Steve Jackson Games - Site Navigation
Home General Info Follow Us Search Illuminator Store Forums What's New Other Games Ogre GURPS Munchkin Our Games: Home

Go Back   Steve Jackson Games Forums > Roleplaying > GURPS

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 11-23-2018, 03:22 PM   #1
onetrikpony
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Default Power Limitations with no point value

Is it correct or fair for a GM to apply a limitation to a power when it doesn't return any point savings?

For example;
"Accessibility; Not During Full Moon" -10% applied to a trait or power that has a base cost < 10CP.

The rounding rule means that the limitation, which can be tactically significant to the character, and may be necessary to the setting, may cost the character that Perk, Easy skill or Technique.
onetrikpony is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2018, 05:17 PM   #2
Kelly Pedersen
 
Kelly Pedersen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Saskatoon, SK, Canada
Default Re: Power Limitations with no point value

Quote:
Originally Posted by onetrikpony View Post
Is it correct or fair for a GM to apply a limitation to a power when it doesn't return any point savings?
Absolutely, yes. The point of power modifiers is to unify the abilities in the power, to make them all behave the same way. That unity should take priority over saving a point or two, I feel.

And, of course, the ability might be built with more limitations than just the power modifier, and that extra -10% (or whatever, not all power modifiers are confined to that value) could make the difference between saving a point or not.

I suppose, if a player had a bunch of abilities that were all below the threshold where the power modifier was saving them any points, I'd consider giving out an extra point or two to that character, to compensate a little. That would be no more than 1 point per two or three abilities, mind.
Kelly Pedersen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2018, 05:36 PM   #3
Anaraxes
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Default Re: Power Limitations with no point value

Certainly. The primary purpose of Limitations (and Enhancements) is to model the character concept with some game-mechanical effects to help the immersion. If an ability or an entire power isn't supposed to work during the full moon, then it doesn't. It wouldn't make sense for a few of the abilities of that power to keep on working while others stop.
Anaraxes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2018, 07:54 PM   #4
Bicorn
 
Bicorn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Default Re: Power Limitations with no point value

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelly Pedersen View Post
And, of course, the ability might be built with more limitations than just the power modifier, and that extra -10% (or whatever, not all power modifiers are confined to that value) could make the difference between saving a point or not.
I sometimes feel Power Modifier shouldn't even be a limitation by itself; vulnerability to specific countermeasures and such is balanced out by gaining bonuses from Talent.
Bicorn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2018, 08:20 PM   #5
Plane
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Default Re: Power Limitations with no point value

Gaining bonuses from talent isn't worth anything unless you buy a talent, it's arguably built into the cost of a talent. The freedom to buy certain advantages sounds more like unusual background.

Not all powers suffer countermeasures, only those which specify that like psychic/magic. Stuff like chi or biological or cosmic doesn't have countermeasures, there's no neutralize for them since the cost doesn't reflect that.
Plane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2018, 08:29 PM   #6
Bicorn
 
Bicorn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Default Re: Power Limitations with no point value

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plane View Post
Gaining bonuses from talent isn't worth anything unless you buy a talent, it's arguably built into the cost of a talent.
True, but the countermeasures thing doesn't really matter either unless the GM intends to use opponents that have such abilities.
Bicorn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2018, 08:36 PM   #7
David Johnston2
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Default Re: Power Limitations with no point value

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bicorn View Post
True, but the countermeasures thing doesn't really matter either unless the GM intends to use opponents that have such abilities.
Which is why 0% Power Modifiers are a thing. Not every Power Modifier has counter measures.
David Johnston2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2018, 10:57 PM   #8
whswhs
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Default Re: Power Limitations with no point value

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bicorn View Post
True, but the countermeasures thing doesn't really matter either unless the GM intends to use opponents that have such abilities.
A limitation that doesn't limit is not worth any points. If there is no such thing as anti-psi technology, the GM should reduce the Psionic modifier from -10% to -5%. On the other hand, if anti-psi technology is just rare, it might be better to have psis take some points in Unusual Background.

But that's a matter of the nuances of how to use power modifiers. It's not invalidating the basic concept.

I like power modifiers as a source of flavor. Giving players a cost break for taking them makes it likely that such flavor will be more prevalent. A while back, for Pyramid, I wrote up a setting where there were over a dozen different power modifiers for supers of different types—including one that came to 0%, designed to set super normals apart from mundanes—and without the Super modifier being available at all. . . .
__________________
Bill Stoddard

A human being should know how to live fast, die young, and leave a beautiful corpse. Specialization is for insects.
whswhs is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2018, 06:56 AM   #9
AlexanderHowl
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Default Re: Power Limitations with no point value

0% power modifiers can be fun. For example, you could have a 0% power modifier with the following modifiers: Backlash, Ecstasy, Resisted by HT, -50%; Cosmic, +50%. While it would not give any points back, it offers a significant bonus and penalty, and would result in interesting RP opportunities (the reason to have Ecstasy rather than Agony would be to prevent munchkins from using High Pain Threshold to reduce the severity of the Backlash).
AlexanderHowl is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2018, 08:34 AM   #10
Anaraxes
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Default Re: Power Limitations with no point value

Power Modifiers are a convenient way to express consistent traits so that all abilities of a power have a similar feel from their common pros and cons (Enhancments and Limitations). They don't have to come out to -10% -- Powers just does it that way so they don't have to recalculate the value of all those example abilities for each different power.

And there's nothing "built in" to a Power Modifier. If you want it to come out to 0%, that's easily arranged. If a GM somehow isn't going to field opposition that can effectively oppose the characters' abilities -- well, it's your game, so just leave out the countermeasures Limitation and go mow down the hapless mooks. Powers don't automatically come with countermeasures. It's just generally a more interesting game that way.

The classic counterexample is the mage in wainscot fantasy. None of those mundanes know about or believe in magic, so they don't have magical defenses. But in that sort of work, they're also not the real opposition -- and the real opponents generally are clued in, and can and do put up pentgrams and scrywalls and anti-teleport fields. In that sort of game, you'd still include a countermeasures Limitation not because every has it (not everyone in the real world wears ballistic vests with trauma plates, either), but because the significant opposition will be prepared.

To truly lack countermeasures, the GM has a trickier balancing act. You could, for example, go for a technology-vs-magic game, where none of the technologists have magical defenses -- nor do any of those medieval wizards have the savvy to really defend themselves against modern technology. But then you're going to have to be careful about exactly which sorts of magic and tech you allow and how powerful they can be. You can't just mind control all the techy leaders, or send an ICBM to the Dark Lord's tower, and have much of a contest.
Anaraxes is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
limitations, point discount, rounding

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Fnords are Off
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:29 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.