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Something, Something, Something, Dark Side

I wanted to do a fair review of the new Family Guy Star Wars “homage,” and so I sat through the movie long after I wanted to turn it off (less than 5 minutes before I got fed up with the “jokes” Seth MacFarlane was offering).

The on thing I can’t find any fault with was the animation. While the visuals were incredible, it’s easy to tell after watching it that – like the first one – that’s where all the money went. The script was so weak so as to be non-existent and large chunks of the story they were attempting to send-up made it nonsensical.

The most insulting fact about the movie – and not just for Star Wars fans – was that he couldn’t come up with new and original jokes. More than half the time we were treated to the same jokes that we’ve seen on the TV show numerous times, and the entire time they went for the cheap laugh instead of doing anything even slightly thought provoking. Examples include:

-Making Meg the space slug

-Doing a handicapped parking joke with the Falcon and the asteroid

-Doing a training montage on Dagobah while splicing in footage of Drago’s training from Rocky IV (which seems to be a crutch MacFarlane’s been relying on more and more as the series drags on).

-Making the Giant Chicken (a joke that should have died an incredibly long time ago in the show, in my own opinion) Boba Fett.

-Having Peter drop his trousers and moon everyone as he’s frozen in carbonite.

-Including “Dog” in the background of the line-up of bounty hunters.

And arguably the worst offender. As Peter is about to be lowered into the carbon-freezing chamber and Lois offers up Leia’s line “I love you,” Peter gives her a deadpan stare and simply states, “Fuck you.” There’s being edgy, and then there’s being just plain offensive, and this officially crossed the line.

There’s many more examples in the movie, but I’ve already forced myself to forget a good deal of what I just witnessed. This will be another Family Guy “special” that I will be avoiding like the plague when it inevitably rolls onto network television.

To close this rather short review, let me make a plea to Seth MacFarlane. Please don’t touch Return of the Jedi. It’s not that I hold it in any higher respect out of the original three films, but I know you will handle it just as poorly as you did the first two “films.” Parody is more than just fart and masturbation jokes with your own characters shoved into the movie roles. It’s more than putting a thin veneer of the story your parodying over jokes you’ve recycled four or five times already in the series. I would hope you would understand that.

Final Opinion: This is not worth the time it takes to watch it. I’d recommend staying away and catching the Robot Chicken Star Wars specials again.

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Placeholder Message

This is just a post to let people know that there will be a new Build of the Week up tomorrow. I apologize for the delay. I had an ex-girlfriend of mine pass away in a car accident this Tuesday, so it’s been one of the longer weeks of the year.

Again, I apologize for the delay. Thank you for your patience, and there will be a new build up tomorrow.

-Ben

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Martial Arts Build: The Noghri Death Commando

As promised, I’m back with a few martial arts builds. I’ll be posting them in self-contained articles in order for clarity, and as a way to keep my own thoughts organized and to make a certain build easier to find.The first of the Martial Arts based builds I’m going to look at is:

The Noghri Death Commando

Anyone who has read far enough into the Star Wars Expanded Universe knows about the Noghri. They are one of the most loved, and most recognized species of every other written into the universe, and the Noghri Death Commando is one of the most terrifying sights that a person can see before the end, or more accurately, that they probably can’t see before the end.

The seed of this build was brought about by looking through some of the Scout’s talents, specifically the Camouflage talent tree, and noticing a lot of the cool things that could be done using Stealth checks to utterly destroy your opponent when combined with Martial Arts skills and the K’tara Training feat found in Galaxy at War.

Level Spread

1-13 – Scout

14-20 – Martial Arts Master

Starting Abilities

Strength – 13 (+1)

Dexterity – 15 (+2)

Constitution – 13 (+1)

Intelligence – 12 (+1)

Wisdom – 12 (+1)

Charisma – 8 (-1)

Trained Skills

Stealth

Endurance

Perception

Survival

Swim

Climb

Jump (at 8th level)

Level 1

Starting Feats – Weapon Proficiency (simple weapons), Shake it Off (Core)

Species Feats – Running Attack (Core)

Feat – Martial Arts I (Core) – This is the first level feat you’re going to take. You want to be able to dish out the damage, and with a Martial Arts based build, this is the way to do it. The dodge bonus to Reflex Defense is just gravy.

Talent – Improved Stealth (Core) – This is the first feat that you qualify for on the Camouflage talent tree. Rerolls are often overlooked, but very powerful abilities. I can’t tell you how many players I’ve had at my table who have poo-pooed abilities like this only to have it bail them out at a later time.

Level 2

Scout Bonus Feat – Skill Focus (Stealth) (Core) – Skill Focus is one of the greatest feats you can pick up for a skill focused build. That +5 effectively doubles the bonus you get from Skill Training, and as a Small creature, you get an additional 5 on top of this. With your reroll ability, there won’t be many Stealth checks you won’t be able to crush.

Level 3

Feat – K’tara Training (Galaxy at War) – This is the martial arts feat that most of your abilities are going be revolving around. The ability to keep an opponent silenced while you take them down is powerful indeed.

Talent – Hidden Movement (Core) – You’re going to be spending a lot of time in Stealth, the ability to move your full speed is going to serve you well.

Level 4

Stat Increases – +1 Strength, +1 Dexterity

Scout Bonus Feat – Dodge (Core) – A +1 dodge bonus to Reflex Defense when you have to go toe to toe with an opponent could be all the edge you need to help carry the day.

Level 5

Talent – Shadow Striker (Scum and Villainy) – This talent gives you three powerful abilities you can use in an encounter, all centering around having cover or concealment from an opponent, which you should be using as often as you can to maximize this build.

Level 6

Feat – Martial Arts II (Core) – This is one of the few ways to increase your damage as a bare-knuckle fighter, and the dodge bonus continues to increase your Reflex Defense.

Scout Bonus Feat РMobility (Core) РUnfortunately, as a melee fighter, it is more difficult to take advantage of your speed, as well as feats like Running Attack. This, while not completely preventing  opportunity attacks made against you, does make them a great deal less likely to hit.

Level 7

Talent – Hide in Plain Sight (Scum and Villainy) – This talent is a god-send for those who find themselves forced into the open in a melee, allowing them to fade back into the background once you have cover or concealment from a foe, which allows you to continue your more powerful attack options.

Level 8

Stat Increases – +1 Dexterity, +1 Constitution

Scout Bonus Feat – Skill Training (Jump) (Core) – This feat allows you to train in one more skill, helping to complete your set of Strength based skills.

Level 9

Feat – Martial Arts III (Core) – This feat takes you to the top of your unarmed damage without a few other tricks, and adds another point of dodge bonus to your Reflex Defense.

Talent – Total Concealment (Core) – Turning concealment into total concealment, regardless of the circumstances? Who wouldn’t want this?

Level 10

Scout Bonus Feat – Deft Charge (Rebellion Era Campaign Guide) – The ability to take a swift action, free action, or reaction after charging may not seem like much, but when looking at how you can use your Shadow Striker talent in order to grant yourself concealment with a melee attack made at the end of a charge, you can then use that swift action to hide again, ala the Hide in Plain Sight talent.Strike first, strike hard, then fade away.

Level 11

Talent – Ghost Assailant (Galaxy at War) – Making an opponent flat-footed through a Stealth check, which you have maxed out, is a great option to have in combat. Don’t overlook it.

Level 12

Stat Increases – +1 Str, +1 Dex

Feat – Melee Defense (Core) – This gives you another option when you need those few extra points of Reflex Defense, and satisfies a feat requirement for Martial Arts Master.

Bonus Scout Feat – Conditioning (Knights of the Old Republic Campaign Guide) – This lets you reroll any Strength or Constitution based skills. With your skill spread, that’s Endurance, Swim, Climb, and Jump. When coupled with Improved Stealth, that’s four out of your seven skills that give you rerolls. The ability to add your Strength bonus to your Fortitude Defense is just gravy.

Level 13

Talent – Surefooted (Core) – This allows you to move through any difficult terrain you might come across without hampering your speed. This also satisfies your talent requirement for Martial Arts Master.

Level 14

Talent – Teras Kasi Basics (Threats of the Galaxy) – This gives you an additional damage die on your unarmed attacks, which you need really badly in order to continue to keep pace with a lot of the other warriors out there.

Level 15

Feat – Teras Kasi Training (Galaxy at War) – This feat lets you treat your foes damage threshold as 5 lower against your unarmed attacks once per round. Also, since you’ve take the Teras Kasi basics talent at the previous level, your damage die type increases by one again, bringing you up in the damage department again.

Level 16

Stat Increases – +1 Str, +1 Dex

Talent – K’tara Expertise (Galaxy at War) – A free disarm with a swift action after making a successful unarmed attack without the penalty to two handed wielders that you normally get. The best part is, with Deft Charge feat, you can do this at the end of a charge action, quickly closing the distance from cover, stripping an opponent of his weapon, and keeping him silent with your K’tara training, while at the same time really putting the hurt on them.

Level 18

Feat – Rapid Strike (Core) – This feat simply gets you an extra die of damage for a minor penalty to the attack roll, which is no laughing matter.

Talent – Unarmed Parry (Threats of the Galaxy) – This talent gives you the power of the Jedi’s powerful Block talent when you fight defensively, allowing you to negate a melee attack with a successful unarmed attack roll that beats the incoming attack’s roll.

Level 20

Talent – Unarmed Counterstrike (Threats of the Galaxy) – This talent gives you the one-up on the previous pick, allowing you to throw an elbow in your opponent’s gut after turning their weapon aside with your unarmed parry.

So there you have the Noghri Death Commando. Hopefully you’ve found something you like in this build that inspired you to use it in your own game or come up with your own build ideas.

I should be back tomorrow with a wrestler/grappler build. Until then, Gamer Nation, enjoy.

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Build of the Week – Condition Track Killer (Part 2 of 2)

What’s up, Gamer Nation. I’m back to finish up the Condition Track Killer build with the ranged combat style discussion.

The Ranged Condition Track Killer

Species: Gungan

Of the 12 species in the Core Rulebook, there are 7 with a bonus to their Dexterity score, which is your all important combat stat, improving both your ability to hit opponents as well as your ability to avoid being hit yourself (which makes it less likely you’ll fall victim to being moved down the condition track yourself). However, a few of them just aren’t good choices. Ewoks for example, have the Primitive trait, which can be crippling for a ranged combat build. Bothans have species abilities that don’t line up with the build we’re going for. Gungans, on top of their racial Dexterity bonus get a +2 bonus to their Reflex Defense, which makes them that much harder to hit.. Plus, I’ve always enjoyed making Gungans that rail against the canon examples that we’ve been given (I usually try to include the “bad-ass” Gungan in any game I run).

Stats (at 1st level)

Strength – 13 (+1)

Dexterity 16 (+3)

Constitution – 12 (+1)

Intelligence – 12 (+1)

Wisdom – 8 (-1)

Charisma – 10 (+0)

Dexterity is your big stat, so you’re going to want to budget the most of your points there. A Strength of at least 13 is necessary to take the minimum penalty when using the Rapid Shot feat, and a good Constitution shouldn’t be overlooked in order to bring up your own Fortitude Defense and by extension, your damage threshold. When spending your ability points every four levels, you wouldn’t be wrong to increase your Dexterity every time, working to improve your ability to hit and avoid being hit yourself. Also increasing your Constitution wouldn’t be a bad move, working to keep your damage threshold a little bit ahead of the curve.

Level Spread

Level 1 – Scoundrel

Level 2-4 – Scout

Level 5-9 – Soldier

Level 10 – Bounty Hunter

Level 11-12 – Gunslinger

Level 13-14 Elite Trooper

Level 15 – Gunslinger

Level 16-20 – Elite Trooper

Starting with the Scoundrel class gets us Point Blank Shot right away, which is one of the prerequisites for the Gunslinger prestige class. Your next three levels in Scout gets you access to the Awareness talent tree to get into the Bounty Hunter prestige class, as well as gets Survival on your skill list. Soldier gets you some nice talents to help break your foes’ damage threshold. Bounty Hunter and Gunslinger have some key talents for this build, and Elite Trooper gets you improved versions of your soldier talents.

Level 1

Talent – Debilitating Shot – This lets you move your foe a guaranteed step down the condition track provided you catch them without their Dexterity bonus to Reflex Defense, which is more and more possible because you can train in Deception at 1st level.

Feat – Weapon Focus (pistols) – This gives you a straight +1 bonus to hit with pistols, which is never a bad thing.

Level 2

Feat – Weapon Proficiency (rifles) – This is the one talent you qualify for when you take your first level of Scout.

Talent – Acute Senses – This nets you a Perception reroll, and satisfies one of the talent requirements for the Bounty Hunter prestige class.

Level 3

Scout Bonus Feat – Precise Shot – This feat makes it that much easier for you to hit an opponent tied up in melee with one of your allies.

Feat – Careful Shot – As a ranged fighter, you get access to the Aim action. This feat gets you an additional bonus to hit when you use the Aim action.

Level 4

Ability Bumps – +1 Dex, +1 Int

Talent – Improved Initiative – This gets you an Initiative reroll, and satisfies the last talent requirement for the Bounty Hunter prestige class.

Level 5

Feat – Armor Proficiency (light) – This talent lets you wear light armor without proficiency penalty if you like, and satisfies a talent requirement for Elite Trooper

Talent – Devastating Attack (pistols) – This talent helps you to break a foe’s damage threshold a little more easily with your pistols.

Level 6

Soldier Bonus Feat – Rapid Shot – This feat gives you an extra die of damage for taking a penalty to hit on your attack rolls.

Feat – Deadeye – When you take the aim action, this feat gives you an additional die of damage. Unfortunately, this doesn’t stack with the added damage from Rapid Shot feat, but it does give you some versatility in your actions.

Level 7

Talent – Weapon Specialization (pistols) – This talent gives you a flat bonus to damage rolls with your pistol. This one should be a no brainer.

Level 8

Ability Bumps – +1 Dex, +1 Int – Train in Survival with your increased Intelligence bonus

Soldier Bonus Feat – Armor Proficiency (medium) – This talent satisfies another talent requirement for entry into the Elite Trooper class.

Level 9

Talent – Indomitable – This lets you move up to the top of the condition track once per day, allowing you to turn the tables on an opponent that is trying to use the same tactics against you.

Feat – Quickdraw – This feat lets you get your weapon out more quickly than anyone else, plus satisfies the last feat requirement for the Gunslinger prestige class.

Level 10

Talent – Hunter’s Mark – This talent moves your foe an automatic step down the condition track if you deal damage to a foe with a ranged attack that you have used the Aim action for. With the extra die from Deadeye, you should have no problem damaging them.

Level 11

Talent – Debilitating Shot – This talent does the exact same thing as Hunter’s Mark, allowing you to move a foe up to -4 steps along the condition track in one attack should you catch them without their Dexterity bonus to Reflex Defense and break their damage threshold.

Level 12

Ability Bumps – +1 Dex, +1 Con

Feat – Martial Arts I – This feat gives you a viable attack option should you find yourself stripped of your weapon, and satisfies the last feat requirement for the Elite Trooper prestige class.

Level 13

Talent – Greater Weapon Focus (pistols) – This is an improvement of the Weapon Focus feat you took at first level.

Level 15

Talent – Multiattack Proficiency (pistols) – This talent lowers the penalty you take when making multiple attacks in a round.

Feat – Double Attack – This talent lets you make two attacks in a round in exchange for taking an attack penalty on the attack rolls, which is lowered thanks to your talent choice this level.

Level 16

Ability Bumps – +1 Dex, +1 Con

Talent – Greater Devastating Attack (pistols) – This talent further lowers your foe’s damage threshold against your pistol attacks.

Level 18

Talent – Greater Weapon Specialization (pistols) – This talent is an improvement on your Weapon Specialization talent taken with your Soldier levels, increasing your damage output with pistol attacks.

Feat – Triple Attack – This feat follows the same concept as the Double Attack feat.

Level 20

Ability Bumps – +1 Dex, +1 Con

Talent – Tough as Nails – This talent gives you an extra second wind per day. This extends your “work day” another few encounters.

So there you have my suggestions for the Ranged Condition Track Killer. As the melee build, there isn’t much in the Core Rulebook to modify the build a whole lot, but you can certainly take what you want in order to get the character to play like you want.

You might also consider the Rodian, Sullustan, or Duros for your species. All three of them give you a bonus to your Dexterity score and give you a different flavor to help you fit into whatever role your playing in your group.

So there you have part 2 of the Condition Track Killer. Tomorrow you can look forward to several Martial Arts builds, inspired by the latest episode of the Order 66 podcast. So until tomorrow Gamer Nation.

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Build of the Week – The Condition Track Killer (Part 1 of 2)

Sorry for the lack of updates. It’s been a trying couple of weeks and I just haven’t had the chance to get around to doing this. However, this time around I’m going to hit you up with a two for one deal at first: the Condition Track Killer, both melee and ranged, and to add to the challenge a bit, I’ll only be using the Core Rulebook for this build.

Star Wars Saga Edition introduced to the concept of the Condition Track, which made it possible for even a high level character to be taken down in a number of rounds without having to call in an airstrike. In fact, a properly built character stands a good chance of dropping a powerful opponent in a round or two through dropping an opponent multiple steps on the condition track in a single attack, whcih at higher levels, becomes a much more economical way to take down a target than just through dealing hit point damage.

I’ve decided to present my builds a little bit differently. I’m going to show you my build, talents and feat choices, species and stats and all that good stuff. Then I’m going to tell you why. At the end, I’ll discuss other good options someone exploring this build might consider. This way, someone will have a complete build already presented to them that they can use in their own games if they like it, and easy ways to modify it.

The Melee Condition Track Killer

Species: Wookiee.

I went with the Wookiee because the species easily fits the motif of the build. He’s got the highest Strength bonus of all the species in the Core Rulebook and has the devastating Rage ability that makes him even more ferocious in combat. His ability to shrug off even the most debilitating wounds more quickly than any other species also helps them to get back into the fight more quickly, and his bonus to Constitution gives him a little extra staying power in the middle of a knock-down, drag out fight. Wookiees do take three ability score penalties, but two of the three stats don’t have a bearing on this build. The other one is a hit to Dexterity, which does bring down our Reflex Defense a little bit, but nothing that can’t be compensated for later on.

Stats –

At 1st level

Strength -18 (+4)

Dexterity -13 (+1)

Constitution – 16 (+3)

Intelligence – 11 (+0)

Wisdom -6 (-2)

Charisma -8 (-1)

When budgeting points, Strength and Constitution are your two primary stats, in that order. Strength not only allows you to deal more damage to break an opponent’s damage threshold, but also allows you to hit more often, Strength being your prime combat stat. A high Constitution not only allows your character to take more damage through more hit points, but also helps to drive up your Fortitude Defense, which helps you avoid being the victim of the same tactics that you yourself use. Dexterity is nice, but a super high one isn’t essential at 1st level. You can easily pick up a suit of armor to keep yourself ahead of the curve at lower levels, either trading out for your character level at higher levels or picking up a couple of key soldier talents to let you keep another possible source of a Fortitude Defense bonus. When looking to spend your points every four levels, Strength and Constitution are always solid choices. Putting a few points into Dexterity isn’t a bad idea, though I’d recommend putting your first one into Intelligence to pick up another trained skill, but I’ll discuss that more a little later.

Level Spread

Levels 1-2 – Soldier

Level 3 – Scoundrel

Level 4-8 – Soldier

Level 9-18 – Elite Trooper

Level 19-20 – Soldier

You’re largely going to want to stick with the soldier class. It starts you off with some great armor proficiencies, plus it has the highest hit die of the basic classes not to mention the highest base attack bonus.¬† However, a level dip into Scoundrel for Dastardly Strike is highly worth it in my opinion, plus it allows you to train in Deception as a trained skill in order to more fully utilize the Dastardly Strike, and lets you pick up the (worthless to you) Point Blank Shot feat for free in order to qualify for the Elite Trooper class (since we’re doing Core Rulebook only for this build, you don’t have access to the Flurry feat that can be substituted).

Level 1 –

Feat – Weapon Proficiency (advanced melee weapons) – This class of weapons gets you access to the melee weapons with the highest damage output, plain and simple.

Talent – Devastating Attack (advanced melee weapons) -This starts you off on the track of breaking a foes damage threshold more often by allowing you to treat it lower.

Level 2

Soldier Bonus Feat – Power Attack – This gives you a huge trade-off for taking a penalty on your attack rolls to add to your damage rolls, at a double rate if you’re using the weapon two handed (which you should be ;) ).

Level 3

Feats – Rapid Strike, Point Blank Shot – Rapid Strike gives you an extra die of damage in exchange for a measly -2 to your attack roll (since you have the required Dexterity score needed for the smaller penalty). This is pretty much a no-brainer feat. Point Blank Shot is gained from the level dip into Scoundrel, which satisfies a feat prerequisite for entry into the Elite Trooper prestige class.

Talent – Dastardly Strike – This lets you move a foe a guaranteed step down the condition track should you catch them without their Dexterity bonus to Reflex, on top of what you might normally move them down. This is nice under the right circumstances. A little later, we’ll move to help those circumstances come about more often.

Level 4

Stat Bumps – +1 Dex, +1 Int – Use your new Intelligence bonus to train in Deception.

Talent – Melee Smash – A +1 bonus to melee damage rolls may not seem like much in the grand scheme, but since it’s untyped, it stacks with everything, and is a set up for our next soldier talent.

Level 5

Soldier Bonus Feat – Martial Arts I – Unarmed fighting isn’t what we’re really going for, but it not only satisfies a prerequisite for entry into the Elite Trooper, but gives us a solid backup option should we find ourselves ever without a weapon, and gives us a +1 dodge bonus to Reflex Defense on top of it. Not bad.

Level 6

Talent – Stunning Strike – This talent lets you move a foe an additional step down the condition track should you beat his damage threshold. Now we’re up to -3 steps per hit should we catch a foe flat-footed and break his damage threshold from one attack. Scary.

Feat – Improved Charge – This feat gives you an extra damage bump when charging, which is a nice combat option for melee types to close the distance faster when they need to.

Level 7

Soldier Bonus Feat – Weapon Focus (advanced melee weapons) – This gives you a permanent +1 to hit with advanced melee weapons. This is always a good option.

Level 8

Ability Bumps – +1 Str, +1 Dex

Talent – Weapon Specialization (advanced melee weapons) – This gives you a little damage bump when using advanced melee weapons, which all goes toward helping to break a foes damage threshold.

Level 9

Talent – Greater Weapon Focus (advanced melee weapons) – This is our first Elite Trooper talent, and increases our bonus to hit with our weapon that we got from Weapon Focus, and sets us up for the last next few talents.

Feat – Double Attack (advanced melee weapons) – This gives us our first chance to take an opponent down in one round, provided we catch him without his Dexterity bonus to his Reflex Defense and break his damage threshold with each attack.

Level 11

Talent – Greater Devastating Attack (advanced melee weapons) – This moves the penalty to a foes damage threshold from -5 to -10. This is an absolutely mean talent.

Level 12

Ability Bump – +1 Str, +1 Dex

Feat – Extra Rage – This gets us one additional use of our devastating Rage ability per day, plain and simple, simple and dirty.

Level 13

Talent – Greater Weapon Specialization (advanced melee weapons) – This is the same story as Weapon Specialization, only the damage bonus is greater.

Level 15

Feat – Extra Second Wind – This feat allows us to last an extra encounter or two per day by allowing us one more use of the Second Wind action each day.

Talent – Indomitable – This talent lets you turn the tables on an opponent who is trying to use the same tactics on you by letting you jump to the top of the condition track once per day. This can put you back in the fight in a second and allow you put some serious hurt on an opponent.

Level 16

Ability Bumps – +1 Str, +1 Con

Level 17

Talent – Tough As Nails – This is the same concept as the Extra Second Weapon feat, giving you a few more encounters per day that you can conceivably last through.

Level 18

Feat – Improved Damage Threshold – This gives your own damage threshold a boost of 5 points, allowing you to foil the plans of a foe that attempts to use your own tactics against you.

Level 19

Solder Bonus Feat – Triple Attack (advanced melee weapons) – This gets you a third attack with your weapons as a full attack. Simple and nasty, not to mention highly effective.

Level 20

Ability Bumps – +1 Str, +1 Con

Talent – Indomitable – This gives you one more use of the talent per day.

There you have the build progression. There isn’t a whole lot of room for variation in the talent, feat choices aside from what level you might take them at, since there isn’t a whole lot for the build in the Core Rulebook, but even without them, you can still make a dangerously effective melee condition track killer. After level 10 or so, you have more or less free rein with your feat selection, so go ahead and choose differently if something else strikes your fancy. You might consider Mighty Swing, which allows you to deal an extra die of damage in exchange for not moving during your combat round. This bonus die however does not stack with that granted from Rapid Strike, so be warned. It’s a good option if you don’t have the Dexterity score to use Rapid Strike to it’s fullest advantage (ie, taking the -5 penalty instead of the -2).

The real room for variation comes in the species selection. Gamorreans and Trandoshans both get Strength bonuses as well as a host of other abilities that make them appealing in their own right. Gamorreans get the Improved Damage Threshold feat for free at creation on top of an additional +2 to their Fortitude Defense making them that much harder to move down the condition track in their own right. Trandoshans have Natural Armor which helps offset their racial penalty to Dexterity. They also have the Regeneration ability, which helps them to deal with nasty conditions like limb loss that sometimes can happen with the nastier beasts in the universe, not to mention anything wielding a lightsaber.

So there you have my considerations for the Melee Condition Track Killer. I’ll be back in a few hours with my build presentation for the Ranged Condition Track Killer and possibly a few other build goodies today (by way of apology for being so delinquent with these posts (Not to mention posting here in general. I’m getting better about that. I promise.).

So we’ll see you in a few hours, Gamer Nation.

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Introducing

My my, but time does fly when you’re not blogging.

 

In an effort to continually build up a reserve of NPCs for my Star Wars Saga Edition games, I will be initiating a new weekly venture: The Build of the Week, on Fridays. These will be builds I will look at – low or high level – it doesn’t matter, using the Star Wars Saga Edition rules. Some weeks I may use certain books only, some weeks I’ll throw restrictions to the wind.

 

I would also like to implore my fellow Star Wars Gamers out there for build ideas. If there’s something you would like to see statted out, drop me a line, either with a comment, or on thed20 Radio Forums (user name Cyril).

So, we’ll see you back here this Friday for the first installment of “The Build of the Week.” I hope to see you all there.

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Podcasts

In the past I’ve brought up a few of the podcasts that I have subscriptions to. Since I’ve been listening to a few others lately, I figured I would spread the love and let the rest of you know what I’ve been listening to along with the short description, in the hopes that you’ll find something you like in this list.

The Order 66 Podcastwww.d20radio.com

This is the flagship podcast on the d20 Radio Network, and is dedicated, to borrow the phrase from GM Chris, the power, the passion, and the glory that is Star Wars Saga Edition Roleplaying. GM Chris and GM Dave bring you a (usually) weekly podcast that is entertaining, thoughtful, and very well put together. They are a cast that truly knows they stand on the shoulders of their fans and will bend over backwards for them, something that is very cool to see. They have been casting for just under two years and have a pretty impressive backlog of episodes, including notable guest appearances from game designers Rodney Thompson, Sterling Hershey, Gary Astleford, and Vader’s Secret Apprentice himself, Sam Witwer. The casts usually average out to about an hour in length, but never seem to last long enough.

Radio Free Hommlet www.d20radio.com
Radio Free Hommlet was the first sister cast on the d20 Radio Network and is dedicated to Dungeons and Dragons 4th Edition. DMs Tim, Kate, Jackson, and David take you through the new edition of the game and let you know all the things you think you should know from the previous editions, only to find out just how wrong you were. DM David has an interesting segment that he does every so often called “World-Building Affirmations” that has actually been the seed idea for a possible podcast from yours truly.

Game On! www.d20radio.com
This cast is all about good, not always quite so clean fun. Brian and Andy talk about all things gaming, a large focus on board games, but taking detours into miniatures, card games, and roleplaying games. They have a very easy, very obvious chemistry, and it’s very clear that they love what they are doing on the cast. It’s so clear, that you can’t help but laugh along with them whenever they make a cheap joke (so make sure you’re listening somewhere you won’t get odd looks… unless you’re into that sort of thing).

City of Doors www.d20radio.com
This is a new podcast on the d20 Radio Network, sponsored by Reaper Miniatures. Bryan and Justin focus on the fluff of roleplaying games, such as character creation at a troupe level, building interesting worlds, and making combat encounters and skill challenges interesting (as well as making failure more than just failing… and sometimes character death).

The Irish and Celtic Music Podcast www.celticmusicpodcast.com
Produced by Marc Gunn of the Brobdingnagian Bards, this cast was started in 2005 after he started the Celtic Music MP3s Magazine, and offers about an hours worth of Irish and Celtic music of all genres from all parts of the world. I’ve only just started listening to this one and have found myself making less and less progress as I spend more and more of my time rewinding a podcast to listen to a song again and again (the latest being “Crazy Like Everybody” by an Australian group named Brother). For $20 a year you can also get access to an online directory of free and legal Celtic Music downloads known as “Song Henge.” I’ve discovered so many new bands, and my wallet may soon hate the man, but my ears will be loving him for years to come as I buy some of these albums off CD Baby. This is definitely worth checking out if you like Celtic Music of any kind. He plays it all, traditional, folk, rock, even bluegrass and some other experimental fusions.

Celtic Myth Podshow www.celticmythpodshow.com
Gary and Ruth bring the ancient Celtic myths to life through semi-dramatizations, giving us the myths the way they were meant to be told. They started with the Irish Book of Invasions and once they finished that group of stories, they moved on to some of the individual stories. They also plan on covering the myths and legends of Wales, Britain, and the other Celtic countries, including the Arthurian tales. They also do specials for each of the major holidays in the “wheel of the year” (Beltane, Samhain, the Solstices and Equinoxes, Yule, and Lughnasadh). It’s an incredibly immersive experience and I am planning on giving the ones I’ve already listened to again when I’m not at work so I can concentrate fully on the experience.

Druidcast www.druidry.org
This podcast is put out by the Order of Bards, Ovates, and Druids (or OBOD) and covers many things about modern Druidry, which I have found simply fascinating. There are clips from talks at various OBOD events including the role of the male deity in Druidry to interviews with the current head of the Order about the life of the founder to samples from the Order’s audio course, all interspersed with Celtic music and poetry. This is definitely worth a listen if you’re on the path or have ever been curious about just what it’s all about.

This is by no means an exhaustive list, but it’s the ones I’ve been listening to a lot lately.

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A Belated Congratulations

I know I’m a bit late to the party, but I just wanted to give a shout out and a big congratulations to Chris and Dave over at the Order 66 Podcast on their win at the ENnies. They took the silver ENnie in the “Best Podcast” category, and they well and truly deserved it.

I would have gotten this post out sooner, but since I never listen to the Order 66 Podcast, I didn’t hear about this news until now.

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Really, Hollywood?

First we get Fast & Furious, the fourth movie in the franchise and not to be confused with The Fast & the Furious. Now I’m seeing previews for teh fourth film in the “Final Destination” films, titled The Final Destination, not to be confused with the first film simply titled Final Destination.

Have they just stopped trying to come up with names? What’s wrong with Final Destination 4? In that vein, I would not so humbly like to put forth some suggestions that would have been worlds better (and much less confusing) than the choices they went with.

The Fast and the Furious: Really Tricked Out Cars Driving At Unsafe Speeds… Again

2 Fast + 2 Furious

Watch The Original Cast Do The Same Things But This Time With a Bigger Budget… & the Furious

Final Destination: Maybe We’ll Break the 4th Wall In This One

Final Destination: We Really, Really Mean It This Time

Come and Pay Money to Watch Teenagers Die in Preposterous and Oftentimes Hilarious Ways

Hollywood can contact me here to discuss my payment.

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The polls are open and the race is on

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