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Old 07-12-2018, 01:56 PM   #131
evileeyore
 
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Default Re: The Problem With Magic

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Originally Posted by maximara View Post
You don't want more more utility for just a little extra?
I put the skills I want on the sheet. Adding a Wildcard for 4 more points cuts 4 points out of something else.


The reason I don't like Wildcards is they tend to do strange things with a few skills... like "and any use of Acrobatics, Climbing, Jumping, or Stealth in combat" instead of just giving Swashbuckler! Acrobatics, Climbing, Jumping, and Stealth in general in the Wildcard.

This leads to the Character having those skills separately (or in another Wildcard) and thus having differing levels of them for different tasks leading to confusion during play.

Also Widlcards like Detective! that have "etc" at the end. That makes me twitch so hard.

/rant on Wildcards
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Old 07-12-2018, 07:23 PM   #132
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Default Re: The Problem With Magic

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Originally Posted by evileeyore View Post
I put the skills I want on the sheet. Adding a Wildcard for 4 more points cuts 4 points out of something else.
It all depends what wildcard skill one uses.
Megadungeon Knowledge! and Connoisseur! aren't in the same ball part compared to an Ultimate Talent Wildcard like Sage!

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Originally Posted by evileeyore View Post
The reason I don't like Wildcards is they tend to do strange things with a few skills... like "and any use of Acrobatics, Climbing, Jumping, or Stealth in combat" instead of just giving Swashbuckler! Acrobatics, Climbing, Jumping, and Stealth in general in the Wildcard.
That is because Swashbuckler! is a Template Wildcard skill. Compare to Pirate! which is an Ultimate Template Wildcard skill.

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This leads to the Character having those skills separately (or in another Wildcard) and thus having differing levels of them for different tasks leading to confusion during play.
Template Wildcard skills and their ultimate brethren (like Sage!) can cover a lot.

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Originally Posted by evileeyore View Post
Also Widlcards like Detective! that have "etc" at the end. That makes me twitch so hard.

/rant on Wildcards
Detective! is effectively an Ultimate Template Wildcard skill and yes it is pretty ridiculous. In fact, the only character from fiction who IMHO could serve as an example would be some of the adaptive (ie not canon) versions of Sherlock Holmes.

Now examples of Science! are all over the place. It seams that nearly every fictional scientist has this Wildcard skill be it Professor Roy Hinkley from Gilligan's Island at the low end to Reed Richards on the high end. Most of them have Inventor! as well.

I should mention that Magic! compared to Ritual Magic is likely the best priced wildcard skill there is. At two learned colleges it is the same cost (three VH skills, so you are paying the 3x VH cost either way) and anything above that is just gravy.

Last edited by maximara; 07-12-2018 at 07:48 PM.
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Old 07-15-2018, 10:42 PM   #133
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Default Re: The Problem With Magic

Wildcards: I'll also contend that anyone willing to put more than one Wildcard skill on their character sheet--considering how defining a Wildcard is--is going to be willing to deal with differing skill levels the same way someone with multiple weapon skills (for example) deals with varying weapon defaults.
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Old 07-15-2018, 11:16 PM   #134
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I generally prefer to avoid Wildcard Skills myself, even in Supers campaigns, as I prefer more specialization.
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Old 07-16-2018, 12:43 AM   #135
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I generally prefer to avoid Wildcard Skills myself, even in Supers campaigns, as I prefer more specialization.

Normally valid, but if you're doing a 750 pt Amber character....
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Old 07-16-2018, 01:57 AM   #136
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Default Re: The Problem With Magic

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Normally valid, but if you're doing a 750 pt Amber character....
You're going to be boosting stats and leaving skills at the 1 point level. Which means Wildcards aren't efficient.


(Unless the Wildcard is chock full of Hard skills or you don't mind your Wildcards bought at the Att-2 or Att-3 level, then Wildcards are very efficient)
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Old 07-16-2018, 07:01 AM   #137
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Default Re: The Problem With Magic

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Originally Posted by evileeyore View Post
You're going to be boosting stats and leaving skills at the 1 point level. Which means Wildcards aren't efficient.

(Unless the Wildcard is chock full of Hard skills or you don't mind your Wildcards bought at the Att-2 or Att-3 level, then Wildcards are very efficient)
The efficiency of Wildcard skill varies wildly as they come in three general levels: building block, Template, and Ultimate Template.

Building block wildcards are things like Art!, Boat!, History!, etc. Basically the generalization of skills that normally require specialization. These tend to be the least efficient wildcards skills with the elimination of Specialization, Familiarity and TL penalties being the main assets. However even here that are exceptions like Magic!, College!, Wizardry!, and Theurgy!

The next level up are Template wildcards. As the name suggests this takes the related skills of template and turns them into a Wildcard skill. Examples of these are Assassin!, Barbarian!, and Bard! These are far more efficient then building block wildcards.

The third level is Ultimate Template wildcards. They are task based rather then skill based. and so take all the skills associated with a template and turns them into a wildcard skill. They also serve as a quick way to make NPCs. Examples are Contact!, Orc!, and Sage!

Some wildcards vary depending on what skills fall under them. Pirate! for example can be either a Template or an Ultimate Template wildcard. Detective! can be a building block or Ultimate Template wildcard.

I should point that as far as DX based Wildcards are conserved, unless they are very narrow building blocks, it is far cheaper to increase a wildcard (12 points) then DX (20 points). Even with the cheaper ST, IQ, and HT (10 points) improving a wildcard skill may make more sense then improving the attribute especially if Hyper-Competency is factored in

Having a Wildcard point that can be spent as character point per Influencing Success Rolls makes the Wildcards skill even better. They are session based so they don't carry over from one session to the next but they do renew each session.
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Old 07-16-2018, 07:11 AM   #138
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With 750 points, you could very well have a character with human maximum attributes and secondary characteristics ('20' in each of the four attributes, '26' FP and HP, '12' Basic Speed, and '15' Basic Move 'only' costs 685 points). With Combat Reflexes, they have Dodge 16. With any combat skill at DX, they probably have Block or Parry at 16. Even if you reserve the majority of the points for abilities, they should probably have a minimum of 300 points in attributes and secondary characteristics (if not, why not?).

That is one of the things that I find weird about Supers templates like the Weatherworker, you are spending over 500 points for abilities that have only a 75% chance of hitting at 2 yards away. It might be better to increase DX and reduce the abilities some in order to increase general effectiveness. I would have designed that template with ST 10, DX 16, IQ 16, and HT 16 myself, and just made all of the combat abilities as alternative abilities of the Control (Weather) ability.
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Old 07-16-2018, 12:35 PM   #139
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Default Re: The Problem With Magic

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With 750 points, you could very well have a character with human maximum attributes and secondary characteristics ('20' in each of the four attributes, '26' FP and HP, '12' Basic Speed, and '15' Basic Move 'only' costs 685 points). With Combat Reflexes, they have Dodge 16. With any combat skill at DX, they probably have Block or Parry at 16. Even if you reserve the majority of the points for abilities, they should probably have a minimum of 300 points in attributes and secondary characteristics (if not, why not?).

That is one of the things that I find weird about Supers templates like the Weatherworker, you are spending over 500 points for abilities that have only a 75% chance of hitting at 2 yards away. It might be better to increase DX and reduce the abilities some in order to increase general effectiveness. I would have designed that template with ST 10, DX 16, IQ 16, and HT 16 myself, and just made all of the combat abilities as alternative abilities of the Control (Weather) ability.
I think it is more a matter of tone then anything else as to why the templates are set up the way they are.

The tone of GURPS Supers has been more along the lines of an Earth-One Silver Age then anything else. Let's face it heroes and villains even in the later Bronze age weren't the sharpest knives in the drawer and the majority were average people who lucked into their powers.

It certainly didn't help that what a hero/villain could do (or succeed in doing) varied all over the place.
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Old 07-16-2018, 01:01 PM   #140
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True. In the Golden Age, intelligent heroes were common, though they were not exactly uncommon in the Marvel Silver Age (Bruce Banner, Reed Richards, Peter Parker, Hank Pym, Tony Stark, Hank McCoy, Charles Xavier etc). Of course, there is no particular reason why a 750 point superhero or supervillain with mental powers should not have an IQ 20 (other than if the GM is trying to impose some sort of artificial realism to an otherwise unrealistic setting).

Of course, a character could use a magical ability or a magical artifact to increase their intelligence as if it were an ability. A character with IQ 15 could possess the 'Wisdom of Athena' magical ability: IQ+5 (Magical, -10%; Preparation Required, One minute, -30%) [60]. While the character normally possesses an IQ 15, they can increase their intelligence to IQ 20 for one minute if they spent a minute in meditation earlier in the day. Or they could have the 'Ring of Athena', which would give them IQ+5 (Breakable, DR 2, SM-8, -20%; Can Be Stolen, Trickery, -20%; Magical, -10%) [50]. Ironically, the latter is much cheaper than taking an enchanted ring that gives a magical bonus to IQ as Signature Gear (which would probably cost around 400 CP for Signature Gear).
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