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Old 10-16-2020, 10:04 AM   #31
ericthered
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Default Re: [Basic] Advantage of the Week: Gadgeteer

I usually end up using gadgeteer in monster hunters games, where it appears on the techie. There I try to channel away from general "Tech upgrade!" and into the following categories:


Superscience and weird science: a LOT of gadgeteers don't advance the TL, they work orthogonality to it, and monster hunter techies can interact with psi and ghosts really well, and they add a "^" to the tech level rather than advancing it.


Traps: If you have the ability to build working equipment from scraps in a short amount of time, traps become a lot easier and become a lot more useful. A lot of hare-brained PC ideas should work only if someone has gadgeteer.


Making do without the Supply Chain: A lot of gadgeteers spend their time building equipment that is part of this tech level but not widely available. Its hard to get a flame thrower around here, but the techie can take an hour an build one that's almost as good using a garden hose, a gasoline can, a bucket of old paint, and spare bits from the hoarder's shack.



Custom Gear: You should have exactly what you want for any situation. If you don't, take a few hours and make it so you do. Often PC's want equipment that is technically possible but not actually manufactured. A lot of robotics ideas fall into this category. Gadgeteer is your license to fix this.
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Old 10-16-2020, 04:16 PM   #32
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Default Re: [Basic] Advantage of the Week: Gadgeteer

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Originally Posted by Ulzgoroth View Post
Some of those aren't actually uncovered to begin with:

-A laser pistol would be Average complexity, and a starship Amazing. That's flawed, certainly, but not in the way you suggest.

-Putting a Limitation on the Advantage is fairly obvious and standard, though a lot of Gadgeteers can switch fields relatively easily.
Ulzgoroth reminded me of another question I have, if someone thinks they can explain:

How do you tell if something is one invention, or multiple inventions? Especially with those having issues keeping Gadgeteering in line, especially the "prototype to production model" aspect, is that a possible answer?
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Old 10-16-2020, 06:29 PM   #33
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Default Re: [Basic] Advantage of the Week: Gadgeteer

Portal Realms only mentions this advantage for creating spells but introducing technological advancements in low-tech worlds by reinventing them is a common trope/cliche found on Isekai genre. It's fairly unrealistic that an ordinary person would be able to pull it off but a PC could justify it with the 25-points version of Gadgeteer.
The chapter five of Fantasy-Tech 1 mentions some technologies that could be introduced in such way and would be immediately useful for the PCs, and the rest of the Fantasy-Tech books serves as an inspiration for what to invent in a fantasy world.
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Old 10-16-2020, 07:01 PM   #34
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Default Re: [Basic] Advantage of the Week: Gadgeteer

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Originally Posted by Sorenant View Post
Portal Realms only mentions this advantage for creating spells but introducing technological advancements in low-tech worlds by reinventing them is a common trope/cliche found on Isekai genre. It's fairly unrealistic that an ordinary person would be able to pull it off but a PC could justify it with the 25-points version of Gadgeteer.
The chapter five of Fantasy-Tech 1 mentions some technologies that could be introduced in such way and would be immediately useful for the PCs, and the rest of the Fantasy-Tech books serves as an inspiration for what to invent in a fantasy world.
This raises a question about 'inventing' things when you already know how they work.

At worst, you clearly get +2 on the Concept Roll for the item already existing (albeit potentially only 'already' in your personal timeline rather than your current world) and obviously no TL penalty since you could only do this for something within your personal TL. And conceivably the GM could impose the -5 for tech 'totally new to the campaign' though I'm not really sure of the intent there.

However, that concept roll seems blatantly unfair. That's the same roll you'd need to replicate the tech based purely on having heard that it exists. Maybe fair enough if you're at the level of "I'm pretty sure we can get antibiotics from bread mold". But not if you actually have a strong prior understanding of the mechanics and design of your 'invention'.

Basic says you can skip concept rolls if you have actual blueprints. But I'd probably say that a concept roll is unnecessary any time you know both the underlying principles and the general practice of the design. That's basically what a concept roll is trying to get. Of course if that knowledge is wrong you've effectively critically failed the concept roll!

Basic doesn't really address what happens on the prototype roll in that type of situation. The prototype roll gets all modifiers that the concept roll gets. But 'skip this roll because you have blueprints' doesn't provide a numerical modifier, even though it's probably quite a favorable position to be prototyping from...

Getting -10 to your prototype roll because you're trying to prototype a TL4 'invention' while not having the very best possible tools of your own TL8+ available also seems wrong to me.
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Old 10-17-2020, 05:21 AM   #35
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Default Re: [Basic] Advantage of the Week: Gadgeteer

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Originally Posted by ericthered View Post
I usually end up using gadgeteer in monster hunters games, where it appears on the techie.
Pretty much where my monster hunter is. My excuses for him running an electronics repair shop in downtown Jacksonville FL when he has the skills to be a Silicon Valley billionaire are that (a) he doesn’t have the patience to acquire formal qualifications or run a large-scale business, (b) he doesn’t relate to other techies that well, what with all the instinctive technical shortcuts, and (c) he feels some kind of loyalty to the neighbourhood and the life. (His juvie record is sealed, but might not help.) In other words, although he may occasionally look like the party’s token sane person, he’s a bit of a mad scientist at heart. Well, mad engineer.

Which may work as a partial excuse for super-gadgeteers in many fictional settings not uplifting the ambient tech level. If the advantage is tied to a certain level of eccentricity — to a brain on permanent fast forward — they may have problems interacting with quotidian reality well enough.
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