[FFG] Edge of the Empire

'A long time ago in a galaxy far far away..." Discuss the Star Wars campaign setting, as it relates to pen & paper RPGs, here.
Post Reply
User avatar
shesheyan
Cardboard Hero
Posts: 2573
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 3:58 pm
Gender: male
Location: Montreal

[FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by shesheyan » Mon Dec 31, 2018 5:56 pm

So, reading my latest acquisition.

I skipped the dice mechanic system which is presented at the beginning of the book after a short overview of Star Wars, the Edge of the Empire and what is a role playing game. I'll come back to it later.

The first part of character creation is background related. You have to choose an Origin (background) and Obligation (a debt - monetary or psychological) which must guide your character's actions during play. These things to not grant any gaming bonuses but most be role played if the player wants to receive all possible XPs at the end of the session.

Attributes are not rolled. Brawn, Agility, Intellect, Cunning, Willpower, Presence. They are determined by your race (droid frame). Race determines the starting XP budget. It gives special abilities and a unique ability like Wookie Rage for some races. Races gives bonuses to Wound Threshold Bonus (Hit Points), starting Strain Threshold (Mental Health).

Character creation is a crossbreed between a class system and a skill system. There are 22 general skills. 5 combat skills and 7 Knowledge skills. The character sheet offers a section for custom skills.

First you choose a Career (class), then you choose one of three specializations available for that Career. For exemple, if you choose Bounty Hunter as a Career you can select either Assassin, Gadgeteer or Survivalist as a Specialization. You then choose 2 out of 4 Specialization skills.

Each Specialization also has a Talent Tree. First level Talents cost 5XPs to buy, 2-Level 10Xps. 3-level 15xp, 20, 25. Some Talent are Passive (no action cost) others are Active. The Talent Trees are presented in a clear visual design with boxes and arrows. It's very easy to understand and see which Talent to choose next depending on where you want your character to evolve.

Invest Experience : During this step you spend your Starting XPs in one of 4 ways. Improve Attributes, Skill Training, Acquiring Talents, Acquiring Specializations. Obviously there are caps to what a starting character can have to avoid abusive decisions by players.

Determine Derived Attributes :
- Wound Threshold Bonus or Hit Points
- Strain Threshold is Mental Health or Stress
- Defense is how difficult a character is to hit using Armor, defensive positions and some Talents
- Soak Value is much incoming damage a character can shrug off. Damage not soaked is deducted from Wound Threshold.

Motivations : Whereas Obligation gives a concrete goal to the character Motivations defines what makes him «tick». You can roll randomly or choose from a table. A character will have a specific ambition, a specific cause and a specific relationship.

Gear and Appearance : The usual stuff. You start with 500 credits, a total that can be increased by taking additional Obligations.

Starship : Characters start with a starship. They must decide together during session 0 which type of ship it will be.
Last edited by shesheyan on Tue Jan 01, 2019 4:00 pm, edited 3 times in total.

User avatar
Big Mac
Giant Space Hamster
Posts: 25256
Joined: Sun Jun 15, 2008 3:52 pm
Gender: male
Location: London UK
Contact:

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by Big Mac » Tue Jan 01, 2019 10:00 am

shesheyan wrote:
Mon Dec 31, 2018 5:56 pm
Stats are not rolled. They are determined by your race (droid frame). You can upgrade them with XP points you can spend during character creation.
You actually have XP when you start the game? :?
David "Big Mac" Shepheard
Please join The Piazza's Facebook group, The Piazza's Facebook page and follow The Piazza's Twitter feed so that you can stay in touch.
Spelljammer 3E Conversion Project - Spelljammer Wiki - The Spelljammer Image Group.
Moderator of the Spelljammer forum (and administrator). My moderator voice is green.

User avatar
Havard
Dragon Turtle
Posts: 20211
Joined: Thu May 22, 2008 7:32 pm
Gender: male
Location: Norway
Contact:

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by Havard » Tue Jan 01, 2019 12:00 pm

Thanks for the insight on this games Shesheyan! I actually bought this game ages ago, but was turned off by the core mechanics that took some time to wrap my head around. One of my friends who has actually played the game says it plays quite well though, so I would probably join a face to face game if I had the chance :)

Aliases: Håvard Frosta, Havard Blackmoor, Blackmoorian, Dragon Turtle etc
Where to find me on the Web
The Comeback Inn - My Blackmoor Forum
The Blackmoor Blog
THRESHOLD Magazine - The Mystara Fanzine
My Articles at the Vaults of Pandius
Moderator of the Mystara, Blackmoor and Thunder Rift forums.
My moderator voice is
GREEN.

User avatar
shesheyan
Cardboard Hero
Posts: 2573
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 3:58 pm
Gender: male
Location: Montreal

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by shesheyan » Tue Jan 01, 2019 1:07 pm

Big Mac wrote:
Tue Jan 01, 2019 10:00 am
shesheyan wrote:
Mon Dec 31, 2018 5:56 pm
Stats are not rolled. They are determined by your race (droid frame). You can upgrade them with XP points you can spend during character creation.
You actually have XP when you start the game? :?
Yes XPs are a ressource you use to gain ranks and new skills. Think of them as character building points. After each game you spend the XPs you receive to increase you skills. Gaining ranks gets more expensive with each step.

User avatar
shesheyan
Cardboard Hero
Posts: 2573
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 3:58 pm
Gender: male
Location: Montreal

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by shesheyan » Tue Jan 01, 2019 1:16 pm

Havard wrote:
Tue Jan 01, 2019 12:00 pm
Thanks for the insight on this games Shesheyan! I actually bought this game ages ago, but was turned off by the core mechanics that took some time to wrap my head around. One of my friends who has actually played the game says it plays quite well though, so I would probably join a face to face game if I had the chance :)
Thanks. Rereading myself I see missed a few things in my original post - derived attributes mainly. I will update the OP later.

I find the Character Creation is the place to start reading a RPG. I want to know what is the power level of starting characters and how they evolve. If I don't like what I read I don't go any further. Character creation in EoTE is very short - 15-20 minutes - despite the fact it's a skill base system.

I read the dice mechanic pages but don't want to comment on it yet. We will be playing our first game soon. I'm lucky enough to have three players who understand and like the narrative dice mechanic.

User avatar
shesheyan
Cardboard Hero
Posts: 2573
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 3:58 pm
Gender: male
Location: Montreal

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by shesheyan » Tue Jan 01, 2019 3:58 pm

I've updated the OP with a more complete overview.

User avatar
Tim Baker
Axe Beak
Posts: 2375
Joined: Tue Jan 19, 2016 7:51 am
Gender: male
Location: United States
Contact:

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by Tim Baker » Wed Jan 02, 2019 3:55 am

Thanks for the overview. The important question is, does it make you want to play the game?

User avatar
shesheyan
Cardboard Hero
Posts: 2573
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 3:58 pm
Gender: male
Location: Montreal

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by shesheyan » Wed Jan 02, 2019 12:30 pm

Tim Baker wrote:
Wed Jan 02, 2019 3:55 am
Thanks for the overview. The important question is, does it make you want to play the game?
Yes... and I'm the GM! :lol:

User avatar
shesheyan
Cardboard Hero
Posts: 2573
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 3:58 pm
Gender: male
Location: Montreal

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by shesheyan » Wed Jan 02, 2019 2:03 pm

The narrative dice system - Part one

The NDS is a dice pool system. Instead creating a pool of d6s you create a pool with icon dice. There are three types of dice :

TASK RESOLUTION DICE :
- d8 (or d12)

DIFFICULTY LEVEL :
- d8 (or d12)

ENVIRONMENTAL MODIFIERS:
- d6 positive
- d6 negative

Step 1 : Resolution Dice
You take as many d8 Resolution dice as the highest score between the Ability or Skill used. Ex. : if you have Intel 3 and Computer 2 you take 3d8 task dice because your Intel is the highest.

Because you have an applicable skill, to the task at hand, you upgrade some of the d8 to d12 to better your chance of success. In this case with Computer 2 you upgrade 2 of the original d8 (produced by Intel) into 2d12. For the roll you now have 1d8+2d12

Step 2 : Difficulty Level
The GM determines the difficulty level of the task. 0 (simple) to level 5 (daunting). The player adds that many d8 difficulty dice to his pool. When rolled these will cancel out success symbols of the resolution dice. These can be upgraded to d12 difficulty dice by some game parameters. Thus making it harder to succeed.

Step 3 : Environmental Modifiers
Having a passcode to enter a computer's files is a positive modifier so you add 1d6 Positive dice. Having a broken arm at the same time is a negative modifier so you add 1d6 Negative modifier.

Step 4 : Upgrading, Downgrading, Adding and Removing
Talents and other game parameters can intervene to upgrade, downgrade, add or remove dice. This step is done last in a specific order.

Now that the pool is constructed the player rolls.

____

Thoughts :
It's just a different way of determine the Target Number, the Difficulty Level, Rules and Environmental modifiers. Instead of saying you need to beat DC 15 to run on a narrow metal ledge (-1) while its raining (-1) but you have magnetic boots (+2). You build the pool using three types of dice.

But why would you want to use this system?
It all looks very complicated for nothing at first. The major difference with a regular dice pool is the use of icon dice. It allows for narrative interpretation of the result. I'll talk about this in Part Two.
Last edited by shesheyan on Thu Jan 03, 2019 12:43 am, edited 3 times in total.

User avatar
Big Mac
Giant Space Hamster
Posts: 25256
Joined: Sun Jun 15, 2008 3:52 pm
Gender: male
Location: London UK
Contact:

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by Big Mac » Wed Jan 02, 2019 7:09 pm

shesheyan wrote:
Tue Jan 01, 2019 1:07 pm
Big Mac wrote:
Tue Jan 01, 2019 10:00 am
shesheyan wrote:
Mon Dec 31, 2018 5:56 pm
Stats are not rolled. They are determined by your race (droid frame). You can upgrade them with XP points you can spend during character creation.
You actually have XP when you start the game? :?
Yes XPs are a ressource you use to gain ranks and new skills. Think of them as character building points. After each game you spend the XPs you receive to increase you skills. Gaining ranks gets more expensive with each step.
Thanks for that.

Spending XP individually, is a big contrast to D&D, where you stack them all up in one place in order to buy one level (and then get a package based on that character class).

Does this mean that there are no levels in Edge of Empire?
David "Big Mac" Shepheard
Please join The Piazza's Facebook group, The Piazza's Facebook page and follow The Piazza's Twitter feed so that you can stay in touch.
Spelljammer 3E Conversion Project - Spelljammer Wiki - The Spelljammer Image Group.
Moderator of the Spelljammer forum (and administrator). My moderator voice is green.

User avatar
shesheyan
Cardboard Hero
Posts: 2573
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 3:58 pm
Gender: male
Location: Montreal

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by shesheyan » Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:59 pm

Big Mac wrote:
Wed Jan 02, 2019 7:09 pm
Does this mean that there are no levels in Edge of Empire?
There are no «levels». Players are free to upgrade and buy what they want at the end of each gaming session with their newly earned XPs.

User avatar
Sharkbelly
Bugbear
Posts: 160
Joined: Mon May 22, 2017 8:31 am
Gender: male

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by Sharkbelly » Mon Jan 28, 2019 1:27 am

Just like there were no levels in the D6 RPG. You just used skill points to make your character better at things.

User avatar
shesheyan
Cardboard Hero
Posts: 2573
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 3:58 pm
Gender: male
Location: Montreal

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by shesheyan » Tue Mar 19, 2019 4:42 pm

I've decided to abandon this system. The icon dice are part of my decision but mostly because the game forces on me background events with at die roll at the beginning of each game. The players make a roll and its triggers background related events during the session. I don't mind improvising background elements during sessions but being told how and when is just not for me. Its just too disruptive for my taste.

User avatar
Tim Baker
Axe Beak
Posts: 2375
Joined: Tue Jan 19, 2016 7:51 am
Gender: male
Location: United States
Contact:

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by Tim Baker » Tue Mar 19, 2019 6:53 pm

shesheyan wrote:
Tue Mar 19, 2019 4:42 pm
I've decided to abandon this system. The icon dice are part of my decision but mostly because the game forces on me background events with at die roll at the beginning of each game. The players make a roll and its triggers background related events during the session. I don't mind improvising background elements during sessions but being told how and when is just not for me. Its just too disruptive for my taste.
Would it be possible to simply ignore this mechanic? Does it tie into other mechanics where it's not that simple? I've never played EotE myself, and am not trying to convince you one way or another – I'm just curious to better understand how severe an issue this is, or if it could be worked around.

User avatar
shesheyan
Cardboard Hero
Posts: 2573
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 3:58 pm
Gender: male
Location: Montreal

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by shesheyan » Tue Mar 19, 2019 7:14 pm

Tim Baker wrote:
Tue Mar 19, 2019 6:53 pm
shesheyan wrote:
Tue Mar 19, 2019 4:42 pm
I've decided to abandon this system. The icon dice are part of my decision but mostly because the game forces on me background events with at die roll at the beginning of each game. The players make a roll and its triggers background related events during the session. I don't mind improvising background elements during sessions but being told how and when is just not for me. Its just too disruptive for my taste.
Would it be possible to simply ignore this mechanic? Does it tie into other mechanics where it's not that simple? I've never played EotE myself, and am not trying to convince you one way or another – I'm just curious to better understand how severe an issue this is, or if it could be worked around.
Characters gain bonuses (talents/skills) for background elements that can interfere in their adventuring lives. The harsher, the more bonuses you get. Ignoring it would break the game's character creation economy too much.

As I've said before in another thread. My years of tailoring rpg systems are well behind me. Modern AGE is 100% perfect for me at this juncture of my GM life.
Last edited by shesheyan on Tue Mar 19, 2019 7:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Tim Baker
Axe Beak
Posts: 2375
Joined: Tue Jan 19, 2016 7:51 am
Gender: male
Location: United States
Contact:

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by Tim Baker » Tue Mar 19, 2019 7:15 pm

shesheyan wrote:
Tue Mar 19, 2019 7:14 pm
Characters gain bonuses (talents/skills) for background elements that can interfere in their adventuring lives. The harsher, the more bonuses you get. Ignoring it would break the game's character creation economy too much.

As I've said before in another thread. My years of tailoring rpg systems are well behind me. Modern AGE is 100% perfect for me at this juncture of my GM life.
That makes sense. Thanks for explaining it.

User avatar
shesheyan
Cardboard Hero
Posts: 2573
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 3:58 pm
Gender: male
Location: Montreal

Re: [FFG] Edge of the Empire

Post by shesheyan » Wed Mar 20, 2019 11:33 am

Tim Baker wrote:
Tue Mar 19, 2019 7:15 pm
shesheyan wrote:
Tue Mar 19, 2019 7:14 pm
Characters gain bonuses (talents/skills) for background elements that can interfere in their adventuring lives. The harsher, the more bonuses you get. Ignoring it would break the game's character creation economy too much.

As I've said before in another thread. My years of tailoring rpg systems are well behind me. Modern AGE is 100% perfect for me at this juncture of my GM life.
That makes sense. Thanks for explaining it.
Thank you. Just to be clear. I don't think it's a bad system. It is very well design with good internal logic. It forces the players and the GM to actually use the background of the characters for narrative purposes. If you are new to RPGs this is a great learning tool but for old dogs like me, who do these things by reflex, it's too disruptive and doesn't feel organic. ;)

Post Reply

Return to “Star Wars”