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Yepesnopes

starting basic skills

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Hello everybody

I want to apologize before hand if this has already been posted.

I am concerned about the fact that players start with all the basic skills acquired.  I am new as a GM on the third edition, but I have been playing all through the first and second editions for years. On the previous editions, players only started with a few of the basic and advanced skills available. Making a test for a basic skill you didn't posses involved some penalties.

With the new system I have noticed, after the first two sessions, that the wizard in the group is as a good explorer as the ranger of the group, and that the archer of the group is a better thief than the actual thief from the group.

I imagine that when the players start to get expertise dice for their skills the ranger and the thief will start to shine a bit more above the wizard and the archer, although I am not sure.

What are you experiences regarding this? Have anyone developed a house rule to limit the starting basic skills in a similar way as in the previous editions? Is it a problem that will disappear after a handful of expertise dice?

 

Thank you in advance for your feedbacks

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The expertise dice makes a lot of difference for the characters ability to succeed. When creating a character my group allways max out or almost max out the number of skills taken since it makes a world of difference to be trained or not, and it's the only way to get the sigmar's comet.

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Expertise dice

Fortune dice

Talents

Those three things make quite a measure above just being "acquired."  If the actual 'ranger' of the party has not put any advancements into the relevant skills, that's not the wizard's fault.

Also, the GM should be liberal with the use of "this is a forest Mr. Wizard, you've got  a 1 black penalty."

 

jh

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 Thank you all for the feedback. Nonetheless, after a few games I am not very convinced yet. I still don't like (and I find it difficult to justify) that starting characters get ALL the basic skills. So I am going to rescue the idea of the 1st and 2nd editions of the game, where characters started only with a few of the skills.

In that way basic skills will have an extra box (4 in total) The first one to check it has been acquired, and three more for the expertise dice as usual. When a character attempts a skill test covered by a skill he does not posses, the difficulty of the test is increased by one <P> (that is roughly decreasing the success chance by 15%)

I am going to use the nice idea of Liber Fanatica 1 to distribute starting characters into different backgrounds: military, rural, merchant, academics etc. The background and the initial career will determine which basic skills the characters start with. Something like the following, the character will start with 3 basic skills determined by the background of the character plus the ones listed on the career sheet as possible advances.

 

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 Yeah while I haven't had the attempt to run a session (beyond character creation and some general dice testing) I don't see the problem.

I mean, the ranger should have the stats required to fulfill their ranger skills while the wizard will have some their not going to be his main focus. Similarly the ranger should be putting more points in things like observation, and other such skills not to mention talents, etc. Point being if the Ranger spends none of his points in making himself better at things a ranger is normally good at then of course the wizard is going to be just as good if not better at tasks a ranger is normally good at simply because the ranger didn't other making their character.... like a ranger. It just sounds like players aren't building their characters to support their role and then complaining that they're not good at their role.

 

Again though this is merely an outside observation but from a mere statistical standpoint it will ring true that a character class that focuses his creation points and advancements on things related to his class will be better at those things than someone in a different role.

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 I hear what you are saying but all you are really doing is formalising jay's comment about penalising wizards in a forest

By making it formal as you are suggesting, IMO, you run the risk of having players avoiding making rolls for skills they don't have.

Consider using your idea as more of a gm crib sheet for applying penalties as and when you see fit- that way you can use the "power of yes" so for instance if the wizard tries to use observation to spot tracks let them but add black or purple dice as its not something the wizard excels at compared to the ranger,whereas if the wizard used observation to overhear some muttered incantation then the penalty might be less than if the ranger tried it -or the ranger might have no chance at all

With your concept the wizard either has observation as a starting skill and makes both rolls equally well or he doesn't have the skill and is possibly unjustly punished on the second roll

 

 

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Keep in mind, that the career players chose for their chars are not necessarily something they're good at.

Just because you're big, doesn't make you a good watchman, or even able to handle a sword.

Even in real-life, we'll come across people in jobs they stink at, and which we, without any prior experience, could handle better.

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 Hey guys!

Thanks for all these feedbacks, they really help. After reading your posts I have to agree at least on the idea that I don't want to penalize my players too much, that is for sure. This 3rd editions is just great, nonetheless I think I am still too attached to the 2nd (and 1st) editions :( I liked the hard time players had there to survive in the 3rd edition everything seems too easy for me. But specially, it is still difficult to me to understand why all the people in the old world, no matter where they come from or who they are, have basic knowledge on for example: evaluating wounds (First Aid), or motivating groups of people (Leadership), or following trails (Observation), or picking up locks (skulduggery) and a long list.

The current rules of the game are made in a way (If you do a few numbers) that a common human (3 dice in a characteristic) who attemps any of the above examples with an average difficulty 2<P> will succeed, on an average, 45 - 51 % of the times (depending if he goes one dice conservative, reckless or just neutral). Looks like to me that in that wolrd nobody can keep their saves in an average chest with an average lock, lock picking is jut too easy for everyone!

On the other hand, after reading your comments, I realize that adding an extra <P> to the test may be too much (extra banes, chaos stars etc), so may be I will try just removing one <BU> from the dice pool of a character who tries a skill test without the appropiate Basic skill acquired.

I will let you know how it goes.

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Yepesnopes said:

 Hey guys!

Thanks for all these feedbacks, they really help. After reading your posts I have to agree at least on the idea that I don't want to penalize my players too much, that is for sure. This 3rd editions is just great, nonetheless I think I am still too attached to the 2nd (and 1st) editions :( I liked the hard time players had there to survive in the 3rd edition everything seems too easy for me. But specially, it is still difficult to me to understand why all the people in the old world, no matter where they come from or who they are, have basic knowledge on for example: evaluating wounds (First Aid), or motivating groups of people (Leadership), or following trails (Observation), or picking up locks (skulduggery) and a long list.

The current rules of the game are made in a way (If you do a few numbers) that a common human (3 dice in a characteristic) who attemps any of the above examples with an average difficulty 2<P> will succeed, on an average, 45 - 51 % of the times (depending if he goes one dice conservative, reckless or just neutral). Looks like to me that in that wolrd nobody can keep their saves in an average chest with an average lock, lock picking is jut too easy for everyone!

On the other hand, after reading your comments, I realize that adding an extra <P> to the test may be too much (extra banes, chaos stars etc), so may be I will try just removing one <BU> from the dice pool of a character who tries a skill test without the appropiate Basic skill acquired.

I will let you know how it goes.

I think the point we are trying to make (or at least I was) is that it's ok to add in purples if you want to make the task difficult for that character type to complete, but it's "better" in my opinion if you avoid hard and fast rules around that (such as your idea of adding the need to have basic skills acquired) and just make those kinds of rulings on the fly based on what "feels" right.

The way the systems deals with your issue to a certain extent is by adding specialisations to the skills, but that gives bonuses for when the skill is really appropriate, whereas you want to penalise the player when the character type isn't appropriate for that skill.

You can get the same result within the rules system though, by liberally dishing out misfortune dice and purple dice into the task, as standard; environmental effects is always a good catch all for a reason for adding the dice.

By doing this, it will then force your players to look for ways to counteract the bad dice you are adding in by trying to get good dice of their own - one of the ways is by adding a specialisation, and you are obviously within your rights to insist the specialisation they take is reflective of their character type.

So in a nutshell, you already have the power to make tasks more difficult for certain PCs without the need to change the RAW, you perhaps just need to get a bit more free with adding in black/purple dice to the base difficulty.

I almost always tweak the bad dice added to a pool based not only on the base task, but also the environment (and how that environment relates to the actual PC making the roll) and usually on that characters background, career and anything else I can use to shoe horn in an odd black dice or two!

If you want it gritty, its down to you to add in bad dice, as the system won't automatically add them in for you, in most cases - its more free form in that respect.

 

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