CONFERENCE March Game System and Dice Updates

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Davin Kabak

Almighty HGM
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Game Master
May 2, 2017
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Hello everyone!

Here are a few updates for the month of March, detailing a couple of updates and initiatives that the SWO staff have implemented.

Dice Updates

For many years, our dice mechanics have remained relatively unchanged. This has given the staff plenty of opportunity to observe how players respond to a variety of different scenarios, and what effects certain dice mechanics have on the overall player experience. We have come to the conclusion that certain portions of these mechanics have started to have much more influence on that player experience than they were originally supposed to.

Because we do not want to upend the system overnight, we are implementing an initiative designed to refocus the emphasis of our game play on the areas we feel deserve it.

For one thing, we feel that there has been a general trend toward short, vague action posts, in favor of 'getting to the Dice Roll' quicker - and thus letting the Dice run the show. This is not how Dice were meant to operate in our game. We feel the most important aspect of the game, is what the player chooses to do - and more importantly, how they choose to do it. Thus, we are taking steps to make success or failure of rolls be a little less obvious, and encourage a little more thought and effort on the part of the players in action posts.

Specifically, we believe that the Wild Die (the first Die rolled in a set) has started to have far more influence over player enjoyment and perception than it was ever meant to. While this mechanic has it's place, we feel that players worry about it far too much. We also believe that GM's have not been immune to this effect either. We are therefore making these changes in order to help GM's remain focused on player actions as well.

Since we do not want to make any large seismic shifts that would disrupt the game or harm player perception more than help, we are starting with some simple aesthetic changes first, in an effort to adjust these perceptions back to the level we feel they ought to be.

We want to encourage players to think about what they type in their action post more. We also want to help GM's remain focused, and reduce the amount of distractions the dice create for them during Sims.

To that end, the green and red color coding for RANDOM COMPLICATIONS and BONUSES has been REMOVED!

This allows players to worry less about how they might affect the action they took, by removing the stigma that comes from their roll being highlighted with standout colors. It also removes the pressure a GM might feel to make separate rolls and rulings on the effects of the Wild Die, even when it does not serve the pace of the story or the situation at hand.

To be clear, none of the actual mathematics of the dice have changed. The Wild Die still activates, Re-rolls are still not added to the total, and Bonuses still are.

In addition, GM's have always been free to ignore the effects of a Random Complication, or a Bonus, if they felt the situation warranted it.

We are simply changing the aesthetics to reflect that reality, for now.

In the mean time, we are also re-evaluating the effects of certain Character Traits based on Random Complications and Bonuses. No changes have been made to these traits at this time! However, GM's are currently encouraged to focus more on the player's action, and the core roll result related to that action, as primary consideration. If the GM feels it appropriate, then they may then employ the use of the Wild Die's effects. Should the staff decide to implement any further changes that would affect player Trait choices significantly, an additional announcement and free Trait re-spec would be announced at that time.


Midichlorian Roller

When our Organization used to use IRC as our chat platform, we had the ability to randomly generate a Midichlorian count for new characters and NPC's. When we moved to the current web-based chat interface, that functionality did not make the transition with us. We are pleased to announce that this has finally been implemented within our chat!

The chat command to roll for Midichlorian count is: /midi [modifier]

Modifiers:
NO/No/no/N/n = The character is not force sensitive. Their Midichlorian count will be between 1,500 and 6,999.
YES/Yes/yes/Y/y = The character will be force sensitive. Their Midichlorian count will be between 7,000 and 14,000.
(blank) = By leaving off any modifier, you let fate decide whether the character is Force Sensitive or not!

Current character Midichlorian counts will generally remain unchanged. Unless you hear differently from the staff, then your character's Midichlorian count will not need to be re-rolled!

In addition, the current MIdichlorian limit has been adjusted to a maximum of 14,000 - to reflect a more realistic level compared to Canonical Star Wars heroes. Updates to the requirements for Midichlorian Path skills have been made to reflect this change, so be sure to review them if you have a Force Sensitive character!


We hope these changes will enhance the game play experience for our players, and we welcome your questions or comments in the thread below!
 
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