PDA

View Full Version : The Living Force mechanics



Ardent
18 March 2003, 11:04 PM
Well, it's been brewing for a while. But I just need to vent a bit.

While I usually don't attack people's work, I have to say that I've seen a steady stream of terrible mechanics eminating from the RPGA, at least for Star Wars RPG (I haven't even looked at the D&D one lately).

I know I'm not alone in my opinion, and it really burns me that it continues to occur. I can't believe they haven't had so much negative feedback that they'd stop or clean up their act or something.

Okay...I think I'm feeling better now...

Satyrgrrrrl
19 March 2003, 09:47 AM
Originally posted by Ardent
Well, it's been brewing for a while. But I just need to vent a bit.

While I usually don't attack people's work, I have to say that I've seen a steady stream of terrible mechanics eminating from the RPGA, at least for Star Wars RPG (I haven't even looked at the D&D one lately).

I know I'm not alone in my opinion, and it really burns me that it continues to occur. I can't believe they haven't had so much negative feedback that they'd stop or clean up their act or something.

Okay...I think I'm feeling better now...

While I enjoy a good rant as much as the next gamer, could you be a little more specific?

Like, what is it that makes you so angry? Which mechanics?

It'll help me understand, and perhaps empathize with your rant.

Thanks

Jim Williams
19 March 2003, 10:01 AM
Satyrlgrrrl, this reverse engineered extrapolation of the Jedi Artisan PrC is a fine example...In particular note the bonus feats and the now predicted note that 5 levels of Jedi Artisan count as 1 Master level to meet the prerequisites for Instructor. Only Artisan though, not (breathes in deeply) Jedi Healer, Scholar, Weapon Master, Investigator, or Ace. Or they just made a mistake in the write-up.


Jedi Artisan

Hit Die: d8 + con
Skill Points per level: 4 + Int modifier

BAB: +1, +2, +3, +4, +5
Fort: +0, +0, +1, +1, +1
Ref: +2, +2, +3, +3, +4
Will: +2, +2, +3, +3, +4
Defense: +1, +2, +2, +3, +3
Rep: +1, +1, +2, +2, +2

SQs
1st: Bonus feat, Mastercraft lightsaber (+1)
2nd: Deflect (defense)
3rd: Bonus feat, Increase lightsaber damage, Mastercraft lightsaber (+2)
4th: Deflect (attack), Material mastery
5th: Bonus feat, Mastercraft lightsaber (+3)

Evik_Blastrider
19 March 2003, 01:06 PM
I too would like more specifics on what Ardent is referring to.

I am more appalled by LFs poor writing/plotting. But that is a standard complaint for RPGA modules.

One thing they did right: In LF, stun weapons have NO effect unless the character fails the save. The reason this is so necessary is that some character carried a satchel of stun grenades. These things are really unbalancing in RCRB. I ran a fight with an Acklay and they killed it in the one round it was stunned from a grenade. The group was pretty low powered and it should have been a tough combat. And pretty much any character can be profficient with grenades (simple weapons). Also, players (esp. Jedi) hated being hit with a stun bolt that made them drop their stuff.

Ardent
19 March 2003, 01:34 PM
I've always been a critic of RPGA module mechanics, but I usually kept it to myself but the Jedi Artisan thing was the last straw. What this PrC does, effectively, is provide munchkins with everything they need to annoy the crap out of their GM. Mastercraft lightsabers, circumventing the requirements for Jedi Instructor with no visible or viable mechanics, bonus feats out the yin yang...

There's something to be said for artisitc license, and then there's RPGA which makes artistic nuclear war on the establishment. It's getting very old. I love d20 mechanics. I especially love watching it evolve as new products are released. Which makes me despise what RPGA does even more.

The writing/plotting isn't nearly as bad as the blatant disregard for existing mechanics and the work of the Designers to balance the game system. I'm shocked WotC even continues to acknowledge the RPGA as an official source.

Satyrgrrrrl
19 March 2003, 01:47 PM
Ok, I appreciate your rant.

Now, let me play Devil's Advocate for a moment:

Where is the Jedi Artisan posted?

Is that the actual class, or is that just what you reverse-engineered? Because, no offense, you could be wrong if it is. It could be a 10-level PrC.

If it's the actual class, you have every right to be po'd.

But, you always have the option of not including it.

And, that's only one example. Evik made a nice point about the stun weapons... I didn't know Living Force did that, but I do it that way, and I use Living Force's rules for Vitality.

If there are other things that you don't like, I'd like to hear more.

Just keep taking deep breaths, and have fun with the stuff you do like.

:D

Ardent
19 March 2003, 01:55 PM
You know, the Koreans build cars based on information gathered from reverse-engineering Hondas. They're called Hyundais. ;)

There's always a margin of error in reverse engineering, but trust me, you can tell this PrC packs far too much into far too little space.

You can find Felanil Baaks, Jedi Artisan here (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=starwars/livingforce/swlf20030313baaks).

Give it a go reverse engineering it yourself. Paul Klein and I both did and our results pretty much show how ridiculous it is.

Satyrgrrrrl
19 March 2003, 02:02 PM
Originally posted by Ardent
You know, the Koreans build cars based on information gathered from reverse-engineering Hondas. They're called Hyundais. ;)

There's always a margin of error in reverse engineering, but trust me, you can tell this PrC packs far too much into far too little space.

You can find Felanil Baaks, Jedi Artisan here (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=starwars/livingforce/swlf20030313baaks).

Give it a go reverse engineering it yourself. Paul Klein and I both did and our results pretty much show how ridiculous it is.

Okay, it's a poorly-designed PrC. Others come to mind as well (most notably, Jedi Weapon Master :raised: ). My point is, make it work or eliminate it, no one is making anyone use the Living Force rules.

Also, that one PrC is still the only example you've given as to the crappiness of the Living Force mechanics.

One more thing: I am just playing Devil's Advocate, so I can help make what sense of you both have said, and understand your argument better.

Ardent
19 March 2003, 02:11 PM
I'm not really interested in thumbing through all of the modules to find more examples, but someone may be. It happens every once in a while when I get bored and decide to look at one. I'm not sure why RPGA has so much difficult with mechanics, there are plenty of well-versed people on the Holonet, and most of them aren't paid RPG designers.

Of course, I suppose, mechanics aren't usually inclined to write adventure modules, but it doesn't mean they couldn't be consulted on one. It's just one of those things that when I see it, it irks me and when I don't, it doesn't.

Satyrgrrrrl
19 March 2003, 02:13 PM
Originally posted by Ardent
I'm not really interested in thumbing through all of the modules to find more examples, but someone may be. It happens every once in a while when I get bored and decide to look at one. I'm not sure why RPGA has so much difficult with mechanics, there are plenty of well-versed people on the Holonet, and most of them aren't paid RPG designers.

Of course, I suppose, mechanics aren't usually inclined to write adventure modules, but it doesn't mean they couldn't be consulted on one. It's just one of those things that when I see it, it irks me and when I don't, it doesn't.

Fair 'nuff. I guess that's what this board is for (Rants).

Thanks for working with me. :D

Jim Williams
19 March 2003, 03:30 PM
Hey, if a mob can't be inflamed to violence with just one excuse, life is not worth living. Ardent, my men and I are ready to storm the barricades with you over the travesty of just one PrC. <shing>To Arms!

(We'll run if an Artisan is manning said barricade, however)

Ardent
19 March 2003, 03:49 PM
Originally posted by Jim Williams
(We'll run if an Artisan is manning said barricade, however)

Wisely said, my friend. Wisely said.

Nova Spice
21 March 2003, 01:35 PM
I'd like to add to Ardent and Jim's tirade; the RPGA has some very poorly developed game mechanics as well. The whole d4 (Tech Spec, Noble, Scoundrel) d6 (Scout, Jedi Consular, Force Adept, Fringer) d8 (Jedi Guardian, Soldier) vitality die situation is ridiculous. IMO, I feel that it provides an unrealistic representation of the vitality system as a whole.

Now, where's my riot shield? Onward brothers! Charge! :mad: