Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Speed, Momentum, and Damage

I promised last time that I'd address defenders in this post. However, to make sense of that, I need to talk about techniques in general, so let's break down the technique elements.

Jedi have a speed pool. This is a pool of points that they get every exchange to perform techniques. Each technique has a speed cost. You call out the technique name, pay the speed cost, and perform it, no roll necessary.

Remember that technique roll I talked about last time? There's a slight wrinkle in it. Your technique roll determines what techniques you can perform in an exchange, and also sets your status as the aggressor or defender. However, before you roll you can kick any number of technique dice you want over to your speed pool, giving you more fuel for your techniques.

Technique rolls only grant access to attack techniques. Defense techniques work the same as attacks in that you call out the technique, pay the speed, and perform it automatically. Again, success is assumed. You will block the incoming attack. You just will. Jedi do it too often to leave the outcome to dice.

However, at the top of the defense ladder is a technique called Reverse, which turns you into the aggressor and lets you now lay the smack down on the guy who was beating on you. To get there, you need to accumulate momentum. Each defensive technique earns you a certain amount of momentum. As you gain momentum, more defensive techniques open up to you, culminating in the reverse.

All attack techniques have a damage rating. Much like momentum, you accumulate damage points for performing attack maneuvers. However, this isn't damage done to your opponent for each individual strike. Rather, you keep a running total of all the damage for every technique thrown over the course of the fight. If the defender reverses and becomes the aggressor, his attacks add to that same damage tally.

This total continues over multiple exchanges until someone lands a blow, which means the defender runs out of speed while the aggressor still has enough to make an attack. At that point, you apply all the damage accumulated over the course of the fight to the losing jedi. Results depend on the damage total, and can range from being knocked down and dazed to being maimed or killed.

This models the fact that longer battles in the prequels tended to have higher stakes. Short fights often ended with everyone alive, but the longer the fight went the more serious the consequences for those involved.

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