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reptile74

Time for Careers ?

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I'm not sure if this is the right place to post this, otherwise just move it.

Since our group started our campaign a couple of years has passed in game time and the characters have been out there doing missions and investigations all the time. They've managed to advance to about fourth level.

As it is I've started to think it is strange that the characters have "lists" to choose their skills and talents from, based on their Careers. I mean our Arbitrator, since the first mission, has never had the chance to be an Arbitrator. I can see that starting skills should matter based on careers but when the game has started advancements should be handled in a different way. How? I do not know really?

Maybe the possibility to choose whatever they want (except when Prerequisites say otherwise?)

Maybe the advancement system we have now is some sort of standard solution in RPGs generally, in computer games and P&P. Maybe it is based on D&D 3.0 where your road to level 20 was pretty much straight ahead with only a couple of free choices from feats. (If I remember correctly, was some time ago now)

 

I really have no problem with power gamers, I know our sneaky girl would continue to add stealth skills, our pistol noble would take more shooting talents and so on.

 

what's your opinion? any input?

 

Thanx!

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The difference with D&D being that here, everything is a choice. What you buy per level depends on your class, granted, buth with the number of options you get at each Rank, you should normally always find something worthwile.

Plus the ranks system represents the fact that PCs get back to "civil" life between their missions for the Inquisition. So it's not really the missions that make them progress, it's that plus their everyday life ;)

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Stormast said:

The difference with D&D being that here, everything is a choice. What you buy per level depends on your class, granted, buth with the number of options you get at each Rank, you should normally always find something worthwile.

Plus the ranks system represents the fact that PCs get back to "civil" life between their missions for the Inquisition. So it's not really the missions that make them progress, it's that plus their everyday life ;)

 

Yes, that was my take on this too, that "Civil" life was the source of new skills and talents. But, at least in our campaign, there has been no time for civil life. I mean with the travel times in the 40K universe and grand campaigns there are no "down times."

To contact and asemble a party in game time would take several months, so in my campaign, the player characters just rest up a bit between the missions at the "base" then their Inquisitor sends them away again.

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Then use Elite Advances as a GM fiat: for example if you feel like the Arbitrator has merely acted as a Guardsman-like character, just handwave it and give him the Advance Table of a Guardsman his rank, more or less.

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I'm not a big fan of the career restricted advancements either.

I think it was on these forums that I was made aware of the fact that a Guardsman can't get Climb until level 4. Whilst probably not a big issue, it does highlight that sometimes things are just wrong. What if said Guardsman's early life was climbing cliffs, or if he spends his down time rock climbing? Putting it as an Elite advancement is an awful idea - it costs twice (or more) as much as normal. It then becomes not about the skill itself, but about what skills you can't take because of it.

My suggestion may end up being a lot more GM-heavy, but essentially goes that any advancement is available as long as the characters can demonstrate that they have had the chance to improve it. This may be as simple as saying that the character works out between missions (Strength increase) or can shoot better due to the previous session being combat heavy, or may be as involved as petitioning someone for proper training/enhancements in the case of some Talents.

Career path specific Talents remain restricted as per the rule book, to allow for delineation between the ranks.

If you end up getting cheesy characters (like a BS70+ assassin for example) at relatively low levels, as GM the campaign can be structured to focus more on the less tooled guys.

It's a pretty large deviation from the rule set, but allows for more interesting characters all up. It also removes the problem  of an RT game I played previously, where I had to take unwanted skills/Talents, simply because there was nothing I actually did want, but still wanted to reach the next level.

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I actually like the classes as they add a lot of flavour, but agree with the OP that most characters have effectively stopped being what they were before they joned the Inquisition.  Being an RPG however you have as much freedom to tweak the system to do what you want.

If the player has a good reason for something then I try not to stand in the way, and try to be flexible on what I make them pay.  If it is fairly mundane, like the climb skill, let them have it at R1 for 100xp, it's not going to break anything, if the feral World Assassin complains that 200xp for survival is too much because they already have it as a basic then give it to them for 100.  No harm done.  If they want a talent from another class that will make them unstoppable, then make them pay, as much as you think is reasonable.  Assassin wants Crushing Blow, that's 300xp bucko.

So long as you are comfotable, it's not breaking the game, and it's not being abused by the same people when others don't even use it then go for it.  You'll soon notice if someone is abusing it and then it's a simple case of 'You're cut off buddy". 

Having said all that, I would consider the game broken if you allowed so much freedome that you ended up with a bunch of cookee cutter characters. 
The classes are great for giving flavour, but you don't need to treat them like a straightjacket where there is a well justified reason.

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Exactly what Zakalwe said... It is an RPG, therefore the GM has COMPLETE CONTROL over what happens, and the skills and talents that are available to the players. I have never understood the mentality of "It says X in the book, therefore that is the case."

Just change it.

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Who ever said Elite Advances had to be expensive? I never.

Elite Advances is just the official name for GM fiat. Something's wrong? Change it. Want all of your characters to be able to speak Eldar? Darn it, give'em the Advance for 100 XP if you like!

[insert mandatory "Freedom" video link I'm too lazy to search here]

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Diel Ulricsson said:

Exactly what Zakalwe said... It is an RPG, therefore the GM has COMPLETE CONTROL over what happens, and the skills and talents that are available to the players. I have never understood the mentality of "It says X in the book, therefore that is the case."

Just change it.

 

I'm just looking for input and what you think about the subject. I know I can change the rules around and have done so alot in alot of games. There is always a chance that you miss something, something that you never thought of when you make up houserules, that's why I need different point of views and so on before I'm starting to change stuff.

 

At least two in my group are pretty new to RPGs and are following the rules by the book so I think I have to put down some rules and lists on paper at least.

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Guardsmen don't get Climb early on because they automatically have it with their cheap Strength advances. A starting Guardsman with Strength (say) 50 (not impossible at all) already has almost as good a Climb skill as an Assassin with Trained Climb and a Strength of 30.

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I have to agree, I have given out elite advances for 100xp multiple times becuase the players wanted it and made a good argument for it.  And Downtime isn't only at home on-world, my players move from one mission to the next often on a ship for months.  The Inquisitorial Heavy Cruiser that they are on is over 5km long, and has a crew around 100k.  That is a flying Hive, the players downtime is spent there; the Scum steals, cons and gambles in the down time, the Arbite enforces Imperial Law, the psycher studies, the AdMech works in the Engineerum, and so on.  The Career advances give a direction for the players to go for their advances based on the guidlines of how that kind of character generally acts, if they want something early or something not listed in their charts, then they have to explain why they want it, how they plan to use and how they would go about learning it.  If an Assassin from a Savage World wanted secret tongue (Tech) he better be able to explain how hes getting it.  But a Scum who wants Secret Tongue (Gutter) makes sense, that's where he spends his time and its easily conceivable for him to be able to learn it from a contact or friend he's made in the underbelly of the ship.

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 The way I think I will run this is by dividing skills into "career skills" and "out-of-career skills." I would allow the characters to purchase any basic or advanced skill from their career at any time for 100 exp and 200 exp respectively. To buy and out of career skill, you simple add 100 exp to it and get it. You can only buy a skill or skill increase once per rank. You can never have more than +10 to an "out-of-career skill." Talents have to be bought in rank order as per usual.

I have always had a problem with skills in DH. I have never understood what would stop an agent of the Inquisition, even a Guardsmen, from picking up a book and studying the Xenos or Security. However, I do like the career that the player rolled to have an effect on them. I feel that this solves both problems.

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Having played and Reffed many systems, I would say the stuff in the books is there for a reason and playing RAW (Rules As Written) is the easiest thing to do.  If you start faffing with a system then you need to be sure that you don't break it in the process, which is normally what happens.

As for limiting skills and talents to certain careers and ranks is for game balance.  As yet I have not had a player ask for an elite advance of any skill or talent.  All of them seem happy with the career paths in the books that we use.

If you are going to change the way system for skills and talents works I would suggest that you play test the hell out of it, with everything, I talking Pyskers maxed out, Faith powers, throw in some monsters based on the same things, and see what happens if it work then good on you.

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I disliked the career system so much I essentially abolished it.  In particular, the thing that bothered me was teh many and varied costs for skills and talents.  For example, 300 xp for a Guardsman to learn literacy?  Wut?  I'm all for flavor but at that price you might just as well say "don't take this.  ever." cause that's pretty much what happens. 

I did the following (roughtly):

PCs are allowed to assign their own stat advancement priorities.  3 primary (the cheapest to buy with xp upgrades), 3 secondary and 3 tertiary.  These are chosen at character creation and cannot be changed.

Skill costs are standardized:  100 xp to learn, 200 xp for +10 and Rank 4 and 200 xp required for +20.

All combat talents are priced according to the Guardsman advancement list, and the guardsman advancement scheme determines what rank a talent is available.  If something is available sooner or later in the character's chosen "starting" profession, an argument can be made for them obtaining it sooner but the price remains standardized for all characters.

Currently we play RT, so letting the characters choose their starting profession for their bonuses was pretty simple.  The guy wanting to be the Missionary got True Faith.  The Explorator got his tech-priest implants.  The psyker got his psychic powers and the assassin got his arch-militant weapon specialization.

Its required a bit of work as specific issues crop up.  But the fact that everything is standardized makes it pretty fair overall.  So far all my players are very happy with it and so am I.

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