Zaz

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Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber. Organized Play Member. 716 posts. 1 review. No lists. No wishlists. 1 Organized Play character.


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Grand Lodge

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Hold on, I’m confused. Doesn’t the CRB literally point out that item levels are a guideline rather than a hard restriction? As in, a low-level character could own level 20 items, it’ d just be a bad idea to allow that as a GM

Grand Lodge

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I mean, I can certainly understand how it can be comedic. Gods know my players have laughed at many of the player races, and the desire to make atrocious puns is quite strong...

(One day I will make my Morlawmaw gang boss who runs a street gang called the Eggmen and I will die on that hill)

Nevertheless, there's nothing I feel inherent to the system or the APs I've read so far that's comedically focused. Heck, many of the campaigns I've homebrewed and ran were very serious and they used existing lore. I mean, the fact that an internet equivalent exists means that characters can meme in-character, but the party was always going to do that...now they can just do it without it completely breaking the story down.

Grand Lodge

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They’re tiny plants, but they have a species-specific augmentation that heavily reminds me of Irken PAKs from Invader Zim. This aug are a set of dexterous biotechnical tentacles that can hold and use medium sized items

Grand Lodge

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I mean, Sorcerers do receive their 1st level focus spells for their bloodline, which feels comparable to, say, a bard getting one feat from their muse.

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Fare thee well, Mr. Stephens. Your contributions will always be appreciated. Starfinder has been one of my favorite Paizo product lines and your participation in that will be sorely missed. Thank you for all of your hard work and for helping provide people with great games.

Grand Lodge

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I dunno why this got skipped out, but a Vigilante archetype that uses the kineticist burn mechanics. Having an elemental superhero is kind of a staple, and it would be nice to have.

Grand Lodge

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I personally agree with Firebug's assessment of the OP's description. The shaman *can* do anything, but not all at once. Yes, it is versatile in how you build it, but that versatility isn't as at-the-same-time accessible like some wizard and druid builds are.

Don't get me wrong, I think shaman is a good class. I think it might be a low-key improvement on its parent classes (well, kinda, I like the witch's flavor too much to say that, and I have a personal dislike of the oracle that biases my opinion somewhat), and I think that it can have a few really neat tricks and abilities if carefully selected...buuuuut I still think a wizard or druid might be more versatile in the day-to-day.

Grand Lodge

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Lurkers in Light. The idea that the thing that's supposed to make you feel safe makes them more dangerous.

Oh, and Shining Children, because they make no sense and look really creepy af

Grand Lodge

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Androids seem pretty popular in mine, thoigh so far we’ve had no particular patterns at my table. Thoughe everyone certainly likes the idea on an Uplifted Bear or Morlamaw.

Grand Lodge

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To be honest, the entire cast of Guardians of the Galaxy could be played, or at least approximated, using existing stats, such as...

Rocket: A Ysoki bounty hunter soldier focusing on the bombard style and using heavy weapons
Gamorra: Android cyberborn operative (or soldier)
Peter Quill: Human (maybe Planar Scion) Outlaw Envoy
Drax: Half-Orc (close enough in terms of stats at least) Gladiator Soldier
Mantis: Damaya Lashunta Spacefarer Mystic

Then, you could move on to other various space-operas like Saga, Star Wars, Cowboy Bebop, Voltron, etc. Let's take Volton just for fun:

Keith: Simulate his lineage by making him a Half-Elf Mercenary Operative
Lance: Human Icon(?) Soldier (focus on sniper weapons)
Hunk: Human Roboticist Soldier (focus on heavy weapons)
Pidge: Human Scholar Mechanic (with maybe a hover drone to simulate that little robot she had in season one)
Allura: Endiffian Xenoseeker Technomancer (or maybe Witchwarper?)
Shiro: This one was tough. He's definitely human, but then he's either a Gladiator or a Cyberborn, and while his original robot arm had a lot of Solarian-like capabilities, I think I have to go with soldier instead.

We could do the villains too:
Zarkon: Hobgoblin (in stats) Death-Touched Soldier (Armor Storm specialization)
Haggar: Endiffian Death-Touched Witchwarper
Lotor: Half-Drow (in stats) Scholar Envoy (Star Knight)

Grand Lodge

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Indeed. It’s likely that the engineers if Alenstar developed firearms out of necessity. But thise beyond their borders are likely to giew them as foreign curiosities at best, given that they produce relatively few advanatges over, say, an enchanted crossbow. And since manufacturing guns requires the production of relatively difficult to make resources, it’s not like their ease of use or production can outcompete, say, alchemy or magic...yet. Clearly by Starfinder’s time this is drastically different, but those were very different guns.

Rudimentary firearms existed since the 15th century. If I recall correctly, full plate was designed to protect against them. Back then they were wimpy enough that this was actually a solid counter in the tech arms race for a while.

Grand Lodge

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Yeah I have an idea for a gladiator brakim that seeks to Continue the war his people abandoned long ago (or, really, any war: he’s an Alucard from the Hellsing anime levels of bloodthirsty) that I’d originally stated as a soldier that’d be perfect for a Vanguard. As to Biohackers, I know it doesn’t quite work stat-wise, but a drow biohacker sounds pretty menacing.

Also grays. Never forget grays

Grand Lodge

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Okay, I actually super like the proposal for Quantumancer, because that actually sounds really neat. I do want to push back against Biohacker though. Personally, I quite like the name, and the proposed alternatives sound more appropriate for themes.

Grand Lodge

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Oh this is so nice! Just a quick peak at these and I'm very excited to give these a whirl. They all look fun, interesting, and fill a niche that makes them distinct from what's already available. I'm really excited to see how they play.

...And am unashamedly salivating over the other options teased in that book. I hope it's a long one!

Grand Lodge

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WhileI am breathless with excitement about the new Starfinder classes, I would also be highly interested in an episode that details the ysoki, particularly those native to Akiton, as relatively little is known of their culture. In particular I want to know more about the Nurkop clan that was teased in Pact Worlds. The idea of an ultra rich clan of Ysoki sounds really interesting, and bega the question of what pies have they stuck their fingers in with that many resources to invest.

Grand Lodge

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I had my ysoki technomancer become a talk show host. Because he deicded that being an academic wasn’t fulfilling anymore

Grand Lodge

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Xenocrat wrote:
Getting armor is part of the graft. Adjusting stats is not. Only damage from weapons selection is adjusted. The Aeon Guard was designed by someone like you who didn’t understand the rules.

Alright, no need for anything personal. CeeJay does have a point in that the RAW of class grafts say you do adjust things with armor and weapons as well. However, I would still argue that this adjustment is large wnough to warrant a CR change. Flavor is all well and good but CR is a number game, and at some point your super fancy ubermench is going to have to be accounted for. CR is designed so GMs can eyeball a creature and make an assessment, and any possible tables or random encounter generators will have their results thrown off by a threat this dispreportionate listed under a CR 3 category. Just because it is physically possoble (even though I think at this point I’m concerned about the contradiction oresent in those two passages), doesn’t mean it should be done. I still think as a design choice the ripple effect is pretty harsh. Keep in mind that during the ol PF days, NPCs with better-than-usual gear did get Cr adjustments to compensate.

Grand Lodge

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I'd argue this would be more appropriate in the general discussion section as opposed to rules...but...

it *appears* to be the case. They look like one of those species, based on their description, which is hormonally driven to sexual reproduction only once in their lives. It's not an uncommon characterization of non-human sapients (The Listeners from Brandon Sanderson's Stormlight Archives also had a conditional sex drive, for e.g.), so I don't think it's out of the ordinary, per se.

Grand Lodge

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Personally I'm also fine with their skin tone variations. Even in Pathfinder skin-tone variation among orcs was mentioned, so it makes perfect sense for drow to have genetically selected ones that look "better" (i.e., if they are anything like humans, "more like us"). Also, this makes them more visually distinct from hobgolbins which was always a concern for me at any rate. Sooooooooo, yeah, I'm fine with their appearance. And the hobgoblin one too for that matter.

Grand Lodge

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Dracomicron wrote:

It's almost as if people with autism are individuals and not a monolithic block who all want the same things.

I think that the Vlaka are an interesting way to explore the issue of differences without the kind of stakes that are involved in the real world with real people of differing abilities.

Very true. It is indeed an issue of each individual decision. I have more to say but that's off-topic for this thread and would gladly engage in discourse via PM.

However, this is actually one of the reasons I would like more books like Pact Worlds in the future (i.e. more culture books). As fun as game mechanics are, SF as a setting is actually well poised to let GMs pick at really interesting cultural issues. I'd love to see the viewpoints of literal alien creatures more, as it can be quite insightful (Vlaka's perception thing, Maraquoi's views on relationships as a result of biology, etc. All very cool).

Grand Lodge

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CeeJay wrote:

From p. 127 of the Alien Archive.

Alien Archive wrote:

EVERYTHING IS OPTIONAL

When creating an NPC, you are free to enact whatever changes you need to in order to make your creation work the way you intend. For example, an array might tell you to select two special abilities, but you know you need four—or only one. Go ahead and make the change! If you want your combatant NPC to have a really high AC but not many Hit Points, you can increase its AC by 1 and use the expert array’s HP. This doesn’t make the statistics wrong; rather, it helps the statistics match your concept. Creating NPCs is fundamentally a creative process, so while these steps are useful to keep the NPC’s capabilities from going too far astray for its CR, don’t treat them as hard restrictions.
I think it's pretty unlikely that anything in the book "cannot be created using the rules in Appendix 1" given what that Appendix tells us about those rules.

I would like to point out that said section also cautions GMs against making substantial changes that throw off the CR balance. I.e. they tell you that you can make whatever changes you like, they also tell you to consider the gameplay implications (for e.g. adding double the special abilities to a creature of that Cr without compensating in other areas is *allowed*, but it will effectively make that monster a higher CR in terms of combat difficulty.

Given that the monsters published in the front of the book are created by the designers, who are aware of the potential threats to balance of raising the AC of a creature to 6 points above the recommended range for that CR, this still seems like an oversight. All rules can be broken, certainly, and all choices are optional. But their voluntary nature does not exclude them from consequences. The long and the short of it is that a party of 4 3rd level adventurers would have considerable difficulty fighting a creature that, according to gameplay, is only considered a modest threat. Therefore, while they were allowed to make this creature CR 3, it doesn’t seem altogether appropriate as a CR 3 encounter, given its stat distribution. At my calculation, a character would need to be fully optimized just to have a good chance to hit. A 3rd level soldier with a 20 in Dex and using a laser weapon, having laser accuracy and Weapon Focus, still only has a slightly above 50% chance of hitting. And that’s assuming they place considerable respurces towards optimizaion. A non-soldier character would have quite a lot of trouble.

Grand Lodge

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Nah, it metioned that their blindness and deafness isncongenital, much like that in IrL dogs. And much like IRL dogs (and humans, for that matter, as the medical principle is the same), they still maintain the genetic ability to see, and even the functional hardware, so to speak. But a defect in the occipital or parietal lobes makes it impossible to perceive sound or hearing. However, corrective surgery for a society as technologically adept as SF’s, such as neurological fix is probably relatively simple. As to the justification as to why you should or shouldn’t fix a congenital defect...I mean technically it is a choice, sure. It *is* a weak cultural justification IMO. This gets used for the argument of whether we should “fix” autism if found. Speaking as someone who has autism, yeah I’d have preferred functional social skills thank you very much, and a lower predisposition towards GI problems. That would’ve been nice. And the whole “it’s just a different experience” is an argument. I don’t buy it though. Different, sure. It also causes me grief. That’s just me though. Still, it’s a bit of stale reasoning.

Grand Lodge

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I mean, real physics indicate that without an opposing force to push back against an object...if an object continues to exert force to move forward in space (i.e. an empty void), it'll keep accelerating until it runs out of energy...at which point it'll maintain that speed until it hits something.

The implication of the star shaman ability, however, is that they accelerate *up to* X number of feet, and that's it. You don't get faster or slower until pushed, or until you presumably use the same magic to exert a force in the opposite direction to "stop."

Grand Lodge

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People of the Stars is also a reference with some brief material, though some of it might be redundant and/or out of date at this point.

Grand Lodge

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My only concern is that NPCs aren’t supposed to be built using specific information such as their specific armor type as a PC would be. And while yes, the book does specify that NPC creation is optional, it does also specify that this optionality shouldn’t violate balance. At the moment, the AC of the Aeon Guard is equivalent to a CR 7 creature, and that wide of a difference feels more like an error than a voluntary deviation or flavor perk.

Grand Lodge

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I mean, I’m not sure how offensive a teddy bear would be given that, as you said, stuffed animal humans exist in the form of things like rag dolls or cabbage patch kids and stuff like that. In my games at least, stuffed versions of types of aliens aren’t inherently offensive unless they appear to be deliberate caricatures rather than cartoonish versions of a living model (so, you know, a toy).

Grand Lodge

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In my game, in Douglas Adams esque fashion, and researcher attempting this method repeatedly receives a constellation spelling out: “nice try, smarta**” signed by Desna

More seriously: results will likely vary or make no sense, or would “fuzz” on recording equipment or in memory

Grand Lodge

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Yeah I disagree with making liquid nitrogen equivalent in damage to lava. Maybe half as bad at worst. Supernaturally chilled nitrogen might be equivalent, buuuuuuuut, the bog stabdard liquid nitrogen shouldn’t be that degree of harmful. Keep in mind coming within 3 feet of lava is enough to cause things to bust into flame. You need to immerse a surface to cause harm, so making these two substance equivalent seems inappropriate given their vast differences in scale, as Metaphysician said

Grand Lodge

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Seems to be that as RAW, it treats an unarmed strike as the CRB battlegloves. Whether or not the armory rules for boosting the levels of items applies is uncertain, but I believe it explicitely turns unarmed strikes into a battleglove of an equal or lower level( so, 1d4 damage at level 1, 2d8 at level 10, 3d10 at level 13, and 5d10 at level 17).

Grand Lodge

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If you’re playing anything other than an operative, make sure to take the Skill Focus (profession (chef)) feat, since I don’t believe the envoy specialization offers a boost to cooking (or Life Science, which can also be used to cook).

Make sure this character knows how to use knives. Maybe even have them take Weapon Focus (basic/advanced melee) to reflect this. Heat-based weapons like the Quorlu heat-amp might also be flavorful (ha-ha) for a chef character (flambe your enemies!). Keep in mind that if you are using a Profession check, talk to your GM and see if you can justify using your highest mental stat for the skill roll (Int for professional, by the book chefs, Wisdom because cooking is about attentiveness and intuition, Charisma because cooking, especially for media, requires knowing how to make things presentably).

A solarian is actually an interesting idea, with a solar weapon that looks like a cooking knife or frying pan os quite good, especially with a weapon crystal that adds fire damage.

Grand Lodge

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I’m just going to estimate. Given that Golarion typically seems to develop at a slower rate than Earth does, I estimated that I’d take them a bit of time to industrialize. But gIven they’re already at rennaissance conditions, I’d estimate jo longer than 800 years before they reach current technological atabdards. Then about another 1000 before they reach full spaceflight capability. I’d say about 2000 years, but for my campaign I’m being generous and saying a solid 4000. So, in a sense, in my own personal campaign, the AR date is 8718. That is not supported by the canon anywhere as far as I’m aware. Like Garretmander said, it’s left deliberately vague.

Grand Lodge

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Amanda Hamon Kunz wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
The Drunken Dragon wrote:
Also, what most influenced the Damai. I’ve seen elements of Godzilla, Attack on Titan, and Evangelion in there...
And Pacific Rim, and Power Rangers.

Daimalko is absolutely anime inspired! Evangelion held me rapt in high school and was a major influence. Just as much of an influence was a more recent series you can find on Netflix called Knights of Sidonia. That series has some really fascinating sci-fi world-building revealed in delicious drips and drabs against a space mech-kaiju backdrop. If you like space kaiju and sci-fi, I'd definitely recommend checking it out.

Attack on Titan was certainly a secondary influence, especially in the way kyokors and the other types of colossi go about attacking the aboveground colonies.

You know, now that you mention it, Ravingdork--I didn't intend for Pacific Rim to be a huge influence, but I bet it was there rattling around my head in the background. I really love the world-building in it and the way its kaiju work. The main battle theme also gets stuck in my head constantly!

Godzilla and Power Rangers weren't intentional, but also probably fed into it from the background. I watched a ton of Power Rangers as a kid and have seen some things from the Godzilla franchise, though certainly not everything!

Not gonna lie, that is amazing. And with this confirmation, I feel a lot more justified in resolving the Daimalko portion of the campaign using giant robots.

Grand Lodge

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Honestly, I really want to know who was responsible for the Uplifted Bears. I’d dearly like to know what the inspiration for those were. Also, what most influenced the Damai. I’ve seen elements of Godzilla, Attack on Titan, and Evangelion in there...

Grand Lodge

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I do want to point out that while the sentiment that “access to new technologies doesn’t devalue the old” is technically true, the issue is that each new iteration is broader in its ability to entertain. I.e. a book has less ability to entertain than a tablet with a whole library of books. Likewise, while your character’s laptop (which, btw, has no internet connection in the Drift other than what your characters thought to download in advance) is a good tool to pass the time, a room that you can program with millions of different experience simulations is infinitely more entertaining/useful.

Then consider that being aboard a relatively small space for days at a time may (scratch that, emporically does) have mentally compromising effects, the idea of having a room on your ship that can provide the illusion of open spaces, atmosphere-filtered sunlight, or hell, even experiential variety if scenary is quite handy. And unlike a VR headset, which there are at present no rules for and may have limitations (like needing to be connected to an infosphere or something eith a lot of processing power), a HAC is better suited for resolving the aforementioned issues. Plus, it means no one has to buy a VR rig with their own money. It’s still a good tool to have, even if there is no explicitly stated benefit. If nothing else, a gym would be a good idea. But removing a public space for entertainment or other interation aboard your ship for yet another storage bay is a very munchkin-y perspective. Yes, no mechanical benefits, but it is also a really troubling state of mind were you designing a starship IRL. Come on, even Weyland-Yutani had a communal kitchen at the bare minimum

Grand Lodge

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BigNorseWolf wrote:
if theres 2 plus ysoki on board theres always another way to pass the time...

I don’t know what you’re implying, but I think you need a HAC to optimize it

Grand Lodge

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Tbh, it’s basically a roleplay thing. Because while a spaceship does have mechanics attached and could be optimized *more*, having a recreation suite makes the ship that your PCs spend 80% of their lives on feel like a home, rather than just another weapon that they happen to sleep in. Besides, as mentioned above, it can serve as oneshot fodder, justification for retraining or training sinulations for practice, and, heck, *not* having one on a long-term bessel probably violates some workers rights bylaw in Pact World space :)

Grand Lodge

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Ooooooooo, neat.

Can anyone provide me their stats? Like fully? I've been itching to make a character with one and the status of my order for this book is super in question :p

Grand Lodge

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Are the Uplifted Bears quadrapeds or bipeds? Like, have they been anthropomorphized or are they literally intelligent bears?

Grand Lodge

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All I know is space bears are coming.

Grand Lodge

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Sheyln for sure.

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Keeping in mind that there isn't actually a distinction between physical and psychological in reality: all problems are physical, its that we don't have the specific degree of knowledge and detective equipment to tease them apart. I imagine magic would make that possible, however. If anything, given that the soul and the mind are both constructs in SF in ways they aren't IRL would give you even more options.

But then again, IRL we have vaccines against measles and people refuse to take them. We have antibiotics and people don't adhere. People don't report severe illness or go to the doctor's for myriad reasons. So just because it's probably possible doesn't mean people could or would do it.

Grand Lodge

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I might be infering from the reference of that general that tried to isurp the throne in his introductory episode refering to all of Lotor’s soldiers being “not full-bloodrd Galra.” And given their reaction to his anti-galran sentiment, I just assumed they were the half-Galrans referenced. I think tvtropes also referenced them but their resources are sometimes apocryphal.

Grand Lodge

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I’d just mentioned that Galrans tend to interbreed with a lot of other races (humans are possible, and with Lotor’s guard, each of them is half Galra and half...um...other things), so you might end up needing to house rule something there. As for the olkari, maybe use a particularly tech savvy race (ferrans maybe) and adjust size to medium.

Grand Lodge

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I've got a question about the playable race introduced in the bestiary section (the endrofans). One of my players is interested in playing one, but she wants to know what her home planet should be. I can't seem to find the listing for where these folks come from.

Grand Lodge

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I'm also playing it that even if you have access to Space Google (Scholar), your existing ranks in it determine your existing knowledge, so you can more efficiently sort the wheat from the chaff, even if you are taking 20. That's just my head-cannon though.

Grand Lodge

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For my campaign, I tend to pepper my brands and business names using various references to sci-fi works, either to characters, actors, creators, whatever. They range from pun-based to theme-based to whatever the heck I feel like doing at the time. Some examples...

Peridot Cybernetics: A Vercite-based cybernetic company created to help colonies compensate for muscular degeneration due to early-life malnutrition or exposure to low-gravity environments. They come with many general basic enhancements to improve reach and flexibility. Despite being incredibly helpful and receiving the Company of the Year award on Vercite for their improvement of health outcomes on colony worlds, its rather controversial "don't be a clod" campaign was seen by many to be ableist and needlessly aggressive to try and encourage people to "realize their full potential."

That one was based on the Steven Universe character Peridot...and serves as an example for a direct reference.

Then I have the Hardy-Theron brand of motorcycles, which is typically used on Akiton (though they are considered a collector's item off-world). These are based off the the names of the stars of Mad Max: Fury Road, and because it makes it sound similar to the Harley-Davidson brand...

And then of course there's just the idiotic pun for any old sci-fi nerds in my group, like the Strugatsky's Outfitters, which primarily sells things like tents, thermoses, portable cooking implements, etc. In short, the sorts of things one need for...dare I say, a Roadside Picnic (as a snarky tongue-in-cheek reference to the novel of the same name by the Strugatsky brothers).

I'm pretty sure my players hate me for these, but they are a fun exercise to come up with.

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To be perfectly honest, what I want most is something like the Inner Sea Race Guide: a systematic assessment of the culture and history of the various species, particularly the more common ones in the Pact Worlds. For example, while we have some basic information about, say, ysoki from a combo of the Pact Worlds book and the CRB, I'd still like to know more about them. In depth, what role do they tend to play? What are their families like? What troubles the average ysoki? The same can be said of many of the other PW races, especially the shirren and lashunta, since unlike the kasatha or vesk, there was substantially less opportunity to tie in their culture with a singular place. For e.g., the kasatha's culture is so intertwined with the Idari and discussions of their homeworld that the PW book dealt with them a lot. But those races that moved beyond their homeworld and are less homogenous have details on their culture vastly displaced across many sources and tend to receive less attention. What are androids like? Ysoki? Barathu? Shirren? Ryphorians?

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Tbh it sort of reminds me of the Headmaster portraits in Harry Potter, in that it retains the memories and knowledge (and in certain unfortunate cases, personality) of their original owner for the use of the next, in this case, First Seeker. It’s a way if making the whole”I must consult with my ancestors” a literal statement rather than a spiritual one, as you could literally ask a former First Seeker what they would have done in a certain complex scenario.

Grand Lodge

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They didn't add items to support solarian armor, but they did add 3 stellar revelations that specifically buff solar armor, so...

But yeah. Since the solar armor seems less an independent item than an overlay across existing armor (as opposed to the weapon, since that was designed to be an item all its own), it seems difficult to create upgrades for it that don't seem possible as a new revelation or a base armor upgrade instead.

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