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Old 11-28-2013, 08:10 PM   #41
Peter Knutsen
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Default Re: CIA Special Activities Division PMO Skill Set

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Originally Posted by TheOneRonin View Post
The 1 point is to remove any unfamiliarity penalties with those weapons. This guy is clearly built to default to all of those weapons from Guns (Rifle).
Instead of spending 1 CP each on half a dozen different firearms, which already default from Rifle, it ought to be possible to buy a single 1 CP Perk that grants the character familiarity with a large set of firearms.

I imagine such a Perk already exists. If not, I'll design one for you:
Cost 1 CP, Name: Wide Weapon Familiarity (levelled), for each level you may write a list of IQ+5 firearms that you are Familiar with, plus 5 more if you have Eidetic Memory or 10 more if you have Photographic Memory.

It makes perfect sense for US Army Special Forces to cross-train with a wide range of weapons, including weapons likely to be used by the enemy (especially the AK-47 assault rifle).

Also I agree that the CP in Diplomay and Tactics and Escape can be halved. Maybe the CP in Judo and Karate too (2 CP each, plus a few 1 CP Techniques or a 1 CP Perk or two), and the 4 CP Shortsword sounds absurd. I doubt they spend that much time training with batons.

And in some cases, you may benefit from using the Dabbler Perk. It's from one of the GURPS Power-Ups volumes, and boils down to splitting a single CP up into as many as 8 instances of 1/8 CP. Dabbler makes perfect sense for special ops soldiers (and cohesive adventurer teams) who cross-train a lot. Although critical skills still ought to be learned to at least the 1 CP level.
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Old 11-28-2013, 08:13 PM   #42
Peter Knutsen
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Default Re: CIA Special Activities Division PMO Skill Set

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Originally Posted by jmurrell View Post
You might want to see how your template matches up with Kromms skill guidelines here. So it likes primary skills at 14-15, maybe a 16 in a specialty and important but secondary skills at 12-13 is the ballpark you should be in.
Maybe raise all those values by +1 because, hey, you know, they do special ops stuff for a living...
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Old 11-28-2013, 08:18 PM   #43
TheOneRonin
 
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Default Re: CIA Special Activities Division PMO Skill Set

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Yes and no. On one hand, yes, there will be an accumulation of skills and an improvement in competency over time. I think that's the case with just about any professional skill set, whether soldier, accountant, or cook.
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I disagree very strongly. GURPS is silly with its "1 CP per 800 hours of work"-concept. Fast food cooks and truck drivers quickly develop their skill to a point where they're no longer challenged by the work they do, and so the ratio quickly becomes 1 CP per 2000 hours, and eventually even 1 CP per 10k hours.
For what it's worth, my comment above was more about the generalities of working in a profession over time, and less about CP point accumulation. And even when you hit the point where your routine work no longer "challenges" you, there is still room for improvement and development. In my experience, lots of people in those "unskilled laborer" professions often get VERY GOOD at either finding easier ways to do their work, or at finding innovative ways to get out of doing their work. Neither of those would necessarily equate to more CP in GURPS terms, but would certainly qualify for what I said in my previous post.
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Old 11-28-2013, 08:50 PM   #44
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Default Re: CIA Special Activities Division PMO Skill Set

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Knutsen View Post
Instead of spending 1 CP each on half a dozen different firearms, which already default from Rifle, it ought to be possible to buy a single 1 CP Perk that grants the character familiarity with a large set of firearms.

I imagine such a Perk already exists. If not, I'll design one for you:
Cost 1 CP, Name: Wide Weapon Familiarity (levelled), for each level you may write a list of IQ+5 firearms that you are Familiar with, plus 5 more if you have Eidetic Memory or 10 more if you have Photographic Memory.
I think that it should be a fixed number or something depending on their skills.

My first suggestion would be to double the preexisting familiarities from any firearms skills.

My second suggestion would be to analyze the time used in obtaining a familiarity. I think that it's about 8 hours of practice, which is 25 firearms assuming 200 hours to a CP.

I just really don't like bringing in Eidetic Memory and friends into it.

Quote:
And in some cases, you may benefit from using the Dabbler Perk. It's from one of the GURPS Power-Ups volumes, and boils down to splitting a single CP up into as many as 8 instances of 1/8 CP. Dabbler makes perfect sense for special ops soldiers (and cohesive adventurer teams) who cross-train a lot. Although critical skills still ought to be learned to at least the 1 CP level.
Yes. I'm using the Dabbler perk for a spy who was mainly a courier because she could get into places that other people couldn't (through medical conventions and such). Putting one point per skill makes her skills too high. Dabbler does it just right. She would have been trained to use "spy" skills, but hasn't had much chance to use them and get good at them.
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Old 11-28-2013, 10:02 PM   #45
Peter Knutsen
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Default Re: CIA Special Activities Division PMO Skill Set

I wrote a very elaborate version of the Weapons Cross-Training Perk. Clearly you can simplify it for the world you're building, if you want to.

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Yes. I'm using the Dabbler perk for a spy who was mainly a courier because she could get into places that other people couldn't (through medical conventions and such). Putting one point per skill makes her skills too high. Dabbler does it just right. She would have been trained to use "spy" skills, but hasn't had much chance to use them and get good at them.
I'm thinking, most special ops units should probably have their own Dabbler Perk, a single CP (or sometimes two) usually split 4 or 8 ways (sometimes 2), into skills that are very tertiary but are still ascribed value to by the units. Escape, Photography, perhaps even Driving. First Aid should be included in the Dabbler Perk for anyone who doesn't have a full CP in it, except maybe SWAT teams and hostage rescuers. Maybe.
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Old 11-29-2013, 05:09 AM   #46
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Default Re: CIA Special Activities Division PMO Skill Set

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Originally Posted by Peter Knutsen View Post
Maybe raise all those values by +1 because, hey, you know, they do special ops stuff for a living...
Yes. That's the skill levels for people who do stuff for a living. Skill 12 is often where professional templates begin.

You (plural you) are turning these people into supermen. We're not building Batman.
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Old 11-29-2013, 08:46 AM   #47
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Default Re: CIA Special Activities Division PMO Skill Set

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Yes. That's the skill levels for people who do stuff for a living. Skill 12 is often where professional templates begin.

You (plural you) are turning these people into supermen. We're not building Batman.

One of the reasons why I brought this to the boards is because I'm not a long time GURPS veteran. And while I've played in a handful of games, I'm still learning how to equate the designer's intent with my understanding of real world capabilities.

One of the examples I brought to the boards (this thread) a couple of years ago ended up coming out with the idea that your Delta Force Assaulters probably HAVE to have a Guns (Rifle) skill of 21 or better to be able to do a core part of their job. Douglas Cole even commented on it and agreed that 21 is right.

And many of the people on these forums would flip out if I showed up at their table with a veteran Delta Force character that had 21 in Guns (Rifle) and cry "That's not at all plausible! This isn't a cinematic game!"

I know the SF guys aren't supermen. I know they don't have every skill in the book at absurd levels. But I think sometimes we miss the influence that game mechanics actually have on some of the outcomes.

It's all fine and dandy to say "These guys wouldn't have a skill of higher than 15 because that's just not realistic." But then when that skill 15 guy regularly fails at using the skill under stressful situations that he is supposed to be trained for, then no, 15 DOES NOT represent the skill level that guy should have.

So rather than getting tied up in what makes a person "superman" or "batman", how about we take a look at what skills levels are needed for these special forces types to be able to succeed at acceptable rates when under combat/adventuring levels of stress. Because if they can't, then those guys will fail their missions every time.

And for what it's worth, at least some of the GURPS developers agree with me. Just take a look a the templates in SpecOps and SEALs in Vietnam.

Last edited by TheOneRonin; 12-01-2013 at 08:29 AM. Reason: Fixed skill rating to match up with original post
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Old 11-29-2013, 09:06 AM   #48
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Default Re: CIA Special Activities Division PMO Skill Set

Ultimately this is a question for the Cult of Stat Normalization, of course. Just remember that most of the things we know about CIA agents, we know because the CIA wants us to know them. They have an active interest in promoting certain views about their agents, and lying and spreading misinformation is part of their job description.

For instance, the jobs we get to hear about are likely to be the successes. The botches, where one of their negotiators said something wrong and was blown up - those we don't hear about. If you only hear about the successes of a group (and carefully chosen successes for that matter) - you will likely get an inflated picture.

But this isn't really my thread, nor is it my campaign.
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Old 11-30-2013, 07:38 AM   #49
TheOneRonin
 
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Default Re: CIA Special Activities Division PMO Skill Set

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Ultimately this is a question for the Cult of Stat Normalization, of course. Just remember that most of the things we know about CIA agents, we know because the CIA wants us to know them. They have an active interest in promoting certain views about their agents, and lying and spreading misinformation is part of their job description.

For instance, the jobs we get to hear about are likely to be the successes. The botches, where one of their negotiators said something wrong and was blown up - those we don't hear about. If you only hear about the successes of a group (and carefully chosen successes for that matter) - you will likely get an inflated picture.

But this isn't really my thread, nor is it my campaign.

So lets take this approach.

Since there is obviously a lot we don't know, I'm just going to build a campaign based on what we DO know.

I will take the books I've read, the stories I've heard, and the data that is out there at FACE VALUE.

Even if it isn't a 100% accurate depiction of what these guys can do in real life, it's what I want the PCs to be capable of.

So rather than trying to refute sources and claim what's out there as "just propaganda", lets figure out how to stat these guys as if they were actually "superman" or "batman" or whatever the hell flavor of hyperbole you all want to use.

This is, after all, a game.
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Old 11-30-2013, 11:28 AM   #50
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Default Re: CIA Special Activities Division PMO Skill Set

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So lets take this approach.

Since there is obviously a lot we don't know, I'm just going to build a campaign based on what we DO know.

I will take the books I've read, the stories I've heard, and the data that is out there at FACE VALUE.

Even if it isn't a 100% accurate depiction of what these guys can do in real life, it's what I want the PCs to be capable of.

So rather than trying to refute sources and claim what's out there as "just propaganda", lets figure out how to stat these guys as if they were actually "superman" or "batman" or whatever the hell flavor of hyperbole you all want to use.

This is, after all, a game.
Here's something that might help:

Rather than "one template to rule them all", let the PCs "stack" templates. That is, if a SAD/PMO PC is a former SF Weapons Sgt, let them first take that template before adding the SAD/PMO template.

GM's call as to how to handle redundant skills; plausibly, a person who has more points in a skill from template A than are included in template B would be someone for whom the training assumed for template B may not add to their skill; it would server as refresher instead. Alternatively, that person might serve as an assistant to the instructor for that skill and gain skill points in Teaching; again, GM's call.
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