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  • Companions - what would you like to see?

    One thing I'd like to see in the new SFC is rules for more than one type of FTL. Something for a warp drive as well as a blink/jump type drive

  • #2
    The existing rules can easily be adapted to both forms of travel.
    • Plot travel using Astrogation (whatever that becomes with the Adventure update; probably a Science specialty). Modify result based upon distance traveled.
    • Travel takes 2d6 days from departure to arrival.
    • Raises on Astrogation can reduce travel time.
    • Expending additional ship's power can reduce travel time.
    The only difference is describing the travel. In one model, the journey is a jump through some kind of hole in space-time followed by moving the vessel through conventional space. In the other model, the journey is a warping of space-time to arrive at the destination anywhere from the same day to twelve days later.

    The difference is akin to fire and ice bolt powers; descriptions and trappings, but the mechanics are the same.
    Personally, I want the new Fantasy Companion to have lots of guidance on creating power lists to customize ABs for a setting. Especially to customize different iterations of Miracles by deity.
    Last edited by ValhallaGH; 08-31-2020, 10:18 PM.
    I hope you find the above post useful. And not insulting, because I was trying to be helpful, not insulting; being a pedantic jerk, that isn't always clear.

    Comment


    • #3
      For me:

      I know that everyone has a knee-jerk reaction to say "use X Companion". Not me. I want the Companions to feel like they are a part of the existing rules, expanding upon the core rule book. In the past they have always felt "taped on" to me. I have wanted to like the Companions, but I have been disappointed with all of them. They felt unfinished, like a start of something good, but never quite finished. They feel like "splat books" with a bunch of ideas but not a lot of playable cohesion between them. Fine for one-shots, or mini-campaigns of a handful of sessions, but terrible for longer campaigns.

      In one campaign that I ran, I was using the Super Powers Companion. The rules between powers vary greatly. We switched to using Gifted. It was a shift in power level but it made the campaign a lot more fun for us. A nice benefit was that it used the same rules as in the core book and we could use the power cards (those are great!). I have made up a few more powers over the past year, but the core book offers quite a bit by using Gifted and "Race Points".

      Speaking of "Race Points", the Robot and Cybernetics in the Science Fiction Companion are playable if you give them a similar Race Point cost that the character can pay for with Hindrance Points or Advances.

      Comment


      • #4
        Fantasy Companion:
        For a while I've been thinking that the medieval melee weapon section of the core rulebook is great for the general notion of what those weapons would do, but they don't serve a fantasy game very well. I may write a post about sometime, but as for the topic of this thread, I would very much want to see medieval fantasy weapon arsenal and rules that will allow for tactical depth and would make fantastic fighting styles (Like dual daggers) viable even in compare to the ones that are dominant with the core books

        Comment


        • #5
          I'm probably not the best person to answer this question because although I have all the previous versions of the Companions and the Tool Kits that preceded them, I generally prefer to run games in fully fleshed out settings, preferably ones that have a PPC or at least some adventures to spark my imagination rather than leaving me to create stuff from whole cloth. I'll still get them, but I'd prefer to see them go back to their Tool Kit roots and offer a lot of different options with the idea that the GM will pick and chose which pieces are right for their setting and not expect to use everything in the book in a single setting. Part of the problem I had with the switch from the Tool Kits to the Companions was that in an effort to streamline things, they tended to reduce the number of options in favor of offering more of a one way or flavor of doing things. Fantasy ended up being typical D&D-like material, the SFC mostly space opera. We now have a variety of Fantasy settings like Gold & Glory and Tyrnador that do the D&D thing, so I'd rather see something besides just medieval fantasy weapons and typical fantasy races. The problem for SF is even larger since the tools I need to create a hard sci fi setting are much different from what I need to do space opera. Again, the problem I had with the previous Companion series is how limiting they are. Back in the day, we didn't have nearly the wealth of settings available that we do today, so I find the need for the Companions to be even less than before since it's often just as easy to borrow bits of two or more settings to create something unique rather than expect that PEG can cover all the bases of a genre in a single book. Conversely, I wouldn't want content/setting creators to feel constrained to keep their products Companion compatible.

          Comment


          • SeeleyOne
            SeeleyOne commented
            Editing a comment
            That is my problem with them: they SHOULD be tools that you can plug and play into a campaign. But they do not, nor do they play nice with the rest of the rules.

            When people say something like "I want to play X campaign, what books do I need?" on Facebook, people jump to the companions. I always think to myself "have you even opened up those books?". It is not that they are bad, but they are really just, to me, a springboard to come up with something that you will write up on your own to use.

            Also, as you mention, the setting authors do feel constrained to use them, which makes their setting have weird quirks rule-wise.

            I have been happy with some of the SWEG products, particularly the Arcane Background line. They have done a fantastic job of doing what a companion should do. A toolbox that can be added to a campaign as desired. While I disagree with some of the power point values and edges, as a whole they are solid products.

          • Radecliffe
            Radecliffe commented
            Editing a comment
            Well consider that the previous companions were written at different times and even for different editions. I believe the Fantasy Companion was 2 editions previous to the Deluxe edition. But now they are all being updated at the same time in a coordinated effort. IMO this tells me that this iteration of the companions will be a lot more coordinated and will actually help mesh the rules together.

        • #6
          Originally posted by ValhallaGH View Post
          The existing rules can easily be adapted to both forms of travel.
          • Plot travel using Astrogation (whatever that becomes with the Adventure update; probably a Science specialty). Modify result based upon distance traveled.
          • Travel takes 2d6 days from departure to arrival.
          • Raises on Astrogation can reduce travel time.
          • Expending additional ship's power can reduce travel time.
          The only difference is describing the travel. In one model, the journey is a jump through some kind of hole in space-time followed by moving the vessel through conventional space. In the other model, the journey is a warping of space-time to arrive at the destination anywhere from the same day to twelve days later.
          .
          Sorry, long time in answering this. I have to disagree. It depends on the setting. For Last Parsec (or a setting like it) where there is no map or where distance travelled is unrelated to time there is, indeed, no issue. I wouldn't be too worried about putting Star Wars or Firefly into this category as distances and travel times are usually vague.
          With something Star Trek, Stars Without Number or Traveller, though, distances do matter and you want to emulate that. When distances (or time and/or fuel) matter the system in the current SFC breaks down.

          Comment


          • ValhallaGH
            ValhallaGH commented
            Editing a comment
            That's a very setting specific request. You want a distance-travel time chart for the imaginary FTL travel system of a given setting. That's too niche to be used in a genre Companion, not a setting companion.

          • paladin2019
            paladin2019 commented
            Editing a comment
            If you are basing your game on published canon, why can't you use the canon values? If your game includes a highly customized XS-1299.5 tramp freighter and you know the trip from the tattoo parlor with the broken AC to Dan's tattoo parlor has a base canon time of x, why can't you just use x/2 like the canon says? If another setting says your drive can only go 6.9 light years per jump before you have to stop to dump accumulated etheric effluvium and gives the travel time for various ship classes to go this far, why can't you translate these values into Savage Worlds?

        • #7
          It is an interesting question. I do not use Supers much at all, so I do not have much to say about that one. Most of the stuff I ever used in the Fantasy Companion as been worked into the last two editions of SW Core (and I love Hellfrost, which is a great example of putting setting rules into play for Fantasy). I really just use the companions for equipment (esp the ScfFi Companion) and critter ideas. The recent update to the free vehicle guide fixed my burning issue with the SciFi companion (Shields as written in the SciFi Companion was basically strapping a D&D troll onto your spaceship - regenerating HPs - ugh - the revision is pretty good [in my own I did it as a Bennie for the Ship, but what they did works well enough]).

          I really would like a better no-power point system. I do not like the variations they have created (including Hellfrost, ironically). A recent PEGShow highlighted the problem in the first line they talked about it when Ron said "you take a negative...". Its poor design when one character constantly has negatives to just perform the core concept of the build when no one else has that problem.That and updated/expanded rituals would be welcome by me.

          The good thing is it sounds like they are working on them concurrently so they all flow together. I will likely get them, but my use of them in the past is been moderate.

          Jeffrey...
          Left is Death!

          Comment


          • Deskepticon
            Deskepticon commented
            Editing a comment
            SeeleyOne I came up with a "no Power Points" system that doesn't use penalties. I haven't playtested it very extensively, but on paper it holds up. I'll make a thread in the Homebrew section, so keep an eye out. I'd love to get some feedback.

          • amerigoV
            amerigoV commented
            Editing a comment
            I too have my own I am testing. I think it will work well for Hellfrost. I am doing a one-shot in a couple of weeks that will be the first real test of it.

          • Deskepticon
            Deskepticon commented
            Editing a comment
            amerigoV Cool! Hopes it works out for you. Happy Gaming!

        • #8
          In order....

          Fantasy
          Martial Arts
          Supers
          SciFi
          Horror

          Comment


          • #9
            Originally posted by Matt View Post
            In order....

            Fantasy
            Martial Arts
            Supers
            SciFi
            Horror
            You mean the order in the Box Set?

            I would love there to be just one big Kickstarter.
            Jeffrey...
            Left is Death!

            Comment


            • Radecliffe
              Radecliffe commented
              Editing a comment
              It is my belief this is their intent. Get them all done and do a kickstarter for a boxed set.

            • steelbrok
              steelbrok commented
              Editing a comment
              I thought Martial Arts was coming at a later date?

            • mac40k
              mac40k commented
              Editing a comment
              The latest from Shane is the existing 4 being worked on simultaneously to ensure cross-compatibility, martial arts coming later. Decision on whether to have a single Kickstarter or not hasn't been made yet.

          • #10
            I would like to see a very complete toolkit of 400 pages of rules, most of them compatible with each other and design principles, that make everything very modeable. Ideas and various mechanics that can fit into various things. The idea of ​​having to jump from book to book looking for what I want doesn't appeal to me that much. And the bestiary pages can be sold separately.

            Comment


            • Ndreare
              Ndreare commented
              Editing a comment
              Sounds like the approach they took for Fantasy Hero 6th Ed. During a game sd would always pick and choose what to use. But it got referenced a lot when designing settings.

          • #11
            Post-Apoc. No, not RIFTS or Low Life. but good old fashioned Gamma World. Hell, I should just submit my mountains of ideas for a Companion book. Problem is, as said above, my stuff is Gamma World. If you want a better more meatier companion, you should cover everything from gritty Twilight 2000 survival all the way up to angelic vs. demon invasions with magic and mutations to whatever.

            For example, in the hardcore have some simple rules for making fuel, planting crops, building up a community, etc. a la Twilight 2000. (Actually, Broken Earth does a decent job of this). Yes, yes, I know one can simple have the characters make Dramatic Tasks of Survival or Knowledge (Farming), but agin some clean simple suggestions could work. The trick is to add just enough to hang ideas and gameplay on, without bloating it out and ruining FFF.

            Comment


            • #12
              Originally posted by The Radioactivist View Post
              Post-Apoc. No, not RIFTS or Low Life. but good old fashioned Gamma World. Hell, I should just submit my mountains of ideas for a Companion book. Problem is, as said above, my stuff is Gamma World. If you want a better more meatier companion, you should cover everything from gritty Twilight 2000 survival all the way up to angelic vs. demon invasions with magic and mutations to whatever.
              Post-apoc is definitely a genre that seems to get overlooked, but I'm having trouble envisioning enough material to fill a full Companion. It seems like some stuff can be covered by Sci-Fi and some stuff covered by Fantasy. But a "Post-Apoc Companion" may come off as both superfluous (i.e., content for content's sake) and redundant (stuff already covered---or could have been covered---in another Companion).

              I find myself agreeing with SeeleyOne on this. Ideally, the individual Companions should have a good deal of "plug-n-playability" allowing GMs to mix and match Setting Rules and mechanics. A post-apoc setting would arguably be mostly Sci-fi, but an "angel v. demons" approach would pluck ideas right out of Fantasy. And any post-apoc would have elements of Horror.
              _______

              So I guess my response to the OP would be:
              I'd like to more of a "toolkit" approach to the Companions, with "plug-n-play" options. The one exception might be Super Powers, since the power dynamic tends to skew gameplay significantly. Although, more robust Base-Building rules can be useful in many non-Super settings.

              Comment


              • Radecliffe
                Radecliffe commented
                Editing a comment
                This. It's my personal opinion that one of the reasons they look like they are doing all the companions together is to make them more cohesive which in turn makes it easier to combine elements from more than one companion into one setting. This may be wishful thinking but that would be my strategy.

              • SeeleyOne
                SeeleyOne commented
                Editing a comment
                The thing is with a post apocalyptic setting is that it used to be something else. It does not just appear on its own. To understand the setting, you need to understand what it used to be. It is better to pick what it used to be and then go from there.

            • #13
              I have recently found myself scouring the internet every evening in search of news about new companions.
              I would love an updated Fantasy and Sci Fi Companion. Personally, I would love a proper and contained section of starship building and all rules regarding starship combat.
              As others mentioned, a Tool-kit approach would be very lovely.

              Comment


              • #14
                Exactly what LordMithras said...i would just like an update/ETA....i feel that SW isn't complete until the companions are updated to the latest version. I know thats pretty ignorant but...

                So what i would like to see....an announcement/update...I figured they would be announced after weird west...guess not
                Last edited by Nostromo; 10-15-2020, 08:41 PM.

                Comment


                • #15
                  Yeah, I'm with LordInquisitorMithras, too. A companion update would be greatly appreciated. I'd especially like a beefier Science Fiction Companion. The last one was good, but I'd like starship construction, trading, travel (I want space hexploration FTL options), and especially starship combat to get expanded content.

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