From Version History:
Version 1.0 was published on 2/6/11 via Googledocs and MediaFire download. It was subsequently offered for discussion on RPGNet and notes made on its use and possible issues. It subsequently went unchanged for a while because I was finishing my Master's thesis.
was published on 7/4/11 via Googledocs and MediaFire download. It incorporated some minor copy edits and various little fixes to minor errors some people had pointed out, although it still will need a full re-read and edit before Version 3.0 is released. Most importantly, it included major rules overhauls in the following areas, based on conversations with other people on the internet:
- Melee Weapons and Lightsabers: The Lightsaber and Archaic Weapons skills were united into the single Melee Weapons skill with special rules for lightsabers. A number of folks pointed out an issue with the handling of melee weapons and Lightsabers. Namely, a swordmaster picking up a lightsaber would be useless with it because of the separate skills, while a Jedi with lightsaber experience would be useless with a regular sword. My primary concern was that using a Lightsaber is a very difficult thing to do, and it takes special training. In fact, most Star Wars material suggests some kind of connection to the Force is necessary to truly master it. The fix applied means a swordmaster can still make use of the Lightsaber, and the Jedi can use swords, but true mastery requires a Jedi's touch.
- Two force skills: Initially, I used the two skills featured alongside a separate Dark Side skill. This has been the largest point of contention in these rules. Some feel that the separation of the Force into discrete skills is a mistake, a legacy of the WEG version of the rules. But my division was not based on that tradition, but rather an observation from many comics, books, movies and TV episodes: namely, that there are two very different applications of the Force, and characters often vary in their mastery of each one. We see characters who can use the Force to move things and the like, but who have not yet mastered the Jedi Mind Trick. We see criticisms of certain Jedi for not being able to get in tune with the Force as portrayed in the Force (Empathy) skill, but who are plenty handy with the Force (Telekinesis) skill. I wanted to preserve that feel, that portrayal that shows that the different applications of the Force take different kinds of training and mastery.
- However, a separate Dark Side skill actually forced fallen Jedi to spend more skill ranks, instead of accounting for the fact that the Dark Side should be easier. The applications of the Dark Side can be learned by anyone, so they were made into general, flexible stunts instead of a discrete skill. Furthermore, the changed Dark Side rules (see below) would also allow any Jedi to call upon the dangerous powers of the Sith. So I did ultimately do away with the Dark Side skill, instead incorporating it into the larger Force situation.
- A happy side effect of two Force skills is that Jedi have to spend more of their development and opportunities to develop their Force powers, to the exclusion of their more mundane skills. Some folks felt that this meant they would never be as good a pilot as a dedicated pilot, or they would be behind other characters in non-Jedi skills. I, personally, prefer this. Jedi training takes a lot of time and effort, and it should naturally retard efforts in other areas. Furthermore, with only Force skill and very few stunts, why would I ever make a Han Solo character, when my Jedi could be almost exactly as effective AND have the Force? Separate skills and a more granular stunt system may slow down Jedi development, but it also means they can't eclipse all other characters, a situation sometimes referred to as “Jedi Porn,” where they can and do do everything better than everyone.
- Under this system, a Jedi could call on his Force powers to close the gap in skill with a non-Jedi, but the non-Jedi would ultimately be more skilled and more genuinely talented. I think this incentivizes playing non-Jedi. Also, in my experience, people playing special types like Jedi want to spend skills and stunts on their cool powers, and this system does that. Finally, having a ladder of more granular stunts means that the most potent powers of the Jedi take years to master, something clearly modeled by the source literature.
- Less Force Stunts: That being said, I probably was being a little too stingy in the Force stunts. Several of the lower level stunts have been removed, leaving the stunts to replicate truly special applications of the basic Jedi powers. Furthermore, the edited skills and less total stunts means a Jedi with just the two basic skills can do most of the important Jedi stuff, and lets them choose how many Jedi powers they want to hoard at the expense of other powers. I feel like this version strikes a much better balance, although I might edit a few more of them.
- Dark Side rules: The previous rules were cool, but didn't reflect the slower burn towards the Dark Side. At the suggestion of other posters, I just added an additional stress track. This is an established rule that doesn't require new rules, just twists. The rules in total are a little more complex now, but I feel they better reflect the way a legitimate Jedi can call on the Dark Side without completely falling to it, and it also models the slow descent better. I also think the new rules make Dark Siders more formidable after their fall, which is also properly modeled.
Version 2.1 was published on 7/24/11 via Googledocs and MediaFire download. No major rule changes, only clarifications, addendums, and editing, such as adding the strangely missing lightsaber stats.
Version 2.2 was published on 10/5/12 via google docs, as MediaFire feels my Star Wars hack somehow infringes on the rights of CBS. After extensive playtesting with a new group, it was obvious that initiative, armor, and stress needed to be changed, so they were. The previous initiative system was well intended but did not work as well, so I shifted to a system more resembling traditional Fate games. Stress was somewhat low, so I adjusted it. Armor was actually TOO effective, so it was also adjusted. Clarified rules for movement before actions. Also added a rule for two targets. Few little tweaks elsewhere.