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Old 11-13-2018, 01:49 PM   #21
Bruno
 
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Default Re: Survival (Urban).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ulzgoroth View Post
Or you might have Smuggler skill without having ever been in or near 'the business'. Physical-task and social-knowledge skills shouldn't be merged casually.
Smuggling is used to transport things without others finding you doing it. Smuggling things into or out of boarding schools, jails, or high security workplaces such as the Royal Canadian Mint is Smuggling if it involves hiding it in stuff rather than on or in your person. But there's no significant connection to rum runners or drug runners or tea smugglers when you use it like that.

I believe one "clever" thief stole mercury out of a lab by getting employed as a janitor and pouring some of it in the bottom of his bucket every week, which is otherwise full of dirty water, so nobody noticed the extra weight. He was eventually found out when the mercury formed enough of an amalgam with the metal in his bucket that it was fatally weakened and the bottom fell out.

Things stolen from workplaces are possibly more often carried out via Holdout, or just brazenly walked off with, but Smuggling certainly gets used.
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Old 11-13-2018, 02:17 PM   #22
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Default Re: Survival (Urban).

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Originally Posted by Joe View Post
Quite so. For consistency and simplicity, it's better to use the existing Crewman (Seamanship) rather than adding a new Professional Skill (Sailor), when they would cover pretty much the same territory.

(SNIP)
Okay. I'd go with the "Crewman" choice, too. I didn't have my book with me, when I posted that, and the professional skill just popped into my head.

I think the rest remains valid, though.
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Old 11-13-2018, 05:21 PM   #23
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Default Re: Survival (Urban).

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Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
You could also use Merchant with an optional specialization in illegal or smuggled goods.
Can you specialize in illegal goods, or do you have to specialize in a particular illegal good?


e.g., is Merchant (illicit wares) legal, or should it be Merchant (street drugs)?
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Old 11-13-2018, 06:00 PM   #24
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Default Re: Survival (Urban).

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Originally Posted by Not View Post
Can you specialize in illegal goods, or do you have to specialize in a particular illegal good?


e.g., is Merchant (illicit wares) legal, or should it be Merchant (street drugs)?
Optional specialization is at GM's discretion. So there's no generic answer.

Illicit wares wouldn't quite pass muster with me, I think.
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Old 11-13-2018, 06:02 PM   #25
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Default Re: Survival (Urban).

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Originally Posted by Not View Post
Can you specialize in illegal goods, or do you have to specialize in a particular illegal good?
The RAW say, "illicit goods at -3, unless you have Streetwise at 12+ or specialize in such goods."
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Old Yesterday, 05:51 PM   #26
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Default Re: Survival (Urban).

I feel like Urban Survival would entail not only sneaking onto ships but also getting into boxcars. I don't think those would be easy skill rolls but they are entailed as part of the Down-and-out skillset. I wouldn't say those would replace the stealth or running rolls to accomplish those boardings but the survival skill would tell you how to stay warm in transit, hide your gear, avoid security threats, know the best times to get on or off.
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Old Yesterday, 06:20 PM   #27
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Default Re: Survival (Urban).

I'd like to add that it's my opinion, on reflection, that Smuggling is the skill the owner of a ship, plane, piece of luggage, etc. uses to get things across a customs boundary without paying import duties, or something of that sort. It's not the skill that a crewman or passenger uses to hide things from a vessel's owner, captain, officers, etc. Normally smuggling is done with the cooperation of the captain or crew.
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Old Today, 08:30 AM   #28
Kromm
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Default Re: Survival (Urban).

Urban Survival is functionally "Survival (Manmade Terrain)." It works anywhere the terrain isn't natural Arctic, Desert, Island/Beach, Jungle, Mountain, Plains, Swampland, or Woodlands – or natural Bank, Deep Ocean Vent, Fresh-Water Lake, Open Ocean, Reef, River/Stream, Salt-Water Sea, or Tropical Lagoon – but is instead predominantly asphalt, brick, concrete, glass, metal, plastic, etc., with artificial sources of cooling, heating, illumination, ventilation, and water. That primarily means buildings, roadways, excavated tunnels, and large vehicles. Obviously, extreme, specialized environments would still call for specialties like Survival (Radioactive Wasteland) or Survival (Subterranean). But I'm comfortable saying that Urban Survival works aboard cruise ships and trains – and for that matter at airports, industrial parks, sewage plants, and nuclear missile bases – as well as in true villages, towns, and cities.

That said, I'd apply the customary -2 for unfamiliarity to anyone trying to use Urban Survival outside a true urban environment, unless they had points in a relevant skill. Someone with Seamanship wouldn't be at -2 on a ship; a person with Soldier wouldn't be at -2 on a military base. I'd require a full month of living that way before letting someone without a specialized skill claim familiarity and lose the -2. I chose a month because that's enough time to make a job roll. In this case, the job is "being an itinerant or stowaway."

As for the other aspects of stowing away: You would definitely need Stealth, and I think that's more appropriate than Smuggling when the goal is to hide yourself. If you wouldn't allow Smuggling instead of Stealth when a character wants to hide from a pirate attack on a ship – and I certainly wouldn't! – then you shouldn't allow it when the same person wants to hide from legitimate passengers and crew. If you have accomplices who are free to move about the vessel and function unchallenged, they can use Smuggling to hide you . . . if someone comes looking, I'd have it work just like Camouflage (p. B183): Should your Stealth roll fail, check Smuggling to see if you're covered anyway.

And as to the scope of Smuggling: It works identically to Holdout but has a different set of subjects. Holdout works only when hiding items on people (yourself or others); Smuggling works only when hiding items (or people) in baggage, vehicles, rooms, or buildings. Holdout is knowing the literal and figurative wrinkles of clothing and the human body; Smuggling is knowing the peculiarities of containers, from bags and boxes, through cars and shipping containers, to aircraft carriers and 23-story luxury hotels. Neither skill has any relation to legalities . . . if you blow a roll, you had better be good at Fast-Talk or Running, or at least Law. Of course, it makes sense to permit a lot of skills as complementary to these two; e.g., Sewing to modify clothing to assist Holdout, or Administration to modify documents to assist Smuggling.

Finally, you'll note that Streetwise hasn't been mentioned. It's a useful skill to be sure, but it's a social skill, not a survival or concealment skill. It can keep you alive by avoiding muggings or talking thugs out of beating you up. It can help you know where the police aren't likely to come looking for you. But it won't feed you or keep you warm, which is what Urban Survival is about, and it doesn't imply that you know anything about sneaking around with contraband, which is what Holdout and Smuggling cover. Streetwise requires people to interact with and "play" to be of any value; it's useless when there's nobody else around, whether that means an empty alleyway or a quiet cargo hold.
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