I’ve debated the best way to represent the Force as an in-game mechanic for a game like the Lost Padawans, and ultimately I’ve settled on revising the Magic flavor as the Force. If I were focusing on the usual Light vs Dark dichotomy, I’d likely go another route, but for this game I intend to let the players explore what else the Force could be, if it weren’t being shoehorned into a Good against Evil alignment.
As such, I’m going to skim down the list of powers offered by the Magic flavor and show how I, personally, intend to re-skin them to fit the theme. Only a few Tiers of abilities will be dealt with here, for now.
At Tier One, the Force flavor goes like this:
- Closed Mind: Trained in Intellect Defense and grants +2 Armor against attacks that target your Intellect Pool; this is unchanged from the base Magic ability, as it captures the way that Jedi are trained from their youth to be disciplined and focused, shrugging off mental influence.
- Force Quagmire (1+ Intellect): This power causes the flow of the Force in the area to thicken, making it harder to move. Unlike the base Entangling Force, this power simply makes all actions requiring movement a step more difficult for those caught in it; each level of Effort applied spreads the effect to an additional target.
- Manipulation (1 Intellect): This is the Hedge Magic of the Force flavor; it can be used to manipulate small objects within a short range, and is the basic grade of telekinesis most Force users can call upon. Not useful for inflicting damage, but it certainly makes a good calling card and can occasionally do things like retrieve keycards from a guard.
- Empathy (1+ Intellect): You can create a channel of communication with a single creature within short range, allowing rough mental images and feelings to pass between the two of you. The range is essentially unlimited once established, and it persists for an hour; each level of Effort allow you to either include an additional creature in the communication or extend the duration by an hour (either/or, not both).
- Premonition is essentially unchanged from the Magic ability, granting you insight into a creature.
Second-Tier Force abilities:
- Force Shove (2 Intellect): You send out a telekinetic pulse with the Force that hurls a single creature away from you, dealing 3 damage and moving it back an immediate distance.
- Retrieve (3 Intellect): You reach out with the Force up to long range and collect any unattended item, causing it to fly through the intervening space to your hands. You may also make a check to try to wrest an item from the grasp of another creature with a successful Intellect check.
- Force Lightning (2 Intellect): Your Jedi Master wouldn’t approve of this; you channel the Force into a sizzling barrage of electrical energy out to a short range, dealing 3 damage to your target and making them take the next round’s actions at one step to their detriment.
- Recovery (3 Intellect): You meditate upon the mysteries of the Force and channel it into an injured companion (or yourself). The target of the effect moves one step up the damage track, or it can be used during a recovery check to gain an additional +2 on the recovery roll.
- Force Leap (2 Might): You channel the Force through your muscles, allowing you to spring up to a short range in any direction, landing as easily as if you had simply hopped off a curb.
- Foresight (3 Speed): You focus on the mists of the future, granting you an asset on your next initiative check and all Speed Defense checks for the next ten minutes. This power is the source of much of the legendary speed of the Jedi and Sith in combat, as a moment of foresight is better than all the anticipation in the galaxy.
Third-Tier Force Abilities:
- Hurl (4 Intellect): You grab a hefty object or creature with the Force and hurl them a short distance in any direction; the violence of the movement inflicts 4 damage to the target, and if you use them to strike a secondary target, it takes 4 damage as well.
- Manipulate (4+ Intellect): A creature up to twice your mass is caught in your telekinetic grip, allowing you to move it up to a short distance each round. Sustaining the ability takes an additional 2 Intellect points and success at a level 2 Intellect check each round; Effort can be spent to double the mass you can move with this power with each step.
- Evasion (4 Speed): You take a step beyond Foresight, letting your instincts merge with the cues from the Force in such a way that you gain two Assets to all Speed Defense checks for the next two minutes, and permits you to try to dodge attacks that it shouldn’t be possible to avoid, such as the shots from a capital ship’s turbolasers; you may substitute a Speed Defense check for a Might Defense check at will during the duration.
- Baffle (3+ Intellect): You draw upon the Force to befuddle the creature you’re talking to, allowing you to insert a thought into their mind as if it were their own. The duration of the effect depends on how unusual the thought is for them; most victims will have the effect last around an hour before it begins to strike them that something strange happened. Effort may be spent to apply this effect to multiple targets at once.
That’s it for now; further Force abilities will be meddled with pending the actions of the Lost Padawans and their gaining in Tiers.