Lynata each Role listed an XP cost modifier for every Characteristic and Skill. The result was a table much like an Advance Scheme from DH1e, except the Role table covered every Characteristic and Skill in the system, and listed the XP costs for characters with that Role all the way from CharGen to retirement.
The advantage of having a table isn't just that it is easier for players to look stuff up. The much more important advantage is that it gives players an easy overview of what their characters can become.
Aptitudes work more like a smokescreen, obscuring things.
Roles were made using this recipe:
- 1 Special Rule the equivalent of a Talent in scope.
- 3 Characteristics with an XP cost modifier of 50
- 4 Characteristics with an XP cost modifier of 100
- 2 Characteristics with an XP cost modifier of 150
- 4 Skills with an XP cost modifier of 100
- 14 Skills with an XP cost modifier of 150
- 3 Skills with an XP cost modifier of 200
Note that we striped out the '1 Special Rule' bit, because simply giving players a free Talent during CharGen seemed like a better idea. Anyway...
The advantage of having a 'Role recipe' is that it lets you easily create exactly the character you want, with the exact progression you want, while staying reasonably balanced with any other character.
Aptitudes does a great job of the opposite: it's highly arguable whether RAW aptitudes are as balanced as the 'Role recipe', and customising the Aptitude system is both ridiculously over-complicated and a nightmare to try to balance.
I'll grant you the XP cost modifier is easily customisable using either method. My only comment in that respect, is that DH2.3b RAW had XP cost modifiers that didn't massively encourage a laser-focus, while DH2e RAW has the opposite.
DH2.3b had a pile of different Talent Trees each build around theme. All characters would have access to the top talent in each Talent Tree, but would then have to buy their way through a Talent Tree to get the Talent they wanted.
In the Defence Tree, the top Talent was Evasive, which unlocked Hard Target and Disarm. Hard Target would unlock Step Aside, while Disarm would unlock Counter Attack and Deflect Shot. Step Aside and Counter Attack would unlock Nimble. Nimble would unlock Responsive, and finally Responsive would unlock Snap Fire.
So if you wanted Deflect Shot, you would first have to buy Evasive & Disarm.
Basically, the Talent Trees went overboard.
We've done something very different involving 'soft-linking' [buy Talent Z and you get no discount, buy Talents XYZ and you get a big discount] Talents and Talent Tiers, but I'm actually not crazy about our current system, so I shan't bother you with it.
What I think I'd like to do, though, is to link Talents to Characteristics in a similar sort of way as how Talents and Aptitudes are linked in DH2e.