Monday, June 12, 2017

Disciples of Harmony update

TLDR: Not a bad book..  Not a lot of negative things to say. Unfortunately with a couple of exceptions the positives are also fairly lackluster.  overall rating 7/10 because there also isn't much in the way of duplication (my least favorite thing about all these books)

NEW RACES
The Good: No reprints. Moderately on-theme with some cool aspects to each race that would be fun to play.
The Bad: No overly unique traits except maybe the Pau'an lifespan (average 700).
     ps.  how can 'no one' remember the Jedi when there are whole races of people who could have lived hundreds of years with the Jedi order before and expect to live hundreds after, the Jedi downfall? I know 'maybe they are just bullied into not talking about it but this question always stabs at the back of my brain.

NEW SPECIALIZATIONS
The Good: No reprints. Arbiter and Teacher are very on theme and both have some interesting talents to explore. Ascetic can be a very interesting option for those 'loners' or quiet-master types. Ascetic is especially interesting if your game is low in wealth as it supports a character intentionally keeping material possessions to a minimum.
The Bad: Ascetic seems off theme and has a talent with a conflict cost.

NEW SIGNATURE ABILITIES
The Good: No reprints. Very on theme. Circumstantially either power could be extremely useful. In low combat or more narrative games, both powers could come in handy very frequently.
The Bad: In combat oriented games these powers are likely to prove lack-luster. Even in games that really support the use of non-combat skills and powers Much To Learn may not be as great as it sounds at first. Much To Learn is about sharing your skills and abilities with allies. Sounds great except they have to be near by, and if you're that close why not just do it yourself? after all you have those skills because you wanted your character to be good at those things so you could do those things yourself. Not to say the power isn't still likely to be useful, just that making full use of it will require more planning on the GMs and players parts.

NEW FORCE POWERS
The Good: No reprints. Imbue is pretty awesome and will prove useful in almost any situation and really shine in moments where the character gets to support another character who is having a spotlight moment. Ebb/Flow can give the player a little extra edge in combat or potentially even narrative encounters (though it won't likely be a game changer)
The Bad: Ebb/Flow will require a lot of record keeping.

NEW ITEMS/WEAPONS/GEAR
The Good: Whappity. Some cool non-lethal weapon options (can be really useful for the local law enforcement as well as the players). Individual Field Disruptor is pretty awesome. Most of the gadgets are pretty on theme and seem generally useful.
The Bad: Even though the Individual Field Disruptor has a heavy price tag and is a Restricted item, if those are not played up (and maybe even if they are) it could prove too powerful a weapon/tool for many games.

NEW VEHICLES
The Good: A couple of interesting and unique ship options here, maybe even some good story fodder.
The Bad: A few reprints.

MENTORS
The Good: lots of story telling opportunity. could add some extra weight to a party with few PCs.
The Bad: May be a bit clunky to manage and care needs to be taken to make sure the experienced Mentor isn't detracting from the awesomeness of the player character(s).

OTHER
The Good: some cool story fodder and even mechanics in the 'alternative force traditions' section. Helpful chart for using die results in diplomatic scenarios. 
The Bad: nothing unusual.

OVERALL SCORE   7/10


Updated;
Consular class career sheet.
Force powers sheet

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Alpha-Class Xg-1 Star Wing

By request,  The Alpha-Class Xg-1 Star Wing


In my interpretation of this ship, I used the Missile Pack weapon option instead of the standard Missile tubes. I know that Wookiepedia says they have two missile tubes with 8 missiles each, but lets face it.. based on EVERY SINGLE depiction it looks like it has missile tubes lined up 3x2.

 Image result for xg-1 star wing
Basic math says that's 6 missiles, but if i'm to believe that each side is "one missile launcher with 8 missiles" it means that only 2 of those visible missile tubes have a 'reload' missile. If none of those tubes have a 'reload' then the ship only has 12 missiles total, not the indicated 16.

To stop my brain from exploding from this discrepancy, i decided to just give the ship 2 missile packs.
I know... I know..  in the FFG rules, each missile pack holds 8-10 missiles and fires them one half at a time. So the numbers still don't add up. But it makes my brain way happier to pretend the ship is firing 3 missiles at a time from a 6 slotted missile pack than it does to pretend that only 2 of 6 tubes got a refill missile, or that this little starfighter gets a whopping 16 missiles to fire one at a time.

With missile packs, this starfighter only gets 4 shots with it's missiles but they pack a serious punch, which still lines up with its over-all assault role.  and more importantly, it is far easier to visualize based on all the depictions.

can you tell that this kind of junk gets under my skin?


Friday, May 5, 2017

Qui-Gon Jinn had a particular set of Skills

the other day was May 4th.. and I saw a lot of May the 4th be with you junk as usual.
One post got me thinking about Master Qui-Gon Jinn.

here was my rambling though, put in to a semi-semblance of order.
I am confident the following are fairly indisputable 'facts'

*Qui-Gon Jinn had visited the Priestesses at the Wellspring of Life even before the beginning of the Clone Wars where he was taught a great deal about the living and cosmic Force, as well as about the Eternal Consciousness (which he began studying years before his eventual demise at the hands of Darth Maul).
*It’s pretty safe to say that if the Qui-Gon had NOT died at the hands of Darth Maul at that particular time, the future of Anakin Skywalker (and thus the Jedi, Sith and entire galaxy) would likely have played out completely differently.
*By the time of their final fight, It’s highly likely that a Jedi Master as well versed in the flow of the Force as Qui-Gon is, would have sensed that he could not defeat Darth Maul on his own.
*Moments before this charge and his eventual death, Qui-Gon takes to his knees to (however briefly) meditate and focus.
*Qui-Gon Jinn later is able to “find his way back from the netherworld” becoming the first Jedi to continue their consciousness after death.
*After years of communing with the living and cosmic force, Qui-Gon Jinn was uniquely attuned to their ebb and flow.
*Qui-Gon and Maul get separated by plasma shields. Maul even has a shield between him and the room where he eventually looses. As a result of the shield timing, Obi-Wan later is able to run to the same spot Maul occupies when he is trapped. It's a pretty basic issue of timing that I would think a well trained Jedi could have figured out pretty quickly or at least 'sensed' how this situation could play out.


here is where I really start to speculate

If Jinn really wanted to win against Maul in the fight and remain alive at the same time, his obvious best option would have been to play defense when the Energy barriers turned off. Jinn could have just blocked as he backed up, and Obi-Wan could have caught up with them and rejoined the fight so the two Jedi could fight Maul together. Worst case scenario, Jinn gets caught in the same section as Maul without Obi-Wan when the barriers close, but even then Mauls double lightsaber becomes unwieldy for him in such a confined space and .. but i digress.

When the plasma shield separates the 2 combatants 10 seconds goes by before Jinn takes to his knees. I believe that in this time he knows he can not defeat Maul alone in combat, but he also senses a great eddy and convergence point in the Force. He takes to his knees to focus on the Force and 7 more seconds goes by before he closes his eyes. It is my belief that 17 seconds is more than enough time for Qui-Gon to sense that he is at a critical moment in time where one false move could lead the entire galaxy down the path of the dark side or otherwise upset the balance. I believe that whether he has a vision, or merely ‘senses’ it, at some point during these 17 seconds, he understands that in order for things to progress in the best way possible on a galactic scale, he must face Maul alone and loose.
This helps explain why Qui-Gon charges out of the shields at Maul in a move that is obviously going to mean a prolonged one-on-one fight with the Sith.

With his unwavering faith in the force, I don’t think Qui-Gon would hesitate for a moment to sacrifice himself for the good of the galaxy. BUT, he also has a lot of knowledge of the living force, and he believes he can retain his consciousness after death, so he closes his eyes and spend the next 8-9 seconds doing his best to focus on the path to Eternal Consciousness and ready himself for his next phase. He knows he has to loose against Maul, but he also has a plan to keep helping the Jedi in the turbulent future he has sensed. When he got stabbed, he held on long enough to make sure and pass his last request (maybe he saw or sensed that this was a requirement for things to work out) to Obi-Wan, then he CHOSE to physically die. Yes, he CHOSE to die.

In a galaxy full of Bacta tanks, robot hands and other medical miracles, its hard to imagine that he couldn’t have been saved from his single cauterized puncture wound (after all, Maul got cut in half and survived for years without any immediate outside treatment at all, apparently through "sheer force of will").
Instead of hanging on for a few minutes until he could be whisked to one of the almost certainly state-of-the-art medical facilities present in the PALACE they were in, he chooses to attempt the transition to Eternal Consciousness. Unfortunately for Jinn he had the same qualities that would eventually take down all the Jedi; hubris and overconfidence. As a result he made this attempt at when he was not fully ready or able to make the transition and was unable to attain perfect Eternal Consciousness as desired (he could not manifest a body), though he did eventually figure out how to communicate with the living through auditory means.

Despite his imperfect Eternal Consciousness, his death at the hands of Maul at that time, laid the groundwork for the balancing of the force that we are still witnessing today. That groundwork was laid down by choice, by Qui-Gon Jinn as a result of his particular set of skills.

Now I know most will say “he was not meditating, he was just resting” or “he was just regaining composure” or “he sure looked surprised when he got stabbed” or any number of similar things.
I admit, I could be wrong. It may just be incidental that all the future events are tied so directly to this one point in time. It may be pure coincidence that in this light, the scene feels like a practice run for what Obi-Wan later does with Vader. It may have been bad luck on Qui-Gons part that Maul mortally stabbed him.

But… as a wise master once said

“In my experience, there is no such thing as luck - Nothing happens by accident.”

Image result for Qui-Gon but not Forgotten

Warde's Foresight

I was made aware that there was a Force power called Wade's Foresight in Chronicles of the Gatekeeper. I never buy my own adventure books so i had no idea. Thanks to a friend I was finally able to view the book and i'm happy to say I have updated my work to include the Warde's Foresight Force power.  ... now.. I wonder if I have missed any other cool stuff.. hmm.


Friday, April 21, 2017

No Disintigrations

In the category of 'better late than never', I have finally gotten around to this one.

TLDR: decent book, but nothing special or overly unique. 7/10


NEW RACES
The Good: 2 new races, the Kalleran and the Clawdite.
The Bad: 1 duplicate race, the Devoronian. Depending on the gm, the usefulness and power level of the clawdites shape-shifting power could vary wildly.

NEW SPECIALIZATIONS
The Good: No duplicates. Martial Artist is cool, and Skip Tracer is versitile.
The Bad: Martial Artist may be a neat combat oriented specialization, but in a book about bounty hunters it feels odd. While it's not impossible to envision the specialization in this career, the specialization feels more like a disciplined monastic sort of martial artist, which makes it a hard fit for your 'classic' Bounty Hunter in my opinion. In the same boat as Martial Artist is the Operator Specialization. Operator is geared towards piloting and while I don't doubt that a great bounty hunter could fly and shoot well in his ship, i also think a good bounty hunter knows that the vacuum of space isn't usually the best place to collect your mark.

I think the piloting thing specifically is a great example of a general problem that FFG seems to have in building their careers and specializations. FFGs approach that each game (EotE, AoR, FaD) is an entirely separate entity means there is a lot of crossover and duplication of material already. To make matters worse, they seem to have the impression that any character should be able to do anything. As a result careers like Bounty Hunter get specializations like Operator. because "Boba Fett is the best bounty hunter and he flies the Slave 1 like a boss, why can't I? having to hire a pilot or have a crew is lame". except this is a group game and your buddy who is an ACE probably wants to be flying the damn ship. rookie bounty hunters probably can't do everything. oh, and if they wanted to, the game system already says that they can pay a little extra xp to have access to the Pilot or Gunner or Hotshot or Squadron Leader or Driver or Racer or .... ect Specialization trees. FFG could have included something WAY more specific to BOUNTY HUNTERS to help them be special and unique and fill their niche more appropriately instead of wasting space including half-duplicate null-benefit specializations like this. I would have much rather seen a Bounty Hunter Specialization title Disguise Artist dedicated to insinuating the character in the life of their target, or maybe one called Trapper, dedicated to non-physical and non-lethal take downs.


NEW SIGNATURE ABILITES
The Good: Both abilites are cool with a lot of potential.
The Bad: Alwasy Get My Mark is another GM frustrator. Few characters will have the encumbrance capacity to make full use of Unmatched Devistation (basically you get as many attacks as you have weapons, but weapon encumbrance adds up fast).

NEW ITEMS/WEAPONS/GEAR
The Good: Lots of new stuff. Micro rockets are cool and finally ... Mandalorian Armor!
The Bad: none.

NEW VEHICLES
The Good: I love the fact they are matching the roleplay content with the x-wing content. The real star of the ships in this book is the C-Roc Gozanti-Class light cruiser. why? because its the first Silhouette 5 ship that is affordably attainable and can actually be crewed by a standard 6 person party (other small capital ships have all been prohibitively expensive and/or require a ton of crew to be functional). It's basically the best target ship for when your party has outgrown thier YT-1300.
The Bad: Nope.


INVESTIGATIONS
The Good: nice chart to help people with the nitty-gritty of finding out that info.
The Bad: sometimes having these kinds of rules can pidgeonhole the players or the GM. (still think they are a nice tool to have around)

BOUNTY REWARDS
The Good: Great pay chart with modifiers.  Exploits are interesting and seem properly directed and well balanced.
The Bad: None.


I updated the Bounty Hunter Career Tree.
FIX: all known instances of Improved Reflect now correctly display Threat instead of Advantage cost to activate.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Deathseed

I have received a couple requests for this ship.

the Chir'Daki (Deathseed)

This is an ugly starfighter from the EU which you can read a little about here.
This ship is a great candidate for some kitbashing later. Whether or not I get around to making an actual model of this ship, in the mean time you can enjoy my interpretation of its stats.

Chir'Daki (Deathseed) 

Friday, January 27, 2017

Shuttle Mk 1-A

This was made from only one original model, the Revel Snaptite MTT model. Unfortunately I couldn't find a great picture of the actual model product, but it's this ship.



Not sure it's really a super "kit Bash" because all I did was cut out the front, and put some extra pieces of scrap plastics in a couple places, then turn it around and give it a re-paint. Still counts as a custom mod though, so ... eh.

BAM....

Shuttle Mk 1-A



Mk 1-A because it's my first shuttle and its Armed.