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What did WEG intend for Knowledge?
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Darklighter79
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 19, 2019 3:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, and I was have been searching various forums for opinions and info about rules upgrades. No luck so far.

I am curious about this since in Zorro such aspects of combat as melee and gun fight as well as cinematic chases are quite essential. Hoping on some nice improvements there. Smile
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MrNexx
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 19, 2019 11:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am looking forward to Zorro and seeing how they handle the ruleset. I think looking at Adventure can give us some idea, and I imagine they're going to go with a more traditional physical/mental split, rather than SW's Physical/Mental/Technology split.
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CRMcNeill
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 19, 2019 8:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MrNexx wrote:
I am looking forward to Zorro and seeing how they handle the ruleset. I think looking at Adventure can give us some idea, and I imagine they're going to go with a more traditional physical/mental split, rather than SW's Physical/Mental/Technology split.

It would've been possible to have both; just add more attributes. Even just adding a seventh to make a three-way split - Knowledge, Perception & Presence (to avoid too obviously copying Charisma from D&D) would alleviate most of the issues.
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MrNexx
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2019 10:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

CRMcNeill wrote:
MrNexx wrote:
I am looking forward to Zorro and seeing how they handle the ruleset. I think looking at Adventure can give us some idea, and I imagine they're going to go with a more traditional physical/mental split, rather than SW's Physical/Mental/Technology split.

It would've been possible to have both; just add more attributes. Even just adding a seventh to make a three-way split - Knowledge, Perception & Presence (to avoid too obviously copying Charisma from D&D) would alleviate most of the issues.


In some ways, the tripartite split of SW also works in three different finesse v. power splits

Strength is power, Dex is finesse (no arguments, there, I think)
Knowledge is power, Perception is finesse (Knowledge is processing and memory, while Perception is noticing, manipulating, and balancing)
Mechanical is power, Technical is finesse (Mechanical is gross manipulation of devices to make them DO things, while Technical is a fine manipulation of devices to repair and improve them.

Obviously, this is not a perfectly realized theory, but if we go with that, Intimidation and Willpower in Knowledge make a bit of sense... they're the "Stamina" and "Brawling" of the mental split, whereas Con is more akin to Dodge.

It still doesn't fix "Force Powers are resisted with Perception", unless you consider folks to be Dodging the Force, rather than resisting it.
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CRMcNeill
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 21, 2019 2:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MrNexx wrote:
In some ways, the tripartite split of SW also works in three different finesse v. power splits

That's an interesting way of looking at it. It reminds me of the text from the Intimidation skill:
    Intimidation is normally dependent upon a character's physical presence, body language or force of will to be successful. Some characters use the threat of torture, pain or other unpleasantries to intimidate others.
Note that, as described, Intimidation does not automatically require an active interaction component, but is instead based primarily on "physical presence, body language or force of will," with the "threat of torture, pain or other unpleasantries" as an option ("Some characters use").

Almost like an external expression of Willpower, the palpable realization in others that this is not someone to be messed with, or who is going to break easily, without a word being said.

Quote:
It still doesn't fix "Force Powers are resisted with Perception", unless you consider folks to be Dodging the Force, rather than resisting it.

I used to think certain powers could be resisted by Per, depending on what exactly was being done. For example, when Obi-wan mind-tricked the stormtroopers on the Death Star with an illusion (as in, made them think they heard something), a high Perception roll could conceivably recognize the illusion as false. But as I put more thought into it, I ended up leaning more toward the idea that the illusion wouldn't need to be perfect, because the Force would make sure the stormtroopers thought it was perfect.

It might still be applicable for things like Doppelganger or the Illusions of the White Current, which don't seem to work directly on the mind, but are instead pseudo-real. As such, a good Perception roll might be able to spot flaws in the illusion, as the accuracy of the illusion would be dependent on how well the illusionist created the illusion. Doppelganger would be easy enough, but projecting an image of, say, a stormtrooper when one has only ever had stormtrooper armor described to them, and have never actually seen it?
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 21, 2019 3:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Been meaning to get back to this...
Whill wrote:
I withdraw the two proceeding sentences, and I am sorry.

No need to apologize. As topics here get more complex, we spend more and more time trying to grok what others are saying, and confusion and frustration are unfortunate side effects of that.

Quote:
(let's presume WEG didn't just just flip a coin or roll dice to randomly determine attribute assignment for skills).

A more likely explanation is that they had an intent that was poorly expressed and/or improperly realized in the final product. The wording of Intimidation suggests it's primarily passive (as in, based on body language and/or physical presence), but may include an active component (threats, etc) as an option. As in, it doesn't require an actual interaction by the character in order to have an effect, but that said effect can be enhanced by an active interaction.

I have my own House Rule for allowing PCs to use Knowledge skill rolls to boost more "practical" skills, such as using Languages to boost Persuasion. I see that working similarly here, with Intimidation being used to enhance the effect of a Perception skill (not sure if threats and torture would fit under Persuasion, but it's the closest conceptual fit).


Quote:
I mentioned that I moved First Aid to Knowledge (extremely important), and I was inspired by Bren to move Investigation to Knowledge with other information gathering skills. That makes Knowledge more important while at the same time has personal influence skills all in one attribute.

I concur with the move of First Aid / Medicine, but I have my reservations on Investigation. IMO, it depends greatly on what sort of Investigation one is performing; digging through records, or processing crime scene data through a computer system would certainly fall under Knowledge, but if the character is physically going out and speaking to people, asking questions and monitoring physical indicators (body language, etc), then that is most decidedly a Perception skill. Perhaps a separate Knowledge skill - or even just folding that aspect into Bureaucracy and/or Law Enforcement would be appropriate.

Quote:
The only other option is to split the attribute into two attributes as D6 Adventure and D6 Fantasy have done, which is undesirable to all SW GMs I've talked about it with.

I'm not necessarily opposed to the idea, but implementing it would require a fundamental change to the game from the ground up. That's fine when one is designing a new game from scratch, but is pretty daunting when one considers all the changes that would need to be made to the existing game in order to make it fit. The NPC stat re-writes alone would be daunting.

With me having Willpower on Perception (with Intimidation and Command) doesn't make achieving granularity for better defined character concepts any harder.

Quote:
What do you think about D6 Adventure and D6 Fantasy moving Animal Handling, Intimidation, and Willpower/Mettle to the social/personality "Perception" attribute (Presence/Charisma)? One possibility is the authors felt that they always should have been there, but D6 Space was intentionally left as they were in Star Wars to be more like Star Wars as published.

Tough to say. For obvious reasons, the Technical and Mechanical Attributes are going to be of limited utility in a fantasy setting. I do think Animal Handling / Beast Riding being moved to Perception (or its equivalent) is a good move, though.

My general solution would be to add an eighth attribute to those listed in D6 Space: the traditional six Attributes from SW D6, the Force / Metaphysics Attribute, and Presence/Charisma (with the interaction skills grouped under it).
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Whill
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 16, 2020 11:19 pm    Post subject: Re: What did WEG intend for Knowledge? Reply with quote

CRMcNeill wrote:
I think we've been misreading what WEG intended. Or at least what they had planned, but didn't fully implement. Intimidation always seemed an odd choice to be put under Knowledge, as on the face of things, it would seem to belong under Perception. Unless WEG intended to put skills dealing with having a strong mind / forceful personality / however you wish to phrase it under Knowledge, but failed to fully implement the change (as evidenced by the various Force powers all still defaulting to Perception as a defense).

Now, there have been multiple ideas floated in this forum about how to increase the utility of the Knowledge stat beyond that of a "role"playing stat or dump stat (depending on one's view). But what if we've been looking at Knowledge wrong? What if Knowledge is supposed to have an interactive aspect to it that WEG didn't define clearly enough for it to catch on?

So I have corresponded with Bill Smith himself, the primary game designer of Star Wars 2e. He recalls that the attribute assignments of Intimidation and Willpower were discussed on his design team, with the two candidates indeed being Knowledge and Perception for both skills. In his view, both skills were about 50-50 Knowledge and Perception. Here is Bill's breakdown...


Intimidation
Knowledge - "knowing how best to manipulate your target, knowing their history and weaknesses"
Perception - "picking up on what your target is vulnerable to"

Willpower
Knowledge - "knowing how to endure what you are doing"
Perception - "gut instinct"


The tie breaker between the two attributes in both cases was Knowledge to make Knowledge "more useful" since most of the skills already there were "oriented to research and abstract parts of the game as opposed to the action-packed parts."

Bill also said that I make a good case for moving these skills to Perception.

Of course, none of this should have any bearing on how each GM should run his own game. This only addresses the WEG intention aspect of this thread. I'm still not reading any intention of Bill wanting Knowledge to include an "interactive aspect" other than what the assignment of Intimidation to Knowledge gives it (and it was ultimately assigned there for 'dump stat' reasons). Now if GMs want Knowledge to have an interactive aspect in their games, it should. GMs should keep these skills there and even move Command to Knowledge if they want to. But there is a difference between saying "WEG intended this but just didn't do it" and "I feel my way is better for my reasons."

Personally, I disagree with Bill that it is even 50-50 for Investigation and Willpower. His statements for the Knowledge aspects of those skills seems to me to be going down the path of any skill being thought of as "the knowledge of..." Down that path is where all skills end up under Knowledge. The knowledge of shooting blaster, the knowledge of flying spaceships, the knowledge of repairing droids, etc. Most all skills include a "knowledge" aspect but that alone doesn't mean they should be under the Knowledge attribute.

One more thing. Investigation is a 2e Perception skill which includes a big research component. Bill didn't speak to Investigation specifically, but his characterization of Knowledge skills in general was "oriented to research". I feel Intimidation and Willpower are more Perception, but I would actually have to say Investigation is pretty even between Knowledge and Perception. So for that one, I'll tip the scale to Knowledge. In my game, all influence skills are in Perception and all information gathering skills are in Knowledge. It works for me.
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