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Hakon

Reducing Stats at character creation

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Oh for sure this is true. But I think there should be guidelines for more advanced character creation.

 

Nah, that's what these boards are for :)

 

 

Exactly! The RAW is there as guidelines, but states multiple times to take from the rules and make adjustments as you see fit with your games. That's why people have gone to making new Talents/Skills, mods to Talent/Skills, NPCs, Ships, adding the unofficial species menagerie. The way FFG puts everything is this is your game. What one player or GM has as an opinion, doesn't need to dictate your style of game. But, their insight may help you with something you didn't think of when making an adjustment to the RAW.

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To the desire to "roleplay my kind of character," I can totally get behind that. For sure.

 

In any case, you (the GM) have got to do what's best for your play group. The rules-as-written are (self-admittedly) there as guidelines for a fun time. 

 

My suggestion has been what's worked for my group after much deliberation and consideration. I hope that that everyone gets something good from this discussion...I love that there are so many GMs who go to such lengths to make the game awesome for their players. 

 

May your games have much longevity!

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People can already minmax.

If you want to be the most damage beast melee character possible, be a Wookiee.

Allowing point swapage won't really increase that dynamic.

Now that minmaxer might be open to choosing say Rodian for the same high damage warrior, since they can customize more.

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there is no down side, if you think your player min maxed and thats the sole reason for their choice to lower a stat, then have plenty of encounters where everyone in the group will need to pass skill checks relating to that ability, make them feel their choices, but if they did it to role play, they will punish them selves and you can play the game normally as all it will do is help that player tell his story.

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It seems this is will really vary based on the personalities at the table.

 

At mine, I permit characteristic "refunds" without any limits, and so far it hasn't been a problem. But then again, all my players are either novice enough to prefer one of my pregen builds, or they've taken a very middle-of-the-road approach to choosing stats and skills.

 

If I ever had a player who liked to test the boundaries, I probably would institute some caps on this kind of customization.

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I don't like telling someone 'no' as a general rule but at times being the last word is a need in games.  I do find that by requiring them to present a background and personality before numbers are crunched most people tend to moderate themselves when putting together their characters.  I point out the universe is full of people like us, good people, but not everybody is an Olympic athlete or Rhodes Scholar, doesn't mean there aren't benchmarks amongst species that set boundaries, but I try to encourage reality and most folks respond.

 

That being said if someone wants to drop their intellect to "Simple Jack" threshold for a character idea, I wouldn't necessarily say no immediately, but I wouldn't allow probably more than one stat to be tweaked, maybe two, depending.

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I will say that the way the book sets up default species is fairly forgiving; min-maxing in this game is somewhat punishing, as the game is skill based, with dice pools coming from specific characteristics. The way the species are setup, most can get by with a decent amount of ability dice and not totally be punished by the character generation choices. Giving PCs a Dice Pool for 2 allows them to be at least somewhat able to contribute at the beginning of the game AND prevents problems from a GM perspective when trying to incorporate all PCs in a given encounter. Playing with stats, just in my personal opinion, can really lead to boredom and finding a difficulty to 'balance' encounters early on in the game.

 

I'll give a couple of examples: a 3B/2A/2I/2C/1W/2P Wookiee Starts with 14 Wounds and 8 Strain, but because of it's racials, it gets 90 XP. In any case, you can min-max the Wookiee with 220 XP to get a 6B/1A/1I/1C/1W/1P using up that 200XP. At Char-Gen, as a Marauder, you can get two free ranks in Melee and Purchase a 3rd with your left-over XP, to get you a dice pool in melee of 3P/3A... Along with that, depending on how many people are in your group, you may be able to grab an extra rank in Melee by taking 15 Obligation, which puts you at 4P/2A on a dice roll for melee attacks. A Human would have even less balance with a total XP pool of 240+Obligation, so while It may not have the Wound threshold of the Wookiee, it can begin the game as a 6B/1A/1I/1C/1W1P for 200XP, with two Free Ranks in Melee, along with being able to spend 40+15 (Obligation) you can get a 5P/1A dice pool, or a 4P/1A dicepool with 25 XP to spend on Talents. You're supposed to be at these levels mid-to-late game, depending on how much you invest in a specific area, but by allowing Charactersitic trade-ins, you can get these levels at chargen. In either case, as a GM, what am I going to pit you, and your group against, NPC wise in combat? With your high dice pool, but low starting soak, and some or no real talents invested in boosting your Defense, the 16-20 Wound Threshold becomes more of a chore for a GM to figure out how to craft NPCs that can survive the Marauder, but not also easily kill him or his group. It breaks the 'growth' if you will, of slowly adding in more advanced combat NPCs, without wiping the party.

 

In addition, if you've got a group of min-maxers, it presents a challenge as the group is so ultra-specialized, from creation, that it becomes a rather large nuisance to the GM to figure out how to challenge the group, without putting them into situations where one person succeeds, but the rest of the group is a liability. Let's say the same thing, but with a Human Doctor - basically a 1B/1A/6I/1C/1W/1P, who is awesome at medicine, but can't do anything else. Now, he won't be contribute to combat early on at all, in fact he'll probably die very quickly. You can only use medicine so much.. but realistically, it becomes a challenge how to present the Marauder with a challenge to what they do well, and the doctor a challenge to what they do well, without totally putting the other as a liability. The same can be said about a Pilot - It allows players to make PCs that are already adept at flying, making pilot scenes boring. Also, Talents are necessary to Pilots better, but with the high dice pool, it's hard to challenge the Pilot, without making it too difficult.

 

Allowing the total 100% trading in of Characteristics to totally rework PCs seems like a good thought from a RP perspective, but mechanically it can break the game. That's why I'm against it; but like I've said, I understand that people want to 'customize' their characters. So, what I would do is allow it to be done with a single characteristic, and like awayurweaponput said, give back a diminished return, either by his methodology, or Hakons -5XP per characteristic, which prevents players from totally breaking the game at chargen (whether or not their trying to do so).

 

My other suggestion is perhaps, if you want a more customized character from Chargen, your GM can create a campaign that allows more XP at the get go - maybe let's say +50XP. This way, you can invest more XP on Characteristics and create more of a customized character at Char Gen. I believe some have called this approach more of the 'seasoned career' approach? It doesn't let you make a dumb-brute wookiee, but it does allows a little bit more 'advanced' character generation

 

In any case, I really would recommend against allowing players to trade in all characteristics for full XP, as innate talents, starting Wounds/Strain and Skills would prevent 'all things being equal'. The devs did create a min-maxing species in Droids, which can even have an appearance of another species, such as Guri being a human. However, there's a balance the Droids, with different weaknesses for being able to totally customize the PC.

 

I'd have to say in the sake of redundancy, if you're going to allow customization, you'll definitely want to find ways to mitigate unforeseen repercussions that will pop up; Allowing only a single characteristic to be deducted from, giving diminished returns or just allowing the group to start with more XP, or any combination of these, are good ways to allow customization without significantly affecting gameplay. The best thing to do is figure out what type of campaign you'd like to do, analyze all the risks associated with your potential choices and go over both with your group to figure out how to appropriately implement house rules for chargen.

 

 

 

I don't like telling someone 'no' as a general rule but at times being the last word is a need in games.  I do find that by requiring them to present a background and personality before numbers are crunched most people tend to moderate themselves when putting together their characters.  I point out the universe is full of people like us, good people, but not everybody is an Olympic athlete or Rhodes Scholar, doesn't mean there aren't benchmarks amongst species that set boundaries, but I try to encourage reality and most folks respond.

 

That being said if someone wants to drop their intellect to "Simple Jack" threshold for a character idea, I wouldn't necessarily say no immediately, but I wouldn't allow probably more than one stat to be tweaked, maybe two, depending.

 

Aye sir, look's like we agree on this one ;)

Edited by MosesofWar

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Hence why we all agree, a limit of 1 attribute point maybe sold.

Also a character can not start with a score of 6.

Nor a 3rd rank in anything other then pilot for 1 particular race.

your wookie would never float

 

most that a wookie could have who didn't sacrifice strength is a refund of 20 for 110 xp, taking +15 xp for obligation gives 125

 

so starting wookie could have B 5, A, 3, I 2, W 1, P 2, C 1. and purchase 1 class skill or talent.

 

so lets say he went marauder, takes toughened.

he has 21 wounds and 9 strain with soak 5

 

he's a beast to be sure, but he wont be acting very fast in combat with that low willpower, can be scared easily, has very poor perception and can't lie to save him self, and if he's stranded on an alien world he wont survive very well either.

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Hence why we all agree, a limit of 1 attribute point maybe sold.

Also a character can not start with a score of 6.

Nor a 3rd rank in anything other then pilot for 1 particular race.

your wookie would never float

 

most that a wookie could have who didn't sacrifice strength is a refund of 20 for 110 xp, taking +15 xp for obligation gives 125

 

so starting wookie could have B 5, A, 3, I 2, W 1, P 2, C 1. and purchase 1 class skill or talent.

 

so lets say he went marauder, takes toughened.

he has 21 wounds and 9 strain with soak 5

 

he's a beast to be sure, but he wont be acting very fast in combat with that low willpower, can be scared easily, has very poor perception and can't lie to save him self, and if he's stranded on an alien world he wont survive very well either.

 

Ugh, not having the CRD at work leads to some fallacies on my end. You're correct, you can't have a 6 pool from the start, and you can't go over 3 ranks in a skill.. So 80 (for all 1's, except strength)+90 base XP, still leaves 170 XP to spend... Rank 5 in Brawn brings that back down to 80 + 15 obiligation (95 XP), so the Wookie could grab rank 3 in Melee, 80 XP again, Feral Strength, Heroic Fortitude, Toughtened, Natural Brawler and Defensive stance at Chargen and still have 5 XP left over (basically a session or two away from Dedication). My personal stance is that's a little gamebreaking...

 

You're also correct with your statement that he's awesome in combat, but sucks at everything else, which in my experience leads to a very bored player after a handful of session and a group with that guy that aren't really having fun.

 

This is why, while I don't institute these concepts personally, I've been agreeing with yours / awayurweaponput's thought process (I been repeating the ideas of you guys are viable alternatives if the group wants to customize - we don't need to keep posting redundantly :) ). What I'm trying to do, is point out why allowing free range Characteristic selling for XP isn't exactly a good idea to The Human Target, and why vying for the options that have been presented (One characteristic deduction, giving -5 XP for a traded in Characteristic or giving more Chargen XP) are better options then letting PCs have free reign on selling off all Characteristics for full XP...

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ok, but as i have shown if your only allowing it to happen once, not 4 times like in your example, 5 xp won't break the game and i see no reason to withhold it from the player, with that rank 1 ability they are going to need the 5xp to keep their character interesting, they have no advantage or disadvantage over any other player, everyone has the option and everyone buys and sells for the same amount. it's a totally fair system that can't be broken

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Hakon - I'm agreeing with you, once again... What you are showing can work in a given setting.

 

This is what I was responding to, not trying to tell you that your thought process wasn't logical:

 

Yeah its all preference.

In my perfect version of the game all stats would start at 1 or 2 and you'd just go from there.

I'm not a big fan of racial mods to stats in general anymore.

 

 

People can already minmax.

If you want to be the most damage beast melee character possible, be a Wookiee.

Allowing point swapage won't really increase that dynamic.

Now that minmaxer might be open to choosing say Rodian for the same high damage warrior, since they can customize more.

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Personally it sounds like a terrible idea.  I can see where people are coming from, wanting to have an older, or child character maybe, but I think there's a reason FFG decided humans were broadly competent across the board. 

 

I don't think it would take much to abuse this, and the last thing EoE needs is 'dump stats'.  I don't think it would be things like Brawn or Agility that got dumped, but things like Presence.  Give full value for it and pretty much every Twi'lek would be Presence 2 and jack up something else.    

 

It also takes away from things like droids, and those aliens with desirable stats.

 

In this instance, I think FFG knew what they were doing.  I'm pretty sure limitations could just be role-played without having to munchkinize. 

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what twi-lek player in their right mind would sacrifice presence?

 

and lets say they want to play a male twi-lek, who isn't as good at communication and has learned to rely on his muscle, your typical school yard bully conundrum twi-lek style, he sells his presence down to 2 and buys 1 brawn, gaining a net 10 xp

 

he now has 110 xp like a human, has 2 in all stats like a human, but now has a racial that gives him a skill point in a skill he has a lower then normal attribute for. and may ignore black dice for hot/arid conditions.

 

a human is still better.

 

 

if you can come up with a way to over power a certain race using sell 1 attribute point presented here, ill admit you have merit.

 

without presence you have low initiative when you plan an assault, without wisdom you have slow initiative in an ambush and poor strain, without agility you can't shoot accurately, without brawn you have low wounds and soak, without intellect you can't heal, use computers, repair or use a multitude of knowledge.

 

so from that list, the only ability that could be a dump stat is intellect, if you have it covered.

but as your gm, if you have intellect 1, I'm telling you now, any clever ideas you come up with I will dismiss, because your character isn't smart enough to think of them.

 

so you have poor tactics in combat.

 

every stat is vital in combat, and combat does not make this game, the numerous skill tests and roleplaying is what makes the game.

Edited by Hakon

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I will say that, if you choose to go this route (selling characteristics) it can be unfair to droid players, who already get the short end of the minmaxing stick :) Consider a slight modification to the droid skill rules (for example, a droid can start with 3 ranks in career skills, much like the new Corellian human rule--people treated this idea with ill favor when I suggested it earlier...!) and this should make your droid player happy. 

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I've always felt droids are underpowered, they half half the xp of a human once you put all stats to 2 (55xp left)

 

personally, I've house ruled it that droids stating stats are 1,1,2,1,1,1, giving the droids 20 extra xp, they are so under powered.

now raising all stats to 2 gives 75xp left over, and if they take 15 obligation they can have 3 stats of 3 and 3 stats of 2, which is still lower then all other races (most races can have 4 stats of 3 and 2 of 2)

 

If you like my rule feel free to use it.

I have only had 1 droid player in 17 people due to them being underpowered.

the reason i gave Int 2 instead of +20xp, is i believe it very hard for a player to role play something very stupid that can't think, their ideas can't be shared at the table properly if they stay in character.

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but as your gm, if you have intellect 1, I'm telling you now, any clever ideas you come up with I will dismiss, because your character isn't

 

I wouldn't necessarily say that having a 1 as an intellect score necessarily makes something stupid, as in a d20 system. A 1 score in anything shouldn't prevent a player from narration, or submitting a request for a roll.

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but as your gm, if you have intellect 1, I'm telling you now, any clever ideas you come up with I will dismiss, because your character isn't

 

I wouldn't necessarily say that having a 1 as an intellect score necessarily makes something stupid, as in a d20 system. A 1 score in anything shouldn't prevent a player from narration, or submitting a request for a roll.

 

 

Actually, I would suggest that a 1 Intellect is decidedly below average.  How far below average would have to be determined by the group, but keep in mind that most animals have a 1 Intellect.  Heck, as per RAW a human cannot have a one I would suggest that it may even be stupider than a human can be.

 

I wouldn't stop a player from narrating or requesting a roll, but both the player and gm should be diligent in monitoring any "good ideas" that come from the player being used by the rest of the party.  After all, it would be doubtful that the character would be able to create those ideas.

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Plus, it makes it easier to customize your character in general.

Not that it isn't common in RPGs, but its odd that a game as story focused as EotE tries to be has such strict rules for Characteristic customization.

 

It's designed this way because, you can either choose a species, with certain strengths and weaknesses - you can choose to enhance the species strengths or compensate their weaknesses. There IS a species that allows for outright customization: Droids. You can do whatever you want with Droids, but that freedom has it's drawbacks as well (no force use, or normal healing).

 

If moving all characteristic points around freely is allowed, then why would anyone pick a Droid? Why not pick a human, which can be Force Sensitive and receive normal healing?

 

 

I think most people in this thread are okay with the "one time use" idea of doing it for only ONE characteristic and ONE point.  This allows a little flexibility and isn't a re-write of a species.

 

A friend of mine asked me if he could start with the Droid characteristics (1 point in all attr and whatever the starting xp is), build it however he wants to spend the xp, but just say it's a Wookie.

 

Basically, he wanted a Wookie for RP reasons, but wanted the flexible build of a droid.  I didn't let him lol.

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Plus, it makes it easier to customize your character in general.

Not that it isn't common in RPGs, but its odd that a game as story focused as EotE tries to be has such strict rules for Characteristic customization.

 

It's designed this way because, you can either choose a species, with certain strengths and weaknesses - you can choose to enhance the species strengths or compensate their weaknesses. There IS a species that allows for outright customization: Droids. You can do whatever you want with Droids, but that freedom has it's drawbacks as well (no force use, or normal healing).

 

If moving all characteristic points around freely is allowed, then why would anyone pick a Droid? Why not pick a human, which can be Force Sensitive and receive normal healing?

 

 

I think most people in this thread are okay with the "one time use" idea of doing it for only ONE characteristic and ONE point.  This allows a little flexibility and isn't a re-write of a species.

 

A friend of mine asked me if he could start with the Droid characteristics (1 point in all attr and whatever the starting xp is), build it however he wants to spend the xp, but just say it's a Wookie.

 

Basically, he wanted a Wookie for RP reasons, but wanted the flexible build of a droid.  I didn't let him lol.

 

 

Why not let him build a Wookie-droid?  Use the Droid stats but make him look like a wookie.  

 

At least from a distance.

 

Maybe in bad lighting.

 

If someone was drunk.   :D

 

Edit - Now I am going to build one as an NPC.  Sigh...

Edited by FangGrip

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