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Old 04-08-2017, 09:40 PM   #1
Otaku
 
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Default [Basic] Advantage of the Week (#39): Daredevil, Luck, Super Luck

Last Week: Dark Vision, Night Vision
Next Week: Discriminatory Hearing, Disciminatory Smell, Discriminatory Taste, Sensitive Touch

Preface

The intent of this thread is to discuss the selected Advantages in their entirety. This begins with how the traits were written in [Basic], and while I won't go into depth about what is mentioned in other supplements, I will at least try to touch upon them. I would also like to include links to other useful sources (threads, blogs, etc.), and if it seems worth it, the rules for the traits from past editions. It will also include open discussion of it all, and that means sharing thoughts and experiences on the matter, be they praise, criticism, questions, or just remembrances. I'll avoid sharing my own thoughts, except where it is necessary, such as when I don't really understand the trait all that well myself.

Thanks to the index of topics johndallman created as is maintaining, it is much easier to keep track of what we've covered and where also lessening the need for me to try to cram every remotely related trait together or keep them all separate (whichever might make them easier to find). It also means I can get one more trait we skipped, Daredevil, reviewed alongside what I believe to be a better known and more widely employed trait, Luck, without worrying about future readers looking for it in the threads that will focus on "L" traits.

Basic


Daredevil (p. B47) is a Mundane, Mental Advantage worth 15 points. It has a slightly less detailed entry on page 9 of GURPS Lite which is handy for quoting:

Quote:
Fortune seems to smile on you when you take risks! Any time you take an unnecessary risk (in the GM’s opinion), you get a +1 to all skill rolls. Furthermore, you may reroll any critical failure that occurs during such high-risk behavior.
[Basic] adds an example to help clarify what constitutes an unnecessary risk; the text suggests leaping from cover to charge into battle (instead of firing from that position) as something that would trigger Daredevil. This trait may not make taking an unnecessary risk the best approach, but the combination of a Skill bonus and being able to re-roll critical failures should at least make it more palatable.

Luck (p. B66) is a Mundane, Mental trait that comes in three tiers, each with a different cost. This trait also appears on page 9 of GURPS Lite, where the entry reads

Quote:
You were born lucky! There are three progressively more “cinematic” levels of Luck:

Luck: Once per hour of play, you may reroll a single bad die roll twice and take the best of the three rolls! You must declare that you are using your Luck immediately after you roll the dice. 15 points.
Extraordinary Luck: As above, but usable every 30 minutes. 30 points.
Ridiculous Luck: As above, but usable every 10 minutes! 60 points.

Your Luck only applies to your own success, damage, or reaction rolls, or on outside events that affect you or your whole party, or when you are being attacked (in which case you may make the attacker roll three times and take the worst roll!).
[Basic] adds additional text to clarify; though it can factor into an event that affects the entire party, the only times it will work on a roll for someone else is when that roll directly affects the character with Luck. If your character's life depends upon a door being broken down and you want to use its Luck to improve the odds, your character has to be the one actually making the attempt (as opposed to a fellow party member who would otherwise be more suited to the task). Completely unambiguous is the explanation that how the added text in [Basic] states that the minutes between uses acts like a cooldown timer; you don't get one use per X minutes of game time, but after you use a form of Luck, you must wait that amount of time before you can use it again; no saving it up for later to use several times in a row, or using it back-to-back claiming one was for the previous 60/30/15 minutes and the other is for the next.

Luck includes some Special Limitations you may take for it in [Basic], still on p. B66. "Active" requires you specify you are using your Luck ahead of time, denoting it as a conscious, supernatural ability. You must state you are using it before rolling; no opting to use it to offset a bad roll after-the-fact. This is worth -40%. "Aspected" restricts your Luck to working with a specific class of related tasks; if it falls outside of that scope, it is like you don't have any Luck at all. The text lists some examples as athletics, combat, social interactions, and stuff you could use at your job, detailing the restrictions for combat. This is worth -20%. "Defensive" is basically another instance of Aspected; as your Luck can only re-roll failed Active Defenses, Resistance rolls, HT rolls to resist the effects of injury, or for an opponent to re-roll a critical hit against you. It is also worth -20%.

Super Luck (p. B89) is an Exotic, Mental trait that costs 100 CP. Despite the name, it is not a higher form of Luck; though it still affects the outcome of a roll, it doesn't involve re-rolling the dice. Instead, once per hour of play, Super Luck allows the player to dictate the result of any one die roll you or the GM make for your character. Since you are specifying a result, that means you cannot accomplish the impossible with Super Luck, just the improbable; the circumstances have to permit a roll in the first place, and you just get to state the number rolled. You may take Super Luck alongside one of Luck, Extra Ordinary Luck, or Ridiculous Luck, but Super Luck itself can only be taken once.

Other Supplements

Besides the usual advice for how to use Luck and Super Luck to represent... erm... powers, GURPS Powers includes the new "Wishing" Enhancement for Luck on page 59. On page 80 mentions in a high power campaign, the GM might consider allowing some characters to purchase Super Luck as a leveled trait, and includes the rules for that. It also features the "Alter Reality" Enhancement to allow Super Luck to work retroactively, or the Wishing Enhancement, which does work just a bit differently than it does with Luck/Extraordinary Luck/Rediculous Luck. It also contains some non-trait specific Modifiers that could apply to the various versions of Luck and Super Luck.

GURPS Power-Ups 3: Talents contains optional rules for traits that act as prerequisites or enablers for a particular talent, with Daredevil and Luck showing up among the possible traits. Page 26 of GURPS Supers has rules for treating Daredevil as a leveled trait.

Previous Editions


Daredevil, Luck, and Super Luck all work the same in Third Edition as they do in Fourth. As a reminder, I don't have information for earlier editions.

Useful Links


Thank you for the links. We have not only some threads discussing the use of these traits, but those oh-so-valuable Kromm & PK Quotes:
Discussion Starters

This is a generic list of questions if you need them; if you already know what you want to say, feel free to just chime in.
  • Have you ever taken any of these traits for one of your PCs or NPCs? How'd it go?
  • Is there anything these trait do really well?
  • Is there anything you think these traits should do different, whether it means adding, subtracting, or just changing aspects of it?
  • Any thoughts on how the 4e version of these traits compares to them in earlier editions?
  • Feedback about BAotW threads in general, such as how I structure them?
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Last edited by Otaku; 06-06-2017 at 12:08 PM. Reason: Added entries to and organized Links section
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Old 04-09-2017, 07:28 AM   #2
whswhs
 
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Default Re: [Basic] Advantage of the Week (#39): Daredevil, Luck, Super Luck

I don't really think of Daredevil as akin to the other two; I think of it as more like Higher Purpose. Both are "you get +1 to all rolls when you're doing X." The various Luck abilities work quite differently.
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Old 04-09-2017, 08:22 AM   #3
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Default Re: [Basic] Advantage of the Week (#39): Daredevil, Luck, Super Luck

The only one of these advantages I've used is basic 1/hour Luck. The effect is that I can take somewhat more risk and hope to get away with it, either in taking courses that depend on a single roll, or in trying things that involve bigger penalties.
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Old 04-09-2017, 08:23 AM   #4
Otaku
 
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Default Re: [Basic] Advantage of the Week (#39): Daredevil, Luck, Super Luck

Quote:
Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
I don't really think of Daredevil as akin to the other two; I think of it as more like Higher Purpose. Both are "you get +1 to all rolls when you're doing X." The various Luck abilities work quite differently.
I don't disagree, and in fact was trying to remember what trait provided a similar bonus. ^^' I kept drawing a blank, and eventually, I needed to get this posted. It is a bit of a shame, as Higher Purpose is currently scheduled on its own. Feel free to make further suggestions on ordering in this thread. I may need to add that to the opening post.

All that being said, Daredevil has about as much in common with Luck as Super Luck does. Daredevil allows you to re-roll critical failures under the same circumstances it provides a +1. Luck allows you up to three rolls to get your desired result. Super Luck simply allows you to *name* your desired result. All three are about probability manipulation through the dice (as opposed to through a coincidence, like Serendipity).
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Old 04-09-2017, 12:22 PM   #5
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Default Re: [Basic] Advantage of the Week (#39): Daredevil, Luck, Super Luck

But Serendipity should be included in the talk too, because, despite different mechanics, it is also a kind of luck in game
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Old 04-09-2017, 12:33 PM   #6
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Default Re: [Basic] Advantage of the Week (#39): Daredevil, Luck, Super Luck

Luck shows up on lots of my characters

In particular its just about mandatory for effect shaper RPMists

But it also just handy in general for everyone, and can be a major way of avoiding defeat by smoothing out improbable bad dice rolls at bad times

Extraordinary Luck I see a few times to

Ridiculous and Super Luck not so much . . . . because while they are nifty, they begin to consume so much CP there is not so much base character to be nifty with
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Old 04-09-2017, 12:38 PM   #7
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Default Re: [Basic] Advantage of the Week (#39): Daredevil, Luck, Super Luck

I personally never use Luck.

I never put it on any characters I played because it was on my GM's list of traits forbidden for being too cinematic, and I wouldn't really have wanted it anyway. I don't want to be looking at a clock and waiting for the cooldown on a trait like this.

X uses per session or X uses per in-game whenever would be preferable for me even if it was less even in distribution - especially then, actually, because luck tends to come in streaks. I still wouldn't take it much and usually hoard my lucky breaks for defensive use.

I did make it a mandatory trait on some character templates I made a few years ago because of constantly reading how "Luck is mandatory on action heroes" on this very forum. I don't really feel it.

I would use it in a heartbeat years before I'd permanently expend points for success though.
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Old 04-09-2017, 12:55 PM   #8
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Default Re: [Basic] Advantage of the Week (#39): Daredevil, Luck, Super Luck

I haven't seen much use of Daredevil, probably because it is for risky behavior and the +1 isn't much. It's the reroll of the critical failure that's the big deal in Daredevil.

Luck has been used in various games at various levels. Players like rerolls, so one level of Luck has been taken when it fit the character concept. I had a PC in one of my supers games, Dice, who went all the way with Luck. He had Super Luck and his powers were based on being a deity of luck who'd forgotten what he knew. Essentially, most of his advantages were Secret and he could even pick up skills as needed.

Dice was a hard character to manage and eventually the player went with another character as he was overpowered compared to the other PCs. On the other hand, the other PCs were played by players who really didn't pay much attention to the GURPS rules and had characters with limited motivations.
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Old 04-09-2017, 03:05 PM   #9
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Default Re: [Basic] Advantage of the Week (#39): Daredevil, Luck, Super Luck

Let's not forget that GURPS Supers suggests Daredevil can be taken as a leveled advantage, also.

I've not seen much of any of these, but I'm definitely a fan of Luck as a concept. I also like the idea from Power-Ups 5 regarding Luck. But I have finding myself gravitating toward impulse buys in general.
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Old 04-09-2017, 03:06 PM   #10
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Default Re: [Basic] Advantage of the Week (#39): Daredevil, Luck, Super Luck

Quote:
Originally Posted by baakyocalder View Post
I haven't seen much use of Daredevil, probably because it is for risky behavior and the +1 isn't much. It's the reroll of the critical failure that's the big deal in Daredevil.
The reroll is great, but I wouldn't discount the +1 either. For some characters (Berserkers, characters with On The Edge), it's basically a +1 to everything you're doing (which you desperately need with those characters).
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