it makes sense allowing medical treatement to a strained character, even with no wounds sustained, justifying an Easy, or even Simple medecine check in that situation.

In any case, its your game, do what works best for you. I don't think the system will break either way, it's that flexible to begin with.

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Maybe it would be reasonable to assume every Medpac is equipped with some smelling-salt type substance. A one-time use per encounter (or per Medpac) that wipes 5 strain on an unconscious character. I chose 5, just because that would make it the opposite of the standard anesthetic.

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A sort of Strain simpack thing might be a good idea. It should be more limited in my mind than the standard wound healing stimpacks, perhaps a once per encounter deal is a good solution like Spjork suggests. A more powerful one could heal it all, but at the cost of addiction or lowered strain threshold for x amount of time afterwards... this is close to drugs in a way. Potentially. Note, I'm also considering its use for conscious characters, not only unconscious.

 

I like Spjork's idea, I might add that to the full Medpack kit's abilities.

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I had a situation like this come up in last night's game. Basically the group's healer wanted to restore some strain to the Slicer, only the Slicer hadn't taken any wounds. I just assigned a difficulty based on how her strain was less than half her threshold (Easy) and then let the healer roll. I told him he needed one success just to jab the needle in correctly, and then any Advantage he got would heal strain just like you do when someone's wounded.

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I had a situation like this come up in last night's game. Basically the group's healer wanted to restore some strain to the Slicer, only the Slicer hadn't taken any wounds. I just assigned a difficulty based on how her strain was less than half her threshold (Easy) and then let the healer roll. I told him he needed one success just to jab the needle in correctly, and then any Advantage he got would heal strain just like you do when someone's wounded.

This is kinda what I was suggesting, but we eventually came up with another solution.

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The house rule we came up with, btw, was that strain could be restored on an unwounded character with advantages on  a simple check, or on unconscious and unwounded on an easy check.  Threat still causes strain, and this still counts as the one use per encounter.

Oooh, similar to healing System Strain on an starship with no Hull Trauma...I like it.

Really though, from smelling salts to buckets of water to comedicaly slapping the person into consciousness, you should be allowed to attempt it.

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Simple check is the best way to do this, IMO, with Advantage being used to heal Strain as normal. Note that you can only perform first aid once per encounter per target character as well, so it's not like you're a never-ending fountain of Strain relief. 

 

By contrast, the Politico can do the Inspiring Rhetoric as many times as she likes. 

 

I'm not sure I like the idea of stim-packs-for-Strain. Strain is different from Wounds, and there are a lot of ways to mitigate Strain that there aren't for wounds. E.g., the Inspiring Rhetoric, Resolve, and Intense Presence talents. 

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Get or become a Politico. Inspiring Rhetoric is the way to clear out your allies' Strain during combat.

Not particularly useful if you're already unconscious... 

 

 

I'd be okay with a PC using up a Stimpack for strain.

Edited by FuriousGreg

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While I agree to the use the medical skill to heal strain even without a wound, using cheap additional methods to do so would seem like a system breaker. If you don't like the concept of strain, just don't use in in your game - make all strain damage wounds instead (maybe 2:1 conversion).

 

It shudders me to hear as a GM when the obligation triggers ("Your sister was kidnapped by the black sun - get four strain") as an answer: "No problem, I have a strain recovery stimpack right here".

 

Strain accumulates over a day - its the stress you can handle. If you don't want stress, just get a boring job somewhere in the core worlds. If you want to handle more stress - don't start with low willpower.

 

On the pro side it should make the players happy to get stunned and flee afterwards instead of getting killed.

(off-topic: the same discussion is going on with Shadowrun for years)

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In my group, I would see two solutions:

1.)  The mechanic & doctor make a contraption (like a stim pack) to heal the strain, albeit good for only one use.

2.)  The doctor injects the Wookiee with a serum to increase his attributes, and uses his advantages to heal the strain.

Also, I'm surprised cutting themselves isn't a Wookiee combat ritual.  

Meanwhile, I have been scouring the forums for more uses for strain.  It is vastly underplayed in my game (perhaps because no one is going for stun damage with their blasters), but I don't see a lot of examples where players take more than a couple points of strain (and most of them voluntarily for talents, by choice).  Those one or two points per encounter usually get recovered with advantages fairly quickly and anything left over is recovered at the end of the encounter.

What I'd like to know is how is everyone inflicting enough strain on their characters to make it even an issue in the conflict?

 

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Often in the games I've seen, it's more of a combination of the GM inflicting strain on the characters AND the characters taking optimal use of their extra maneuvers which cost them strain.

 

If, over the course of a three- or four-round combat, a player took an extra maneuver each time (to Aim twice, to find cover, to close on the enemy or move to a better vantage point), that's around 8 points of strain right there. If the GM uses Threats a few more times, that could be 10 or more points just from that one combat.

 

It makes the player really have to think about whether to use the Advantages they roll to crit the enemy or to recover strain on themselves. 

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It also depends on the role of the character. 

 

In the convention game I played over the weekend, the 2 or 3 characters who were really focused on combat racked up a LOT of strain and were really feeling it after each ground combat.

 

My character was the Pilot, so I racked up some strain from taking a maneuver or two during our space encounters but I had hardly any after our ground combats.

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Uncancelled threats can be used for it.  You need to either shoot at them with stun, or have players that use large amount of strain offensively and defensively for it to matter. Dodge can burn a lot if the player is targeted more than once.  Multiple uses of Frenzied Attack.  You need to see high use of those incidental class talents and double maneuvers they you'd see Strain be impacted.

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Often in the games I've seen, it's more of a combination of the GM inflicting strain on the characters AND the characters taking optimal use of their extra maneuvers which cost them strain.

 

If, over the course of a three- or four-round combat, a player took an extra maneuver each time (to Aim twice, to find cover, to close on the enemy or move to a better vantage point), that's around 8 points of strain right there. If the GM uses Threats a few more times, that could be 10 or more points just from that one combat.

 

It makes the player really have to think about whether to use the Advantages they roll to crit the enemy or to recover strain on themselves. 

I often find it challenging to keep any real strain on my PCs. Even the ones burning it like kerosine (much as in your example). They love to get those big dice pools and use what ADV they can to offset expenditures.

 

Heck, I've got guys who do stuff like: Move to cover and Aim (2 strain), Side Step x2 (burning 2 more), then on his attack he might generate say 5 ADV. 2 go towards the crit and recovering 3 strain with the rest, thus netting the whole action as using only an effective 1 point of strain for all of it.

 

And if anyone starts to accumulate more strain than they feel comfortable with, they start to focus even more on using those ADV to heal it.

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Often in the games I've seen, it's more of a combination of the GM inflicting strain on the characters AND the characters taking optimal use of their extra maneuvers which cost them strain.

 

If, over the course of a three- or four-round combat, a player took an extra maneuver each time (to Aim twice, to find cover, to close on the enemy or move to a better vantage point), that's around 8 points of strain right there. If the GM uses Threats a few more times, that could be 10 or more points just from that one combat.

 

It makes the player really have to think about whether to use the Advantages they roll to crit the enemy or to recover strain on themselves. 

I often find it challenging to keep any real strain on my PCs. Even the ones burning it like kerosine (much as in your example). They love to get those big dice pools and use what ADV they can to offset expenditures.

 

Heck, I've got guys who do stuff like: Move to cover and Aim (2 strain), Side Step x2 (burning 2 more), then on his attack he might generate say 5 ADV. 2 go towards the crit and recovering 3 strain with the rest, thus netting the whole action as using only an effective 1 point of strain for all of it.

 

And if anyone starts to accumulate more strain than they feel comfortable with, they start to focus even more on using those ADV to heal it.

 

You can't aim if you move.  No move to cover, no Sidestepping if you Aim.

Edited by 2P51

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Why can't you move maneuver/aim maneuver/attack action all in one turn? You'll take two Strain for the second maneuver, but unless I missed something it's perfectly legal. So long as the attack immediately follows the Aim, all should be good.

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