Star Wars: Edge of the Empire: Looking at some combat percentages

Star Wars Edge of the Empire RPG from Fantasy Flight GamesStar Wars: Edge of the Empire, the new RPG currently in beta from Fantasy Flight Games, continues to be at the top of my reading list (oh, and – as a note – the stuff found within is based on the beta of the game, so it may not be representative of the final product). One of the things that stuck out to me when I was reading through Star Wars: Edge of the Empire is that there is not a really wide range in the levels of skills (It reminds me a lot of my days playing Shadowrun in that way, where attributes and skills capped out at six by default). In Star Wars: Edge of the Empire, you have a couple of important things to keep track of in combat: Soak, which prevents damage from being done to you and Defense, which adds a negative dice (good for you) to the dice pool of the person attacking you, increasing their chance of failure. What I decided to do was to do a couple of rounds of 20 rolls (I know it’s not enough to be scientifically accurate, but it’s still interesting and I’m not trying to get this in a journal) and see what effect changing Soak and Defense has on combat. For this little experiment in Star Wars: Edge of the Empire I decided to use a character with two upgraded positive dice and one regular positive dice (a very competent starting character) using a regular blaster at medium range against a strong enemy with 3 Soak (which is pretty substantial). I would expect, in most games, that the competent starting character should hit the enemy most of the time and it did. In fact, I was successful in hitting my armorless, hypothetical enemy 14/21 times (66.67%). I did an average of 5.29 damage per hit (so it would take roughly three hits to take an opponent down), got 2.43 successes per roll, and 1.19 failures. Using most armor just reduces the amount of damage the opponent takes, so an armored opponent can generally expect to take one or two hits more than an unarmored one.

Continuing in this vein, we look at what a heavily armored opponent (only the most heavily armored foes get Defense, and they will probably be fairly rare in a game about smugglers and vagabonds, who tend to – at least in my games – be less armored) in Star Wars: Edge of the Empire does to the fight. I did the test under the same condition, only this time adding the die for defense into the mix. In this run of testing out Star Wars: Edge of the Empire I was only successful in hurting my heavily armored foe (with my very good hypothetical starting character) 12/21 times (57.14 percent) with an average of 2.85 successes per roll (I actually got a little luckier on my rolls despite my lower success rate) and 1.333 failures per roll (an increase slightly less than the .33 increase expected, but we’ll chalk that up to not enough sample size) and an average damage of 4 damage per hit (pretty close to the prior number for an armored target). Doing some fuzzy math based on the target we’ve been using, I would estimate, then, that a pretty strong target will last about 6.5 shots while a slightly less armored target (still full body armor, though) will take about 5.5 shots to take down, a strong target with armor can expect to take about 3.5 shots. All estimates, of course, but I think it’s interesting. Of course, all of that is using a regular blaster pistol, without using an sort of the Advantage that we rolled (which might have resulted in us adding positive dice to the pool in Star Wars: Edge of the Empire), using Talents that might give us a boost, or using a stronger weapon (A rifle will lower the life expectancy in Star Wars: Edge of the Empire considerably). So, that’s it for looking at how a couple of different factors affect the combat in Star Wars: Edge of the Empire.

What plots would you like to use about smugglers and rogues in the Star Wars: Edge of the Empire RPG? Talk about it in the comments! If you’ve wrapped things up here, why don’t you check out the Related Posts below or go to a random page on Futile Position?

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About Michael

Michael is an enthusiast about a lot of things, including indie games, roleplaying games, board games, and comic books that wanted to help create a place where he could bring things to the attention of those with similar interests. Futile Position is a true labor of labor, which he hopes continues to grow through the support of the great readers who have come upon this page.

28. August 2012 by Michael
Categories: RPGs | Tags: , , , | 2 comments

Comments (2)

  1. We tried out a simple combat yesterday, I was a wookiee with 4 brawn and 2 in melee armed with a vibro-axe, I jumped a stormtrooper, chopped him in half in one swing and had dice over to make the other PC do more damage on his next shot as well as making the other stormtroopers be less likely to hit. So the melee characters are really powerful as long as they don’t get hit (I was hit with one shot and that took me down to almost half health).

    One strange thing was that since all strain damage on minions converts to health damage the last stormtrooper died of a heart attack or something, cause that last strain damage got him down to 0 hp, so that’s something they should have a second look at or maybe we just missed something in the book.

    I really look forward to playing a full adventure in this game, it seams to be really fun!

    • I would say if it is a strain attack that would normally just cause a minion to get upset/cause emotional stress, I might rule that they fled the scene to parts unknown or completely surrendered instead of just falling over. It’s not particularly mentioned in the book, but I think that could easily fall under an explanation of ‘incapacitated.’ If a melee character is attacking a character with a ranged weapon, I might also considering giving them a Setback unless they are blindsiding the armed person since they are going to have to maneuver around being shot in order to make the attack. Just thinking out loud. Anyway, melee characters are going to pretty tough, but – when you think about it – a Wookiee with a vibroaxe should be a terror.

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