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Old 03-28-2014, 09:27 AM   #41
Icelander
 
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Default Re: Talents & Martial Arts

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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
That's why you8 don't do it at all rather than demanding a talent that lets you do it at a major pt discount. These duplicative weapon skills usually aren't worth the space they take up on a character sheet much less the pts you spent on them.
If you don't do it at all, what happens when the master of sword and lance has to use a staff?

In any reasonable world, he's still good with the staff, because he's trained with all knightly weapons and extremely good at footwork, keeping time, distance and proportion and that sort of thing.

If we don't raise any other weapon skills than his two primary ones, however, he has DX-5 with the Staff, because it doesn't default off Lance or Broadsword at all.
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Old 03-28-2014, 09:28 AM   #42
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Default Re: Talents & Martial Arts

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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
That's why you8 don't do it at all rather than demanding a talent that lets you do it at a major pt discount. These duplicative weapon skills usually aren't worth the space they take up on a character sheet much less the pts you spent on them.
But this limits several legitimate character concepts, as well as making it sub-optimal to emulate the skills and abilities of real historical warriors, who often were trained in 4 or more weapons skills.
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Old 03-28-2014, 09:29 AM   #43
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Default Re: Talents & Martial Arts

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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
That's why you8 don't do it at all rather than demanding a talent that lets you do it at a major pt discount. These duplicative weapon skills usually aren't worth the space they take up on a character sheet much less the pts you spent on them.
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But this limits several legitimate character concepts, as well as making it sub-optimal to emulate the skills and abilities of real historical warriors, who often were trained in 4 or more weapons skills.
Evidently, Fred dislikes Talents enough so that it's better to forgo actually modeling certain character concepts or historical characters than it is to allow such a 'whiny' trait as a Talent that reflects a character concept.
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Old 03-28-2014, 09:50 AM   #44
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Evidently, Fred dislikes Talents enough so that it's better to forgo actually modeling certain character concepts or historical characters than it is to allow such a 'whiny' trait as a Talent that reflects a character concept.
Gee, thanks for putting your words in my mouth. I'd never have been able to do it without you.

I do not dislike talents so much as I believe they don't work very well regardless of how others think they either should or do work. I try and guide people to avoid rules I believe do not work well.
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Old 03-28-2014, 09:58 AM   #45
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I do not dislike talents so much as I believe they don't work very well regardless of how others think they either should or do work. I try and guide people to avoid rules I believe do not work well.
What do you perceive as the problem with Talents?

Since you think that raising multiple weapon skills is not worth the points it costs; I can hardly imagine that you think that a cheaper alternative exists is a problem in itself.

What then? What are the flaws with modelling such a character with a Talent for combat skills?
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Old 03-28-2014, 10:16 AM   #46
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What do you perceive as the problem with Talents?
High levels of talent don't scale well against low levels. If you've got a Talent that is pts efficient at 4 levels it may not be pts efficient at 1 or 2 levels. It certainty won't be as efficient. Thus the norm seems to be always to buy the
Talent at maximum ;levels.

I believe this distorts character creation and given the choice of seeing DX16 v. DX12+ Talent 4 I'd take the DX-monster just for the greater simplicity.

Talents also tend to produce clusters of all the Skills in the Talent at equally high levels whether that actually fits the character concept or not. Should all Outdoorsmen be as good at Fishing as they are at Survival? For practical catching of things to eat I would have the character use Survival anyway. Angling is a peculiar Hobby Skill.

There's the general issue of total complexity of the game too. I haven't actually seen the problem of Gurps being too simplistic in the way it handles this sort of thing. Talents are just 0one more thing I would have to explain to new players "No, you probably don't want to get into Gurps at this level of complexity. Your character isn't badly designed f he doesn't have a talent.".

So Talents appear generally counterproductive to me.
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Old 03-28-2014, 10:37 AM   #47
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Default Re: Talents & Martial Arts

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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
High levels of talent don't scale well against low levels. If you've got a Talent that is pts efficient at 4 levels it may not be pts efficient at 1 or 2 levels. It certainty won't be as efficient. Thus the norm seems to be always to buy the
Talent at maximum ;levels.
That has not been my experience. I've seen about equal numbers of Talent levels from 1-4, all depending on how significant natural talent in that field was to the character concept.

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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
I believe this distorts character creation and given the choice of seeing DX16 v. DX12+ Talent 4 I'd take the DX-monster just for the greater simplicity.
Whereas I greatly favour a device which can produce two character with similar primary capabilities, but very different characterisation and back that up with mechanics as they relate to secondary and tertiary capabilities.

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Talents also tend to produce clusters of all the Skills in the Talent at equally high levels whether that actually fits the character concept or not. Should all Outdoorsmen be as good at Fishing as they are at Survival? For practical catching of things to eat I would have the character use Survival anyway. Angling is a peculiar Hobby Skill.
If the character isn't equally good at all the skills included in a given Talent, he probably should take lower level of that Talent and a level of two of a specific Talent that includes only those skills he's meant to excel at.

Don't take a Talent that actually doesn't entirely fit the concept. The listed Talents are only examples and it's assumed that modelling many characters will require taking a Talent for the specific niche they excel at.

Other than that, I agree that many outdoorsmen won't have Fishing skill. In which case they'll have Survival at 4-6 levels higher than Fishing, which sounds fine to me.

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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
There's the general issue of total complexity of the game too. I haven't actually seen the problem of Gurps being too simplistic in the way it handles this sort of thing. Talents are just 0one more thing I would have to explain to new players "No, you probably don't want to get into Gurps at this level of complexity. Your character isn't badly designed f he doesn't have a talent.".
If a character spends 100+ points on a capability worth around 50, maybe it is badly designed. That's why I generally ask players for concepts, not characters, and then assist them in designing such concepts as accurately and efficiently as possible, using the full GURPS rules.

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So Talents appear generally counterproductive to me.
Only if the goal is simplicity at the cost of the ability to accurately model any desired character. Which is not why I play GURPS.
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Old 03-28-2014, 11:21 AM   #48
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Default Re: Talents & Martial Arts

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High levels of talent don't scale well against low levels.
Not my experience. My experience is that talents are either terrible (and you don't buy them at all) or overpowered (and you buy them at 4), but that's not a function of scaling.

My big problems with talents are:
  • Character creation only.
  • The reaction bonus is a hideous abomination. If I want a reaction bonus with a specific group, that's what Reputation is for.
  • The training time modifier ranges from irrelevant to broken depending on how big a role training time plays in your game. Cleaner to leave it off, you already learn a given skill level faster because, well, you have a bonus.
  • The pricing is extremely dubious -- 5 point talents are usually overpowered, 15 point talents are usually terrible unless they apply to skills under more than one stat and sometimes even then, 10 point talents are highly variable.
My preference would be a generic '+1 to X different skills' ability, with cost depending on number of skills and whether the skills are under different stats.
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Old 03-28-2014, 01:49 PM   #49
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Default Re: Talents & Martial Arts

I greatly prefer Talents alternate benefits from the Power Ups: Talents supplement to the reactions bonuses.

Pricing isn't so bad if you have stat caps for genres. Then even the dreaded 15 point talents for mental skills makes sense. (I simply can't approach the disadvantage limit for any character below 150 points total. So no pooh-poohing IQ!.)
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Old 03-28-2014, 04:38 PM   #50
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Default Re: Talents & Martial Arts

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Originally Posted by Peter V. Dell'Orto View Post
You've got a point there. Still, a talent for all combat skills would run at most 15 points (since DX is 20), so you wouldn't want any single style to cost more than 10 or it's really too expensive for what you get.

You can also limit it to the physical skills in a style, to avoid Artist (Cartooning) getting covered. Heh.
But that might not be fair to The Mechanicsburg Mime Brigade! (And if they don't exist, I'll have to suggest it to the Phoglios.). :)
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