Soupspoon wrote:1 By the rules of which, Luke's initial battle in the Death Star Throne Room should have accumulated so many Dark Side Points that the GM should have claimed his character sheet and continued him now as a hostile NPC many times over! No redemption for you, Luke, never mind Anakin!
I don't suppose you'd mind expanding on this. I'm not familiar with this role playing system at all and I was having a tough time finding a reference, but I would love to hear more about Dark Side Points and what Luke did to earn them.
(Oh come on... I was just in the middle of explaining and managed to hit page refresh and lost it all. Start again..!)
It has been a long time, so I might have some details wrong, but my memory is that all characters with Force Sensitivity had numbers of D6 assigned to Force Sense, Force Control and Force Alter (roughly equal to telepathy/supersenses, telekinisis and mind-bending?) plus Force Points and Dark Side Points.
The three Force Stats's given number of D6s were rolled against GM/Source-book decided difficulties of whichever element(s) were necessary. I think Lightsabre use needed both Control and Sense checks, to guide and 'feel' the way to guide the blade accordingly. (Lightsabres were obviously powerful, and supposed to be rare in this 'off to the side of the films' setting, so had to be hard to use rather than power-nerfed, but were there for the fans anyway.)
For difficult tasks, you might need to dip into one or other of the Points pots. Force Points were (on top of any starting number) gained for "good Force play" by the GM, like Skill/Character points for regular skills (in this games system, as well as most others) but specifically for Force stuff, not just good roleplaying in general. They were capped (Major Force Users maybe twice as many as Minor/Latent Force Users) and you could spend excess on Force Skill upgrades, at typical skill-upgrafe junctures. Otherwise, though, you could spend any Force Point you had, at any time, to (I forget which, but I'm sure it's one of these) either get a reroll-on-fail, roll twice the dice and choose the best half or just straight double your roll for a feat Force accomplishment (like targeting an exhaust port the size of a womprat, without targetting computer assistance). With enough panache, you might even get that FP straight back! (Depends on the GM; probably also on what he knows that you still have to survive in his/her game.)
Or, if you wanted to, you could gain
a Dark Side Point for the same/similar boon. As Yoda says "quicker, easier, more seductive", you don't have to work for the bonus (that you may not have an FP left for, if you've been using them up quicker than replenishing them), you just say you're using that and maybe live longer. I half remember that the numbet of DSPs you currently have are added to the regular D6s you're entitled to, so the more Dark Side you have, the more bonus you get. Easy, right?
Except that you run the risk of losing your character. The GM can ask you at any time to roll (I think) a D6 against the number of DSPs and if you get lower than that you have succumbed. A single DSP is safe, but two or more and you're a dice-roll away from turning. Beyond six, and it's inescapable.
Outside the action, GM allowing, I think you can meditate away your DSPs (GM might also reward you with a reduction for Light Side roleplaying, or let you expend a previously rewarded FP to burn away a DSP, which is why I think I recall the DSP bonus being worthwhile to risk over FP spending, if you had the choice), and that is obviously encouraging towards a paladinesque cooling-off as your fellow players pilot you in their (Not-Exactly-)Stock Light Freighter between encounters. Vader's 'meditation sphere' might be even be a conscious attempt to moderate the DSPs that (NPC) Vader is always racking up due to all the force-chokes, etc, perhaps an indication that he is
redeemable. But it could also be for other things.
But, on top of all that, you also
get a Dark Side Point for aggressive
Force use. Cruelty (Force-assisted interogation, rather than merely sensing lies) and physically violent acts (throwing opponents1
across the room, or force-choking). An anti-bonus, you might sau. Lightsabre duels are tricky, given that you can't just act defensively and hope to prevail, but whilst trying to disarm your opponent2
, or otherwise subdue/distract them whilst others do their tning, you don't need
to try to strike them down with killing blows.
And, in the Throne Room scene, Luke is clearly riled up by Vader and Emperor. Vader is just encouraging Luke's rage, not attacking back enough to justify Luke's violence towards him, and counting even a fraction of each emotional strike towards his father (spoilers!) he clearly
has far more than any D6 test can ever pass him for continued playing...
The GM obviously lets him ride a bit, though. Maybe his own redemption and getting Vader to heelfaceturn (as an NPC already, a lower bar, perhaps) cleared his debts.
(Another DFP plusser I remember is becoming cyber-enhanced. Film-wise, Vader's life-support suit (prosthetic limbs also, if Ep3 is part of it) would definitely count. Luke's replacement hand probably needed meditation to deal with, but coincides with the "white robe Luke" to "dark robe Luke" symbolism change, as well.)1
Droids probably don't count, so Qui-Jon and Obi-Wan are safe from this in Ep1. If that even works in this system.2
Not in the Cantina sense. That surely would have been a DSP for Ben, given other options, but he could probably afford it after so much reclusive solitude, and 'prayed it away' not long after, on the Falcon, ready for his force-ascension upon the Death Star. And, anyway, maybe the judgement was one arm and the whole bar of patrons pretending nothing had happened (probably to inform on them later, but they were already getting off-world) was less problematic than the amount of Handwaving ("not the droids..." sort of thing) necessary to exert the same amount of quieting influence.