Welcome to another Combat Master report! In today's issue, we've got the results of my Aspects competition and an introduction to Disciplines!
First of all, I wanted to say thank you to everyone that submitted! A dozen members submitted from all the units in the Brotherhood, and I am appreciative of everyone's effort! I decided I would take this time to highlight the top Aspects, and also add a little commentary on why I liked them, and what future Aspect-writers can learn from these particular examples. If you'd like to get feedback on your specific Aspects, please email me - I received a total of over 120 different Aspects, and in order not to exclude anyone, I did not type up commentary for each one. I received quite a few high-quality Aspects, and I ended up with a tie for third place!
First place: JH Rathus Marr Rathus Marr's first place entry is: (General) Dirty Rotten Scoundrel: CHARACTER is a master of the 'tricks of the trade' - the cheating and stealing trade, that is. With a certain propensity and natural talent for stealth and thievery, CHARACTER is a professional when it comes to crimes, from minor to major. Sometimes it is as simple as a few more favorable cards in a hand to a set of sticky fingers to something as big as a heist. Either way, CHARACTER knows HIS/HER way around a job. However, everyone is bound to get caught eventually, and reputations have a way of finding a way to bite you in the rear. . . not to mention those looking to extract a little vengeance.
Rathus' entry was one of many good entries he submitted, but this was my favorite. Not only does this entry touch on a bit of history and background of a character, it suggests possible fictional angles that a member can use to customize the Aspect through developing a more robust, unique character history in the future. It is "double edged" in that it is not universally positive, and it refers to potential skills without discussing ability in them (which is for the Skills part of the CS).
Second Place: DP Halcyon Rokir Taldrya (Combat) Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster by your side, kid. CHARACTER may wear a lightsaber at HIS/HER waist, but HE/SHE always goes for HIS/HER trusty blaster instead, preferring to shoot it out from range rather than trying to get in close and personal. Only as a last resort will HE/SHE go for HIS/HER lightsaber.
I absolutely love witty or Star Wars themed Aspect names, as they tend to be instantly recognizable, even without reading the Aspect itself. Note that not all combat Aspects need to have a huge downside - yet one could imagine where reluctance to engage in melee combat could come at a cost quite easily.
Third Place: TIE: JH Saronyx (General/Personality) Shiny! CHARACTER is mesmerized by anything shiny and can easily spot shiny objects from a distance. This makes HIM/HER good at finding things of importance, but HE/SHE may also be distracted by shiny things.
TIE: DJM Keirdagh Taldrya Cantor (Combat) Tonight, we dine in hell! CHARACTER possesses a single minded drive for victory, and a deep seeded martyr complex. When presented with a chance to wade into battle versus overwhelming odds, CHARACTER NAME does not hesistate, and instead rushes in, hoping on skill, fate or chance to let HIM/HER survive.
For both of these, there's a clear downside to each. I personally liked Shiny because uh, it kind of applies to me IRL, and believe me, it can be a downside. :P Tonight, we dine in hell! does a good job of showing a combat Aspect that doesn't need to deal directly with type of weapon used or the like, but more how the character would behave in combat situations. I think that's an important part of a really good combat Aspect, so I thought I'd highlight it!
Now, I'd also like to give an honorable mention to Wally, who narrowly came in fourth here, and to Chaos, who submitted 60 some aspects himself, most of which will be making it into the new CS tool shortly!
Disciplines are another key aspect of the Character Sheet. In past iterations of disciplines, they were tightly tied to Orders. That's not the case for this character sheet. Orders, instead, are more philosophical concepts in how one relates to the Force, and this is reflected in what they bring to the character sheet in terms of Force and Skill bonuses. Disciplines, on the other hand, are more like character archetypes (or classes from other games). Disciplines provide specific bonuses to a particular Skill or Force Power, while also providing a unique ability. Disciplines are meant to be specific enough that picking one gives you a good idea of what you might spend your points on, but open enough that you can experiment with different character concepts even within the same Discipline.
So today, we'll feature my favorite Discipline so far, and one that Wally has put a ton of work into, and that's the Assassin.
Assassins are more than mindless killers; they take their work seriously and view the act of taking a life as an art. Whether stalking from the shadows or blending into a crowd, an assassinâs mark never sees their death coming.
Assassins received the Granted Feats "Ghosting" and "Faceless." Ghosting augments Force Cloak, a Force Power on the character sheet. Faceless is a whole new ability that allows the Assassin to change his or her appearance. For each "Rank Tier" (Journeyman, Equite, Elder), Disciplines receive more advanced versions of these two Granted Feats. Let's take a look at the Journeyman levels of Ghosting and Faceless:
Journeyman Ghosting - *Blend *- One of the most important things for an assassin is to move unnoticed. As a Journeyman, the assassin knows how to blend into a crowd, using the basics of light, shadow, and color to augment Force Cloak, the assassin can move through a crowd and follow a target largely unnoticed by his or her target. The assassin is still visible on sensors and to the naked-eye if attention is drawn to him or her, and anyone with enough precognition through the Force could still sense his or her movements and approach.
Journeyman Faceless - Alter Feature - Staying incognito is key for any assassin. Even a Journeyman Assassin has the ability to alter one or two of their features with the Force. Even a change of eye color and the crook of a nose can help the Assassin avoid being recognized by an untrained eye. The effects can last over the course of half a day, but then would need to be re-applied before the power fizzles out.
Force Cloak normally prohibits movement, so Blend allows the Journeyman Assassin a bit of a perk compared to others - but of course, it has it's limitations, and the power of this ability is based on the level of Force Cloak on the Assassin's character sheet. Alter Feature itself draws upon the rank of the user, and difficulty at detecting such Altered Features is based upon the rank of the Assassin.
Wally, Atyiru, and Gryffon have all contributed heavily to our current lineup of Disciplines. The Assassin is just the tip of the iceberg; we've also got several more coming along that will be available once the new Character Sheets go live soon!
-Tons of Aspects were submitted -Congrats to Rathus, Halc, Saronyx, and Yacks! -Disciplines are cool and help to define a character archetype. -Assassins are one discipline, and they gain the ability to move under some circumstances while Force Cloaked, as well as modify physical features. Pretty cool stuff!
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