Kyber crystals – Stygium crystal

Rarer than a selfless, altruistic and pacifist Hutt, these crystals are extremely difficult to find and locate, even where they are supposed to exist.

While the crystal is a key component in cloaking devices, some (even rarer) Stygium crystals can also be attuned to force users and be used in lightsabers. Legends tell of these crystals bestowing great powers of illusion upon the wielder.

Stygium crystal

Stygium Crystal
Exceedingly rare by the time of the Empire, this strictly regulated crystal sometimes appear in such a pure state that it can be used in a lightsaber. The blade produced by this crystal is all but silent and the edge of the energy blade seems blurred.

Base Modifiers: Installing this crystal changes a lightsaber’s base damage to 7 and critical rating to 3, and the lightsaber gains the Breach 1 and Sunder weapon qualities. Additionally an attuned wielder of the lightsaber gains Indistinguishable +1. If the crystal is removed, the lightsaber loses those qualities and reverts to its previous base damage and critical rating.
Modification Options: 1 Item Quality (Vicious +1) Mod, 1 when the lightsaber is lit increase level of concealment by one (see page 219 FaD CRB) Mod, 2 Item Quality (Disorient +1) Mods, 1 Item Quality (Ensnare +1; Discipline check to break free, not Athletics) Mod.
Hard Points Required: 3
Cost/Rarity: 16,000/15R

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Kyber crystals – Bondar crystal

It’s been asked about on the Order 66 podcast and elsewhere. How do you make a “proper” lightsaber that is non-lethals, but more than a “mere” training saber?

Of course the question is if there’s any need. Also, should it do just stun damage or should it be a low-damage lightsaber with Pierce 5 and perhaps the Stun (active) quality?

It is no secret that it can provide players (and GMs) more satisfaction if there’s a crystal involved because that means questing. A training emitter is both cheap and readily available.

So then we look to the bondar crystal, that first appeared (I believe) in KOTOR.

What we know is that it can stun targets, but does it only inflict stun damage?

Below are two different takes on the bondar kyber crystal. While I’d prefer to settle on one, presenting two options can also perhaps give me an idea of which route is preferred and could be settled on (in other words: feedback people. If you can be bothered.)

Bondar Crystal [non-lethal]

The bondar kyber crystal served as the inspiration for making training emitters. These crystals produce a blade capable of stunning their targets.
Base Modifiers: Installing this crystal changes a lightsaber’s base damage to 6 and critical rating to -, and the lightsaber gains the Stun 1, Stun Damage and Sunder weapon qualities. If the crystal is removed, the lightsaber loses those qualities and reverts to its previous base damage and critical rating.
Modifications: 2 Item Quality (Stun +2) Mod.
Hard Points Required: 2
Cost/Rarity: 8,500 credits/10 (R)

Bondar crystal (from http://starwars.wikia.com/wiki/Bondar)

Bondar Crystal [lethal]

The bondar kyber crystal served as the inspiration for making training emitters. These crystals produce a blade capable of stunning their targets.
Base Modifiers: Installing this crystal changes a lightsaber’s base damage to 5 and critical rating to 4, and the lightsaber gains the Pierce 5, Stun 3 and Sunder weapon qualities. If the crystal is removed, the lightsaber loses those qualities and reverts to its previous base damage and critical rating.
Modifications: 3 Item Quality (Stun +1) Mod.
Hard Points Required: 2
Cost/Rarity: 8,000 credits/10 (R)

Kyber crystals – Rubat crystal from Phemis

The Rubat kyber crystal can be found on Phemis in the Corellian sector, as Suns of Fortune sector book mentions briefly, and of course it is the destination of the adventure Hidden Depths (GM’s kit.)

The only issue, which already has been addressed on the FFG forums by perceptive fans, is that the Rubat crystal has not been given stats of its own.

It’s to be treated as a Ilum crystal. This is hardly satisfactory for anyone who’s played KOTOR (and I’m sure others too.) Kyber crystals should differ, even if the variations are only slight. No two types should be the same.

Kyber crystal cave (from: http://starwars.wikia.com/wiki/Lightsaber_crystal)

Some suggestions on the forum tweak the Ilum a bit, making the Rubat somewhat weaker in terms of upgrades – namely removing 1 or 2 Damage upgrade mods.

Presented below is my suggestion:

Rubat Crystal
Found on Phemis in the Corellian sector, these kyber crystals can be found in deep caves often treacherous and inhabited by strange, dark creatures. When attuned to and placed in a lightsaber the blade is sharpened in appearance and definition.
Base Modifiers: Installing this crystal changes a lightsaber’s base damage to 6 and critical rating to 3, and the lightsaber gains the Breach 1 and Sunder weapon qualities. If the crystal is removed, the lightsaber loses those qualities and reverts to its previous base damage and critical rating.
Modifications: 3 Damage +1 Mod, 2 Decrease the weapon’s critical rating by 1 to a minimum of 1 Mod, 1 Item Quality (Accurate +1) Mod, 1 Item Quality (Vicious +1) Mod.
Hard Points Required: 2
Cost/Rarity: 10,500 credits/10 (R)

Cargo: gear and starships

This is the basis of a suggested house rule in the up-coming Cartol’s Emporium supplement.

The encumbrance system in EotE/AoR might seem confusing. For silhouette 3 and smaller vehicles the cargo capacity can make some sense, but for larger ships and transports, silhouette 4+, the unit of measurement that is Encumbrance can come across as confusing. While the game itself has a very narrative orientation, which is used as an argument against a more nuanced and detailed cargo measurement system, presented here is a tweak of the existing system. This idea does not dramatically change the encumbrance system of EotE/AoR.

Mentioned briefly under the Encumbrance heading in the Gear and Equipment chapter in the core rulebooks is the notion of cargo crates consuming between 4-7 encumbrance in the cargo bay.

How much such a container can hold on the other hand is not detailed. The suggestion presented here is that a cargo crate can hold up to 8 times its own encumbrance. So a crate consuming 5 encumbrance can hold up to 40 encumbrance worth of gear. Obviously this isn’t a static value. Some items require a lot of volume and the crate may only hold 20 encumbrance worth of items of that nature. Common sense should prevail in situations where comparisons stops making sense.

In any case, at some point one has to make a decision when it comes to 0 encumbrance equipment like comlinks and the like. Off hand one could say that 0 encumbrance gear and equipment consumes 1 encumbrance when put in groups of 5, 10, 15 or more (depending on “actual” size”). That is, comlinks and power packs would perhaps need 10 to consume 1 encumbrance, scanner goggles would need 5 to consume 1 encumbrance, whereas stimpacks and toxins would need 10 or perhaps even 15 to consume 1 encumbrance.

When it comes to weapon crates and specific crates for specific types of gear, one could decide that weapons (and armour) stacked in crates consumes less encumbrance than when carried and ready for use. Halving the encumbrance, and rounding up, could be a good start for some types of gear and equipment that can be folded and neatly packed.

One important point to remember is that these crates cannot normally fit into smaller than silhouette 4 ships. For instance a cargo crate won’t fit into a Y-Wing, there just isn’t enough room.

Update in progress… yet again

So, here’s a quick look at the new look of the catalogue. Any criticism and pointers are welcome, I’m hardly an expert at this, but I’m getting there.

It is a lot of work, trial and error and all that, using open source stuff is like that some times. Also having issues with tables in Scribus it seems, so for now its images of the tables made elsewhere.

 

Tell me if it works.

Update progress

I have received the core rule book ahead of amazon’s plans, which means that last night I started the slow updating progress.

So far I have:

  • Tweaked some of the qualities, which includes:
    • Renaming Serrated to Barbed, so that it is not confused with the melee weapon attachment in the core book, this has also had its price changed as play-testing on my end left a lot to be wanted. Current price is 1 advantage for +1 damage.
    • Blinding has been changed to require a Vigilance check or be blinded for rounds equal to uncancelled failures.
    • Limited range and auto-fire friendly have both had their drawbacks changed to setback dice rather than upgrades.
    • I have removed Reach – as there was only one weapon with the quality and it proved troublesome to make work properly.
  • I have adjusted a lot of the weapon attachments to reflect the new attachments in the core rule book. Some has been renamed, but most remain the same.
  • I have adjusted cost and benefits from some armours; this also goes for the armour attachments:
    • Since the laminate/heavy battle armours body glove is not stated out like in the beta, I have made a 1.000 credit attachment that basically covers that, plus an advanced version.
    • The vacuum attachment in my catalogue has been tweaked.
  • I have removed starships that now appear in the core book.
    • Although I have not removed the entry for the Wayfarer medium transport, this entry now shows the statistics of the wayfarer with a Hangar module instead, so the entry only contains encumbrance capacity and vehicle complement information, everything else is as per core book. This entry also has suggestions for other modules mentioned in the original write up of the Wayfarer; transportation and sensor module. Also I have suggestions for changes to the statistics without the module.
  • I will look at the speeder entries eventually, but this is at the moment not a vital part of the document; but if you have suggestions, stats or whatever, please feel free to send them to me. Any and all contributions are credited – if you feel forgotten drop me a note, I’m not perfect.

Beyond this I haven’t added much new stuff to the catalogue. I am looking for some stats I know is around somewhere to add. If you have suggestions, comments, criticism, desires or want to contribute please feel free to comment here or message me on the various forums I frequent. Any and all contributions and comments are appreciated and welcome; as long as its starships, gear and fringe related.

Dangerous weapons and “the win”

So early on in the beta a certain Mouthymerc suggested slapping a dangerous quality on certain weapons if used untrained, i.e. no ranks in it. The basic idea, as I remember it, was that the Dangerous rating equalled number of difficulty dice upgraded to challenge dice. I like it.

Similarly, and recently, a discussion was initiated at the d20radio forums which origin was the concern that most lightsaber duels were short lived affairs, the first hit won – mostly. The lightsaber ignores soak (up to 10 at least) and has a high base damage (higher than your average blaster rifle) with an added bonus of a crit value of 1. So as long as there’s a net success that’s 11 damage, and with 1 advantage you can either score a crit, or use sunder to damage your opponents gear – their lightsaber for instance.

The community took this concern seriously and lots of suggestions were made. Some good, some complicated (or just less simple), mainly they made lightsaber duels into a separate combat type. Which I guess is fair – as long as its a 1-on-1 affair or a climactic battle, etc. To me this change is hard to accept. I mean, the suggestion of adding in the “Gain the Advantage” action from starship combat was a very good idea… something I feel could be added into general melee combat anyway, slightly tweaked at least.

Now, for low level play and against minions its obvious that a lightsaber should cut down any enemy quite easily – and players should run from a lightsaber wielding opponent if they have any care in the world. For mid-level play I guess its safe to assume that most players will have a few defensive talents to increase wounds and upgrade defence (that is to say upgrade the opponents difficulty to hit), perhaps a few too, so that they have multiple upgrade. Defensive Stance and Dodge can be a nice combo against a lightsaber wielding villain. Still, this doesn’t really feel … good enough.

*clang*
*whrrbzz*

On the d20radio forums an old suggestion was resurrected from the beta-testing months (an older rule it might appear too, as there are references to opposed combat checks for brawl and melee at the very least); why not make it an opposed roll (or use the normal average if an opposed roll is worse for the defender of course). This is one way to go, but I feel this is an unnecessary punishment, or drawback at least, for those players that decide to go melee. Now, you might say “but this is only applied to lighsaber duels”, well sure, but in this case I’m in on (my interpretation of) the KISS-principle. If you’re changing a part of melee combat, you should change all of melee combat – its simpler and easier to keep track of and there is no need to adjudicate whether these special rules applies to a situation or not. This also in turn, to me, means that ranged combat should get some sort of opposed rule option. This can either be done by adding a dodge skill – which might be a good idea, or not. I’d let coordination, perhaps athletics, but I think coordination is the best fit, serve as a dodge skill. Again, I think that the player picks the best defence, I mean at long range three difficulty dice upgrade by talents (if applicable), might be better than agility + coordination ranks (the also of course upgraded by talents if applicable).

Now here’s the potential problem. This makes everyone harder to hit – except minions perhaps, and the odd henchman. Of course, minions and henchmen could be ignored by this opposed check idea altogether.

Now, defensive talents can now become a problem. If I have agility 3, coordination 3 (that’s three challenge dice in an opposed ranged attack), plus side-step 2 (add another challenge die) and perhaps even Dodge 1 (take strain add a difficulty die) its not even fun to be a sniper any more, if it ever was to start with (which I think its safe to assume that it might have been). This difficulty would of course be applied to all ranges, engaged to long (extreme), I mean adding additional dice for range would make sniping a disheartening venture – more so than the opposed roll melee route. Of course a tweak can be added here: defensive talents can only be applied to base difficulties in combat. This means that the players will either go for ranks in coordination (and melee/brawl) for defence, and trying to avoid defensive talents, or go for defensive talents and ignore the skills (for this use at least). Also, the idea of using coordination is “unfair” since melee users would get both offence and defence in one skill, whereas ranged combatants (anyone really) would have to invest in an entirely different skill for the same benefits in ranged combat. Rationalise at will.

Jedi? Sith? Force? Or no spoon?

One solution to this could be to add “combat training” to all combat skill types. That is to say, brawl and melee can be used opposed to each other for anything melee, and ranged (light) and (heavy) can be used for any ranged combat defence. The rationale for the latter is that one could assume that ranged combat training includes the knowledge and training in using terrain, cover and firing patter and whatnot in defensive ways too.

Whatever route one picks, there is the argument that “its easier to pick target and shoot them at a distance” and “you can’t dodge bullets, except maybe jedi”. Sure, but I can already “dodge” bullets (or blaster bolts really) with the Dodge and Side-step talents. Granted its not the same as skill ranks, but its still dodging and side-stepping bolts. This also, once again, adds in the issue of range added to (or subtracted) from the opposed roll. Perhaps engaged and short range dodging is downgraded “so-and-so”, or even decreased … I mean, its harder to hit at longer ranges, and someone hunkering down, dodging and running in random patterns (add in narrative fun yourself) could be argued to be even harder to hit – as long as they’re aware where the shooter is located.

To me this is a fun idea, but I know that with some of my players this will bog down play, it will change the way they build characters and it will in many ways change the way combat and encounters turn out. In one way I’d love to have it this way, because that means that my villains aren’t as likely to get offed straight away by random lucky rolls – even if its those rolls that makes the game epic – or some other randomness of fate. Therefore I’m not going with any of the above suggestions or what inspired them (not yet anyway).

Now, to make lightsaber duels into opposed roll combat, with some added manoeuvres and actions, perhaps even some rules removing Breach (as was suggested on the d20radio forum), could work and work fine. I’m not perfectly certain its a good idea though for a mixed fringer group. An all Jedi bonanza is something else, and we’ll see what FFG has in store for us soon enough (yeah yeah, 2 years is like more than 700 days and all, but … meh!).

“My” current, temporary (and not really relevant to my game since there’s no lighsaber toting hippies [yet]) solution is based on some of the less extensive tweak suggestions. For one the added quality mentioned at the start of this post, together with the thread starters own thoughts. I propose two new qualities, both of which should be added to the Lightsaber. Before I detail them I should say that these could be made into one quality I guess (which I present after these two as an alternative).

Danger, danger.

Dangerous quality [rated]
Weapons with quality are very dangerous for the untrained wielder. Upgrade attack check difficulty equal to quality rating. This upgrade is waived if the wielder at any point receives 1 rank in the appropriate skill. Does not stack with the Lethal quality.

I suggest that Lightsaber receives Dangerous 2 or 3, I can also see that vibrosword, vibroaxe, perhaps even some of the heavier ranged weapons could have this quality, albeit rated 1, or 2 at the highest.

Lethal quality [rated?]
Weapons with this quality are lethal for even the trained wielder. Upgrade the attack check difficulty equal to quality rating. Does not stack with the Dangerous quality.

I suggest that Lighsaber receives Lethal 1 or 2, 2 would be in line with GM Chris’ own suggestion at the d20radio forums, but I also think that 1 difficulty upgrade could suffice. I’ve also questionmarked the rating part, because I cannot at the moment think of any other weapon that would qualify for this quality, except perhaps the lightfoil or some other crazy weapon. Hence it could be a flat 1 or 2 upgrade drawback, no rating required.

Now, a different route could be to slap the qualities together, make it slightly worse, but also make it graded, so in the long run the really proficient will have lower difficulty too:

Grievous quality [graded/rated]
Weapons with this quality is lethal for all wielders, trained or untrained. Upgrade attack check difficulty equal to quality rating, this is modified by wielders training in the appropriate skill.

For example: Lightsabers have Grievous 3, so an untrained wielder must upgrade the combat check difficulty 3 times. If the wielder on the other hand has 1 or more ranks in the Lightsaber skill, the Grievous rating is decreased by the number of ranks in the skill. So a padawan with 1 rank would only apply 2 of the 3 upgrades, while a Jedi Knight Guardian most likely has at least 3 ranks and would ignore the quality altogether.

Now this is perhaps not the most elegant solution if the desire it to keep these babies dangerous and harder to use, but it does make proficiency even more important for at least lightsabers (and any other weapons you think you should apply it to). If opting for this quality instead of the two above, I’d suggest that viboraxe and vibro sword get no more than 1, preferably 1 for sword at least, a rating of 2 for the vibroaxe might make sense, but I’m not feeling it. For heavy ranged weapons I’d also keep it at 1.

For minions and henchmen I’d ignore this rule mostly, if its the weapon they are designed to wield. Or you could just use the normal number of minions beyond first = ranks idea to apply to this, which would make the lone gamorrean minion with a vibroaxe (let’s say it has Grievous 1) have an even harder time trying to hit you… personally I’d go for the “ignore it” rule there.