Monday, February 13, 2012

Burning Star Wars SAGA: A Few Houserules

So here's a random idea. Light Side Points and Dark Side Points, tied into Beliefs. This is just a quick and dirty thought experiment, so it's not been tweaked or playtested. But I think it works really nicely for Star Wars SAGA, and would do tons for that game system.

I'll cover what the Points do first. The Light and Dark Side Points replace Force Points. When you make a character you divide up the amount of points you get from your classes between Dark and Light. You do not regain Force Points every level.

Light Side Points are a manifestation of the Light Side of the Force, and are extremely powerful. Whenever you use one you may either re-roll a d20 roll, amplify a Force Power (as Force Points normally did), negate a Dark Side Point (and nothing else), or regain your Second Wind. You regain Light Side Points by doing good deeds that threaten to complicate (and possibly end) your character's life.

For instance, let's say Han Solo hates the thought of Wookies being enslaved, so he helps save one's life. He gets kicked out of the Imperial Academy, but he gains a Light Side Point! Don't forget that the Wookie stuck with him til the end, too.

Dark Side Points are a manifestation of the Dark Side of the Force, and are highly corrupting. You may spend a Dark Side Point to add a bonus equal to 1d6+half-level to a damage roll, amplify a Force Power (as Force Points normally did), or regain your Second Wind. Whenever you spend a Dark Side Point you not only generate another Dark Side Point but you lose a Light Side Point. You get Dark Side Points by using Dark Side Powers and committing evil and selfish deeds, even if it's not to your benefit.

Now then, there's Beliefs. These are similar to Burning Wheel. You must have three. These Beliefs must be specific and have a plan of action written into them.  

Darth Vader is evil and must be vanquished.

Beliefs must have a Light or Dark descriptor on them as well. This helps describe the general intent of your belief, of whether or not your character means well in his belief. Whenever you fulfill one of these Beliefs you get the descriptor's Force Point, regardless of whether it's a good or evil action.

So, for instance, I said in my belief that Darth Vader must be vanquished. I attach a Light Side descriptor to this Belief. Whenever I take a step in the direction of fulfilling this Belief, regardless of what type of action it is, I get a Light Side Point. This represents the relative purity of intention. Of course, if I keep doing Dark Side things with a Light Side belief, that might piss the GM off.

If you keep abusing your Beliefs to get a plethora of both Points the GM may start a vote to change the descriptor of your Belief. If there is a universal vote, your Belief's descriptor is changed. This is to prevent power gaming and those bastard munchkins who think that the best way to play the game is to exploit it. ROLE PLAYING GAMES ARE NOT MADE WITH MUNCHKINS IN MIND, AND THE RULES SHOULD REFLECT THAT.  The GM may not invoke this vote unless it is obvious to all involved that the offender in question is only in it for exploiting the rules.

All feats that apply to Force Points apply to Light and Dark Side Points.

That's it for now. If you guys have any helpful additions and thoughts, please comment! I'll incorporate the suggestions into the main post and attribute whoever suggested it.