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Inquisitor Tremayne
05-03-2009, 10:43 AM
How do you handle them and how do you dish them out?

Do you run high-heroic games?

Morally ambiguous games?

or very black and white games?

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
05-03-2009, 11:03 AM
Morals are about perspectives, more times than not. Even though i don't run Star Wars systems, I've always wanted to play and run them. What i do run is Traveller D6 and Mongoose Traveller, and everyone knows that Traveller was basically... inspired-yeah, lets use the word inspired, by Star Wars. In my games there are Sith and Jedi, but they are extremely rare and are avoided at all costs.

In answer to your question, depending on the players skills and abilities, everything you've listed can potentially come into play. Mostly though, my players would be similar to Hans Solo, and Capt. Mal types. They typically do things to turn a profit that are under the legal radar, never taking it so far where the Empire is likely to really take note. They've even assassinated an individual once, rationalizing it as being okay for all the potential lives that were saved with his death.

Good times. I hope i answered your question somewhat.

Sascha
05-03-2009, 01:24 PM
If a Force-sensitive does something worthy of a Dark Side point, yeah, I'll hand them out; I'll confirm that's what they're going to do, and that they understand the consequences first before, though. Non-sensitives, I don't really worry about - they don't feel the Force, thus they aren't much swayed by the Dark Side ... unless they use a Force Point to do so. Basically, the d6 Star Wars rules :P

I do like the idea of temptation, though. A sparkly red d10, "offered" in a moment of emotion, that'll "assist" on a task just short of success ... with the player's narration of how a darker emotion guides their hand ... The resulting Dark Side point gets better narrative treatment and the spirit of Star Wars - rise, fall, redemption - is better served if there's a glint of each in every action's consequence ^_^

RexxRedfoxx
05-19-2009, 12:49 PM
I let my players go darkside if they want, then watch them like a hawk to make sure they arnt doing it just to play a generic Evil. But most of my older characters has the habbid of giving their eviol characters, and usually good ones, intresting little quirks. Like the Imperial Inquisitor who was a master torturer, and often did it being nothing but nice to his victiums.

Something about serving tea and sweets in a room lined with over 1000 years worth of torture impliments.

Dytrrnikl
05-20-2009, 10:37 AM
How do you handle them and how do you dish them out?

For non force-sensitives, darkside points are a tad bit tougher to acquire, but not much. Example, in the original Theatrical release of Star Wars, Episode IV: A New Hope...when Greedo catches Han Solo in the Cantina, Han actually shot Greedo before Greedo even twitched his finger on the blaster. In the strictest sense, while Greedo was threatening Solo with a blaster pointed at him, Greedo did nothing to indicate that he was going to blast Solo, only that he was trying to get Solo to fork over credits due Jabba. I would more than likely give Solo a darkside point for this, as he used misdirection and deception to draw his blaster under the table and then Greedo.

Now, with the latest release of Star Wars, Lucas actually has Greedo firing a shot off at Han's head and missing, prior to Han pulling the trigger. This then becomes a case of self-defense, and thus no Darkside Point.

I'm much stricter with Force-Sensitives, particularly Force users. Using the Force in a fashion the cause harm to a living being, even if the power (as described in the Saga rules format) does not have the Darkside Descriptor, results in the gaining of an automatic Darkside Point. If used against droids, even though they are essentially autmatons...constructs, a Darkside Point may still be awarded if there was another means to take out the droids without using an aggressive use of the Force.

I despise the moral ambiguity introduced by the Yuzhon Vong series to the Force and Jedi. The major draw for me to Star Wars was the idea that their was a definative good and evil, right and wrong. That damn series took it away, with later series sort of making up for it, by getting back to the Darkside and Lightside. I've never been able to comprehend why someone would want to play what is supposed to be a Jedi, a Light-Side Force-User, and use Telekinetic Kill (West End Games d6 game), or rather its d20 equivalent Force Grip and argue that it's not a darkside power. In one of the movies, it explained that a Jedi uses the force while calm, at peace, serene, never using the Force to attack, only for peaceful means. So, I always interpreted the Force as, if you use it to inflict harm directly upon a living being, it's the Darkside. A perspective in which I'm sure i'll find myself in the minority here.


Do you run high-heroic games?
Definately. Star Wars has been called Space Opera, epic story of adventure in space. It is that, but for me it's about good verses evil and doing the right thing, when doing the wrong thing would be easier.


Morally ambiguous games? Or very black and white games?
I run games that are definatively black and white. Moral ambiguity has no place in the games I run, and will never be portrayed or allowed to rear it's ugly head. If I want morally ambiguous, I'd run a Watchmen-like story where once the group found out who killed 8 million people to stop nuclear armegedden they could then say, well oh-ok, you had a good reason 8 million lives verses the possibility of 6 Billion lives and teh rest of the world. Uh, good job, we're going to let the mass murder of the city of New York slide for your good cause. (Incidentally, I loathe and despise that damn story. Rorschach was vicious killer in his own right, and he was the only one that was going to try anything to stop Ozy. Crap. A Big load of crap. And other harsher sentiments inappropriate for a public message board.)

Inquisitor Tremayne
06-04-2009, 10:50 PM
snip!

I like your viewpoint and your argument for your side and think I will ease up on some of the moral ambiguity in my games, get things back to being more black and white, because afterall, that is Star Wars.

That said, I think a lot of the Star Wars mythos can be enhanced by adding in moral ambiguity. Case in point, Luke and Anakin. They are the heroes of their time yet they struggle with the whole black and white thing the entire time, Anakin more than Luke, but still.

My favorite 2 lines from all the movies are from Episode VI and Episode III. First is Obi Wan explaining things to Luke on Dagobah, Luke, you are going to find that many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view. And Anakin's response to Obi Wan, From my point of view the Jedi are evil!

For me, this sums up a major point that Lucas is trying to make and if you re-watch the films with those 2 lines in mind, then you realize how true that is for all the characters in the films. That they are making decisions based on the information that they have and from their own point of view, this is specifically the stuff we are shown.

The perfect example is Anakin, well we know he feels as if he is being held back (Ep II), then in EP III the Council asks Anakin to spy on Palpatine, a very close friend of his. Palpatine tells Anakin about powers that he doesn't know about further reinforcing his belief that he is being held back. Then he sees Mace Windu try to assassinate Palpatine himself! So yeah, from Anakin's point of view, the Jedi are evil.

There is more, but those sorts of inner conflicts can be very interesting and fun to roleplay. Not necessarily moral ambiguity, but at the very least getting the PCs to question their beliefs of their characters is a lot of fun. At least for me anyway!:evil:

Webhead
06-04-2009, 11:09 PM
"Fear. Fear attracts the fearful...the strong, the weak...the innocent, the corrupt. Fear. Fear is my ally!" - Darth Maul

:D

I like the "struggle" of Light versus Dark, Good versus Evil within a character's mind. That said, regarding the Force, I like to represent the Dark Side as temptation and desire by way of promising to help you achieve what you want most. Like Anakin. So afraid was he of Padme's death and so selfish to keep her that he was willing to accept any answer that would bring him the power to change that fate. Ironically, he realized only too late that his vision of her death was the result of his very own greed.

That's what makes the Light Side/Dark Side struggle so powerful and so much fun for me...because the Dark Side promises the easy road, promises to fulfill your greatest desires. And it is so much fun and so moving to see a character make the choice between what is "right" and what they want, especially when the stakes are personal. Would you fall to the Dark Side to save your friends? To save your family? To save the Republic?

The great question becomes: "How high of a price would you pay to protect your own interests?" :)

Chavic
06-28-2009, 10:16 PM
I'm running a morally ambiguous game. The players can dip into crime, or even work for the Empire if the really want to. But of course they will have to face the consequences of their actions.

I am probably a little more lenient on giving out dark points than others. For example, to use the Han Solo and Greedo example that has already been mentioned.

I don't really give a damn that Han shot first. Greedo had a blaster on him and was trying to get money (either by "taking it to Jabba" or by killing Han and collecting a bounty. No Dark point there.

If Han drew a blaster and Greedo dropped his and yielded, and Han still shot him, then definite dark point.

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-07-2009, 02:28 PM
Would you fall to the Dark Side to save your friends? To save your family? To save the Republic?

The great question becomes: [I]"How high of a price would you pay to protect your own interests?" :)

This is what is so great about Episode III, witnessing first hand Anakin's fall. And from a certain point of view, rightly so.
--- Merged from Double Post ---

I'm running a morally ambiguous game. The players can dip into crime, or even work for the Empire if the really want to. But of course they will have to face the consequences of their actions.

I am probably a little more lenient on giving out dark points than others. For example, to use the Han Solo and Greedo example that has already been mentioned.

I don't really give a damn that Han shot first. Greedo had a blaster on him and was trying to get money (either by "taking it to Jabba" or by killing Han and collecting a bounty. No Dark point there.

If Han drew a blaster and Greedo dropped his and yielded, and Han still shot him, then definite dark point.

I think morally ambiguous has its place in Star Wars. Especially in fringe type campaigns where the players are somewhat free to make their own way and deal with criminal elements all the time.

Suzaku
07-08-2009, 08:47 PM
Snip


Remind not to play in one of your games...

Han shot in self defense, Greedo was likely going to turn Han in (to be killed) or kill him shortly.

It would mean Jedi in the movies and comics would be rapidly gaining dark side points. Would Yoda gain Darkside point when he knocked the guards out by using the force? Obi wan would have gotten darkside points when he force slam droids because he could've destroyed them with lightsaber. Once again he would've obtain a darkside point when he attempted to push Vader.

Why is attacking through self defense through the force more evil then attacking with pistol or even a lightsaber?

korhal23
07-08-2009, 10:37 PM
Remind not to play in one of your games...

....

It would mean Jedi in the movies and comics would be rapidly gaining dark side points. Would Yoda gain Darkside point when he knocked the guards out by using the force? Obi wan would have gotten darkside points when he force slam droids because he could've destroyed them with lightsaber. Once again he would've obtain a darkside point when he attempted to push Vader.



Yes, if you've read his posts elsewhere. I for one, am very fond of the default implementation of Dark Side points. It is intent, not actions per se, that cause the Dark Side to rise in someone. Using the Force to torture anyone, or to harm innocents is Dark Side. Using the Force generally is not. Raging out and losing control is Dark Side. Appropriate levels of vengeance for a fallen ally (such as Obi Wan at the end of Ep. I) is not Dark Side.

And I'm not even going to touch the Watchmen rant, because obviously the point was missed.

No one can ever be 100% up to the impossible standards the Jedi put forth. It is an ideal to strive for, but it's not possible. Failing to follow the Jedi code to the letter is not inherently Dark Side.

The biggest beef I have with the super black and white policy is that the Dark Side is NOT a punishment. It can be used to punish a heinous act, but if it's moral gray area, don't give the Dark Side point. You have now found your most likely target for my mechanic:

The Dark Side is supposed to be alluring. It is supposed to tempt everyone with more power, even if said power is not as it seems. The Dark Side should be present in the game through Dark Side powers like Force Lightning, but also through the GM offering slight bonuses in exchange for Dark Side points. When a player goes to spend a Force point to enhance a roll, offer them an extra d6 (or d8 if they're Strong in the Force) in exchange for a Dark Side point. The Dark Side lends it's power to those in combat... so every now and then, offer more power to players in exchange for Dark Side.... did they leave an enemy with only a few HP? Offer an instant killing blow for a point. Is one of them severely injured? Offer them a small swift action heal (their rage letting them ignore some pain/damage... a d8 or so should be sufficient). Did they miss an attack by one? Offer for their hate to guide their hand...

Also, one of the optional rules from the Jedi Training Manual is that once a player is halfway to the Dark Side (you fall to the Dark Side when your points equals your Wisdom score), then their last pangs of conscience try to hold them back... whenever they'd gain a Dark Side point, make a Wisdom check at DC 5+the number of Dark Side points they currently have. I like that rule, but I'd also add that if the player passes that check, the next time they have to make it it's DC 6+ Dark Side points, then 7+DS, et cetera, permanently. This then creates a mechanic for the 4 stages of Dark Side...
1) Temptation - All that extra power the GM was offering.
2) Imperilment - Character is addicted to the Dark Side's power and is in serious threat of falling (the halfway point). Only the strongest willed will not fall when this stage is reached.
3) Submission - The actual fall to the Dark Side, reached at DS Points = Wisdom
4) Atonement/Redemption - Already a core mechanic


I think you'll find this to be a FAR more appropriate application of the Dark Side in your game. Don't use it to slap someone for being an imperfect person. Use it to tempt, to corrupt, to destroy, just like the Dark Side actually does in the Star Wars universe.

Dytrrnikl
07-10-2009, 01:31 AM
...snip...


A very solid perspective and some good suggestions that I'll consider. I do however vehemently disagree with "...intent, not actions per se, that cause the Dark Side..." Actions speak louder than words in my book, regardless of intent. Which is the core of my view of the Darkside. I do offer darkside as a temptation, with things like offering a flat +10 bonus to all resolution rolls and defenses for a round when a player wishes to use a Force Point from time to time, or for an entire encounter if I really want to get them to take it. But, yes, more often than not, I stick to using DSPs as more of a punishment than a temptation.

Here's a scenario I just ran in my campaign recently, and you be the judge if you think I was correct.

I've been incorporating the Dawn of Defiance adventures into my own Star Wars campaign and just recently got to the module with the Nazren uprising. One of the players is playing a very much straight-laced soldier that was a Imperial Supporter until he became disillusioned by seeing the darker side of things. Well, while he and another player, a scout, were scouting the lay of the land - the city in which the adventure takes place, they came across a group of Compnor Soldiers and Stormtroopers yanking a Nazren female out of her home. She was holding a baby, which one the Compnor agent in charge tore from the woman's arms and casually tossed aside like it was a sack of potatoes. This brought both players to action, attacking the Imps. Eventually, the Imps realizing they were outclassed, tried to run away. The players gave chase, even after encountering more troopers. BY this point the rest of the group was involved. Finally, the Imps realized they couldn't run away, they tried surrendering, well the Compnor Forces did, as they weren't mindless troopers. The player of the straight-laced soldier walked up to the Compnor Commander, who by this point was disarmed and on his knees, that tossed the baby aside, and essentially executed the Compnor Commander. I was fine with everything except for the execution, with which he took a darkside point for and if I didn't know any better, gladly took it. Why did I do it? Because the Compnor agent was by that point disarmed and on his knees, defenseless.
I had not problem with the killing of Imps during the running gunfight, just the killing that took place after the surrender and disarming of weapons.

So, fire away...was the execution a Darkside point worthy event or not?

Webhead
07-10-2009, 01:42 AM
...The Dark Side is supposed to be alluring. It is supposed to tempt everyone with more power, even if said power is not as it seems. The Dark Side should be present in the game through Dark Side powers like Force Lightning, but also through the GM offering slight bonuses in exchange for Dark Side points. When a player goes to spend a Force point to enhance a roll, offer them an extra d6 (or d8 if they're Strong in the Force) in exchange for a Dark Side point. The Dark Side lends it's power to those in combat... so every now and then, offer more power to players in exchange for Dark Side.... did they leave an enemy with only a few HP? Offer an instant killing blow for a point. Is one of them severely injured? Offer them a small swift action heal (their rage letting them ignore some pain/damage... a d8 or so should be sufficient). Did they miss an attack by one? Offer for their hate to guide their hand...

...I think you'll find this to be a FAR more appropriate application of the Dark Side in your game. Don't use it to slap someone for being an imperfect person. Use it to tempt, to corrupt, to destroy, just like the Dark Side actually does in the Star Wars universe.

Yes, yes! To Korhal23 you listen! The temptation of the Dark Side was handled beautifully in Star Wars D6 and, consequently, I created my own similar house rules for Saga which was otherwise lacking in real "punch" when it came to properly representing the struggle between light and dark.

The Dark Side promises power and control. Whether or not you actually benefit from that power is irrelevant...but it will offer to help you when you are most desperate, most in need, most filled with unchecked emotion...in short, when you are most willing to pay any price for victory.

As far as the whole "actions versus intent" debate, there is one key phrase that I stick too when it comes to Jedi and following the Code:

"The ends are as important as the means."

A Jedi must have good intent as well as proper course of action in order to most effectively walk the path of the Light.
--- Merged from Double Post ---

...So, fire away...was the execution a Darkside point worthy event or not?

Absolutely. Especially per the description that you gave of the scene, the character(s) made a deliberate and intentional decision to kill the Compnor commander even after the point at which he was submissive and unable to defend himself. That is premeditated murder and is the definition of a Dark Side act. However the character might try to justify the action within their own mind, the Dark Side does not care.

As an old rule of thumb from the Star Wars D6 RPG: "If a player has to spend more than a few seconds describing why an act does not deserve a Dark Side Point, odds are that the act is evil and the Dark Side Point should remain."

Dytrrnikl
07-10-2009, 09:46 AM
Han shot in self defense, Greedo was likely going to turn Han in (to be killed) or kill him shortly.

I agree with this as it was presented in the update with Greedo actually being shown as shooting first. The original where Han shot Greedo under the table, without Greedo firing off a shot I contend is questionable and may warrant a warning or maybe a Darkside point. Was greedo really going to shoot? Or did he simply have the blaster out to add emphasis to dire circumstances of crossing Jabba?


It would mean Jedi in the movies and comics would be rapidly gaining dark side points. Would Yoda gain Darkside point when he knocked the guards out by using the force?

There's a sidebar on page 93 of the SECR titled BEWARE THE DARKSIDE, that states "...if you want a campaign where all of the heroes must constantly strive against the lure of the dark side, then the GM should increase a character's Dark Side Score for even the most minor transgressions...", which is exactly the type of game I run. Of course, that same side bar also states that if you don't want heroes to slipping to the dark side to be a major theme, be less strict with how DSPs are given.

Also, From page 94 of the SECR, it states under MODERATE TRANSGRESSIONS, referring to Darkside Transgressions:
"Any of the following transgressions might increase a character's Dark Side score by 1, at the GM's discretion:
USING THE FORCE TO CAUSE UNDUE HARM: Many uses of the Force are not overtly of the dark side, but they can be harmful or even fatal in their applications. When a Force power that isn't specifically tied to the dark side is used to harm living beings, the GM should consider increasing the character's Dark Side score by 1. ..."
For me, I say yes, Yoda or not. However, this is only in regard to Force Powers specifically excluding the use of a lightsaber or lightsaber related technique.


Obi-Wan would have gotten darkside points when he force slam droids because he could've destroyed them with lightsaber.
You have a point here. In all honesty though, I've never - nor would I, award DSPs for using the Force against a droid. There constructs, machines, nothing more. Yes, this contradicts what I've been saying. However, what if said droids were housing some sort of living sentient being? Or, if said droids were somehow truly sentient and free-willed, like Johnny 5 from the Short Circuit movie? Then I'd have to consider awarding a DSP.


Once again he would've obtain a darkside point when he attempted to push Vader.
I always interpreted that scene as Obi-Wan counteracting Vader's attempt at pushing him, sort of like parrying or blocking. More than likely though, I would've classified it in the Moderate DS Transgressions, and would lean strongly towards a DSP being given.


Why is attacking through self defense through the force more evil then attacking with pistol or even a lightsaber?
Well, the cop out answer would be, because I'm the GM and I say so. :p That notwithstanding, it's because I've always seen Star Wars as striving to do the right thing, which isn't always easy, sometimes well-nigh impossible. Not so much about being lured to the darkside, as falling to it out of weakness and lack of strength. It's how I run my games. I like heroic stories, which for me does not include morally grey areas. It's about doing the right thing even if there might be a slightly easier, morally grey path to accomplish what you seek.

However, to answer your question...
I've always interpreted Force Powers that cause harm...excluding the use of a lightsaber and lightsaber related techniques, damage to living beings, as being a corruption of the Force. How can a Jedi be serene and at peace with the Force if using it to - Force Grip (using the Force to choke or crush your enemy) or Force Slam (pound one or more creatures with the Force)? For me, Jedi can't. Other powers are on a case by case basis. If it's a non-damaging Force power or one that cause damage as a side effect like Force Thrust, I see that as an ambiguous use of the Force. If it's suspect, it's DSP worthy. Throw in a Force Point to increase the damage and it's no longer ambiguous, it's falls into corruption of the Force. Using a pistol or a lightsaber to attack in self-defense aren't corruptions of the Force. They are tools that are being used when something easier exists, the Force, to accomplish the same thing. Take the easier path and fall to dark side at your peril.

korhal23
07-10-2009, 03:15 PM
I acknowledge that your interpretation is by the optional rules sidebars. That said, I think that it really doesn't mesh that well with what is presented in the books or the movies. If a character is exceptionally weak willed, I could see the swift application of Force Points, but for someone who has a wisdom above, say, 11 or 12, DSPs shouldn't be so easily acquired. Besides, I'd think slamming someone to the ground with the Force would, in most cases, be less fatal (if still incapacitating) than a slice through the gut with a beam of a lightsaber.

Vapaad, the lightsaber style created by Mace Windu, is exceptionally brutal and violent... So much so that without fail, everyone he taught it to fell to the Dark Side... except for himself. This is, if nothing else, to show that wisdom and control of your emotions are the real key, not necessarily what you do. Allow me to clarify:

In your example, yes absolutely the player deserved a DSP. What he committed was no longer defense of himself, or the woman or child in the scene, it was now cold blooded murder. Heinous act, worthy of a DSP, and if you remember in my first post I stated the murder of someone who was surrendering was DSP worthy. However, in a combat where both sides are engaging the other, I feel that the rules change a tad. Now, so long as the player is not using a Force Power with the intent to cause undue suffering (such as, say, if there's an enemy Imperial who you KNOW can not swim, using Move Object to fling him into the middle of a deep lake would be undue trauma), he is in the clear in my book.

What I suggest is this: if you want to give DSPs out with a higher frequency, at least allow for a check to counteract it, probably based off wisdom... Some Jedi are in better control of their emotions and can use such powers, and should be allowed to. I suggest a DC 10 wisdom check for most cases. From there, modify it: -5 if to defend and ally or an innocent in immediate danger, or if you offered a chance to surrender and were declined, +5 for revenge (i.e., if you're fighting one guy and his buddy shoots you, turning to zap said buddy), etc... I think personally that someone's Wisdom should play into the situation to a degree.

Beyond that, consider Mara Jade. Okay, so she's no bastion of the Light, ever, really. But she does become legitimiately good, yet retains her control of the Dark Side of the Force. She becomes strong willed enough to resist its pull while using it as a tool. Should your whole party be made of Maras? No. But there IS precedent in the Star Wars universe for people using the Force is a "dark" way, such as Mace or Mara, without falling to the "Dark Side". And that's an element that should be present in any adaption of the universe.

Suzaku
07-10-2009, 04:06 PM
There's a sidebar on page 93 of the SECR titled BEWARE THE DARKSIDE, that states "...if you want a campaign where all of the heroes must constantly strive against the lure of the dark side, then the GM should increase a character's Dark Side Score for even the most minor transgressions...", which is exactly the type of game I run. Of course, that same side bar also states that if you don't want heroes to slipping to the dark side to be a major theme, be less strict with how DSPs are given.

Also, From page 94 of the SECR, it states under MODERATE TRANSGRESSIONS, referring to Darkside Transgressions:
"Any of the following transgressions might increase a character's Dark Side score by 1, at the GM's discretion:
USING THE FORCE TO CAUSE UNDUE HARM: Many uses of the Force are not overtly of the dark side, but they can be harmful or even fatal in their applications. When a Force power that isn't specifically tied to the dark side is used to harm living beings, the GM should consider increasing the character's Dark Side score by 1. ..."
For me, I say yes, Yoda or not. However, this is only in regard to Force Powers specifically excluding the use of a lightsaber or lightsaber related technique.


You have a point here. In all honesty though, I've never - nor would I, award DSPs for using the Force against a droid. There constructs, machines, nothing more. Yes, this contradicts what I've been saying. However, what if said droids were housing some sort of living sentient being? Or, if said droids were somehow truly sentient and free-willed, like Johnny 5 from the Short Circuit movie? Then I'd have to consider awarding a DSP.


I always interpreted that scene as Obi-Wan counteracting Vader's attempt at pushing him, sort of like parrying or blocking. More than likely though, I would've classified it in the Moderate DS Transgressions, and would lean strongly towards a DSP being given.


Well, the cop out answer would be, because I'm the GM and I say so. :p That notwithstanding, it's because I've always seen Star Wars as striving to do the right thing, which isn't always easy, sometimes well-nigh impossible. Not so much about being lured to the darkside, as falling to it out of weakness and lack of strength. It's how I run my games. I like heroic stories, which for me does not include morally grey areas. It's about doing the right thing even if there might be a slightly easier, morally grey path to accomplish what you seek.

However, to answer your question...
I've always interpreted Force Powers that cause harm...excluding the use of a lightsaber and lightsaber related techniques, damage to living beings, as being a corruption of the Force. How can a Jedi be serene and at peace with the Force if using it to - Force Grip (using the Force to choke or crush your enemy) or Force Slam (pound one or more creatures with the Force)? For me, Jedi can't. Other powers are on a case by case basis. If it's a non-damaging Force power or one that cause damage as a side effect like Force Thrust, I see that as an ambiguous use of the Force. If it's suspect, it's DSP worthy. Throw in a Force Point to increase the damage and it's no longer ambiguous, it's falls into corruption of the Force. Using a pistol or a lightsaber to attack in self-defense aren't corruptions of the Force. They are tools that are being used when something easier exists, the Force, to accomplish the same thing. Take the easier path and fall to dark side at your peril.

Notice how it says to do undue harm? You can use the force to defend yourself. Yoda used the force to push em together so they would be knocked out, otherwise he would've have to kill them with his lightsaber. Obiwan used force push to send Vader because they were in a middle of a fight (they just happen to use it at same time or someone rebuked.

Also what if you rebuke a force power back at someone would you award darkside point?

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-10-2009, 08:23 PM
Using the Force to harm living creatures I think is one of those things that is taken too literally by a lot of folks. Same for Yoda's "Knowledge and defense line".

These truths are not absolutes, for that would be the way of the Sith. For if the Jedi REALLY believed that the Force should be used for Knowledge and defense only they wouldn't carry lightsabers and would choose death when confronted by an opposing force.

So awarding a DSP for every time a Jedi uses the Force to harm a living being I think is a bit extreme.

In my view it is using the Force to cause extreme damage or death to a living creature. For example, Force Gripping someone until they go unconcious and continue to do so until they are dead, using Move Object to pick someone up and throw them off a building, and other extreme examples like that.

I encourage my players to flirt with the dark side as much as possible.

Dytrrnikl
07-11-2009, 11:37 AM
The temptation of the Dark Side was handled beautifully in Star Wars D6...

They did at that, but you were also only allowed 6 DSPs maximum before you fell to the darkside. I may have to get back to something more like that. The Wisdom limit always irritated me. I always thought it should've been something like you were allowed to acquire only 2 + your wisdom modifier in DSPs. I may try that, but opening up a bit on I how I handle DSPs.


Notice how it says to do undue harm? You can use the force to defend yourself. Yoda used the force to push em together so they would be knocked out, otherwise he would've have to kill them with his lightsaber...
I did see that it said Undue Harm. However, I interpret undue harm being caused anytime it's caused by a Force Power (lightsabers and lightsaber techniques not included).


Also what if you rebuke a force power back at someone would you award darkside point?
I'm not sure. I've never had a player take that particular power or it's equivalent in previous editions of the game. If the player harmlessly redirects the power definately not. If it was turned back at it's orginator, in all honesty, quite possibly I would.

Korhal, in regards to Mace and Mara, I've never viewed either one as being bastions of the lightside. I think that those two characters were extremely unique and special individuals that represent the exception to the rule, not a standard. Moreso where Mace is concerned than Mara.

Here's the main kicker to me: Everytime I see force powers being used to harm, it screams WRONG to me. Granted in the original trilogy, the Jedi have long been crushed, but the only Force-Users causing harm to others through the Force are Vader when hurling objects at Luke and Palpatine when he uses Force Lightning. The impression that stuck with me from those movies was that using the Force to hurt others was Darkside, while those times when it didn't hurt others was Lightside. Seeing how Lucas expanded the Force in the prequels, not that I can argue with the mastermind behind the Star Wars story, it just doesn't sit well with me.

I only quoted the bits from the Saga book to show that within the context of the rules of the game, my rather strict handling of the Force is supported, while not necessarily being encouraged. Why is how I handle the darkside coming across as such a slap in the face? Or rather wrong from all of your perspectives? I've never encountered it before, not once since since I first saw Star Wars, even after the prequel trilogies came out. For me - Temptation, Imperilment, Submission, Atonement/Redemption - was Vader's path to the darkside and not one that I use. I stick with Imperilment and Fall.

I also do something else that may not sit well with many of you...once a player has a character fall to the darkside, said character permanently becomes an NPC - essentially character death as far as the player is concerned. I have done the seeking atonement/redemption story arc once or twice as a GM and experienced it as a player with a long standing WEG d6 jedi character I refuse to translate to d20. Everytime it's not enjyable for me, though others have enjoyed it.

korhal23
07-11-2009, 12:29 PM
But Mace was the number 2 on the Jedi Council... if anyone is an example to point to for this, it'd be him. And Mara was Luke's wife... Sure Luke himself has flirted with the Dark Side a few times, but he's one of THE heroes in that universe... and a proponent of Unifying Force.

The three step process of falling to the Dark Side (and then step 4 being coming back to the light) is the accepted standard in the books, as well as the saga edition gamebooks. It is not only Vader... and Starkiller... and Mara Jade.... and Luke... twice... it happens frequently.

The reason I oppose your method is threefold. For one, it doesn't mesh with the movies and books. I can see how it kind of fits into Ep. IV, but other than that, what you suggest systematically opposes every movie and book in the Star Wars universe. You can't pick and choose canon to follow... "I liked this movie and that book, but these don't count..." At that point you aren't playing Star Wars, you're playing some other vaguely similar Sci-Fi universe. Two, The Force is, as I've said before, integrated deep into everything a Jedi does, in combat or out. So, really, your method is incomplete/inconsistent. If I use the Force to throw an enemy into a wall, that's Dark Side. If I use the Force to gain an edge over my opponent in speed to slice him with a lightsaber, that's not? If I use the Force to knock someone to the ground, that's Dark side. But if I'd used the Force to throw my lightsaber at him, that's not? That makes no sense. If ALL harmful uses of the Force are DSP worthy, then you need to really make it ALL uses of the Force, which is, again, incorrect. And three, you're harshly limiting your Jedi players. If a Jedi wants to be effective in combat, he has two real options... lean on his Lightsaber skills, or his combat Force powers. You're removing combat Force powers, which negates half of the choices of a Jedi. And say I wanted to make a character that I didn't want to fall to the Dark Side... I'd have to make them either Lightsaber heavy, or simply non-combat/utility. No basically being a Force-mage in your game.

As for turning the character into an NPC, that is a logical thing to do. A person who falls to the Dark Side wouldn't have much place in a group of good people. I'd do the same.

I think, however, that your method of play is too strict, even for the rules you are quoting. Harm is not Undue Harm.

"Any of the following transgressions might increase a character's Dark Side score by 1, at the GM's discretion:
USING THE FORCE TO CAUSE UNDUE HARM: Many uses of the Force are not overtly of the dark side, but they can be harmful or even fatal in their applications. When a Force power that isn't specifically tied to the dark side is used to harm living beings, the GM should consider increasing the character's Dark Side score by 1. ..."

You have to look at circumstance. Just as killing in self defense is not murder in the real world, using the Force in self defense is not Dark Side. You have to look at what transpired.... was the player trying to make the NPC suffer? Or just defending himself and his allies?

If your players are cool with how you run it, then whatever, you can play however you want. But I'd ask them, seriously, how they'd handle such situations. That, more than anything I or anyone else can say, will tell you whether you should lighten up or keep on the way you have been going.

Webhead
07-12-2009, 04:29 PM
On the Dark Side: "It is dangerously seductive to those who lack the ability to control their emotions and passions. Those who give in to the Dark Side find their abilities greatly enhanced at first but as time passes, the Dark Side does not respond so readily. The Dark Side demands more and more of those in its power."

On the Light Side and the Jedi Code: "The Light Side is created and sustained by life. The Jedi acts to preserve life. To kill is wrong.

Sometimes it is necessary to kill. The Jedi may kill in self-defense or in defense of others, especially the weak and the good. The Jedi may kill, if by her action she preserves the existence of life. However, the Jedi must never forget that killing is inherently wrong. The death is a stain upon the Jedi's spirit.

The Jedi seeks knowledge and enlightenment, peace and harmony. The Jedi wishes to defeat those who would wipe out such qualities--those who would inflict death, tyranny or ignorance upon others--yet the Jedi should never act out of fear or hatred...

Jedi should seek nonviolent solutions to problems--but this isn't always possible. Sometimes, killing or fighting is the only answer. Sometimes it is even the best answer. But that doesn't mean the Jedi shouldn't try to find an alternative."

The Responsible Use of Power: "A Jedi acts from wisdom, using persuasion and counsel over violence and Force Powers. Force Powers are used to serve the interests of the Light. Using the Force for personal aggrandizement, for personal power or wealth, for convenience when other means would be more prudent--all of these traits are of the Dark Side."

A Call to Action: "A Jedi cannot allow evil to occur by inaction--a Jedi who voluntarily stands by and allows evil to be committed is encouraging the forces of darkness.

Jedi are also bound by the actions of those around them. It is not acceptable for a Jedi to associate with those who willfully choose to commit evil."

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-13-2009, 07:41 PM
on the dark side: "it is dangerously seductive to those who lack the ability to control their emotions and passions. Those who give in to the dark side find their abilities greatly enhanced at first but as time passes, the dark side does not respond so readily. The dark side demands more and more of those in its power."

on the light side and the jedi code: "the light side is created and sustained by life. The jedi acts to preserve life. To kill is wrong.

sometimes it is necessary to kill. The jedi may kill in self-defense or in defense of others, especially the weak and the good. The jedi may kill, if by her action she preserves the existence of life. However, the jedi must never forget that killing is inherently wrong. The death is a stain upon the jedi's spirit.

the jedi seeks knowledge and enlightenment, peace and harmony. The jedi wishes to defeat those who would wipe out such qualities--those who would inflict death, tyranny or ignorance upon others--yet the jedi should never act out of fear or hatred...

jedi should seek nonviolent solutions to problems--but this isn't always possible. Sometimes, killing or fighting is the only answer. Sometimes it is even the best answer. But that doesn't mean the jedi shouldn't try to find an alternative."

the responsible use of power: "a jedi acts from wisdom, using persuasion and counsel over violence and force powers. Force powers are used to serve the interests of the light. Using the force for personal aggrandizement, for personal power or wealth, for convenience when other means would be more prudent--all of these traits are of the dark side."

a call to action: "a jedi cannot allow evil to occur by inaction--a jedi who voluntarily stands by and allows evil to be committed is encouraging the forces of darkness.

jedi are also bound by the actions of those around them. It is not acceptable for a jedi to associate with those who willfully choose to commit evil."

qft!

Dytrrnikl
07-14-2009, 09:06 AM
ALERT! ALERT! ALERT! Long post below...

Before I get to the conversation I had with my group about what this forum has been discussing, I'm going to take a moment to respond to some things.

But Mace was the number 2 on the Jedi Council... if anyone is an example to point to for this, it'd be him. And Mara was Luke's wife... Sure Luke himself has flirted with the Dark Side a few times, but he's one of THE heroes in that universe... and a proponent of Unifying Force.
I'll grant you Mace and Mara. I still them as being one step away from falling to the darkside, more Mara than Mace, since Mara decides to be judge, jury, and executioner to Jacen in the Sacrifice novel. However, I completely and totally disagree with the assertion that Luke is a proponent of the BS crap shoot introduced in the Expanded Universe Star Wars Yushon Vong series - the Unifying Force: where the Force has no light side or dark side, the person wielding it makes it light or dark; where the belief is as long as you are completely devoid of intent and steering the course in the right frame of mind, go ahead and fight fire with fire or rather Darkside with Darkside without worrying about having to be tempted by the darkside. In the expanded universe series of novels Legacy of the Force, Luke begins to right the course of the Jedi away from the Unifying Force, feeling that there is a better way to do things.

And In regards to the Unifying Force - it's an excuse to allow Jedi to do things like Telekinetic Kill, or it's called now - Force Grip, somone in self-defense and not be doing something inherently evil. That whole concept of the Force introduced in the expanded universe of Star Wars novels is rotten eggs.



The three step process of falling to the Dark Side (and then step 4 being coming back to the light) is the accepted standard in the books, as well as the saga edition gamebooks. It is not only Vader... and Starkiller... and Mara Jade.... and Luke... twice... it happens frequently.

The reason I oppose your method is threefold. For one, it doesn't mesh with the movies and books. I can see how it kind of fits into Ep. IV, but other than that, what you suggest systematically opposes every movie and book in the Star Wars universe. You can't pick and choose canon to follow... "I liked this movie and that book, but these don't count..." At that point you aren't playing Star Wars, you're playing some other vaguely similar Sci-Fi universe.
Yes, that is the accepted standard in the novels...and can be said of the movies due to the path that was taken by Vader in the movies. However, official/cannon Star Wars is what has been shown in the movies, cartoons, and...groan - the ewok specials. The books and comics are expanded universe material and by no way shape or form to be considered cannon. If it doesn't come from Lucas directly, not merely approved by Lucas licensing, it's fanboy material (granted some really well done material) which Lucas can disregard. He could very easily write a novel or pen a comic or make another movie (hope!!!) that could completely negate anything and everything else that has been written in the expanded universe. With that being said, I stick to my interpretation of the Force with a light side and dark side as shown in the original trilogy after the jedi have basically been long crushed. Am I ignoring cannon, cherry picking what I like and don't like - only in regards to the lure of the Darkside fall/redemption four step thing, otherwise, absolutely not. I am picking and choosing what bits of material I enjoy from the expanded universe.



Two, ...snip... ...But I'd ask them, seriously, how they'd handle such situations. That, more than anything I or anyone else can say, will tell you whether you should lighten up or keep on the way you have been going.
Ahh, inconsistent...now that is something that is spot on the money with me and the main point my group made in regard to how I handle the Force. After talking to them, they agree that I am strict in that I run things on the absolute of either it's good or it's evil no middle ground. Ultimately, the covnersation lead to a compromise that excited them a bit, while still keeping things in a manner that feels correct to me, which i'll explain later after address point 3.


And three, you're harshly...snip...
Negates half a jedi characters choices by removing combat powers? Really? Hmmm...let's look at that in some detail excluding the recently added ligthsaber stuff, the Kinetic Combat power, and the Battle Strike power (which I relegated strictly to the realm of lightsabers in my games).
15 powers in Saga book - 1 expressly DS as written...7 powers in Clone Wars book - 1 DS as written...9 powers in Legacy - 2 DS as written...5 powers in Force Unleashed book - 1 DS as written...9 powers in KotoR - 3 DS powers as written...17 powers in Jedi book - 3 DS powers as written, making 62 Force powers in the sourcebooks. Force Powers that I deem DS powers from sourcebooks - Ballistakinesis (unless of the forbidden for player use in my games jensaarai force tradition), Mind Shard, Force Grip, Force Slam, Force Thrust, Move Object (if used in fashion that causes damage to a living creature), Force Whirlwind (except if said character is a member of the jensaarai tradition, a forbidden tradition for players in my games), Force Blast, Combustion, Stagger, and Thought Bomb - 10 powers out of 62. Add in the 9 DS powers as written and that leaves 41 other powers for a Jedi to call upon...half of which can be used in combat. Just because you have ultimate power doesn't mean you should use it. :p
My approach has lead players in my game to THINK and outside of the box at that. No utility/Force mage/non-combat/lightsaber heavy force-users - people that THINK!!


You have to look at circumstance. Just as killing in self defense is not murder in the real world, using the Force in self defense is not Dark Side. You have to look at what transpired.... was the player trying to make the NPC suffer? Or just defending himself and his allies?
I do look at circumstance, however, I base my judgement off of my own very RL belief that your actions speak louder than words regardless of intentions. However, my stance also falls back upon the inconsistency of using the Force and wielding a lightsaber distinction.


Now, the compromise that my players are excited about, that still keeps things within my perspective of the Force. 8 of the 10 Force powers I listed above as being DS will be available for use, with the following stipulations:

- The damage dealt must be subdual damage, requiring a +5 increase to all DCs. This is to be an in game illustration of a Force-user wielding the Force within a passive, non-aggressive state with restraint. DCs are normal if you wish to actually hurt somone, however, that means you are giving into darker impulses and have tapped into the darkside, earning a darkside point.
-The maximum number of DSPs one may have before falling to the Darkside is 1/2 Wisdom score, rounded down.

Setting someone on fire - Combustion, is just wrong no matter which way I look at it, so it's a DS power when used on living creatures or to set forest fires. Force Grip - using the force to crush or choke your enemy, is and will always be a DS power. I've had the misfortune of actually being strangled. The scariest thing in the world is not being able to breathe. This power not only chokes you, it induces fear and panic. Don't mention the sick people that like to be choked while being frisky. They need some serious psychological help.

Sascha
07-14-2009, 09:58 AM
Actually, official Star Wars canon includes *all* licensed material that doesn't directly contradict the films and series.

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-14-2009, 01:12 PM
I do look at circumstance, however, I base my judgement off of my own very RL belief that your actions speak louder than words regardless of intentions. However, my stance also falls back upon the inconsistency of using the Force and wielding a lightsaber distinction.


Now, the compromise that my players are excited about, that still keeps things within my perspective of the Force. 8 of the 10 Force powers I listed above as being DS will be available for use, with the following stipulations:

- The damage dealt must be subdual damage, requiring a +5 increase to all DCs. This is to be an in game illustration of a Force-user wielding the Force within a passive, non-aggressive state with restraint. DCs are normal if you wish to actually hurt somone, however, that means you are giving into darker impulses and have tapped into the darkside, earning a darkside point.
-The maximum number of DSPs one may have before falling to the Darkside is 1/2 Wisdom score, rounded down.

Setting someone on fire - Combustion, is just wrong no matter which way I look at it, so it's a DS power when used on living creatures or to set forest fires. Force Grip - using the force to crush or choke your enemy, is and will always be a DS power. I've had the misfortune of actually being strangled. The scariest thing in the world is not being able to breathe. This power not only chokes you, it induces fear and panic. Don't mention the sick people that like to be choked while being frisky. They need some serious psychological help.

Good lord man! I thought I was strict on Force Users! 1/2 your Wisdom score and you fall to the dark side to become a permanent NPC!!??

Not to sound hoity-toity but that house rule right there would keep me from playing in your game. I find that a bit extreme and unnecessary.

I circumvented the problem of Force users abusing the system and racking up DSPs only to atone and get rid of them by making atoning much more difficult and only doable once a level.

Obviously you are set in your ways and your beliefs and have changed your game to fit that, and that is all fine and good.

Also, as Sascha said, all licensed material from Lucasfilm/Lucasarts/etc... is officially canon. Granted there are various levels of canon, the movies being higher than the comics, but the comics and everything thing else that is licensed are still canon.

korhal23
07-14-2009, 05:34 PM
One point: there is no subdual damage in Star Wars saga, so did you house rule it into place? The way that my group played was on the killing blow, you could decide if you knocked the enemy out or killed him... our GM gave us all the sever limb talent right off the bat... perhaps that's a better solution?

Also, the others are correct about canon. If it's licensed, it's canon, provided it isn't an alternate history timeline.

And sure, there's a lot of powers left, but look at the ones you're including... Surge, and Battle Strike and Vital Transfer and the like... The group I played in, we had 4 Jedi (it was an all Jedi campaign). I played a Dex heavy, finesse based lightsaber user... I only had a few force powers myself. We had a dual-wielding defense heavy Jedi, a high strength single blade user, and a Force Mage of sorts... she only carried a lightsaber to block and deflect. In addition to having several utility powers like move object and vital transfer, had several instances of slam and powers of that variety. One of the key reasons some of these powers exist is to, mechanically, allow a Jedi to deal with more than one enemy at a time, something most of the other classes can do just by grabbing the right blaster, but the Jedi can not handle without the proper powers. That said, I'll give you combustion and grip, those powers I don't see how they aren't tagged DS.... errata perhaps? I don't know.

But hey, I'm glad your group could come to a consensus. That's what counts.

Perhaps this is a question for a different thread, but this is one that kinda caught me off guard.

My approach has lead players in my game to THINK and outside of the box at that. No utility/Force mage/non-combat/lightsaber heavy force-users - people that THINK!!
Huh? Leaning your character towards what he's good at IS thinking. All Jedi are rounded out to a degree, but they always have a focus. I don't understand how fitting your character into game mechanics is not thinking. In fact, I'd argue that anyone who uses this line of reasoning is the one not thinking. It shows that your train of thought is backwards. The character (in his world) didn't, say, become super strong because he wanted to be good at the lightsaber. Could it have happened that way? Sure. But more likely, he became good at the lightsaber because he was strong. Similarly, he doesn't become intelligent so he can learn more Force Powers, he learns lots of Force Powers because he's intelligent.
Characters who try to be "different" by being sub-optimal, like people who are in a job that just doesn't suit them, are destined to fail. This isn't to say a character needs to be min-maxed, or even that it should, but playing to your strengths is not "not thinking". Quite the opposite, in fact.

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-14-2009, 10:34 PM
Force Grip isn't Dark Side because Luke used it on the Gamorrean Guards and as a lesser cannon example Mace Windu used it on General Grevious in the original Clone Wars cartoon series at the end of season 2.

I'm just the messenger, but these are the often cited examples of why Force Grip was made non-Dark Side.

While I had no problem with it being a Dark Side power, it hasn't really affected my game as a regualr power either, so I am fine with it.


Out of curiosity, how do you explain Yoda knocking out the Royal Guards in Episode III? Would the wisest master of the order take a DSP to ko some low level thugs?

Tamerath
07-14-2009, 11:13 PM
I really liked Korhal23's answer to Dark Side point awards/disadvantages. I actually ran a dark side campaign...a couple of them actually. The key is to have great players...players that really act out their fall through the storyline. As well as a great storyline and GM. If a player is just cutting off fingers or kicking droid heads...I don't really center on his story...he's just being evil for evil sake...but not for a storyline. I also had a method for redemption..and in the end..3 out of my 5 players went the other way....learned from their fall...and were able to teach their jedi padawans not to follow the same path. The other two were...uh...kinda killed in a power struggle. I miss those adventures.

Webhead
07-14-2009, 11:57 PM
Force Grip isn't Dark Side because Luke used it on the Gamorrean Guards...

This is a discussion that has put me at odds with others before but (until the scene was cited as above in regards to Saga Edition) I never interpreted that scene as Luke using any form of Force Grip or other application of actual Telekinesis on Jabba's guards. Perhaps my point of view stems from my own understanding of Affect Mind, but it is much more plausible and appropriate for Luke to use that power on the guards instead.

Luke makes a similar motion with his hand against the Gamorreans as Obi-Wan did against the Stormtroopers in Mos Eisley. Ben had taught Luke that "the Force can have a strong influence on the weak-minded" and the Affect Mind power (non-Saga Edition) stated: "The target character believes he is affected by any successful illusions...If he thought he was injured, he would feel pain, or if he thought he had been killed, he would go unconscious. However, the character suffers no true injury."

Thus, Luke simply makes the guards perceive that they are suffocating which simply knocks them unconscious.

That seems far more likely and supported by his training than Luke actually learning and applying "Telekinetic Kill" or "Force Grip" without invoking at least a twinge of Dark Side temptation. Tell me I'm wrong.

In my games, Luke would be using Affect Mind to accomplish that task. Such an action isn't really supported by the RAW of Saga Edition but then, that's one of the minor issues I have with Saga.


...and as a lesser cannon example Mace Windu used it on General Grevious in the original Clone Wars cartoon series at the end of season 2...

This, however, I see as a very blatant application of "Force Grip" and, were I GMing that scene, Mace would definately have nabbed a Dark Side point for that action. He was employing the Force to physically *crush* a living being (villain or not) and given that Mace has a rather dubious reputation for flirting with the Dark Side anyway, I see his decision to do so as totally in-character. Still, the Dark Side cares not for personal justification.

I house-ruled Force Grip as a Dark Side power in my Saga Edition games. For me, it could exist no other way. It is an aggressive application of the Force intended to inflict serious harm on another being and serves no other viable application.

Interestingly, Saga Edition has also caused me to be vary wary of the "Force Slam" power for similar reasons. After discussions with my players on the subject, I house-ruled the option for a character using Force Slam to choose to inflict "stun" damage rather than normal damage with the power. Choosing "stun" damage allows the power to operate normally while choosing to inflict normal damage constitutes a minor Dark Side transgression.


...Out of curiosity, how do you explain Yoda knocking out the Royal Guards in Episode III? Would the wisest master of the order take a DSP to ko some low level thugs?

In D6, I would handle it as Yoda simply using Telekinesis to slam the thugs and render them unconscious ("pulling his punch" to prevent permanent injury). In my house-ruled Saga, he would use Force Slam and inflict "stun" damage but in Saga RAW (which allows "full" Force Slam with no DSP penalty), he would simply use Force Slam as written.

Yoda would not risk any possible course of action that would grant him a Dark Side Point simply over the Emperor's minions.

Dytrrnikl
07-15-2009, 12:25 AM
One point: there is no subdual damage in Star Wars saga, so did you house rule it into place? The way that my group played was on the killing blow, you could decide if you knocked the enemy out or killed him... our GM gave us all the sever limb talent right off the bat... perhaps that's a better solution?

Subdual was the wrong word, I meant stun damage. I have a houserule for combat in which a player can save there life if they take non-stun damage from a single attack that would drop them below 0 HP, that they can spend a FP to move to the bottom of the condition track and be maimed in some appropriate way - based on d6 WEG rule or maybe houserule from the GM of that game.


Also, the others are correct about canon. If it's licensed, it's canon, provided it isn't an alternate history timeline.
Well, this is one that I disagree with, but that's me...inconsistent maybe to world at large. I still stand by my original assertion that if Lucas chose to, he could very easily stomp on and negate all the written material that has come out by other fans - I know if I was him, there's definately one or two series of books that I'd cast aside - a lot of stuff in the Vong series and Thrawn Trilogy (a lot of hype, big let down, and just plain awful series).


And sure, there's a lot of powers left, but look at the ones you're including... Surge, and Battle Strike and Vital Transfer and the like... The group I played in, we had 4 Jedi (it was an all Jedi campaign). I played a Dex heavy, finesse based lightsaber user... I only had a few force powers myself. We had a dual-wielding defense heavy Jedi, a high strength single blade user, and a Force Mage of sorts... she only carried a lightsaber to block and deflect. In addition to having several utility powers like move object and vital transfer, had several instances of slam and powers of that variety.
I actually have only ever had one or two players, that ever want to play Jedi - most of the other players see the Jedi as the ultimate (don't shoot the messenger) "munchkin power gamer class"...I'm paraphrasing here considerably. They have more attraction for Solo, Leia, Wedge, and Chewbacca.


One of the key reasons some of these powers exist is to, mechanically, allow a Jedi to deal with more than one enemy at a time, something most of the other classes can do just by grabbing the right blaster, but the Jedi can not handle without the proper powers. That said, I'll give you combustion and grip, those powers I don't see how they aren't tagged DS.... errata perhaps? I don't know.
My longest standing character is a Jedi, from day one, he has had no qualms using a blaster, an actually preferred it for a time over the use of a lightsaber. Of course, that same character had a quirk where he would go out of his way to avoid using the Force.



Perhaps this is a question for a different thread, but this is one that kinda caught me off guard.

Huh? Leaning your character towards what he's good...snip...

I was actually getting at them finding alternate solutions than always relying on sabers and force powers. However, looking at it, you are correct, it is backwards.
--- Merged from Double Post ---

Good lord man! I thought I was strict on Force Users! 1/2 your Wisdom score and you fall to the dark side to become a permanent NPC!!??

Not to sound hoity-toity but that house rule right there would keep me from playing in your game. I find that a bit extreme and unnecessary.

I circumvented the problem of Force users abusing the system and racking up DSPs only to atone and get rid of them by making atoning much more difficult and only doable once a level.

Obviously you are set in your ways and your beliefs and have changed your game to fit that, and that is all fine and good.quote]

One of my issues with the d20 format for Star Wars, is that the feel of the mechanics doesn't translate well for me in regards to Star Wars. I have always thought the WEG d6 system does it in superior fashion. In that system, you were only allowed to acrue 6 DSP before falling to the Darkside, plus each time you gained a DSP, you had to roll a d6 or risk having fallen to the darkside even if you had less than 6 DSPs. Going with 1/2 wisdom gives more of that feel to me, and it's something to which my players responded favorably - they still want to go back to the WEG system - I got tired of batch rolling die.
--- Merged from Double Post ---
[quote=Webhead;94379]This is a discussion that has put me at odds...snip...

Nicely put Webhead. I remember Luke as WEG statted out his character with Luke having 2 DSPs as of the Return of the Jedi. The group I played with at the time felt that 1 was for the gamorrean guard incident and the other was for when he gave into to his emotions when he tried to strike down the Emporer.

Webhead
07-15-2009, 01:00 AM
...Of course, that same character had a quirk where he would go out of his way to avoid using the Force...I was actually getting at them finding alternate solutions than always relying on sabers and force powers...

I think this is very cool because that is how Jedi are supposed to be played. Jedi are supposed to seek use of the Force only when more conventional means would not be effective or available. And a Jedi should only draw his lightsaber when he is prepared to take a life. It is not a tool of intimidation. It is an implement of last defense to end a threatening conflict before more unnecessary life is lost.


...One of my issues with the d20 format for Star Wars, is that the feel of the mechanics doesn't translate well for me in regards to Star Wars. I have always thought the WEG d6 system does it in superior fashion. In that system, you were only allowed to acrue 6 DSP before falling to the Darkside, plus each time you gained a DSP, you had to roll a d6 or risk having fallen to the darkside even if you had less than 6 DSPs. Going with 1/2 wisdom gives more of that feel to me, and it's something to which my players responded favorably...

Agreed. This is the reason for my Saga house rule on accumulation of Dark Side Points. Minor transgressions bestow 1 DSP, Moderate bestow 1d2 DSP and Major transgressions bestow 1d3 DSP. Falling to the Dark Side with those rules is much less predictable and much more threatening...kind of like the way I liked it in D6.


...they still want to go back to the WEG system - I got tired of batch rolling die...

I would rarely see more than 7 or 8 dice thrown in any single roll so I never had the "pound-o-dice" issue that some groups apparently had. But it's okay, you can call me an old fart. Star Wars D6 is still my uncontested favorite. Saga Edition is okay but it is a very distant second at best. I hate house-ruling game systems and I've had to create about 2 pages of house rules for Saga to bring it onto more acceptable terms with me.
--- Merged from Double Post ---



...Nicely put Webhead. I remember Luke as WEG statted out his character with Luke having 2 DSPs as of the Return of the Jedi. The group I played with at the time felt that 1 was for the gamorrean guard incident and the other was for when he gave into to his emotions when he tried to strike down the Emporer.

Thank you. As far as Luke's 2 DSPs, here's how I always interpreted it (quoted from the movie script):

Luke gains 1 DSP in the Emperor's throne room when he attempts to strike him down and is blocked by Vader:

Palpatine: "Good. I can feel your anger. I am defenseless. Take your weapon! Strike me down with all your hatred, and your journey towards the Dark Side will be complete."

[Luke can resist no longer. The lightsaber flies into his hand. He ignites it in an instant and swings at the Emperor. Vader's lightsaber flashes into view, blocking Luke's blow before it can reach the Emperor.]

Luke gains 1 DSP when Vader threatens to turn Leia to the Dark Side and Luke lashes out to destroy him:

Vader: "Sister! So...you have a twin sister. Your feelings have now betrayed her, too. Obi-Wan was wise to hide her from me. Now his failure is complete. If you will not turn to the Dark Side, then perhaps she will."

Luke: "Never-r-r!"

[Luke ignites his lightsaber and screams in anger, rushing at his father with a frenzy we have not seen before. Sparks fly as Luke and Vader fight in the cramped area. Luke's hatred forces Vader to retreat out of the low area and across a bridge overlooking a vast elevator shaft. Each stroke of Luke's sword drives his father further toward defeat.]

Dytrrnikl
07-15-2009, 09:42 AM
Thank you. As far as Luke's 2 DSPs, here's how I always interpreted it (quoted from the movie script):

Luke gains 1 DSP in the Emperor's throne room when he attempts to strike him down and is blocked by Vader:

Palpatine: "Good. I can feel your anger. I am defenseless. Take your weapon! Strike me down with all your hatred, and your journey towards the Dark Side will be complete."

[Luke can resist no longer. The lightsaber flies into his hand. He ignites it in an instant and swings at the Emperor. Vader's lightsaber flashes into view, blocking Luke's blow before it can reach the Emperor.]

Luke gains 1 DSP when Vader threatens to turn Leia to the Dark Side and Luke lashes out to destroy him:

Vader: "Sister! So...you have a twin sister. Your feelings have now betrayed her, too. Obi-Wan was wise to hide her from me. Now his failure is complete. If you will not turn to the Dark Side, then perhaps she will."

Luke: "Never-r-r!"

[Luke ignites his lightsaber and screams in anger, rushing at his father with a frenzy we have not seen before. Sparks fly as Luke and Vader fight in the cramped area. Luke's hatred forces Vader to retreat out of the low area and across a bridge overlooking a vast elevator shaft. Each stroke of Luke's sword drives his father further toward defeat.]

I stand corrected!! Nice point.

Sascha
07-15-2009, 11:31 AM
<snip Luke possibly choking pig-guards>
Out of all the scenes in the original trilogy, that's the one that bugs me most, heh. If Luke's just using ye olde Jedi Mind Trick on the Gammoreans, why make them believe they're choking? It seems so ... unneccessary, when a simple "I am supposed to be here" does the job. (That it's the canon explanation is really what does it. The films should speak for themselves, dangit~)

If he instead was channeling his father and, in fact, choked the hell out of the pigs, where's the Dark Side touch? All his stats reflect is the aftermath of Endor - y'know, after the whole 'redeem his father from the grip of the Dark Side by refusing to finish him off.' That's gotta count for something.

(This is why I adore the property; the ambiguity of all the little details gives rise to some awesome interpretations of the tragedy and heroism that is the Skywalker family.)


I think this is very cool because that is how Jedi are supposed to be played. Jedi are supposed to seek use of the Force only when more conventional means would not be effective or available. And a Jedi should only draw his lightsaber when he is prepared to take a life. It is not a tool of intimidation. It is an implement of last defense to end a threatening conflict before more unnecessary life is lost.
I rather liked d6's optional maiming rule, for this very reason, myself. Wholly within the spirit of the films, that one.


<snip Luke's Dark Side push>
Exactly how I interpreted it, too ;) (I almost made the lightsaber noises when reading that. Sad, isn't it? :P)

Webhead
07-15-2009, 07:01 PM
...I rather liked d6's optional maiming rule, for this very reason, myself. Wholly within the spirit of the films, that one...

As do I. In fact, I was rather irked by the fact that Saga Edition turned that element into a Talent that has to be "purchased" by characters taking the Jedi Knight prestige class.


...(I almost made the lightsaber noises when reading that. Sad, isn't it? :P)

We all make lightsaber sounds when reading Star Wars...at least, I do anyway! :cool:

Sascha
07-15-2009, 09:42 PM
As do I. In fact, I was rather irked by the fact that Saga Edition turned that element into a Talent that has to be "purchased" by characters taking the Jedi Knight prestige class.
No kidding.

[edit]
Journal entry; July 15, 2009. Reread Skywalker's Saga Edition stats. Noticed third Dark Side point. Possible Gammorean strangler. Must investigate further.

Webhead
07-15-2009, 11:52 PM
...[edit]
Journal entry; July 15, 2009. Reread Skywalker's Saga Edition stats. Noticed third Dark Side point. Possible Gammorean strangler. Must investigate further.

Heh heh! Nice reference!

"Nobody cares...nobody cares but me..."

Sascha
07-16-2009, 11:26 AM
Thought you'd appreciate it :P

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-16-2009, 06:59 PM
I think a lot of it is intention. I mean a Jedi or other Force User could potentially use any Force power for evil, so why such restrictions?

I leave a lot of the Dark Side point awarding to what happens in-character, unless of course some one uses a specific Dark Side force power.

i also dont see using the Force to cause damage specifically evil when it is necessary. A lot of times use of the Force can put an end to a situation that could have easily gotten out of control if the Force wasn't used.
--- Merged from Double Post ---

My longest standing character is a Jedi, from day one, he has had no qualms using a blaster, an actually preferred it for a time over the use of a lightsaber. Of course, that same character had a quirk where he would go out of his way to avoid using the Force.

Even considering the fact that the Jedi view blasters as "uncivilized" weaponry and the lightsaber as "their life"?


One of my issues with the d20 format for Star Wars, is that the feel of the mechanics doesn't translate well for me in regards to Star Wars. I have always thought the WEG d6 system does it in superior fashion. In that system, you were only allowed to acrue 6 DSP before falling to the Darkside, plus each time you gained a DSP, you had to roll a d6 or risk having fallen to the darkside even if you had less than 6 DSPs. Going with 1/2 wisdom gives more of that feel to me, and it's something to which my players responded favorably - they still want to go back to the WEG system - I got tired of batch rolling die.
--- Merged from Double Post ---

I can't really say whether I prefer one over the other. There was so much I didn't like about d6 that I feel Saga gets right that I can't really picture it any other way now. I really like having a single Use the Force Skill and gaining Force powers in a suite and having them refresh after an encounter.

In fact, Rodney Thompson the designer of Saga is a big d6 fan so he tries to pull from it and innovate game design as much as he can in Saga and I think he has done a fine dang job of it with Saga.

Saga leaves a lot of the details to the GM and/or the group that is playing Saga, similar to the way d6 did. Which is why I dont really have a problem with the dark side system in Saga. A lot of it is left to game situations and the GM to decide what warrants a DSP and what doesn't, unless a character uses some specific game mechanic to gain a DSP.

Saga makes it incredibly easy to play the Jedi we see in the films and cartoons with very few penalties. And that speaks to a larger theory of game design currently in the gaming industry, that games should no longer be impossibly hard for the player, that the designer wants them to get from level 1 all the way to level x, in this case 20. Like the Force Unleashed vg for example, you can die over and over but you respawn where you have progressed in the story instead of starting over at the beginning of the level, like in early NES games. A similar thing has happened in rpgs, especially with 4e and a certain extent in Saga edition.

But in general I think almost any Force power can be used for evil so why not make them all Dark Side. The Jedi understand that violence is sometimes necessary and that taking a life to preserve life is also sometimes necessary.

I feel I am rambling now.

Sascha
07-16-2009, 09:26 PM
Even considering the fact that the Jedi view blasters as "uncivilized" weaponry and the lightsaber as "their life"?
Going by G-level canon, that could just be the opinion of one traditionally-minded Knight. I don't recall anyone but Obi-Wan expressing disdain for blasters in the films, and I'm very much not an expert on the other canon sources.

korhal23
07-16-2009, 09:58 PM
Kyle Katarn loved him some blasters and in fact is often depicted with a lightsaber in one hand and a Bryar pistol in the other, and Luke was no slouch with them either.

Actually come to think of it, Katarn was another one who could use the Dark Side of the Force as a tool and didn't fall... hell, he even learned to use lightning without it causing him trouble.

I think it is generally the view of Jedi that lightsabers are far superior (I mean, either way, you don't see very many Jedi with blasters ever).

Inquistor Treymane, you're spot on though about the feel of Saga Edition. I like it myself, and there's very little I would houserule were I to GM it, I believe.

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-16-2009, 10:41 PM
Going by G-level canon, that could just be the opinion of one traditionally-minded Knight. I don't recall anyone but Obi-Wan expressing disdain for blasters in the films, and I'm very much not an expert on the other canon sources.

If there is going to be that sort of attitude toward quotes from the films used as "fact" or reference then using the whole "knowledge and defense" as a reason why the Force should never be used to cause harm doesn't hold up either.

Meaning, if you try to dismiss it in that way.

Dytrrnikl
07-17-2009, 12:01 AM
Even considering the fact that the Jedi view blasters as "uncivilized" weaponry and the lightsaber as "their life"?

The campaign started as a Rebellion Era campaign in d6, so using a blaster was less suspect than a lightsaber. RIght from the start of that character, I had the belief that every major galaxy wide conflict was caused because of the struggle of darksiders verse lightsiders, essentially the Force. I played him extremely conflicted about his capabilities. I think the same outlook was recently expressede by Boba Fett in the Expanded Universe Legacy of the Force Star Wars novels.


Saga makes it incredibly easy to play the Jedi we see in the films and cartoons with very few penalties. And that speaks to a larger theory of game design currently in the gaming industry, that games should no longer be impossibly hard for the player, that the designer wants them to get from level 1 all the way to level x, in this case 20. Like the Force Unleashed vg for example, you can die over and over but you respawn where you have progressed in the story instead of starting over at the beginning of the level, like in early NES games. A similar thing has happened in rpgs, especially with 4e and a certain extent in Saga edition.

Which is something I am having a great deal of difficulty reconciling this mindset that has been cropping up since 3E, and why I don't play video games much anymore. Gaining a level or completing a level after having started over at the beginning of a level in the case of VGs were much more meaningful - I felt like I accomplished something, now, not so much. It's a personal taste thing. Yes, games are meant to be fun and enjoyable, but in my book, there needs to be moments of disappointment in a game - character death, starting over at the beginning of a level in a VG if you screw up, in order for the game to be enjoyable. But that's a personal taste thing on my part. It plays into me being baffled by the idea of telling someone, kids in particular, that to lose at something they are the last winner. If I lost at something at a kid, I'd be told to try harder next time or questioned about why I thought I lost. People don't do that these days, and sadly I see it as becoming a part of the gaming industry. Maybe I'm just getting old.



But in general I think almost any Force power can be used for evil so why not make them all Dark Side. The Jedi understand that violence is sometimes necessary and that taking a life to preserve life is also sometimes necessary.

Any Force can be used for evil, it's essentially just another loaded gun. However not every Force Power is designed to be used specifically for battle, such as Force Slam and the like. It's the last part...taking life is also sometimes necessary...that I have a personal issue, but that's a topic suited to a completely different message board.

Sascha
07-17-2009, 01:13 AM
If there is going to be that sort of attitude toward quotes from the films used as "fact" or reference then using the whole "knowledge and defense" as a reason why the Force should never be used to cause harm doesn't hold up either.

Meaning, if you try to dismiss it in that way.
Not a dismissal, but a counterpoint. Two lines in two separate films, both spoken by the same character, doesn't necessarily constitute a system-wide belief (in this case, Obi-Wan's choice of words reflecting on all Jedi). It doesn't necessarily mean they're only personal opinion, either. Apologies if it seemed dismissive.

But yeah, Yoda's line about knowledge and defense isn't entirely clear, largely due to varying interpretation of "defense" - as either implicitly including harm or explicitly excluding it.

Both d6 and Saga Edition address the issue in more detail, under the same heading ("The Jedi Code": p. 145, d6 2nd Edition; p. 105, Saga Edition) and come to the same conclusion: fighting or killing is sometimes the only, even best option (thus, not acting from the Dark Side), but it should be neither the first, nor the only avenue explored (which would be acting from the Dark Side).

Chavic
07-19-2009, 02:17 PM
I'm seeing a lot of divergent views on here and I don't agree with most of them. Of course everyone is free to run their campaigns however they want, but I think people should remember that games, like real life, aren't black and white.

--I do not think that any force power is inherently evil. Sure things like Force Grip and Lightning draw on your emotions as well as the force, but I think there are many people who can control themselves well enough to be unaffected. Kyle used lightning, so did several other light-side and gray Jedi. I think it depends more on how it is used.
Let's use some examples from the movies and books:
-The Emperor torturing Luke with Force Lightning is evil, his sole motivation was to inflict pain and eventually kill.
-Kyle using Force Lightning to take out a bunched group of Stormtroopers is not evil. He is merely using the tools at his disposal to win his battles.
-Luke using Force Grip to cow the guards at Jabba's Palace is not evil. He does not kill the guard, but actually prevents further conflict by making a show of power (something these guards respect and fear).
-A Jedi Force Choking an opponent to death would be evil. The enemy would pass out and be incapacitated, thus ending the fight, to kill would required continued choking. Or, if the enemy needed to be killed in this situation, there are more merciful alternatives.

--I do not think that the rules should be changed relating to Wisdom scores and Dark Side points. This system represents the struggle between a person's force of will and wisdom against the corruption and temptation of using the Force in an evil manner. To set everyone at the same level is to ignore that everyone is different. People deal with things in their own ways and are capable of different things. Why could Mace Windu use Vapaad when so few others could? Because he was wise enough to see himself in complete honesty and know his limits. Because his will was strong enough to maintain that balance.

--I do not believe that killing is inherently evil
. Sometimes you have to kill a few to save many. Sometimes you have to fight to maintain peace. Finding the balance of this is of course the hard part.
Some more examples:
-Again, the Han verse Greedo debate. Han shot first killing Greedo, but this isn't evil. Greedo had a gun drawn and aimed at Han and was making threats. Whether or not Greedo intended to actually fire, Han would have no way of knowing, and acted as best he could with the information he had to save his own life.
-If killing makes you evil, the Luke Skywalker is one of the most evil characters in the movies, second only to the Emperor himself. He blew up the first Death Star, killing thousands. And although he did it to save people, there were certainly office personelle and soldiers just doing thier jobs, some unaware of the evil of the Empire. But does this act make Luke a Dark Sider? No. He acted not only to save the Rebles that the Death Star would have momentarily killed, but prevented further murders and destruction wreaked by the Empire with the Death Star. He acted as best he could in the time he had.

My games tend towards the roleplaying aspect of the game. I take into consideration emotions, intentions, and actions when making my decisions on Dark Side Points because, well its complicated. The world isn't purely black and white, it has many shades of gray.

Webhead
07-19-2009, 10:44 PM
Yes, everyone has their own interpretations on many aspects of the Star Wars universe, especially aspects are mysterious as the Force.

My view and classic understanding of powers like Force Grip (formerly called Telekinetic Kill) and especially Force Lightning is that they are techniques that were created by Dark Side Force users and thus perversions of the Force intended to inflict pain, torture and death. Thus, I consider those powers inherently Dark Side (likewise, only Dark Jedi know such powers well enough to teach them). It doesn't matter how a Jedi uses them and whether they intend to wield them with good intentions. They are tools of the Dark Side and thus a user must tap into the Dark Side to call upon them.

I also agree with a general notion that there are shades of thematic gray that exist in the Star Wars universe. The Fringe is a perfect example. But while there are shades of gray in the universe, there are not such shades of gray within the Force. There is the Light Side and the Dark Side, the Yin and the Yang. Neither can exist without the other but never do the two mix.

Historically, those Jedi who believed that they could study and control the Dark Side to serve good purposes have in turn found themselves eventually seduced and controlled by it. The Dark Side is not an impartial tool; it is almost an intelligence of its own, like a dark predator luring prey into its maw with promises of power before snapping shut and swallowing its victims whole.

That's my take anyway but then, I tend to have a more classical view of Star Wars and the Force.

korhal23
07-19-2009, 10:54 PM
Historically, those Jedi who believed that they could study and control the Dark Side to serve good purposes have in turn found themselves eventually seduced and controlled by it. The Dark Side is not an impartial tool; it is almost an intelligence of its own, like a dark predator luring prey into its maw with promises of power before snapping shut and swallowing its victims whole.


Usually yes, but there's a few who that's not true for. So that's why it's my take that you should be able to resist the Dark Side as a Wisdom check. There are several heroes who were able to use the Dark Side as a tool, so there's no shortage of precedent.

Mace Windu, Mara Jade, Kyle Katarn, Starkiller, and even Luke in some of the EU stuff all fit this bill.

Webhead
07-19-2009, 11:08 PM
Usually yes, but there's a few who that's not true for. So that's why it's my take that you should be able to resist the Dark Side as a Wisdom check. There are several heroes who were able to use the Dark Side as a tool, so there's no shortage of precedent.

Mace Windu, Mara Jade, Kyle Katarn, Starkiller, and even Luke in some of the EU stuff all fit this bill.

There is precedent (and, consequently, I do allow) for characters to come back from the Dark Side if they have fallen (Vader did it, so others could potentially do so as well) but it is a very significant undertaking and one that usually leaves deep impressions on those lucky enough to return from the depths of despair. The Dark Side is not a forgiving master and it would rather see its servants dead than to resist its power, thus those who attempt to leave its grasp are severly punished.

And there are those who successfully flirt with the Dark Side without falling completely into its grasp (like Mace) but such characters must be extremely cautious and aware of themselves as they are often one misstep away from corruption. The more they comfort themselves with notions that they can wield the Dark Side as a tool, the more they open themselves to the sort of carelessness that leads them blindly into the Dark Side's grip.

The important thing to remember about the Dark Side is that eventually its masters become its slaves. The Dark Side has its own needs and desires and even one as powerful as the Emperor cannot escape its will.

korhal23
07-19-2009, 11:21 PM
Naturally, and I'm not even talking about coming back from the Dark Side. There are some who fall immediately and there are some who can keep their emotions in check and can wield the Dark Side as a tool. I'm talking simply about slowing and potentially halting the descent for the strong willed.

Webhead
07-19-2009, 11:30 PM
Naturally, and I'm not even talking about coming back from the Dark Side. There are some who fall immediately and there are some who can keep their emotions in check and can wield the Dark Side as a tool. I'm talking simply about slowing and potentially halting the descent for the strong willed.

I'll agree to the possibility of "slowing" one's corruption through careful application and atonement but not to the point of completely "halting" it. And even for those who can manage to resist its deepest temptations, they are still tainted by it and thus at greater and greater risk of falling. The Dark Side is especially dangerous to those who presume they can manipulate it without consequence.

Also, I think "tool" is a very tricky term to use. The Dark Side would never allow itself to be used as a "tool", though it may be more subtle (and thus, more delicate) on how it influences particularly wise, skilled or powerful Force users.

korhal23
07-19-2009, 11:36 PM
Fair enough. Mace probably just didn't live long enough to totally fall :P And I don't think you should mechanically halt a character's fall, but if they keep beating the DC, thems the breaks. I still like the idea of the resist roll, but I would also be presenting my players will lots of chances to be earning Dark Side points through my temptation houserule I talked about earlier... so it probably balances out.

Webhead
07-19-2009, 11:53 PM
Cool. And in the end, it's just a game and should take on the qualities that best suit the GM and how they want to run things.

The "Wisdom resist" rule is an interesting approach. I tended to view that aspect as part of why Wisdom determined how many DSP a character could aquire before falling but then, I also created house rules to introduce a less predictable rate at which a character will fall to the Dark Side, so it's all good.

I just like to stress in my games that the Dark Side is a very dangerous thing to fiddle with and not something that can be cast off lightly.

korhal23
07-20-2009, 12:20 AM
It's kinda like how Con determines how many HP you have, and then it helps you resist poisons. Except the poison is the dark side ;)

Chavic
07-20-2009, 02:40 AM
I also agree with a general notion that there are shades of thematic gray that exist in the Star Wars universe. The Fringe is a perfect example. But while there are shades of gray in the universe, there are not such shades of gray within the Force. There is the Light Side and the Dark Side, the Yin and the Yang. Neither can exist without the other but never do the two mix.



This of course depends on what school of theory regarding the force you are a part of. Some say that there is a Dark Side and a Light Side. Others say there is merely the Force, and Dark and Light people.

Is it the Dark Side of the force that causes temptation? Or is it using the Force darkly?
--- Merged from Double Post ---


I just like to stress in my games that the Dark Side is a very dangerous thing to fiddle with and not something that can be cast off lightly.

Can I ask what the Dark Side does to players in your game? I'm trying to figure this out in my own.

Dytrrnikl
07-20-2009, 03:39 AM
I'm not sure how anyone is going to like what one of my player's suggested to me about DSPs and falling to the darkside. Basically, it's something similar to what Korhal suggested, except that it's not so much resisting gaining a Darkside point, so much as the danger of falling to the darkside each time a DSP is earned, very much like WEG d6. Wisdom is still the maximum number of DSPs one may earn before (his suggestion) irrevocably falling to the darkside, however, each time a DSP is earned, a Wisdom check is made to see if one falls to the Darkside. Roll your DSP total or less and fall, but still have a chance at redemption (his suggestion). Of course, if a natural 1 is rolled, you fall and a natural 20 means you resist the lure. I'm inclined to go with this as it feels more like the WEG d6 method and feels correct to me. What so you all on this one?

Sascha
07-20-2009, 01:10 PM
This of course depends on what school of theory regarding the force you are a part of. Some say that there is a Dark Side and a Light Side. Others say there is merely the Force, and Dark and Light people.

Is it the Dark Side of the force that causes temptation? Or is it using the Force darkly?
According to George Lucas, there's not really a Light Side, since that's how the Force *should* act. The Dark Side's a corruption of the Force, but he's not elaborated on how it got corrupted (that I can find); I can only speculate that it's really tied into the user's emotional state, since the Dark Side uses any strong emotion to take seed and grow. Which would explain the Jedi tradition of detachment - practically Stoicism - forsaking even positive emotion, lest it lead to a darker place.


I'm not sure how anyone is going to like what one of my player's suggested to me about DSPs and falling to the darkside. Basically, it's something similar to what Korhal suggested, except that it's not so much resisting gaining a Darkside point, so much as the danger of falling to the darkside each time a DSP is earned, very much like WEG d6. Wisdom is still the maximum number of DSPs one may earn before (his suggestion) irrevocably falling to the darkside, however, each time a DSP is earned, a Wisdom check is made to see if one falls to the Darkside. Roll your DSP total or less and fall, but still have a chance at redemption (his suggestion). Of course, if a natural 1 is rolled, you fall and a natural 20 means you resist the lure. I'm inclined to go with this as it feels more like the WEG d6 method and feels correct to me. What so you all on this one?
I don't like the "natural result" mechanic (then again, I don't like "natural result" mechanics *anyway*, so take that with a grain of salt ;)). Other than that, it's a sound little rule with precedent in Star Wars-based gaming. Especially when one can be redeemed from the fall.


Personally, I'm starting to lean away from a binary state model ('Light' or 'Dark'). For me, a better mechanic would be one of influence: a character's Dark Side score as a penalty to actions not associated with their darker impulses. Scores beyond Wisdom allow the Dark Side to assert control and guide the character against their will (maybe a d20 + Dark Side score vs. Will defense to simulate). (Lack of an automatic success/failure mechanic gives a nice illusion of controlling the Dark Side, tee hee.)

I'd also totally offer shiny red bennies, in the form of bonuses or temporary Force Points: a "gift" of the Dark Side, to get them started down the path ...

Webhead
07-20-2009, 11:33 PM
This of course depends on what school of theory regarding the force you are a part of. Some say that there is a Dark Side and a Light Side. Others say there is merely the Force, and Dark and Light people.

Is it the Dark Side of the force that causes temptation? Or is it using the Force darkly?...

Ah, yes...the Potentium Theory. I never cared for it and don't subscribe to it for my games. Not that I don't allow for Force traditions who believe in the Potentium Theory, just that it is not an accurate representation of how the Force works in my version of the universe. Again, the Dark Side cares not how you attempt to conceptualize or justify its existence (in fact, it's quite happy to take advantage of those who do not fully recognize it for what it is).


...Can I ask what the Dark Side does to players in your game? I'm trying to figure this out in my own.

Of course. For me, characters are either "Light", "Tainted" (have Dark Side Points but have not yet fallen) or "Dark".

When running Star Wars D6, I stay with the Dark Side rules as written (because they emulate my concept of the Dark Side perfectly). Essentially, for every Dark Side Point that a Force Sensitive character acquires, they add 1 extra die to all of their Force Skills. Also, characters may also attempt to "Call upon the Dark Side" to gain a temporary Force Point in exchange for taking a DSP (the Dark Side promises power to those who embrace it). Whenever gaining a DSP, the character rolls a d6. If the roll is less than the total number of current DSPs, the character falls. If you fall, your character becomes an NPC (unless I'm running a redemption game) and no longer gains the extra dice to their Force Skills (once the Dark Side has you, it no longer needs to tempt you with power). Unfallen characters may attempt to atone and remove DSPs by exhibiting restained and redeeming behavior (2 adventures to remove 1 DSP).

In Star Wars Saga, fallen characters also become NPCs (unless I'm running a redemption game). I also created my own house rules to bring the Dark Side more into line with how I think it should behave:

1) The Seductive Dark Side: A Force-sensitive character with a Dark Side Score less than their Wisdom may call upon the Dark Side to gain a temporary Force Point. The character opens themselves up to anger, frustration, desperation or other negative emotions in order to find the power to overcome an immediate challenge. This Force Point must be used before the end of the encounter otherwise it is lost. Calling upon the Dark Side in this manner is considered a major transgression.

2) Call upon the Dark Side: A Force-sensitive character with a Dark Side Score less than their Wisdom may call upon the Dark Side to gain a single use of one of the following Force Powers: dark rage, force grip, force slam, force thrust, rebuke or surge. The character need not already have the power as part of their Force Suite nor does using this power consume one of the characters Force Power slots. Calling upon the Dark Side in this way is considered a major transgression.

3) The Measure of Evil: Characters gain a random amount of Dark Side Points for a given action depending upon the severity of that action. Characters gain 1 Dark Side Point for a minor transgression, 1d2 for a moderate transgression and 1d3 for a major transgression.

4) Atoning: Characters may atone to remove Dark Side Points. A character must spend 2d8 days in atonement, meditating and seeking balance with the Force. The character need not spend all these days at once and may spread them out if needed. However, if the character gains even a single Dark Side Point before the atonement is complete or has to be regularly cautioned about the nature of his actions, the character must start the process over again (no new roll is made). Once the character completes this period of atonement, they may spend a single Force Point and decrease their Dark Side Score by 1.

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-21-2009, 08:29 AM
I have adopted the Dark Side optional rules from The Force Unleashed page 85, Temptation of the Dark Side and Atonement.

Basically spend a FP and gain a single use of any Force Power with the [Dark Side] descriptor, or spend a FP and gain the use of any Dark Side talent, at the expense of increasing your Dark Side score.

Atonement requires AT LEAST 24 hours in meditation and then spend a FP to remove a single DSP, usable once per level.

I am also considering allowing non-Force Sensitives the option to add another d6 to their Force point roll total when spending a Force point at the expense of increasing their Dark Side score. So spend a FP, say you roll a 4, you can give in to your fear, hate, anger, or what-have-you, and gain another d6 to ADD to what you previously rolled on your original FP. So say you roll a 6 on the second one that is a total of 10 to whatever you were applying the FP to.

Make sense?

Another thing I just thought of too, what about call upon the Dark Side to add a d6 to damage? Too powerful?

Jedi Viktor
10-14-2009, 05:28 AM
I'm pretty laid back when it comes to DSP, I have played games where the GM wants people to be perfect good guys and people always end up killing people and going criminal throwing off the campaign. In my games I try and let people get away with some things. It's ok to let someone kill a guy when "He was evil and I didn't like the things he was doing so I killed him". But something like "I didn't like the look on his face so I chopped his head off" or "I just wanted his credits so I killed him and took them" are going to get a DSP ... most of the time. If its funny they can get away with it.

Now thinking about it I like to compare my style with DnD's chaotic good. Doing things that fit your style with a general sense of the "greater good."

Inquisitor Tremayne
10-16-2009, 10:35 AM
I have found it quite difficult to encourage PCs to "flirt" with the Dark Side. There are very rare situations that I can put the PCs in that will give them DSPs. In my game with 5 9th level PCs I think there is a total of 3 DSPs between them!

For my Jedi character that I play, if it were not for a Dawn of Defiance campaign (where you may not atone) then my character would be going back and forth with the dark side all the time. Even though I am having fun playing the super serious light side Jedi!

Anyone else have any issues in the frequency in which PCs gain DSPs?

Dytrrnikl
10-19-2009, 10:08 AM
I have 7 11th level PCs in the Dawn of Defiance/My own homebrew stuff campaign, discounting my own feelings about the darkside, there is a total of 23 darkside points. I have 3 force-sensitives that have earned the bulk, as I do things like grant them a bonus to task resolution rolls equal to their wisdom modifier plus their darkside score in exchange for a darkside point or lower the difficulty of Force Power Use the Force checks by 5 for an encounter. I've sometimes gone as far as making "Darkside attacks" against there will saves set at 1d20 plus #of current DSPs of the character being 'attacked'. If exceed WILL save, they're are experiencing fear or anger or hate or despair or some other negative emotion that has an adverse side effect - in the first couple of rounds of an encounter (equal to the number of DSPs a character that has been 'DS attacked' has) if he sustains a crit from an attack he flies into a Rage as in the Darkside Power or if a social skill or talent used against them is made with a nat 20, then they give off an uncontrollable Hatred or Fear or Thought Bomb effect. If anyone is harmed during this outburst due to lack of control/surrendering to their emotions they get a darkside point. All of this doesn't sit well with my own perspective of teh Darkside, but it has gone over well with my players. Even my non-force sensitives have a good share of there own for things like killing stormies after they've thrown down their weapons to surrender and are kneeling helpless. Their are iof course three force powers that i have not backed down on that I consider Darkside no matter the use - Force Grip, Ignition, and Ballistekinesis (No I don't allow the Jenserai in my game). The first your using the force to crush the life out of a target, the next you're trying to set them on fire - there is no logical explanation to tell me that this is not inherently darkside, and the last simply due to GM fiat and that I stick to old school using Force to hurl objects at people to hurt them is just plain wrong.

Inquisitor Tremayne
10-19-2009, 11:43 AM
I have 7 11th level PCs in the Dawn of Defiance/My own homebrew stuff campaign, discounting my own feelings about the darkside, there is a total of 23 darkside points. I have 3 force-sensitives that have earned the bulk, as I do things like grant them a bonus to task resolution rolls equal to their wisdom modifier plus their darkside score in exchange for a darkside point or lower the difficulty of Force Power Use the Force checks by 5 for an encounter. I've sometimes gone as far as making "Darkside attacks" against there will saves set at 1d20 plus #of current DSPs of the character being 'attacked'. If exceed WILL save, they're are experiencing fear or anger or hate or despair or some other negative emotion that has an adverse side effect - in the first couple of rounds of an encounter (equal to the number of DSPs a character that has been 'DS attacked' has) if he sustains a crit from an attack he flies into a Rage as in the Darkside Power or if a social skill or talent used against them is made with a nat 20, then they give off an uncontrollable Hatred or Fear or Thought Bomb effect. If anyone is harmed during this outburst due to lack of control/surrendering to their emotions they get a darkside point. All of this doesn't sit well with my own perspective of teh Darkside, but it has gone over well with my players. Even my non-force sensitives have a good share of there own for things like killing stormies after they've thrown down their weapons to surrender and are kneeling helpless. Their are iof course three force powers that i have not backed down on that I consider Darkside no matter the use - Force Grip, Ignition, and Ballistekinesis (No I don't allow the Jenserai in my game). The first your using the force to crush the life out of a target, the next you're trying to set them on fire - there is no logical explanation to tell me that this is not inherently darkside, and the last simply due to GM fiat and that I stick to old school using Force to hurl objects at people to hurt them is just plain wrong.

Have you done away with the rule in DoD that characters cannot atone to remove DSPs?

I have always encountered resistance when it comes to forcing PCs to act in ways that are going to grant them DSPs. I'm not sure how my players would react to a rule such as making a Dark Side attack against them and forcing them into a certain mode like Dark Rage. Hmm...

Dytrrnikl
10-20-2009, 01:16 AM
That rule is still in effect. My game is very dark and gritty - there are no shades of grey. Everyone picks a side Empire or Overthrow the Empire, where picking your own side is basically saying Empire. I know ths probably is an affront to people's line of thinking these days. What can I say, I'm sort of sithish in that something is either evil or not evil, nothing in between. Or as my wife keeps telling me - black and white, no compromise.

A Flannel Shirt
12-14-2009, 11:30 AM
For non force-sensitives, darkside points are a tad bit tougher to acquire, but not much. Example, in the original Theatrical release of Star Wars, Episode IV: A New Hope...when Greedo catches Han Solo in the Cantina, Han actually shot Greedo before Greedo even twitched his finger on the blaster. In the strictest sense, while Greedo was threatening Solo with a blaster pointed at him, Greedo did nothing to indicate that he was going to blast Solo, only that he was trying to get Solo to fork over credits due Jabba. I would more than likely give Solo a darkside point for this, as he used misdirection and deception to draw his blaster under the table and then Greedo.


Now, with the latest release of Star Wars, Lucas actually has Greedo firing a shot off at Han's head and missing, prior to Han pulling the trigger. This then becomes a case of self-defense, and thus no Darkside Point.


Wrong.

Greedo (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0086685/): [though some believe he is speaking in Rodian, Greedo is actually speaking Huttese; subtitled] Going somewhere, Solo?
Han Solo (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000148/): Yes, Greedo. I was just coming to see your boss. Tell Jabba I have his money, at last.
Greedo (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0086685/): It's too late. You should have paid him at the first chance you had. Now Jabba's put a price on your head so large, every bounty hunter in the galaxy will be looking for you. I'm lucky I found you first.
Han Solo (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000148/): Yeah, but this time I've got the money.
Greedo (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0086685/): If you give it to me, I might forget I found you.
Han Solo (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000148/): I don't have it with me. Tell Jabba...
Greedo (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0086685/): Jabba's through with you. He has no use for smugglers who drop their shipments at the first sign of an Imperial cruiser.
Han Solo (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000148/): Even I get boarded sometimes. Do you think I had a choice?
Greedo (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0086685/): You can tell that to Jabba. He may only take your ship.
Han Solo (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000148/): Over my dead body!
Greedo (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0086685/): [he doesn't notice Han going for his gun] That's the idea... I've been looking forward to this for a long time.
Han Solo (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000148/): Yeah, I'll bet you have.
[Han Blows Greedo away]
Han Solo (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000148/): [as Han calmly leaves, he flips the bartender a coin] Sorry about the mess.

The Key phrase being "Over my dead body", and Greedo saying yup I'm gonna do it. If someone is pointing a gun at me then I take that as a threatening posture and actions against that person are self defense, no dark side point.

People put too much emphasis on playing the goodie good guy. I welcome and encourage the dark side in my game. I even have a Sith Apprentice on the Jedi council and he isn't hiding it. The game takes place after RotJ but Vader survives and is turned back to the light side to become Anakin and started a new Jedi council with Luke. Learning from the mistakes of the past the Jedi don't fear the dark side (which in itself is a contradiction) they have invited a known sith to be on the council to study the dark side to better understand it. The players are aware of their actions that will cause them a dark side point. Even my GMPC got a dsp for beheading a captive. The reason being is he hates Trandoshans because one killed his best friend. It is all based on character development and real role playing. My GMPC doesn't like it when he gets angry so he is working with the council to control his anger or embrace it. This creates an inner conflict with the character. This keeps with my style of not interfering with free will and building around characters.


I have found it quite difficult to encourage PCs to "flirt" with the Dark Side. There are very rare situations that I can put the PCs in that will give them DSPs. In my game with 5 9th level PCs I think there is a total of 3 DSPs between them!


For my Jedi character that I play, if it were not for a Dawn of Defiance campaign (where you may not atone) then my character would be going back and forth with the dark side all the time. Even though I am having fun playing the super serious light side Jedi!

Anyone else have any issues in the frequency in which PCs gain DSPs?

It is all about the characters inbreed fear that the dark side is something that should be avoided at all costs. Like I did with my GMPC he is going through a tough loss and using anger to deal with it. Depending on the maturity and RPing skill of the players you can always add more dark themes to the game. Think about things that would make you angry and do that to the players. Or do the opposite; give them someone to love something that goes against tradition. Then combine the two. If the players truly want to play their characters then they should eventually break out of their shells, ignoring it in my opinion is just poor role playing. Oh your mom just got raped and murdered, “oh ok time to go bring the murderer to justice, done.” If the players take that attitude have the murderer taunt the heck out of them and always escape. We are not playing emotionless Vulcans, we are playing Jedi.

Sascha
12-14-2009, 02:29 PM
<lots of text>
Er, yeah.

First thought: "roleplaying" isn't satisfactorily defined for the entire hobby (despite being used to paint games and/or styles one doesn't like as "not roleplaying;" qualifier "real" optional). Adding "good" or "bad", or "mature" values judgements makes it more likely your main argument is glossed over in favor of a definitions debate. (Effective, though, but not entirely productive for discussions like this, methinks.)

That said, what folks want out of a game isn't universal, either; playing the shiny do-gooder is just as valid as the gritty antihero. 'Specially in a setting such as Star Wars, where the lines between Good and Evil are canonically marked by hat color.

Dytrrnikl
12-16-2009, 01:20 AM
People put too much emphasis on playing the goodie good guy. I welcome and encourage the dark side in my game. I even have a Sith Apprentice on the Jedi council and he isn't hiding it. The game takes place after RotJ but Vader survives and is turned back to the light side to become Anakin and started a new Jedi council with Luke. Learning from the mistakes of the past the Jedi don't fear the dark side (which in itself is a contradiction) they have invited a known sith to be on the council to study the dark side to better understand it. The players are aware of their actions that will cause them a dark side point. Even my GMPC got a dsp for beheading a captive. The reason being is he hates Trandoshans because one killed his best friend. It is all based on character development and real role playing. My GMPC doesn't like it when he gets angry so he is working with the council to control his anger or embrace it. This creates an inner conflict with the character. This keeps with my style of not interfering with free will and building around characters.

First, interesting and intriguing idea having a Sith on the council so as to better understand the darkside. Sounds as though there is some influence from the end of the Yushong Vong series with that, but I could be wrong.

My view of the Han Solo/Greedo scene was not wrong, simply a different interpretation that falls within how I happen to handle Star Wars when I run the game. Real life as we all know is all about moral ambiguity and shades of grey, nothing being clearly defined. I play RPGs to get away from that, by having and enforcing clear ideas of what I, the GM, see as being Good and Evil. Shades of Grey and moral ambiguity in my games end up being supportive of the side of evil - essentialloy making my games being the struggle between Good and ever worsening degrees of Evil. Does this mesh with and support canon and expanded universe Star Wars as presented by Lucas and many others...absolutely not. But it has allowed me to find a way to make Star Wars my own, and enjoyable for me and my group.

A Flannel Shirt
12-16-2009, 10:46 PM
Maybe wrong was a bad choice of word.


There are a total of seven people on the council in my game. Luke, Anakin (He is still in the armor but it is white and has a more rounded breath mask) A light side wookie and his former student a light side Draethos, the Sith (PC - Human), a Jedi that specializes in light saber combat (My DMPC - Human) and a cross classed Nobel/Jedi (Human). The NewRepublic has been formed but the Empire is regrouping and a new Emperor is about to be named. The Jedi council is engaged in recapturing a planet that is being occupied by a droid army since the clone wars. The mystery being that no one knows how these droids are still functioning after their remote command ships have been destroyed.


My final thought on the matter is as long as people are consistent with how they do things and it is fun that is all matters.