Adventure Submission - Darga's Missing Cargo

Hi folks!

I recently started a Dawn of Defiance campaign using Jeff Greening’s FFG conversion and we are having a blast. If there wouldn’t have been a long term adventure path available I’m not sure if we would have taken the plunge into this system… but I’m glad we did!

I had an idea for a sidequest for my campaign but instead of just scribbling a basic outline, keeping it for myself and improvising like I usually would… I decided to do a whole writeup as an actual adventure usable for anyone to give back to the community… because the more content there is, the longer the system stays alive and the more the community thrives.

So, I am sharing it with you guys! I’m open to suggestions and ideas for potential improvements and would love to hear your feedback. I already know the formatting is a bit rough and the dropbox previewer isn’t the best… it is what it is ;).

I was looking for some feedback before submitting it for the adventure resources section of the site.

Updated link: 2022-10-31

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I’ll give it a look when I get the chance! If I haven’t reached out by Friday, I probably forgot. Please remind me.

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Sure!

Thanks for taking the time:)

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Hi! You had asked for a reminder by Friday; I hope this works :P

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It worked! I’ll get to it now. I had, indeed, forgotten.

Just as a forewarning, this will be an in-depth analysis and I will give a slew of suggestions both meta (e.g. grammar) and about the actual adventure. None of it is meant as a criticism of you, my job in this situation is just to find errors and suggest fixes.

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There look to be several issues with dice images and text positioning. Perhaps this is only on my end, I don’t know, but it’s concerning. In the “Grammar et al” section I link to a font that will allow you to place dice symbols as text.

I really like the set-up for the adventure, but perhaps add a couple “alternate resolutions” for the culprit? For example, a sidebar that lists a couple alternatives and leaves the implementation up to the GM running the adventure. Maybe one could be the moral dilemma where the fruit was stolen by someone trying to raise funds to purchase a slave’s freedom or something along those lines. Then it places these Alliance players in a bind between their ideals and the mission on which they were assigned.

I’ve only made it through Page 5 due to time constraints, but will do more soon. Any feedback you can give on my feedback will help me better target my advice.

Mechanics
  • Page 5: I’d recommend giving Darga a Negotiation pool of RRRP or RRRR, rather than RRPPP. This gives him greater skill in Negotiation, while also making success slightly more obtainable. At the same time, however, it increases the chance for Despair. Success with Despair or a lot of Threat is, in my opinion, far more interesting than any Failure condition.
  • Success condition gives an immediate 33% pay boost, with no allowance for degree. Instead, I would suggest either 10% per net Success or a hard number like +100 per net Success.
  • Ideally, the effects of Advantage and Threat would either be pinned to a certain threshold (“if the check generates 3 Advantage”) or scalable (“Gain an expense account worth 100 credits per Advantage”).
Adventure
  • Page 5: The reward of 1,500 is fine, but depending on party size it can be pretty miniscule. For example, in a party of two that’s 750 each but in a party of five, that’s 300. Generally speaking, the difficulty of a job will be increased to accommodate larger parties, so why not increase the payment as well? Your call, just my two cents.
Grammar et al
  • Page 1: The “brief” is somewhat contradictory in nature. Is it intended to fill in the GM, or a brief to those who are about to take the mission?
My rewrite

A few days ago, a shipment of valuable foodstuffs belonging to Darga the Hutt went missing. A small band of unlikely heroes, seeking to get into the good graces of Darga, has been tasked with retrieving it and finding out what happened to the original crew hired to protect it.

Darga not only does not want to lose out on his investment but refuses to appear weak to his competitors. He wants to make an example of whoever stopped him from receiving the shipment, proving that crossing him has dire consequences. It is up to our heroes to solve the mystery quickly to bring them closer to their ultimate goal.

[Editor’s note: I tried to clean up the wording and bring it into a more universal perspective. I also tried to smooth out some apparent contradictions.]

  • Page 2: Extra space before “Dawn of Defiance” in first paragraph.
  • “Use their investigation skills” (optional)
  • “Bit more of the planet comma, and”
  • Could be “get a chance” to help the farmers. Wording is a little awkward as-is
  • “How they met Darga comma, and” (I generally recommend the Oxford comma)
  • Paragraph four, “Cato
  • “During the Clone Wars comma, half the city”
  • “And its remaining residents live in a cluster”
  • “The city comma, regarding outsiders suspiciously
  • “Somewhere within this ruined city lies the palace of Darga the Hutt.”
  • Formatting-wise, the second column is too high. Not only is it above the first column, but it doesn’t go down as far.
  • “A planet controlled by the Empire” or “an Imperial-controlled planet”
  • “Up-and-coming”
  • “A few days ago comma, a shipment of valuable foodstuffs went missing”
  • “Darga comma, the party has been tasked”
  • Extraneous “and” in “and a small crew”
  • In the rest of that paragraph, refer back to my rewording of the original blurb
  • “Unexpected” can be dropped.
  • “Are comma, in fact comma, only a small” (“only” is an optional addition, supposed to fill the role of “unexpected” more smoothly)
  • “Investigation, comma, they will”
  • “From him comma, to the detriment”
  • “Will have the choice whether or not”
  • Page 3: I have encountered an issue with text wrapping, it spills way off the page. Not sure if it’s something on my end or not. I fixed it with “wrap text in shape,” but now the left column goes down a bit too far and is partially hidden by the page number icon. The planet picture could also be better. It’s squished and the sides are cut off.
  • “Purse worlds” has an extraneous period.
  • I wouldn’t call it “urban,” I’d say “Core World” instead. “Urban” and “small population” are mutually exclusive when talking on the planetary scale.
  • “Centralized” unless you are one of/have been corrupted by the zeeless Brits. Based on some extraneous vowels and misplaced Es, I think you are. xD
  • “Height” of power “before” the Clone Wars. “Heights” “and during” just reads awkwardly.
  • “Its bridge” (remove extraneous apostrophe)
  • Page 4: See previous review of blurb.
  • Page 5: “Before—they are now guests in his palace as he weighs their potential value.”
  • Extraneous space after “not.”
  • “Well-rested” and “well-fed”
  • Of which he was just made aware period.
  • “stats… are
  • in the last pages” or “on the last page
  • “Oddly-scented”
  • “Rising from braziers”
  • Is it necessary to name the protocol droid in this narration? The PCs wouldn’t know that, so it seems extraneous to me.
  • When you write out the translation, the intro (“Darga says to you”) is a bit clumsy. When you watch the Clone Wars movie, the protocol droid paraphrases Jabba. So “I will send out my bounty hunters” becomes “Jabba will send out his bounty hunters.” I would recommend a similar approach, or else something like “The Great and Powerful Darga says/declares/orders/etc.”
  • This particular text block is getting repetitive. I think it’s the fourth time we’ve seen it? At any rate, please see my previous reedit.
  • 1 comma, 500 (1,500)
  • Numbers: There are two schools of though regarding whether or not you write out numbers in long form. One is single-digit numbers are written out, the other is that numbers below 21 are written out (rule of thumb: unhyphenated numbers). I recommend the latter method. Thus, “20,” “10,” and “3” should be written out unless you adhere to the former method.
  • “Locally-grown” “sought-after”
  • Oxford comma after “taste”
  • Extra space before “They are”
  • Why “neon blue or green”? All fruits I can think of are a single color (different breeds of apples are different colors), this implies that the fruit is randomly either. I don’t see much gained from it, so I’d recommend just cutting “or green.” It speeds up and simplifies the sentence.
  • Extra space before “There are”
  • Change “Could we be payed more?” to “Will you pay us more?” One sounds more like a hopeful beg, while the other sounds a bit more like a business interaction. I’m not quite happy with it though.
  • The dice are out of position on my end. They also looks washed out and squished. I recommend the font here, which allos you to write them into lines of text. Note that for others to see it you’ll either have to make the PDF an image or they’ll have to have the font downloaded.
  • Numbers in the thousands should have commas.
  • Threat, not “Disadvantage”
  • I’d reword to “If there is net Threat on the check”/“If there is net Advantage on the check”
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Wow!

Thank you for taking the time to help me make it better with such attention to detail.

I implemented most of the changes you suggested and am working on revising the rest of the document in regards to the dice symbols.

Give me a bit of time and I’ll re-post an updated version saved as a PDF which I hope will fix the text wrapping issues.

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Excellent! I look forward to helping you further.

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OK! So I made some tweaks, inserted dice icons and converted it to PDF. In theory that should have helped with the formatting and should make it so the dice icons show up.

At time of writing I did up to page 15; tomorrow I’ll do the rest of the pages.

I increased the reward a bit like you suggested but my intention was to keep the reward somewhat low as the main goal is gaining favor within Darga’s court and the credits are secondary; it’s more like they are running an errand as opposed to undertaking a mission. That being said it could easily be adjusted by the GM running it to fit their campaign better.

Here’s the updated link:

I just noticed that the font, or boldness of the font, or something is slightly different between the two columns on the page for Cato Neimoidia.

I’ll review more of it when I have the time. If I haven’t done more by Monday, please remind me.

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Good catch; I had just noticed that as well. They were actually two slightly different fonts so now they are identical and I adjusted the font size down a little for a better fit on the page.

Thanks again and have a great weekend =)

Edit: I am doing another read-through to fix little errors and grammatical logic in the document. Hopefully it will be an easier read after ;).

Edit 2: I went through the entire document and made several improvements, added the dice icons everywhere and made it tidier in general.

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Just contacting to say I remember, but am waiting for confirmation of a “complete” reedit/new link before going through and analyzing what might be an old or incompletely edited version.

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Oh! Sorry if that wasn’t clear in my last edit;

Yes I did a full read through and it is ready to be revised now :). I just keep updating the same PDF file so the link to the PDF is still good.

Thanks!! :)

Disclaimer: I speak, write, and know American English. It is possible there are some style differences between British English and American English which I am unaware of because they go deeper than spelling. Accordingly, some things which seem obvious to me (“first floor”=“ground floor”) may be different for you (“first floor”=the floor above the “ground floor”).

I’m going to offer some suggestions on improving prose in addition to fixing errors. While I think the proposals would improve the product, they aren’t as essential and can be ignored safely.

General advice in writing, which has helped my own prose significantly, is to vary your word choice. If you repeat a single word, or even variations of that word, in close proximity, it often reads quite clumsily. Ex. “The residents still living there live their lives in pitiful residences” vs. “The remaining residents live out a meager existence in run-down hovels.” I’m being a bit extreme/silly to make my point, but you can see the difference.

Note on bolding: In prose, bold specific checks (e.g. “Average Negotiation check”), names of parts of the resource (e.g. “Finding Transportation”), and names of other resources (e.g. “Age of Rebellion Core Rulebook”). The occasional emphasis is also appropriate.
Do NOT bold non-specific checks (e.g. “Negotiation checks”), names (Shassa), or check results (e.g. “successful”).

Bolding names is something you do quite frequently, and I understand the draw. However, I would recommend against it. If you particularly desire to, only do it when specifically referring to the person/entity (no possessives) and I’d recommend only doing it the first time the person appears.

I may only mention this occasionally, so you’ll have to comb through yourself and edit the bolding.

Mechanics

You use Average difficulty checks with a single Setback three times. Like in writing, repetition isn’t very good. I’d advise you to try and shake it up, even if that means just making a check Easy and removing a Setback from another check. I think I’d suggest making the Survival navigation check Easy and removing the Setback from the Negotiation check.

If the Setback on the Survival check is supposed to reflect them being unfamiliar with the area, I would suggest mentioning that in some capacity (e.g. “If the party is unfamiliar with the area, add a Setback”). I don’t know the source of the Boost on the Survival check, but am suspicious that it comes from the Advantage option for speeder rental. If this is the case, it definitely should not be listed there.

Adventure

Only issue is that you don’t ever specify how long the trip should take. Is an hour delay 50% or 10%? We have no idea what scale we’re working with here, unless I’m so tired that I somehow missed or forgot it.

Grammar et al
  • Page 1: Extraneous space before colon.
  • Page 2: Dawn of Defiance: I’m not entirely sure of how it should technically be formatted (you might be able to refer to the original publication), but I am sure there shouldn’t be a space before the colon. (This is a recurring theme. Check a local style guide or scroll through and fix them all)
  • Extraneous space after “secret Imperial project.”
  • Capitalize “Clone Wars”
  • “Residents” by definition means that they are living there. “Remaining residents still living there live in” not only repeats the word “live” (in a different form) which is generally a no-no, but is redundant.
  • Second column, first paragraph, capitalize “Imperial presence” or replace with “Empire’s presence” (see note on repetition, although this is a very minor case)
  • Better word choice would perhaps be “isn’t very pronounced.” “That” implies comparison, and no comparison has been established.
  • “Has gone” must be “went,” otherwise the tensing is out of alignment with “a few days ago.” “Has gone” is present tense, so it works when nothing contradicts it (i.e. “the food has gone missing” is correct on its own). I believe all that happened here was that it got overlooked for editing. If you take a phrase from the blurb and spot-search it, that’ll help you find the various appearances so you can resolve them all.
  • “In the course of their investigation, they will also find out that some of Darga’s people are stealing from him, at the detriment of local farmers and the party will have a choice whether or not to do something about it.”
    I’d reword to: “In the course of their investigation, they will discover that some of Darga’s people are stealing from him, to the detriment of local farmers. The party will have to decide whether or not to do something about it.” Hopefully that also helps it fit better.
  • Page 3: Cato Neimoidia picture is much better.
  • Standard style of those entries is to bold the “question” (sorry, can’t think of a better term) being “answered.” E.g. Trade Routes: Quellor Run (you can check the CRBs to see what I’m talking about)
  • Page 4: The Star Wars logo is a little squished.
  • Page 5: “Of which he has just been made aware.” Generally speaking, avoid ending sentences with prepositions. This revision also sounds more sophisticated and polished.
  • “The mighty Darga…” Excellent, this is much better! Good job. The “bestow” line could be tweaked a little bit, e.g. “are to be bestowed,” “…ttion. He bestows upon you,” or “and bestows upon you…” But that aside, it sounds a lot more powerful and “Hutt-like” than it did.
  • “the shipment, and” extraneous comma. I am quite guilty of extraneous commas, but that still is one. :P
  • “steps of the missing crew”
  • At the line of “the crates contain,” I’m seeing a weird line through the whole page, as if a couple pixel lines were cut out and the page was then compressed. I’m not sure if that’s just an error on my end or what, but something to check. Also, make sure your text in the two columns are aligned. Unless the line isn’t, it implies (on my end) that they are at slightly different heights.
  • “taste comma, and medicinal properties” (Oxford comma)
  • Extraneous space before “the answer is obvious” at the beginning of the line.
  • Remove “a” before “[BOOST].” [BOOST] is proscriptive of a single die, so “a” is redundant.
  • Page six: “expenses, comma but this will be deducted”
  • “Trandoshans comma, and Quarren” (Quarren is plural without an “s”)
  • According to FFG’s official style, the check should be written out as “successful Average ([DIFF][DIFF]) Perception or Streetwise check with [SETBACK]” (alphabetize the skills unless one is a harder check, in which case list it second regardless)
  • “Neimoidian” should be upgraded. Simple rule of thumb, upgrade all species names (including “Human”). More complicated, upgrade those with a name deriving from a planet or location (e.g. “Mon Calamari” vs “quarren”). I, and most sources I’ve seen, prefer the first option.
  • “Mood, adding [BOOST] to Negotiation checks targeting him.” (Only bold the skill and/or “check” when they refer to a specific check, not referring to “_ checks” in general)
  • Change “for each [THREAT]” to “per net [THREAT]” (it also cuts out the repetition of “for”)
  • “Friendly, female Neimoidian local…” This is a tricky one. The subject as written is “local” rather than “female Neimoidian,” which makes it a string of three adjectives prior to local and makes the punctuation of “female Neimoidian” confusing because it technically becomes two adjectives rather than an adjective-noun pairing (which would be a noun and thus couldn’t be an adjective for local). All that to say, I suggest “friendly local, a female Neimoidian named Leoma.”
  • “While Leoma is present,” to preface “add [BOOST][BOOST]” rather than coming after. As mentioned previously, the skills should not be bolded since they aren’t referring to a specific check.
  • “Unsuccessful” should not be bold, and there’s an extraneous space after the comma.
  • “Shass at Zarra’s Imports and Exports” sounds like “Hi, I’m Mike at Generic Insurance Agency.” I think what you’re looking for would be “Shass-at-Zarra Import/Export Firm” or something to that effect. Then it could be referred to casually as “Shass-at-Zarra’s” or “Shass’s” depending on speaker preference.
  • “Shass’” shouldn’t be bolded in the second line (at least because you aren’t directly referring to him). I’d also suggest “Shass’s,” although that may simply be preference. Both are valid, but I think “Shass’s” would be more common. It lends itself well to that pronunciation more than some do.
  • This whole paragraph is phrased a bit awkwardly. One of the biggest issues is the use of the plural, which hamstrings you from the start. I’d recommend the following rewording: “After driving one of Shass’s speeders for about an hour, it makes loud exhaust noises and backfires, leaves a visible smoke trail, and its top speed is reduced by 2(1?) (to a minimum of 1). All of Shass’s speeders are prone to overheating and add an automatic [THREAT] to all skill checks made to operate them.” (“Relating to their use” is too broad, I think. Also, the bolding is unnecessary/out-of-place)
  • The connection between wealthy clients and higher prices is left quite vague. I’d recommend rewriting it to either indicate that the prices are unfair (“overcharging wealthy clients”) or that the speeders are higher-class to begin with, and that’s why rentals cost more.
  • Rephrase to “A successful Average ([DIFF][DIFF]) Negotiation check with [SETBACK] reduces…”
  • “Unsuccessful” shouldn’t be bolded.
  • “Per net [THREAT],” to bring it in line with my previous suggestion, and then change “generated” to “rolled.” Consistency is important.
  • “Survival” shouldn’t be capitalized.
  • “Read the following out loud:” shouldn’t be bold and can simply be “read the following:” (which also makes the colon more comfortably placed)
  • I’m not entirely sure how to parse this text box. Are they “taking one last glance” before “traversing the grasslands” or before passing out of the grasslands? While I think I know what you mean, it is phrased very confusingly. I’d recommend the following restructuring:
    “Taking one last glance at Zarra before leaving, you are struck again by its unique infrastructure: the entire city is suspended on a few bridges, architectural marvels which cradle the metropolis under arches of rock and high above the acidic sea. Before you unfold vast grasslands which pass in a blur as the speeder skims along just a meter off the ground.”
  • “Planetary” should be in parentheses, and “Piloting (Planetary) check” shouldn’t be bolded.
  • “an Average ([DIFF][DIFF]) Survival check with [SETBACK]” (See “Mechanics” re: Boost)
  • Change “will all” to “each”
  • Extraneous space after “[THREAT][THREAT],”
  • “successful Average ([DIFF][DIFF]) Mechanics check to continue.”

Alright, I’m exhausted. That’s the first six pages. I’ll do more in the coming days.

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Disclaimer: I speak, write, and know American English. It is possible there are some style differences between British English and American English which I am unaware of because they go deeper than spelling. Accordingly, some things which seem obvious to me (“first floor”=“ground floor”) may be different for you (“first floor”=the floor above the “ground floor”).

Right! So here in Canada it’s typically closer to the British spelling, so you’ll find some metres, centres and such in the text :). Certainly feel free to make suggestions and if it makes sense to me I’ll implement them.

Note on bolding: In prose, bold specific checks (e.g. “Average Negotiation check ”), names of parts of the resource (e.g. “Finding Transportation ”), and names of other resources (e.g. “Age of Rebellion Core Rulebook ”). The occasional emphasis is also appropriate.
Do NOT bold non-specific checks (e.g. “Negotiation checks”), names (Shassa), or check results (e.g. “successful”).

Makes sense, though I would tend to want to bold an important name at least the first time it appears.

You use Average difficulty checks with a single Setback three times. Like in writing, repetition isn’t very good. I’d advise you to try and shake it up, even if that means just making a check Easy and removing a Setback from another check. I think I’d suggest making the Survival navigation check Easy and removing the Setback from the Negotiation check.

Right. I made an effort to have consistency in the difficulty of the checks based on the low-level of my party, so most of the checks are Average (PP) difficulty but I see what you mean that it could get repetitive. I’ll add a bit more variation to the difficulty.

If the Setback on the Survival check is supposed to reflect them being unfamiliar with the area, I would suggest mentioning that in some capacity (e.g. “If the party is unfamiliar with the area, add a Setback”). I don’t know the source of the Boost on the Survival check, but am suspicious that it comes from the Advantage option for speeder rental. If this is the case, it definitely should not be listed there.

I’ll remove the boost/setbacks from the rolls and explain the possible modifiers in text instead. That particular boost is there because they were given basic directions on how to get to the farm, but they are still generally unfamiliar with the area / planet in general.

Only issue is that you don’t ever specify how long the trip should take. Is an hour delay 50% or 10%? We have no idea what scale we’re working with here, unless I’m so tired that I somehow missed or forgot it.

In the section where players ask Darga some questions it is specified that the trip is 3 hours; but it if wasn’t clear to you who is paying very close attention to the text, I should mention it again in the section where they are actually travelling.

Give me some time to comb through your recent suggestions and I’ll go back through the document to make a light revision (bolding, difficulty, etc.). I’ll confirm when it’s ready for another round of revision.

Thanks again for all your support :)

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A consistent standard for what is an “average” check is very sensible, but as mentioned variation is helpful. I personally prefer to set the difficulty of checks based on what I think is appropriate, regardless of PC stats. But I set the challenges requiring checks based on PC stats so that I challenge them appropriately.

As you’re going back through, I want to clarify that my suggestions regarding how to write out the checks are taken directly from official adventure modules. So bear that in mind as you’re considering how to apply the modifiers.

I see that now, I just forgot it. In this case, paying very close attention to the text hamstrung me because it took me so long to get to the next page. You can definitely get by with what’s there, but repeating it on the last page of the chapter where all the modifiers are would not be a bad move.

Glad to be of service.

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OK!

I made most of the changes but am unsure of how to write out the descriptive of, say, adding a boost dice.

Is it:
a) add a Boost Die [BOOST ICON]

Does this also work?
b) add [BOOST ICON]

When should I say a result has been generated as opposed to rolled? I’m reading an official adventure (Under a Black Sun) and it more frequently uses “rolled” but does say “generated” a few times, mostly when referring to threats and advantages.

On p.30 of that adventure they also present results differently by using fewer words and leading with the actual symbol…
[TRIUMPH]: XYZ happens.
[ADV, ADV]: ABC happens

Is this just a different way to present it so it doesn’t get too repetitive?

Thanks!

Edit: And for the commas… I think I was missing so many in your first revision that I just starting putting them everywhere without thinking ;)

Rule of thumb, I’d say use rolled if you’ve just said generated, and generated if you haven’t. There’s really no practical difference in its use, so most of the time it’d come down to what’s least repetitive in the sentence.

Like “if check generates Threat, do X equal to Threat rolled” or whatever.

I don’t have that adventure, but is it in the form of bullet points or individual sections?
E.g.:

  • Triumph: XYZ
  • Advantage: XYZ

If that is the case, it’s one approach you could take. I think what you had in the doc last I looked was perfectly functional approach. As for repetition, two things: one, repetition here could simply mean consistency, and that would be a good thing. Two, there may have been a particular reason for different styles in different places. Like I said, I don’t have that adventure.

B.
“Add [BOOST] per rank of Physical Training,” or “add [BOOST][BOOST] to all Mechanics checks,” etc.

Sure, just don’t go overboard. The main deal was Oxford commas, but when looking at where to put commas, think about how you speak. Where do you put pauses?

Now reread that sentence written this way:
Sure just don’t go overboard. The main deal was Oxford commas but when looking at where to put commas think about how you speak. Where do you put pauses?

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I don’t have that adventure, but is it in the form of bullet points or individual sections?

Here’s a link to it on the FFG website if ever you wanted to look at it:
Under a Black Sun

They are in bullet point form with longer paragraphs.

Rule of thumb, I’d say use rolled if you’ve just said generated, and generated if you haven’t. There’s really no practical difference in its use, so most of the time it’d come down to what’s least repetitive in the sentence.
Like “if check generates Threat, do X equal to Threat rolled” or whatever.

Thank you! That makes more sense now.

That makes sense to me as well… In the adventure I referenced they write it out (Add a Setback die [SETBACK])… but it may be written that way because it is an introductory adventure for Free RPG day; likely to be played by new players who are unfamiliar with the system.

I’m going to keep working on the text and I’ll confirm once it’s ready for further revision. Thanks again!

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OK! I just updated the document again and it is ready for another round of revisions :).

Thanks in advance.

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