The Gaming Den Forum Index The Gaming Den
Welcome to the Gaming Den.
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

Google
 Search WWW   Search tgdmb.com 
Starfinder Looks Like a Mixed Bag
Goto page 1, 2, 3  Next
 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    The Gaming Den Forum Index -> In My Humble Opinion...
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
Voss
Prince


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 3609

PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2017 7:06 pm    Post subject: Starfinder Looks Like a Mixed Bag Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

So, Starfinder (Pathfinder in Space, centuries later after the planet has wandered off) is coming out later this year. A couple weeks ago a developer game got live streamed and there was a Q&A.

Game:
https://www.twitch.tv/videos/115988165

Q&A transcript:
https://quip.com/yFhBANDAGDYb

Theres also other hints and dribbles in their blog and message board.

notably several issues cropped up. Some I personally am OK with, and a couple that make me want to Bash Specifically, the economy and gear. And also, kinda classes.

Classes first:
For the Core book of their new system there are... seven classes. At first glance, this sounds pretty inadequate, especially the way Paizo designs classes.

-Technomancer ("magical hacker blending technology and magic")

This one was in the playtest (and was a ratfolk). She cast magic missile, tossed energy beams which were terrible (1d6 damage, so I suspect they were a domain or bloodline type of energy bolt rather than a spell. I'm sure Frank in particular will be pleased to know they kept this particular waste of a game mechanic), and had a spell that buffed a gunshot pretty significantly (+4d6), but was wasted on goblins.

The buff was I guess the magical hacker part. Mostly the character was a shitty evoker with a gun and several science skill checks. Interesting thing that came out of the character was magic missile started with two missiles (they were level 2) and when cast as a full attack, gained a third missile. Yes, its still fucking magic missile, but sadly I haven't talked about their weapons yet. For know keep in mind that their weapons made magic missile look like a viable life choice. Yes, really.

Oh, yes, also like the other spellcaster(s) (I think there are only the two), this is a 6 level spontaneous caster. Thats right, no full casters in this game. Partly so they could give them more class abilities, but also I suspect for balance reasons. Personally, I'm OK with it. It solves a lot of problems.

-Mechanic ("engineer with a robot buddy")

Also in the playtest. Yes, its a robot version of animal companion. The catch is, either he got a full action or it got a single action or he had to blow his turn using his 'combat rig' to give it a full turn. So definitely a step down from druid animal companions. But it had a better gun that could also go full auto. And jump jets. And armor plating (which seemed like a bonus versus kinetic weapons that turned out not to matter).

He could also overcharge his own pistol (adding +1d6) for the cost of 3 shots, which again giving how shitty their guns were, he should have been doing every time he fired. Also computer skill, because mechanic.

-Solarian ("mystical melee combatant harnessing the cycles of the stars")

Probably the most interesting character in the playtest, with a lot of wacky but familiar mechanics. Basically a grey jedi, but uses gravitons and channels the power of solar flares or something.

Forms an energy sword... that does slashing damage. Whatever. I suspect (based solely on the dice he was rolling) that it follows the monk/warpriest bullshit progression, so starts at d6, grows to d8 at level 4, then d10, 2d6, 2d8 as you level. Not positive on this, but what it comes down to is buy a real weapon at first level. Well, maybe. If the game's melee weapons are as shit as their pistols, maybe not.

He also got to chose between wacky defensive abilities that gave whatever bonuses that involved gravitons or solar things or whatever.
Had a solar nova ability (looked 1 per day), which, again, was wasted on goblins.

Also had a graviton push, with which he could shove people around. Had a can't use again on that target for 24 hours clause, like a witch hex.

So a witch/monk/fighter mashup with no spells. Jedi.


-Soldier ("heavy weapons specialist")
Yeah, this is probably a fighter. Fuck off and die. The one bright spot is the classes apparently come with 3 or so sample builds, and they particularly highlighted sniper as one of them. So if you've got a newbie or idiot, you can just throw a package at them, and not have them trawl the entire fucking feat list. Probably just a starter package, so... yeah.

Hopefully it isn't just a fighter and has some actual abilities like a slayer or something. But it is paizo, so....

-Envoy ("diplomat and ally-booster")
Not a caster. This might as well be called Face, and no other characters need apply to the role.
This is the write-up summary they did for Polygon:
"The envoy is a class dedicated to aiding and manipulating others," Sutter said. "They are giving orders and encouragement that help your allies do better, while taunting and demoralizing your opponents. Envoys are naturally charismatic leaders and smooth-talkers, ranging from celebrities and starship captains to con artists and cult leaders. Lando Calrissian, General Leia Organa, Ruby Rhod and Inara Serra would all be envoys.

Yeah. It's a spell-less bard. Enjoy that.

-Mystic ("caster channeling strange energies to manipulate biological systems")

The other caster. (Spontaneous, 6 levels). I have no idea beyond that. Interesting that bio focused rather than hacking focused. That is actually probably going to suck when facing undead or robots.

Also, there is no arcane or divine or psychic (no one cares about psychic) magic anymore. Just magic. Wizards somehow became passe, even though obviously they're stronger than any magical people wandering around in the future.

-Operative ("stealthy skill specialist")
Yes, the rogue. The class they fucking neutered for pathfinder. Maybe its the slightly unneutered unchained rogue. Dunno, but it ain't promising. But sneak attack is going to really matter with those shitty guns.

Next: races, general stuff followed by the economy problem


Last edited by Voss on Sat Feb 11, 2017 7:54 pm; edited 2 times in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Voss
Prince


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 3609

PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2017 7:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

So, races.
This gets a little odd, because there are the 'core races' and also there are the old pathfinder races in the legacy chapter in the back of the book that you can totally use. They just aren't the focus anymore.

Several come from various In Space! supplements they did for Pathfinder

Races are:

Humans. But the setting is totally less humanocentric now, because the planet wandered off. Except for the ones on the space station that replaced the planet and the ones already on other planets.

Ratfolk. They're... yeah. OK. There were some already on other planets. yes they get to use cheek-pouches. That for some reason was a big deal, apparently because the PF Master Race Guide didn't allow PC ratfolk to do that.

Lashunta. telepathic humans with antennae. Described by one of the designers as humans plus plus. So that bodes well.

Kasatha. Some four armed 'samurai guys'. I'm optimistic already.

Androids. Yep. Artificial and obviously former human slaves that are free but an underclass because cliches.

Plus two more 'less human' races.

Also all the old core pathfinder races in the back of the book, so elves, dwarves, gnomes and halfbreeds are all hanging about and not important.

Naturally, during the playtest, one of the developers played a dwarf. They still get a bonus vs goblins and a bonus against being knocked down by combat maneuvers. Which happily are different, with CMD (at least) out the window. Sadly, they're different in a bad way. In that the DC for being bull rushed was the dwarf's 'kinetic armor class' (KAC) + 8. +4 for being a dwarf. Which was completely off the range with the attacker's bonus. At level 2. So... yeah. Promising.

KAC is accompanied by EAC (Energy AC). This may or may not be touch AC. But various armor types have energy fields so people in heavy armor may not automatically get shit on by lasers and spells.

Or rather, they wouldn't if lasers were actually any good. At least not starter lasers.

Let me wrap up defenses first: Fortitude, Reflex and Will are still things. They kept a functioning system rather than opting for crazy like 5e. Not unexpectedly they went for the standard sci-fi/star wars d20 system of having stamina and hit points. Stamina gets damaged first. Characters also have resolve points, which they can spend with a 10 minute rest (yes, 10, not 5 or an hour) to get back their stamina, 'reducing the need for dedicated healers.' So they snaffled a bit of 4e. Not the worst decision, and it seems fairly functional. Stamina is 'take a breather, walk it off' damage.


So... lasers. The playtest video shows off laser pistols in all their 'glory.' First by goblins firing at the party with bodged, jury rigged pieces of shit that did d4 points of damage. This seemed odd, but fine. Except the party also fired back with laser pistols that also did 1d4(+0) points of damage.

And I immediately went 'Buh?' Yeah. For all that they've blathered about the game being significantly different with everyone wandering around with guns and vacuum sealed armor at level one... they're firing slings at people. Fire damage slings, but still. And given how they moved, I'm not sure the range band is actually that high. I barely consider that worth taking the attack action.

Fun exercise: find a way to backdoor fire resistance 5 from the myriad things in Pathfinder that gave fire resistance. Be completely immune to lasers for the first few levels.

To double down on how bad the laser pistols were, the dwarf solarion also took a full attack action to make two melee attacks (at a penalty) as if it were flurry or rapid shot. I don't think (?) it was a class feature, just something people could do.

But... it gets more stupid than this, because we have to get into the Economy


Last edited by Voss on Sat Feb 11, 2017 8:38 pm; edited 4 times in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Voss
Prince


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 3609

PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2017 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

So. Economics. Quotes from the Q&A: https://quip.com/yFhBANDAGDYb

Quote:
The basic economy of Starfinder assumes that things can be bought and sold, and the most common unit, is the credit. It's got a long science-fiction providence so it seemed like the credit was the good way to go. The main difference between currency in SF and PF is that we've got credsticks so you can carry a whole lot of money in a very small, light amount of space. That is sort of the simplified version, if you've got the creds you can buy their wares. We do have some things that go a little beyond that. We mention that starships are outside of that economy. When you have that starship, that should be a decision on the campaign where it should come from. Are you making massive payments on it? Do you owe a space slug mobster and if you don't do missions for him he'll take it back? Are you part of a military organization? Did you steal the thing?


This, at its very base doesn't sound that bad. The starship thing is basically you get build points as you level and you add to (or replace) the party's ship in a way that you aren't cannibalizing your ship for better gear or taking shitty gear to have a better ship. But on the other hand, you can't take 10,000 space bucks and buy a laser cannon. and that quickly stops making sense.

Quote:
That is separate from how much money do I have to buy a blaster, buy a meal, buy an elixir, those are just credit questions. We do also have a very simple system in that in Starfinder, everything that you can buy normally has a level. So if we say this is a laser pistol, you know if that is a 1st-level laser pistol or a 5th-level laser pistol. The reason that we gave everything a level is it allows us have some very simple rules for things like hardness, hit points, and saving points, both for if they get damaged and the DC if they try to use something, but it also means we can also say this area is a place where you can buy first through fifth level equipment, but they don't deal in higher, more military-grade stuff, so other things aren't available here.


And this is the explanation for why the party's lasers were bad. Because they were using first level laser pistols. And I'm not clear from this description if is just DM fiat that you magically can never find level-inappropriate gear, or if Hal comes over the PA and says 'I can't let you do that, Dave' or if its just Diablo style red items where you must be X level to use. None of those sound reasonable, and I have no idea how long you're stuck with d4 or 'upgraded' d6 lasers that are worth jack and shit.

'Fly me closer so I can hit it with my sword' is going to be a thing.

Also the magic item creation is pretty much out, but you can buy upgrades and infusions and shit so there can be holy plasma cannons and crap.

Quote:
So those factors are fairly simple but we combined them to try to make something that's most importantly is fast and playable, but there's also some thinking behind how that works in a universe where you have AbadarCorp who can mass-produce things in a way that an individual player can't.

Yeah. Everything is mass produced, but you can't buy the good shit, because game mechanics reasons.

[Also, setting info: the Church of Abadar, the god of civilization and commerce formed a megacorp that basically makes everything]

Quote:
Q: People are probably wondering, what are credits based on? It's not on the gold standard. With a billion planets it can't be based on real estate. Do you want to talk about UPBs?

OKCS: UPBs are universal polymer bases. Basically, in Starfinder the vast majority of technology, and even hybrid magical-technological items, are built from UPBs. A single UPB is worth 1 credit, and you can't really build anything from a single UPB. That price-to-UPB ratio means when you're doing construction rules, if you have a character that you want to be able to build a laser pistol, you know if you have a 100-credit laser pistol, that takes 100 UPBs. There are advantages to having UPBs in that you can actually make things out of them and in most civilized areas you can treat them like money, but unlike credits there's not a UPB stick. These are physical objects you use to make a whole range of different technologies. So if you want to carry tens or hundreds of thousands of UPBs that actually has weight and mass and bulk, and you have to worry about those things.

That is the basis of the economy. 1 UPB-to-1 credit underlines everything.

Yeah, and this is where 'can't buy starship upgrades' falls apart. Because if you get 10,000 credits they're objectively worth 10,000 units of 'making shit,' and if you stick them in the right assembler, the assembler puts out an object made out of 10,000 units. And you can also just find caches of UPBs as actual objects.

So at some point you're going to have X,000 credits/UPBs and a laser cannon in setting is assembled from X,000 UPBs, and... you just can't do that. Because go fuck yourself.

So you have all the headaches of a completely tracked-down-to-the-ones-digit cash economy plus all the headaches of a hand-waved virtual economy and they just aren't allowed to interact even though in setting they totally do. Just not for the players when it comes to very specific things.


Finally, just to touch on some setting specific shit, even though I doubt more than two people here actually care. It is the far future. Only 7 of the 20 core pathfinder gods are particularly popular anymore, and there are now 13 others filling the slots of the core 20. But there aren't any clerics or even divine magic anymore, so... whatever.

Rovagug the evil god of evilness presumably vanished with the planet (because he was trapped inside it), but Asmodeus, for example, just isn't edgy enough anymore. Theoretically still around, but most people just don't care. But if you can remember some or any of the pathfinder gods I'd be surprised.

The setting relevant detail of the far future is when the planet disappeared, no one remembers who. Literally everyone in the multiverse (including gods and archdevils and solars and every other being of power in all of existence) lost their memories of whatever happened, in real time as it happened. And all records were also deleted. Everywhere. In the entire multiverse everywhere. This, apparently, makes things exciting and not... stupid.

But that was centuries ago, and the other worlds in the same solar system are habitable and where the planet was there is a giant space station named after (and probably is) the city of Absalom (where the giant rock that either kills people or makes them gods was). So, the big memory gap your great great grand parents had is... kinda irrelevant to day to day life and adventuring. So whatever.



That's all for now. I'll update with more crazy as it comes apparent.


Last edited by Voss on Sat Feb 11, 2017 8:04 pm; edited 2 times in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
rasmuswagner
Knight-Baron


Joined: 16 May 2011
Posts: 609
Location: Danmark

PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2017 8:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

How is this a mixed bag?
_________________
Every time you play in a "low magic world" with D&D rules (or derivates), a unicorn steps on a kitten and an orphan drops his ice cream cone.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Voss
Prince


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 3609

PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2017 9:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

rasmuswagner wrote:
How is this a mixed bag?


Well, for one, I don't have nearly enough information for a real conclusion on the whole system.

Second, classes seem a much better balance than pathfinder, partly for dropping full casters and partly for the 'melee class' having an array of actual abilities, even at low level.

Part of that comes from spending several odd hours in the last week trying to make pathfinder characters. Most of the pages have notes with words like 'functional,' 'good,' 'workable but boring,' 'bad,' 'meh,' and 'shit' scribbled in the corner. I'm pretty sure anyone familiar with the system can match which adjectives go with which classes.

Flesh wounds as stamina can very easily serve to keep the game moving, which is pretty important, and offering an array of simple starting packages for classes is at least an attempt at making character creation for newbies and idiots an order of magnitude less painful.


My big hang up from the information is pretty specifically the lasers. The party's overall AC didn't seem too horrible (even for the horribly indifferent to optimization characters they obviously were), and if energy shielding on armor makes for viable E-AC (touch AC?) for tanky people, armor might actually be a net improvement beyond chain shirt OR mithril breastplate OR full plate.

The starship thing is vastly annoying from a setting perspective, but I can actually see the game design logic in it. That said, the spaceship tier thing they talk about in the Q&A is something they could drastically fuck up.

The starship roles for characters is another possibly problematic area: pilot just drives, gunner is the one that shoots, science officer does checks, captain provides bonuses, engineer fixes and overcharges things. That could turn out to be both really dull and really painfully bad.

For all that they refer to the game (repeatedly and ad nauseum) as Space Opera, I don't think they really know what the term means. The playtest certainly didn't have anything like a space opera feel: it was a pure old school dungeon crawl. Complete with hallways filled with spiderwebs. In Space! They took the time to justify their murderhobo activities, but they totally stabbed people in the face and took their stuff, and even shot the last combatant so they didn't have to deal with a prisoner/witness/evidence. I don't necessarily think that's bad, but if they're going for genre emulation they hit D&D and not Star Wars. But then most star wars games have been D&D in Space!, so I can see where the confusion comes from.


Last edited by Voss on Sat Feb 11, 2017 9:06 pm; edited 3 times in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
K
King


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 6226

PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2017 9:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

There is nothing here that looks well-designed.

The setting is nonsense because someone had a brain hemorrhage trying to convert Pathfinder to space, the rules seem to be the kind of thing you can gludge together from a dozen free RPGs on RPGDriveThru, and the DnD bits have been neutered because cutting rules is easier than writing rules.

I've actually spent a lot of time researching "space opera" RPGs, and I think this one is destined to get dropped into the circular file.


Last edited by K on Sat Feb 11, 2017 9:32 pm; edited 2 times in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Prak
Serious Badass


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 16036

PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2017 11:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

The name "Solarion" kind of bugs me, since, you know, Sol is the name of a specific star... But I suppose it's nothing new, to be honest. Luna is the name of a specific moon, but it gets name-checked in plenty of D&D stuff.

Just... "Stellarian" would be fine and not invoke that issue.
_________________
Dean, on Paranoia wrote:
The book is a hardbound liars paradox.


Winnah wrote:
No, No. 'Prak' is actually a Thri Kreen impersonating a human and roleplaying himself as a D&D character. All hail our hidden insect overlords.


FrankTrollman wrote:
In Soviet Russia, cosmic horror is the default state.

You should gain sanity for finding out that the problems of a region are because there are fucking monsters there.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Roog
Master


Joined: 15 Sep 2008
Posts: 188
Location: NZ

PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2017 11:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

But Solarion rhymes with Golarion. How could they resist that?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Voss
Prince


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 3609

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 12:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

K wrote:
and the DnD bits have been neutered because cutting rules is easier than writing rules.

Eh. Most of the D&D bits are pretty egregiously present. The shitty laser thing is almost certainly a fear of ranged attacks being too good.

If you cut the every use of the word 'space' out of that 'playtest' video and exchange pistols for crossbows it would play out almost exactly like a game of pathfinder and nearly 3.5. The party wandered into an alchemist's (or wizard's) lab and got attacked by the goblins he had experimented on. If it were a rogue with an obscure archetype that gives an animal companion, a paladin with witch hexes and a magus with alchemist bombs it wouldn't feel much different.

The differences are mostly additions, such as full actions giving extra attacks or extra magic missiles, or excising their own clunky subsystems like combat maneuver defense.


But Pathfinder needs a good hacksaw applied to it, as they went absolutely nuts on dumpster dive content. Sadly I think the 7 classes only is to:

a) sell the future Starfinder Advanced Player's and Advanced Class and Ultimate Combat and Ultimate Magic somewhere down the line, and be back to 30 classes and fifty eleven archetypes and nigh-infinite numbers of feats and

b) save room in a stupidly overpacked book (560 fucking pages!)
They saved a grand total of 18 pages over the PF Core book while cutting 4 classes, 9 level spellcasters and going to 2 six level spellcasting classes (which definitely cuts down on the 15 pages of spell lists in the PF book). Clerics don't exist, so the 7 pages of domains in the cleric class entry are gone. Ditto with sorcerers and their 4 pages of bloodlines.

Cutting rules (rather than specific bloated classes) is very much not their problem.

Quote:
I've actually spent a lot of time researching "space opera" RPGs, and I think this one is destined to get dropped into the circular file.


Pretty good chance of that. The genre doesn't seem to last well. When the 'new star wars' bubble bursts (if it hasn't already) I'm pretty sure it will vanish.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
erik
Prince


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 4840

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 12:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Voss wrote:
The genre doesn't seem to last well. When the 'new star wars' bubble bursts (if it hasn't already) I'm pretty sure it will vanish.


Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Voss
Prince


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 3609

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 1:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

erik wrote:
Voss wrote:
The genre doesn't seem to last well. When the 'new star wars' bubble bursts (if it hasn't already) I'm pretty sure it will vanish.


yoda


What's confusing you? That people might already be tired of Star Wars: The Resurrection, or that they might get tired of it? I know I was already sick of seeing Force Awakens toys in stores 2 months before the movie even came out.

Or that Starfinder the Space Opera (according to the paizo devs) is numbers-filed-off d20 Star Wars rpg? They've already made grand sweeping statements about wanting more aliens so that it feels like the Mos Eisley cantina and the solariumian is very blatantly a Jedi, even if it makes its own energy sword rather than carrying a hilt. The player even used not!Force Push during the video.

Does the class list not seem familiar?
Envoy = Noble
Soldier = Soldier
Operative = Scoundrel
Mechanic = Tech Specialist
Mystic = Force Adept
Solarian = Jedi
Technomancer = not one to one, but Tech/Force person is pretty blatant.


Last edited by Voss on Sun Feb 12, 2017 1:05 am; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
erik
Prince


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 4840

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 1:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Well, you might be sick of Star Wars, but that puts you in the weird minority.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_box_office_records_set_by_Star_Wars:_The_Force_Awakens

It's a fuckin yuge deal. Guardians of the Galaxy is also big and they both have movies planned for the next couple years at least.

I think it is not a bold prediction at all that the next Star Wars movie will be breaking records again.


Now, of course Pathfinder team cannot design for shit. I didn't quote anything regarding that and wasn't contesting that. I just think you're crazy if you think Space Opera is on the decline right now.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Voss
Prince


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 3609

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 1:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Which is why i phrased it as 'when it bursts.' Though Force Awakens was absolutely shit, which isn't a particularly rare reaction, regardless of ticket sales. Its the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull part of the franchise.


Though I'd question if the new movies or especially GotG fit the model of Space Opera anymore. Half of GotG was 80s retro nostalgia. Not retro nostalgia for 80s space films, but for actual 1980s culture. If you aren't familiar with 80s comics, music, slang and movies, you'd spend large chunks of that movie very, very confused.


Last edited by Voss on Sun Feb 12, 2017 1:20 am; edited 4 times in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
erik
Prince


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 4840

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 2:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Voss wrote:
Which is why i phrased it as 'when it bursts.' Though Force Awakens was absolutely shit, which isn't a particularly rare reaction, regardless of ticket sales. Its the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull part of the franchise.


I'd say the prequels were the Crystal Skull part of the franchise.

Force Awakens played it too safe by over-emulating the first movies, but I'm totes looking forward to the next.

[oops, hit submit too soon]
As for GotG, my 8 year old doesn't recall much of the 80's but he loved it. And it did pretty well at the box office as well. I really think you are greatly over-estimating how much it relied upon 80's nostalgia. Maybe it wasn't operatic given its lightheartedness, so split that hair all you want I guess.

[edit]And to stray back on track to the Starfinder topic...

I think there's plenty of legs for a sci-fi/star-faring fantasy game. While Star Wars IP could be good, I think I would rather not be limited by their canon. In that vein, a Starfindereqsue game with homage to Star Wars is a good way to go, but I just wish there was someone competent working behind it.


Last edited by erik on Sun Feb 12, 2017 3:03 am; edited 3 times in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
K
King


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 6226

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 2:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Voss wrote:
K wrote:
and the DnD bits have been neutered because cutting rules is easier than writing rules.

Eh. Most of the D&D bits are pretty egregiously present. The shitty laser thing is almost certainly a fear of ranged attacks being too good.


Everyone pretty much understands that DnD "works" up to around 7-8th level, so hearing that they are cutting full casters sounds like giving up the design work of levels 9+ and sounds like neutering the parts of the game that get people excited.

Sure, it's a better working game without the spell effects, magic items, and monsters of 9+, but it's not the RPG that people sign up for.

We've seen the experiment where all the high-level crap is cut out of DnD in a setting that tries to survive by flavor alone: D20 Modern and D20 Future.

You remember those games, right? Those games you never played?


Last edited by K on Sun Feb 12, 2017 2:58 am; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Voss
Prince


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 3609

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 3:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

erik wrote:
Voss wrote:
Which is why i phrased it as 'when it bursts.' Though Force Awakens was absolutely shit, which isn't a particularly rare reaction, regardless of ticket sales. Its the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull part of the franchise.


I'd say the prequels were the Crystal Skull part of the franchise.

Force Awakens played it too safe by over-emulating the first movies, but I'm totes looking forward to the next.

[oops, hit submit too soon]
As for GotG, my 8 year old doesn't recall much of the 80's but he loved it. And it did pretty well at the box office as well. I really think you are greatly over-estimating how much it relied upon 80's nostalgia. Maybe it wasn't operatic given its lightheartedness, so split that hair all you want I guess.


That doesn't seem like a hair split. It's a zany comic book comedy zooming about in space, with most of the drama immediately undercut by goofiness (be it Kevin Bacon or a Dance off) or weird 80s 'cusswords.'

I did totally forget about the prequels when making that comparison though. Take it as read that I think they don't even aspire to the level of Crystal Skull.


K wrote:
Everyone pretty much understands that DnD "works" up to around 7-8th level, so hearing that they are cutting full casters sounds like giving up the design work of levels 9+ and sounds like neutering the parts of the game that get people excited.

Bored I've honestly never seen anyone get excited about high level shit but char-oppers posting theoretical level 20 builds that never see play. The vast majority of campaigns end long before that, so not much to get excited about. Not much to get disappointed about if Starfinder games end up ending at roughly the same level, either.

Regardless, there is still design work that happens above level 9 without full casters. In fact, without the full casters there is a lot more room for the other classes to actually matter past level 9, and not simply be rendered unnecessary by whatever pokemon the wizard or cleric pull out.

Quote:
Sure, it's a better working game without the spell effects, magic items, and monsters of 9+, but it's not the RPG that people sign up for.
Still monsters of 9+ too, and while magic items are different (in some vague way that hasn't been entirely explained beyond a lack of crafting feats and instead characters buy 'upgrades and infusions'), there are explicitly holy bullshit plasma cannons (or whatever), so they aren't gone.

As for what people sign up for, the marketing so far is technowizardry, party spaceship and zoom around exploring 'the Vast' and looking for loot while shooting goblins and generic evil insect race (the Swarm) in the face, and then kick back in Space Bars with a gaggle of possibly sexy aliens. You and many people might well be looking for something else, and some of the designers may well be nuts for claiming its Space Opera, but the marketing so far is Space Dungeons and, yes, the distinct possibility of Space Dragons that want to eat your party ship.


Quote:
We've seen the experiment where all the high-level crap is cut out of DnD in a setting that tries to survive by flavor alone: D20 Modern and D20 Future.

You remember those games, right? Those games you never played?

I do vaguely remember those. I didn't play them mostly due to lack of interest in modern settings, or games that lack detailed settings.

But they don't sound very similar, being no magic and selecting feats or talents alternately from very thin and bland lists. The potentially troublesome looking classes (for the state of knowing no actual details) for Starfinder look like the classic D&D ones: the not!fighter and not!rogue. Given Paizo's recent fixation on overloading classes with too many moving parts, I'd expect they won't be quite as bad as the core fighter or rogue.

The mechanic, technomancer and solarian have some inherited problems (like the shitty energy blast), but seem to have a wide range of themed abilities and contribute in and out of combat. (the solarian might struggle out of combat, or might go full jedi and be omnicompetent)


Last edited by Voss on Sun Feb 12, 2017 3:34 am; edited 3 times in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Shrieking Banshee
Journeyman


Joined: 29 Sep 2015
Posts: 113
Location: Space

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 3:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I don't get this. I like fantasy in space, but all these rules changes seem so redundant and just a tango of staying in place.

Also I thought the PT was the D&D 4e of the franchise. Utterly shit but I can see good idea somewhere, and at least good intentions.
TFA and the NT is D&D 5e. A pathetic mixture of throwback that has nothing to offer on its own but people fellate because it gives nostalgia boners.

Honestly I always say a Spelljammer direction is way better for Adventure in space. Because the open aired deck of it means characters that don't drive the ship get something to do. Or every character has to have a role in the ship but generally never as fun for anybody sans pilot.


Like whats the point of Starfinder if they are not going to do anything with it?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Voss
Prince


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 3609

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 3:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Shrieking Banshee wrote:
I don't get this. I like fantasy in space, but all these rules changes

Like what? The change to bull rush (Ditching CMD)? Calling touch AC, energy AC? The number of rules changes in the demo game and the Q&A is really small.

Quote:
Also I thought the PT was the D&D 4e of the franchise. Utterly shit but I can see good idea somewhere, and at least good intentions.
TFA and the NT is D&D 5e.

PT, TFA and NT are...?

Quote:
Honestly I always say a Spelljammer direction is way better for Adventure in space. Because the open aired deck of it means characters that don't drive the ship get something to do. Or every character has to have a role in the ship but generally never as fun for anybody sans pilot.
That last part is a huge potential problem. But it was a problem in spelljammer as well, given the default assumption is the wizard is the pilot/engine. The other option is man catapults, which is what the gunner in Starfinder does. Except they're laser cannons rather than catapults... in space. Honestly spelljammer can go eat a dick.


Quote:
Like whats the point of Starfinder if they are not going to do anything with it?
It's a shitty paizo setting to latch Adventure Paths onto. I'm not sure what you expect.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Shrieking Banshee
Journeyman


Joined: 29 Sep 2015
Posts: 113
Location: Space

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 3:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I might have mistitled myself. I meant like minor in the sense of pointless.

PT is Prequel Trilogy, TFA is The Force Awakens, and NT is New Trilogy.

Spelljammer has its own problems but I have been having fun after fixing stuff like decoupling the wizard, and going more in depth with some rules.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Wiseman
Duke


Joined: 09 Mar 2012
Posts: 1109
Location: lost... HELP!

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 4:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Do level based systems work for anything out of the fantasy genre? I'd certainly like to play a Star Wars game, but I haven't found any system that works better than M&M.
_________________
Check out my RP site!

Click here to see the hidden message (It might contain spoilers)
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
OgreBattle
Prince


Joined: 03 Sep 2011
Posts: 4967

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 4:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Force Awakens ruined the Star Wars name in China.

So are there cybernetics and power armor in starfinder? So far Komei's Dungeon Crusade is a more interesting take on magic+guns. RIFTS with Palladium rules also feels more distinct.


Quote:
Do level based systems work for anything out of the fantasy genre?


I'm not even sure if a level based system works for the stories D&D and derivatives are trying to tell with Fighter being a 20 level class.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
erik
Prince


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 4840

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 4:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Voss wrote:
I've honestly never seen anyone get excited about high level shit but char-oppers posting theoretical level 20 builds that never see play. The vast majority of campaigns end long before that, so not much to get excited about. Not much to get disappointed about if Starfinder games end up ending at roughly the same level, either.


Nay! I've very much looked forward to playing the high-mid levels. Some of the best play I've had was with a cleric who got to 12th. I got to fight giants, legendary ghosts, raise the dead, raise shipwrecks from waters (well, control water to retrieve them) to build my own fleet. I was looking forward to higher level schticks as well before that campaign ended.

Higher level schticks grant greater agency over the setting. Nothing to be afraid of there, unless you're a designer who doesn't understand that there's no mundane way to compete in that arena. 4e made the tragic mistake of getting rid of all of that in order to bring everyone down to the level of the fighter. It doesn't seem like they're doing this, that's too bold a mistake for Pathfinder team. They just keep repeating the same mistakes of 3e without learning a damn thing. It's completely disheartening that it is allegedly compatible with Pathfinder.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Prak
Serious Badass


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 16036

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 5:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I think the highest level I ever actually played at was 12th. I don't think lopping the top 8-ish levels off of D&D is a bad idea, necessarily.

What strikes me about Starfinder is... Paizo has done:
  • The Pathfinder Technology Guide (cybertech)
  • Androids in Inner Sea Races
  • Iron Gods (a rehash of Expedition to the Barrier Peaks for Golarion)
  • not Paizo, but, Starjammer (Spelljammer IN PATHFINDER)


So... That's three science fantasy things that are officially PAIZO, and one that's on the Pathfinder srd... And now there's Starfinder. Who has such a big rubbery one for Science Fantasy over at Paizo?
_________________
Dean, on Paranoia wrote:
The book is a hardbound liars paradox.


Winnah wrote:
No, No. 'Prak' is actually a Thri Kreen impersonating a human and roleplaying himself as a D&D character. All hail our hidden insect overlords.


FrankTrollman wrote:
In Soviet Russia, cosmic horror is the default state.

You should gain sanity for finding out that the problems of a region are because there are fucking monsters there.


Last edited by Prak on Sun Feb 12, 2017 6:04 am; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Voss
Prince


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 3609

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 6:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

OgreBattle wrote:
Force Awakens ruined the Star Wars name in China.

So are there cybernetics and power armor in starfinder?

Apparently. No idea on details, but both have been mentioned as definitely in. Though keep in mind, all gear will have a level attached to it. So '5th level' cybernetics and power armor (if you can get it at 5th) will vary from '15th level' cybernetics and power armor.


erik wrote:
Higher level schticks grant greater agency over the setting. Nothing to be afraid of there, unless you're a designer who doesn't understand that there's no mundane way to compete in that arena.
Eh. I find that mostly it gives greater agency over the other people at the table. That tends to be unpleasant and things fall apart.

But without wizards and clerics and that sort of fuckery there are also fewer schticks that simply break the game in half.

As far as your specific examples go, giants, ghosts and raising the dead aren't particularly noteworthy D&D things. Fairly standard 6-9th level fare, really. Though I remember a particular asshole GM back in 2nd who felt giants were appropriate at level 3. Right after trying to steal our gear in classic dickmove style.

Quote:
They just keep repeating the same mistakes of 3e without learning a damn thing. It's completely disheartening that it is allegedly compatible with Pathfinder.

Well, sometimes they make all new mistakes, like their some of their clusterfuck classes, where people are expected to juggle half-a-dozen subsystems, or dumpster dive for feats in the middle of combat. (Ah, the Brawler. A worse fighter and worse monk with options paralysis as an active ability).

Compatibility with pathfinder seems iffy. They talk a lot about inserting stuff from their monster books with minimum fuss, but a lot of PC options just straight up wreck things. Fire resistance comes to mind, as lasers do fire damage.

But setting wise, a lot of crossover is just eliminated with multiverse wide memory loss spanning an unknown amount of time, plus centuries on either side of that gap. I'm sure people who masterbate to their Golarion campaign will insist on inserting their epeen-(N)PC into Starfinder, but for the most part there isn't much reason to bother.


Last edited by Voss on Sun Feb 12, 2017 8:39 pm; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
FrankTrollman
Serious Badass


Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 26892

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 7:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

My reading on that passage is actually that every piece of equipment has a level on it, and that this is similar to how magic items already have caster levels. And that shops would be limited by levels rather than costs. So a +2 vibro blade is a 6th level item and you can only buy it in 6th level shops - but a space barge apparently costs many orders of magnitude more than that, but you can still buy it on a station that only goes up to level 3.

That's not actually a bad way to handle things, since in a science fantasy setting you have very expensive common items like cars and space ships but you also have relatively cheap items that are still military and super rare like gatling lasers and photon grenades. It's why most games with scifi or science fantasy elements give items cost and rarity numbers that are calculated differently. Some even do cost, rarity, and legality as three separate numbers.

That being said, none of this looks particularly good. It does look like someone mostly patterned this game off of D20 Star Wars, which was a train wreck. As noted, most of the classes line up 1:1 with the Star Wars D20 classes, and the return of Vitality and Wound Points under a slightly different name does not go unnoticed. The thing is: Star Wars D20 was an awful game, and watching someone try to replicate that while staying Pathfinder compatible is just like watching slow motion horse race crashes. It's all legs and blood and sadness.

-Frank
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    The Gaming Den Forum Index -> In My Humble Opinion... All times are GMT
Goto page 1, 2, 3  Next
Page 1 of 3

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum




Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group