Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

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EinBein
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Re: Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

Post by EinBein » 16 Jul 2017, 16:02

page 3 wrote:Dice only enter the equation when there is a conflict that needs to be resolved and there is something is at stake.
Something is strange about the end of that sentence. An "is" too much?
Last edited by EinBein on 17 Jul 2017, 00:51, edited 1 time in total.
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thirtythr33
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Re: Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

Post by thirtythr33 » 16 Jul 2017, 22:37

nemedeus wrote:regarding "base TN" vs "BTN", was "bTN" considered? Seems like the more clear option to me.

either way, personally I'd prefer "base TN" being used everywhere.
You're probably right. BTN and BTV are too close for comfort for me.

Also, I'd like to acknowledged a really great design choice that is probably going to be underrated by most people.

Tapping Attributes, Traits, Drives, Help etc is a lot of bonuses from a lot of different places. Most games would put each of these in each of their respective sections scattered around the book. That means you either have to memorize the entire book or are constantly flipping around trying to find what bonuses you can get for your situation.

(By comparison, BOB had Working Together in the Contests section, Expertise, Associated Skills and Tools in the Skills section, Defaulting in the Proficiencies section, SAs in the SAs section, Reach in the melee section, Aiming in the ranged section and Advantage/Disadvantage is strewn out between Skills, Maneuvers and other places).

By having a single chapter "Getting more dice" and putting EVERY SINGLE WAY you can get bonuses in the SAME PLACE is beautiful design. Now if I come up to a really difficult Req6 task I know that I'm going to have to squeeze out every dice I can, I just need to look in one place. Clean, simple, efficient.

The only things I think might be missing here are Advantage & Disadvantage, even though it technically isn't "more dice", and Reach & Aim for combat. The adv/dis section in the "assigning TNs" section describes what adv/dis is and the mechanics of them, but not how to get them. In the "more dice" section a adv/dis paragraph would just explain you can get adv/dis by: Positioning, Stunts, Prone or incorporating the established fiction... etc without explaining the full systems. Likewise, you can explain that "reach control gives 2 dice in combat", leaving the details to be explained in Melee. These paragraphs would be more about jogging the memory of someone who has read the full rules rather than explaining how they work fully. You could also put pain killing medicine here too, if that were a thing.

I can see why you wouldn't want to put all the combat stuff (prone, stunts, reach) in this section, but a note that you can get Advantage/Disadvantage to Ability tests from good fiction positioning is at least worth a Footnote Box in the Getting More Dice Section.
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EinBein
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Re: Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

Post by EinBein » 17 Jul 2017, 02:47

Table p7 shows no "compromise" at "bare success" r0.

Ties p9 says it is considered a bare success and "may" cause compromises. Any help for newbies when exactly a compromise is caused? I understand that the definition of a compromise is to be included in chapter 0?
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Benedict
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Re: Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

Post by Benedict » 17 Jul 2017, 02:49

EinBein wrote:Ties p9 says it is considered a bare success and "may" cause compromises. Any help for newbies when exactly a compromise is caused? I understand that the definition of a compromise is to be included in chapter 0?
I believe that Chapter 0 will cover all these issues, like nomenclature, math, etc.
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EinBein
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Re: Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

Post by EinBein » 17 Jul 2017, 03:04

Benedict wrote:
EinBein wrote:Ties p9 says it is considered a bare success and "may" cause compromises. Any help for newbies when exactly a compromise is caused? I understand that the definition of a compromise is to be included in chapter 0?
I believe that Chapter 0 will cover all these issues, like nomenclature, math, etc.
I was also concerned with the seeming discrepancy between p7 and p9, but maybe compromises only occur in contests... but weren't complications a default at r0 successes in BoB?

Anyways, sorry for posting a single entry per finding, I'm in the bus on my way to the office and have some time to flip through the pages and comment...

It's common sense to most gamers, but all examples of contests are with identical abilities (Brawn, Will) and no mentioning of contests with different abilities occur (Perception vs Stealth). Maybe some help for newbies at this point (or system-switchers).
p9 last sentence wrote:Compare your remaining successes to the opponent's remaining successes. The result is the victor's MoS.
This just isn't precise. The result of comparison? I know it has been defined on p8, but maybe you should repeat the same definition. Instead of just "compare" say the "difference" of the two is the MoS.
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Re: Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

Post by Benedict » 17 Jul 2017, 03:07

EinBein wrote:but maybe compromises only occur in contests... but weren't complications a default at r0 successes in BoB?
MoF0/MoS0 Compromise
MoF1 Minor Complication
MoF3 Major Complication


I should clarify:
MoS-3: Fail + Major Complication
MoS-1: Fail + Minor Complication
MoS0: Succees + either Compromise or Minor Complication (GM choice). Opposed is Tie.

Tie: Favors the Agressor with Compromise. Specifically for Combat Attack misses but Agressor keeps Initiative.
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EinBein
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Re: Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

Post by EinBein » 17 Jul 2017, 04:32

But that was BoB. I don't see such a clear wording in SaS anymore?
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Re: Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

Post by Benedict » 17 Jul 2017, 04:40

Indeed.

While the pg11 (pdf numbering) Table: Margin of Success/Failure doesn't say anything about Complications/Compromises but the scale remains the same with BoB (-3 -1 0 1 3 5), I guesstimate that it functions just like BoB.

I believe these would be added both in Ch0 and in the table in question with the next revision.
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Siggi
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Re: Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

Post by Siggi » 17 Jul 2017, 07:18

thirtythr33 wrote: The only things I think might be missing here are Advantage & Disadvantage, even though it technically isn't "more dice", and Reach & Aim for combat. The adv/dis section in the "assigning TNs" section describes what adv/dis is and the mechanics of them, but not how to get them. <***>

I can see why you wouldn't want to put all the combat stuff (prone, stunts, reach) in this section, but a note that you can get Advantage/Disadvantage to Ability tests from good fiction positioning is at least worth a Footnote Box in the Getting More Dice Section.
That's exactly what I wanted to point out. Getting More Dice section goes into some detail on how to, well, get more dice. And Advantages/Disadvantages are barely mentioned.

A couple of words about Tapping. This mechanic appears to be well described but presented as it is it would certainly cause some confusion. And here's why.

First, rules say that players may tap abilities to increase their dice pool. But then we see that
It isn’t assumed that players will be able to
tap something on every test they encounter.

Believe me, guys, it is assumed so by the players. I've seen players and I know what some of them would do: they'd min-max their abilities to have two or three at 7+ (tap value 2) and then they'll try and tap them on every single test. "Normal" players wouldn't min-max, but they'll also try to tap something every time they roll. And when prevented from doing so they'll be asking "Why not?" And I'll have a hard time giving them explanations and, what more important, deciding, whether tapping is appropriate or not in any given situation, because the guidelines for it are vague, to say the least.

Tapping Attributes section on p.31 doesn't make things any easier. Having high Perception probably does make you better at Larceny, but you can't tap it. Conversely, brutal strength does not make you better at Larceny, but you may tap it when you're breaking a lock. This example only makes matters worse if you ask me. For instance, why not roll Brawn to break a lock in the first place?

I am exaggerating, of course, but such questions will arise inevitably during play. And that's why I believe that more specific guidelines are needed for this. Or you may drop the tapping restrictions: that would solve the problem, make players happy and the system – unbalanced.
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EinBein
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Re: Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

Post by EinBein » 17 Jul 2017, 08:43

page 12 wrote:Cascading checks are a bit riskier and more time consuming, but can leverage the strengths of a greater number of characters and provide more dice overall. Finally, only the last roll in the chain suffers any kind of complications, allowing characters to participate in prior rolls without risk.
I know the thinking behind this, but it reads a bit awkward when the same word is used twice in the same context, but once as an advantage and once as a disadvantage.

Maybe something like:
page 12 wrote:Cascading checks bear the risk of a downward spiral if things go wrong in the beginning and are more time consuming, but can leverage the strengths of a greater number of characters and provide more dice overall. Finally, only the last roll in the chain suffers any kind of complications, avoiding further negative repercussions for failed prior rolls.
(though I'm no native speaker, so any proposal might in turn sound awkward to you guys)

Edit:
still page 12, section Tools wrote:When characters have tools above and beyond the minimum required for the test, the the GM may reward bonus dice for the conflict at hand.
Edit-Edit: Just saw 33 had it already, just with his +4 page count.
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EinBein
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Re: Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

Post by EinBein » 17 Jul 2017, 15:53

33 wrote:How do I make an enemy? Relationships are only phrased in a way that the character will help. Why not add a negative relationship option? Is it intentionally removed because enemies have a habit of dying, and relationships are meant to stay stable?
You can choose...
p49 wrote:In an an antagonistic relationship with the PC.
...for -2 Points.

Error:
p49 1-point choice for Character has... wrote:Some minor of amount of power, resources, or influence in the setting. Wealthy merchant, ship's captain, head of a local criminal group.

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Benedict
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Re: Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

Post by Benedict » 17 Jul 2017, 15:56

Yes, we saw that, when we were trying to recreate Ferran who had the Enemy flaw. The problem is that with Relationship trait you get an NPC who will do things for you. The antagonistic relationship discount just makes it harder for you to get the favor done. Still, he's an ally or contact, not an enemy like the BoB flaw.

For reference:
Bastards wrote:Somewhere in the character’s life they have earned the enmity or hatred of another who now works for their ruin. Work with the GM to create an NPC whose ire the character has earned.
The minor version of this flaw implies a nemesis that has resources and skills no greater than the character, though they may have more contacts. The minor Enemy works for the ruin of the character’s reputation and fortune but does not actively seek their life unless the conflict escalates.
The major version of this flaw represents an enemy with resources, skills, and contacts far greater than the character. The major Enemy actively works for the complete ruin or murder of the character and needs little excuse to endanger or kill their friends and loved ones as well.
I can see various Physical (Lame, Elderly), Social (Poor, Outsider), and mental (Temper, Uncompromising) Flaws being represented by Traits that can be Tempted. Not so with Enemy.
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thirtythr33
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Re: Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

Post by thirtythr33 » 17 Jul 2017, 21:18

The only way I can see for a player to 100% guarantee an enemy is to make a Drive like "Survive Rocco's wrath."

Enemies don't really fit with the new trait system. The new traits are all beneficial, and enemies aren't (They won't help you and you can't generate Drive Points by interacting with them), so you kind of waste those character points, especially once the enemy dies.
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Re: Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

Post by Agamemnon » 17 Jul 2017, 22:14

I've been paying attention to this thread. I'm just making sure I get other stuff done before I dig into it all and start acting on it.
thirtythr33 wrote:The only way I can see for a player to 100% guarantee an enemy is to make a Drive like "Survive Rocco's wrath."

Enemies don't really fit with the new trait system. The new traits are all beneficial, and enemies aren't (They won't help you and you can't generate Drive Points by interacting with them), so you kind of waste those character points, especially once the enemy dies.
It'd be easy enough to just add a line that said that allowed you to buy an enemy as a relationship, but ThirtyThr33 has the right of it. The reason we can argue that you pay for character traits that would otherwise count as "Flaws" is because they are actually very beneficial in terms of earning drive points. This wouldn't work for an enemy unless the idea was to give you a drive point every time that enemy messed with you. That kind of goes against the voluntary nature of playing up or tempting traits, though.

Further, while a relationship is purchased and relatively fixed/safe (the GM can't willy-nilly kill off your contacts, short of you doing something that would actually get them killed), giving you an enemy is basically begging for you to kill that character. Again, here I agree with ThirtyThr33.

I'm open to suggestions on the topic, if anyone has ideas on a way to make this actually useful.
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Re: Beta feedback: Initiation and Character Creation

Post by myanbar » 18 Jul 2017, 00:31

I like either base TN or BTN. Lowercase bTN looks weird.

And yeah, Grand Heresy Press guys, just ctrl+F your book for every instance of "it's" and "its" and make sure you've got the proper word there. This typo occurs multiple times in S&S and it's very annoying.
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