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Old 01-24-2023, 09:21 PM   #1
Yenaldlooshi
 
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Default Complimentary Skill Rolls for Influence

In reading Exploits pages 6 and 10, I am wondering if it would be wrong to allow a player with many of the skills for influence rolls (a bard) to make additional skill checks to try to add to the success of a master skill. Example; rolls using Diplomacy with a roll for Fast-Talk and Sex Appeal as complimentary skill rolls per Exploits page 6.

Though the text states; "This usually means rolls against two different skills, attempted by two different delvers...", the word "usually" gives flexibility for this and since the skills seem combinable in many cases. ie. Using fast-talking with sex appeal at the diplomatic bargaining table should be a thing so I am thinking of allowing it.

Can someone make a good case not too? Should I limit it to only one complimentary skill roll per attempt? (I just noticed how busking works on page 14 so I think I will run with just one main roll with as many complimentary skill rolls as appropriate to the scenario)

I don't see this really encouraged nor discouraged by the rules (unless I am missing something).

What say you all?

Last edited by Yenaldlooshi; 01-24-2023 at 09:33 PM.
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Old 01-24-2023, 10:10 PM   #2
sjmdw45
 
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Default Re: Complimentary Skill Rolls for Influence

It seems like a reasonable approach. After all, per Exploits page 6, "The GM is free to allow the individual performing the task to attempt both skill rolls where that makes sense, but this has nothing to do with teamwork".

Obviously there's a limit to what's physically possible to combine but I don't think you necessarily need to define that limit. If someone wants to seal a deal (Merchant) with poetry (praises for their own product, written for the occasion) AND sex appeal (implied or explicit offers to someone who is open to that temptation) AND uh, acting and disguise (pretending to be wealthier and more prestigious than they really are), more power to them. I'd pile on more complementary skills but I honestly can't think of anything relevant. Fast talk and diplomacy seem redundant with sex appeal.

Last edited by sjmdw45; 01-24-2023 at 10:15 PM.
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Old 01-25-2023, 02:13 AM   #3
tbone
 
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Default Re: Complimentary Skill Rolls for Influence

I only have the DFRPG description of complementary rolls on me right now; it doesn't explicitly say "only one complementary skill roll per master skill roll", but the text does strongly read that way.

That makes sense for simplicity. On the other hand, a player making (say) a Survival roll to forage for food might see a barrel of added skills as helpful: Naturalist to identify the good plants; Tracking to pick up the trail of prey; Camouflage, Stealth, Disguise (Animal), and Mimicry (Animal Sounds or Bird Calls) to get close to the prey; a missile or thrown weapon skill to bring down the prey; possibly Climbing, Swimming, and/or Hiking if the GM rules that these would help get at good foraging locations; etc.

Some players may be disappointed to spend a lot on all those skills, just to hear "sorry, pick one as the complement". But rolling against all of those will usually be a bore.

My advice for a GM unsure which way to go:

1) Stick with "just one complementary skill" when fast play is a goal and the players are cool with the idea.

2) When a player really feels multiple skills should help, go ahead and allow multiple complementary rolls, but at a cumulative -1 after the first. Going beyond a small number of complements quickly becomes a real "pushing your luck" situation, best avoided.
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Old 01-25-2023, 04:40 AM   #4
Yenaldlooshi
 
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Default Re: Complimentary Skill Rolls for Influence

I think the cumulative -1 in your second point would be a default "no, you can't" since a typical, non-critical success on a complimentary skill roll itself only leads to an additional +1 margin of success and a critical only a +2, based on Exploits page 6.

ie. doing the extra roll would always be more harmful than helpful unless a critical success was almost guarantied.
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Old 01-25-2023, 06:24 AM   #5
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Default Re: Complimentary Skill Rolls for Influence

Sorry to be unclear. I mean a cumulative -1 on each additional complementary roll, not the master roll.

So if you're uncertain about that Survival roll to forage for food and you want to boost your chances, and you think you might want to use your Tracking-16, Stealth-14, Bow-14, Camouflage-11, etc., you could roll against as many as you like - but at -1 for the second, -2 for the third, etc.

What order to roll them in becomes an interesting question. For example, you might want to roll that Camouflage-11 first, since it can barely absorb a penalty. Maybe then Stealth and Bow, at -1 and -2, respectively; then Tracking, as it can probably absorb a -3 penalty...

And you could keep going from there with more complementary rolls, but penalties of -4 and upward likely make it a bad idea. Maybe. It depends on the level of the skills, and how badly you need yet another bonus to the Survival roll, no matter how unlikely...
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Old 01-26-2023, 05:47 AM   #6
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Default Re: Complimentary Skill Rolls for Influence

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbone View Post
Sorry to be unclear. I mean a cumulative -1 on each additional complementary roll, not the master roll.

So if you're uncertain about that Survival roll to forage for food and you want to boost your chances, and you think you might want to use your Tracking-16, Stealth-14, Bow-14, Camouflage-11, etc., you could roll against as many as you like - but at -1 for the second, -2 for the third, etc.

What order to roll them in becomes an interesting question. For example, you might want to roll that Camouflage-11 first, since it can barely absorb a penalty. Maybe then Stealth and Bow, at -1 and -2, respectively; then Tracking, as it can probably absorb a -3 penalty...

And you could keep going from there with more complementary rolls, but penalties of -4 and upward likely make it a bad idea. Maybe. It depends on the level of the skills, and how badly you need yet another bonus to the Survival roll, no matter how unlikely...
I think in order to avoid overly bogging down the game with two many extra rolls I'd allow as many complementary skills as you want but STOP after a failure. So that would make order especially important

Lets say you have those abilities with Survival (Woods)-13, Tracking-16, Stealth-14, Bow-14, Camouflage-11. Foraging for food as you indicate,
would be Survival (Woods)-13 with complementary skills in the following order: Bow-14(-1), Stealth-14(-2), Tracking-16(-3), and Camouflage-11(-4).

I really don't expect to get a bonus for Camouflage often but don't want to break the chain. Crit success anywhere in the chain means everything succeeds, crit failure means all fail. NOTE: Only a crit fail with main skill is crit fail overall. Only crit success with main skill means crit fail overall.

So I just rolled all as indicated and everything passed. Hence, I get bonuses to the main roll. Survival (Woods)-13 becomes 13+4 for effective skill Survival (Woods)-17!
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Old 01-26-2023, 11:29 AM   #7
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Default Re: Complimentary Skill Rolls for Influence

Quote:
Originally Posted by restlessgriffin View Post
I think in order to avoid overly bogging down the game with two many extra rolls I'd allow as many complementary skills as you want but STOP after a failure.
Whether rolls are succeeding or not, the growing penalty puts a brake on the player, so I wouldn't worry much about too many rolls. If the PC *needs* that success on the main roll, and the player's really willing to push the complementary rolls to get there, and everyone's having fun egging him on, let the rolling go on...

All an edge case, anyway; players aren't often clamoring to use a half dozen complementary skills.

But if too much complementary rolling does come up and slow down play, yeah, it's time to set a limit. "Stop after a failure" sounds like a good option.
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Old 01-27-2023, 09:06 PM   #8
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Default Re: Complimentary Skill Rolls for Influence

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbone View Post
So if you're uncertain about that Survival roll to forage for food and you want to boost your chances, and you think you might want to use your Tracking-16, Stealth-14, Bow-14, Camouflage-11, etc., you could roll against as many as you like - but at -1 for the second, -2 for the third, etc.
A better and simpler choice is to cumulatively penalize all Complimentary Rolls equally, based on -1 per Skill after the first Complimentary Skill.

So if you want to use Tracking, Stealth, Bow, and Camouflage to assist a Survival roll, it's a -3 roll to Tracking, Stealth, Bow, and Camouflage.

Nice, simple, no "escalation" of risk, and it's an "all in" type thing.


For me, I always say 'No' to "Can I use more than one of my skills as a Complimentary Skill?", unless it's a Long Task, but even then, it's only 1 Complimentary Skill per skill roll the PC is making. Because if you don't, you will start getting the Bard* making an obscene number of Complimentary rolls to drive the primary skill into the heavens, which, let's face it, they usually don't need to do anyway as they generally socially outgun the opposition.

* Or Scout who feeds an army off of one Survival check per day due to rolling 6+ Complimentary Skills. Or anyone else with a non-combat skill check.
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Old 01-28-2023, 12:13 AM   #9
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Default Re: Complimentary Skill Rolls for Influence

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Originally Posted by mburr0003 View Post
Nice, simple, no "escalation" of risk, and it's an "all in" type thing.
But I like the escalation part. : )

Otherwise, no argument with your suggestion; it's another valid way to do things. Though I don't know about "simpler": in the example of using Tracking, Stealth, Bow, and Camouflage to assist a Survival roll, whatever the penalties set on those complementary rolls, they still end up getting rolled, which is the time-consuming part.

Then again, the penalties overall are harsher than what I suggested, so that alone should lead to players placing fewer skills on the to-roll list.

It's all good. More options for the GM tool-box. The only added advice on the topic I'd offer new GMs is this: Whatever the number of complementary skills you allow, have the player state (in few words) why that skill is relevant, i.e., how it's helping. Unless time is really pressing, that sort of player description is the fun stuff.
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