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Inside Firefly Online ÔÇô Pt. 4: Your Crew

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Inside Firefly Online ÔÇô Pt. 4: Your Crew

Post by shadowfyre2 » Sat Jun 27, 2015 4:32 pm

As any good Captain knows, your ability to make it in the Black depends greatly upon the company you keep. ItÔÇÖs for this reason that much of your success in Firefly Online will rely heavily on the makeup and happiness of your crew. TheyÔÇÖll be your backup when you get caught in a fight and keep you flying by contributing their specific strengths to the cause, but most importantly, theyÔÇÖll develop a level of loyalty to you that youÔÇÖll need to survive the many challenges awaiting you on the raggedy edge.

Depending on the size of your boat or how youÔÇÖve modified it, it can accommodate up to 8 crew. When you get dirtside, you can take up to 4 crew members (captain included) along for the ride. The stats for a crew memberÔÇÖs overall strength and combat effectiveness will, for the most part, look quite familiar to RPG players:
- Health
- Aim
- Speed
- Defense

Note: These are the stats that have impact on combat. Non-combat stats will be covered in the skills and savvy article later this week.

You can compensate for shortfalls in your comradeÔÇÖs stats with externals like armor and weapons, but for everything you gain, be mindful that youÔÇÖll be losing something as well. For example, youÔÇÖll be able to shore up your Hired GunÔÇÖs weak defensive stat by equipping him with body armor, but heÔÇÖll likely lose some speed points for it. As Captain, youÔÇÖll have to find a balance among your crew to get the outcome youÔÇÖre looking for. Also, as you complete jobs and engage in combat, you and your crew will level up together, allowing you to improve individual stats. Stat improvement will be determined by class and applied automatically. However, some learned skills can also have an impact on stats, allowing the player some control over how their crew develops.

It all sounds pretty straightforward: pick an optimal blend of crew aptitudes, equip your team with the right mix of gear and weapons, and bang: Big Damn Heroes, right? In most RPGs that would be the case. But with FFO, this is where things start to get interesting.

Like MalÔÇÖs motley crew, each character will bring their own unique disposition to your group ÔÇö itÔÇÖs your responsibility to ensure they stay happy enough with your actions to keep flying alongside you. Keeping them clothed and fed is basic. Making sure theyÔÇÖve got some pretties for their cabin will certainly help. Perhaps the biggest factor, though, is what actions you take. This, more than anything, will affect how loyal and happy your crew is.

There are some shady characters out there in the Verse, and some of them may just end up on your boat. If youÔÇÖre the sort that meshes well with that kind of folk, youÔÇÖre sure to gain their allegiance fairly quickly by taking the less-than-reputable jobs and being quick to lie, cheat and kill your way out of problems. However, if you end up with folks that are more wholesome and honest, you stand a chance of losing them if your actions donÔÇÖt stay on the up and up. You can temper the frustrations of disgruntled crew members to a certain extent by having a shepherd or companion around, but the best way to ensure their loyalty is by taking actions that line up with their specific personalities.

If one of your own does eventually tire of serving under your leadership, there are consequences to losing your former crewmemberÔÇÖs loyalty: Not only will you lose all the skills and abilities theyÔÇÖve gained while under your command, they may choose to come after you in a revenge job under their new employer. As the crew of Serenity demonstrates in the series, not everyone will always agree on your actions and dissent is an absolute possibility. Remember to keep your crew in good spirits and treat them like family ÔÇô theyÔÇÖll be much more likely to have your back when the chips are down.
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