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Old 12-30-2014, 11:01 AM   #1
Anders
 
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Default Skills as perks

In an attempt to bring down the number of skills to a manageable level, I'm thinking of ways to convert skills into perks. Some examples:

Fast-Draw (specialization required)
This allows you to Fast-Draw a weapon (or other item, if the GM allows this) at a skill equal to your weapon skill. It otherwise functions like the skill.

Gesture
On an IQ roll (minimum 10) you can convey one simple idea to another person, or understand one simple idea he is attempting to get across.

Speed-Reading
This perk doubles your reading rate.

Any other examples stand out to you?
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Old 12-30-2014, 11:46 AM   #2
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Default Re: Skills as perks

So you've got
Perk: Skill Adaptation (use a Fast-Draw at relevant weapon skill's level),
Taboo Trait (cannot improve Gesture past IQ+0) and
Perk (Speed-Reading is stupid, you read faster).

I'm thinking there should be a broader approach to this, like "if any skill defaults to or from another skill at -3 or better, buy a Skill Adaptation perk and you've got them both at full value."

Last edited by McAllister; 12-30-2014 at 11:47 AM. Reason: Consistency
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Old 12-30-2014, 12:13 PM   #3
Turhan's Bey Company
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Default Re: Skills as perks

What, exactly, is gained by decreasing the number of skills while increasing the number of perks by exactly the same number? It's a bit cheaper, I suppose, but it takes up just as much space on the character sheet.
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Old 12-30-2014, 12:18 PM   #4
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Default Re: Skills as perks

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anders View Post
Any other examples stand out to you?
There are a handful of skills that just don't seem to contain enough material to be full skills, and a few more that seem qualitative, rather than something it makes sense to roll against to see if you succeed (not all those are worth only 1 point though). My usual list is something like:

Body Sense - a skill adaptation of whatever you use the teleport. If it needs to exist at all - you don't roll against anything every time you take a step to see if you keep your balance after all.

Computer Operation. You can use a computer. Roll against the skill for whatever you are trying to use it *for* if you need a success roll.

Counterfeiting. A skill adaptation of whatever the skill is to make the thing you are counterfeiting ordinarily.

Fast Draw. Yeah, skill adaptation of a weapon skill, or DX (i.e. a Shtick) if you don't want to be able to use the weapon well.

Fire Eating. A Shtick.

Forced Entry (?) I haven't quite figured this one out. There doesn't seem to be enough here to warrant skill rolls, but....

Free Fall. G-Experience for a single gravity band?

Hiking. Probably worth more than a point though. Also Running, Swimming and maybe Skating and Skiing.

Lip Reading. I suppose you might occasionally need a Per roll, but still.

Meditation. Cf. Autotrance, which is more useful. Though I sometimes think a combined mental discipline skill might be the way to go instead.

NBC Suit. OTW of Hazardous Materials. Putting you your PPE comes pretty early in teaching that surely. Also Environment Suit.

Panhandling. Beats me what this is, but it's insane for it to be a skill you roll against every *hour* of begging. I could believe an optional specialization of Performance.

Speed Reading. Sure

Typing. A skill adaptation added to your choice of skill you use a keyboard with - typically Administration or Computer something.

Ventriloquism. Another Shtick

Weather Sense.
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Old 12-30-2014, 12:44 PM   #5
Anders
 
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Default Re: Skills as perks

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Originally Posted by Turhan's Bey Company View Post
What, exactly, is gained by decreasing the number of skills while increasing the number of perks by exactly the same number? It's a bit cheaper, I suppose, but it takes up just as much space on the character sheet.
I think they make more sense as perks than as skills. That's more or less it.
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Old 12-30-2014, 12:49 PM   #6
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Default Re: Skills as perks

The three in the OP are all things you can learn and practice to get better at doing. You can't improve a Perk, or have different target numbers for different people with the same stats. How do you represent learning and improvement with Perks? (If they're "levelled Perks", that's just renaming a "skill".)
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Old 12-30-2014, 12:54 PM   #7
Anders
 
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Default Re: Skills as perks

So is English. I see Gesture more as a language with a mandatory level of Broken than as a skill.
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Old 12-30-2014, 01:02 PM   #8
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Default Re: Skills as perks

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anders View Post
Any other examples stand out to you?
Battlesuit (and similar skills) would probably work better as a Perk - without it, you suffer -4 or so to all DX-based skills, with it you don't suffer a penalty. Most fiction with battlesuits, mecha, and so forth either ignore the issue of familiarity entirely or have the character take a bit of time to learn how to do it, at which point he's just as good in the suit as out. NBC suit skill and the like may be realistic as skills, but for gaming purposes a Perk to have familiarity is probably good enough.

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I see Gesture more as a language with a mandatory level of Broken than as a skill.
Heck, in many cinematic settings Gesture can get up to Accented or even Fluent, essentially being some sort of military sign language.

Last edited by Varyon; 12-30-2014 at 01:12 PM.
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Old 12-30-2014, 01:11 PM   #9
vicky_molokh
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Default Re: Skills as perks

Quote:
Originally Posted by malloyd View Post
Body Sense - a skill adaptation of whatever you use the teleport. If it needs to exist at all - you don't roll against anything every time you take a step to see if you keep your balance after all.
Maybe. Warp already managed to forget ever mentioning it.

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Originally Posted by malloyd View Post
Computer Operation. You can use a computer. Roll against the skill for whatever you are trying to use it *for* if you need a success roll.
Umm, to configure packages and drivers when installing an OS? It's not Programming, not Computer Repair, and not Security. Nope, ditching the skill results in throwing lots of CompOps techniques to other skills, but also leaving orphans.

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Counterfeiting. A skill adaptation of whatever the skill is to make the thing you are counterfeiting ordinarily.
Money. Which seems to mean that the skill of legitly making money should be the same as making fake money.

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Originally Posted by malloyd View Post
Fast Draw. Yeah, skill adaptation of a weapon skill, or DX (i.e. a Shtick) if you don't want to be able to use the weapon well.
It certainly simplifies some things. OTOH, it removes the ability to make a nuance between a mediocre fast-drawer but great shooter, vice versa, and someone who is good at both or neither.

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Fire Eating. A Shtick.
Yeah. Or a Technique for Sleight of Hand and 'Feats of Strength', maybe. It feels way too specialised, and too close to other skills (compare to the way there's one skill to cover botany, zoology, micology etc.).

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Forced Entry (?) I haven't quite figured this one out. There doesn't seem to be enough here to warrant skill rolls, but....
There are some, but they're not very numerous.

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Originally Posted by malloyd View Post
Free Fall. G-Experience for a single gravity band?
I endorse this approach. Though maybe make it cost more because 0G is nastier than low-G for non-0G-ers.

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Originally Posted by malloyd View Post
Hiking. Probably worth more than a point though. Also Running, Swimming and maybe Skating and Skiing.
Probably more an issue with the way they're handled right now. They kinda make sense for stuff like packing your bag, negotiating sharp corners (above DX level, that is) etc. And Extra Effort, of course.

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Originally Posted by malloyd View Post
Lip Reading. I suppose you might occasionally need a Per roll, but still.
Too cheap for a Perk, IMHO.

Quote:
Originally Posted by malloyd View Post
Meditation. Cf. Autotrance, which is more useful. Though I sometimes think a combined mental discipline skill might be the way to go instead.
Make Autotrance/Meditation a single skill, just like we have Axe/Mace and used to have Brewing/Distilling.

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Originally Posted by malloyd View Post
NBC Suit. OTW of Hazardous Materials. Putting you your PPE comes pretty early in teaching that surely. Also Environment Suit.
Yeah, HazMat probably should absorb NBC Suit skills.

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Originally Posted by malloyd View Post
Panhandling. Beats me what this is, but it's insane for it to be a skill you roll against every *hour* of begging. I could believe an optional specialization of Performance.
Essentially a Professional Skill that seems to be expected to occasionally come up under conditions where every hour matters.

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Speed Reading. Sure
Probably perkable. The current mechanic makes it so that people rarely care to throw more than one point at it anyway.

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Typing. A skill adaptation added to your choice of skill you use a keyboard with - typically Administration or Computer something.
Umm, maybe. Probably the Perk should allow you to substitute DX+0 or any related skill +0, and allow further increases as a Technique for those who want to win typing-speed competitions.

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Ventriloquism. Another Shtick
Not sure. It needs to occasionally win QCs, right?

Quote:
Originally Posted by malloyd View Post
Weather Sense.
This one is an actual skill that it makes sense to raise past Attribute+0 for some characters.
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Old 12-30-2014, 01:16 PM   #10
Anders
 
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Default Re: Skills as perks

Quote:
Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
Too cheap for a Perk, IMHO.
Maybe as a language of its own?
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