Tag Archives: rpg

Cause & Effect 14 – The art of the Swindle…

C-3PO_EP2-IA-50348_R_8x10Do you see? Do you see what I have to deal with? He expects me to wear this…

Welcome back to Cause & Effect! Today’s nutshell topic: Swindling. When I was a young lad, my uncle told me a story of how his adventuring party (ad&d) had been swindled by a back alley weapons broker. While it seemed like a good idea at the time. The discounted weapons that they purchased ended up breaking when they needed them most. It made for an enjoyable story to hear and found a cozy spot in my head to call home.

I heavily lifted from the idea for one of my Saga campaigns. Where the Crew met a shady Twi’lek in a back alley, who wanted to sell them discounted med packs. They looked a little beat up, but they were assured (and believed) that the product had simply fell off the back of the delivery truck and had not been stolen (well, okay, maybe a little stolen. But they looked to be in a usable condition and hey, times are tough even for the good guys). Credits being tight as they are, and combat being as dangerous as it is; the Crew purchased a few of these med packs. The rub was that the med packs were damaged/expired/etc. and did not heal as well as a regular priced one.

The above example will maybe work once. Players are a sneaky lot and generally like to be the ones doing the swindling (or at least my players do). This is where you, as a GM, need to get a little sneaky yourself. Role Playing Games are designed (in my opinion) to be a form of co-operative story telling. Use this to your advantage. Swindles can just as easily be sneaked into an idea of the Crew as they can into a random encounter. If the Crew are the ones calling the shots, they may also feel as though they are in control of the situation. With the GM being forced to ‘wing it’, the players may not see the twist coming. For example:

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Cause & Effect 13 – What Kind of Thief Steals From an Old Lady?

“Oh my! I’m so glad that you were able to get my bag back. I was so worried. Oh, oh. Those are some well defined biceps that you have there. Do you work out? My nephew works out, but his arms aren’t as well defined as yours. Oh, silly me. I seem to have knocked my walker over. Could you be a dear and pick that up for me? Don’t worry about proper lifting technique. It’s a light walker. No back straining there. Mmmm, oh my...

Welcome back to Cause & Effect! Today I will be picking the results manually on the table presented in V is for Vignettes. These are my results:

Instigator Thug

Action Steals from

Target Poor Citizen

Escalation Quickly turns into a chase scene

Escalation I is for Illegal goods are involved

If the Crew will not defend the honor of an older Ithorian lady who has a taste for bulging biceps and Kowakian monkey-lizards, then who will?

Age of Rebellion: Beta Update

A quick word that all of my Age of Rebellion Beta Stat Blocks have been updated with the recently released first update.

In addition, I’m releasing my stat blocks for the Age of Rebellion Beta starships now. I’ve had these all done for quite some time now, but was holding back in anticipation of a beta update to help manage the huge amount if dice rolls implied by the rules as written when dealing with large capital starships. That seems to be pushed off onto the far horizon for now, so I’m going ahead and sharing with the word where I’m at in terms of large-scale, apital starship combat. Behold!

NOTES:

The overall goal of these Stat Blocks is to provide as streamlined an experience as possible, for the benefit of overtaxed Galaxy Masters, while still retaining the utmost in accuracy. The following notes should help explain my formatting design and alleviate some confusion.

  1. Abilities and qualities that have a strikethrough (oftentimes the Cumbersome quality) are there to show that some effect has already been integrated into the stat block and can largely be ignored.
  2. Some abilities and qualities, such as those that add Boost to certain skills, are simply eliminated entirely off of the Stat Block with their effect built into the appropriate dice pools, etc. so that the Galaxy Master need never even think about them.
  3. Often on starships, multiple embankments of the same weapon are indicated. Where possible, minion group rules have been used top upgrade the attacks of these weapons instead of requiring a Galaxy Master to make multiple attack rolls.
  4. On rare occasions, all in the capital starships section, an exorbitant number of combat dice are indicated for large weapon batteries. In these cases, instead of upgrading the attack via minion group rules, the attack is instead given a +1 damage increase per gun emplacement beyond the first. Thanks go to FangGrip the Consummate Gamer for the idea.

Age of Rebellion Campaign Settings

AoRWhen reading through the new Age of Rebellion Beta, I can’t help but be reminded of this time last year reading through the brand new, fresh Edge of the Empire Beta. Clearly, there was a wave of excitement brought on just due to the novelty of such a new system. Though perhaps the mechanics basics were in place already with Warhammer Fantasy RPG, the narrative dice system was certainly coming out of left field for me. I feel that Age of Rebellion, however, is still coming up short in the department of inspiration and drive, even accounting for the fact that the mechanics of the system are no longer particularly special. There’s something deeper here. When reading Edge of the Empire, I was overwhelmed with new ideas, was bursting with innovation and creativity, and simply could not hold back on the flood of games I wanted to run and ideas I wanted to share. That is, of course, how this blog got started in the first place. It was simply criminal to let these bubbling ideas go unheard!

I think I’ve finally put my finger on what is making Age of Rebellion fall a little flat for me – player agency.

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Age of Rebellion Beta – Adversaries Stat Blocks

I originally began this post by writing out why I don’t like the “standard” FFG format of stat blocks, why I thought a well-designed stat block is important, and how I would choose to go about doing so. Then I remembered, oh yes that’s right, I had already done this many moths ago. You should read it, here, right now.

Now that the baseline stat blocks for Edge of the Empire are not only complete, but also accurate to the core rulebook, I have focused my attention on slowly piecing together the same treatment for the newly release Age of Rebellion beta. BEHOLD! They are done. In time, starships and vehicles will be presented in the same fashion, likely waiting for at least the first week of Beta Updates.

 

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Cause & Effect 12 – Poaching

Star Wars IV A New Hope

“Tortuga knows where it is. The bad news is that he was captured by the Imperials yesterday. The good news? That they’re transporting him to a secure facility tomorrow. That means there will be a small window to snatch him, while they try to make the move. We get him, extract the intel. Then we get the goods and get paid.

Welcome back to Cause & Effect! Today’s results were randomly rolled on the table presented in V is for Vignettes. These are my results:

Instigator Bounty Hunter

Action Discovers

Target Smuggler

Escalation has unavoidable Imperial entanglements

Escalation A is for Artifact is involved

Poaching is only wrong if you get caught…

EotE Core Update – Stat Blocks

images (1)

UPDATE: All Edge of the Empire Stat Blocks have been completed!

With the chaos of GenCon 2013 now behind us, Triumph & Despair can now get back to providing quality content for our beloved, patient readers. Long-time fan Will Patterson has graciously offered his editing skills and services to help update all of the Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition -style stat blocks from the Edge of the Empire Beta to be in line with the current Core Rulebook. A truly monumental task for which we are most grateful.

Here is Will’s first three entries. Keep an eye out for more stat block revisions, and a few surprises, coming out in the near future

NOTES:

The overall goal of these Stat Blocks is to provide as streamlined an experience as possible, for the benefit of overtaxed Galaxy Masters, while still retaining the utmost in accuracy. The following notes should help explain my formatting design and alleviate some confusion.

  1. Abilities and qualities that have a strikethrough (oftentimes the Cumbersome quality) are there to show that some effect has already been integrated into the stat block and can largely be ignored.
  2. Some abilities and qualities, such as those that add Boost to certain skills, are simply eliminated entirely off of the Stat Block with their effect built into the appropriate dice pools, etc. so that the Galaxy Master need never even think about them.
  3. Often on starships, multiple embankments of teh same weapon are indicated. Where possible, minion group rules have been used top upgrade the attacks of these weapons instead of requiring a Galaxy Master to make multiple attack rolls.
  4. On rare occasions, all in the capital starships section, an exorbitant number of combat dice are indicated for large weapon batteries. In these cases, instead of upgrading the attack via minion group rules, the attack is instead given a +1 damage increase per gun emplacement beyond the first. Thanks go to FangGrip the Consummate Gamer for the idea.