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Old 01-07-2013, 12:06 AM   #10
Peter Knutsen
Banned
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Europe
Default Re: High GM burden - Time saving tricks?

Based on the OP's campaign needs, he could try to figure out what's important to know about minor NPCs.

I like knowing how smart and perceptive they are (in GURPS that's IQ and PR), while Will itself strikes me as much less important. I also like to know if they have any moral foibles that the PCs can discover and exploit, e.g. something to do with sex (the Lecherous disad, or something else) or recreational drugs (again, GURPS has a variety of possibilities, and more possibilities that aren't well-covered in its disad system).

Combat with peacefully encountered NPCs is very unlikely, so it could make sense to assign them a single Fight rating. Using GURPS' system of Poor, Good, Fine, Very Fine, assigning ratings based on realism and in-world role, it could be something like this:

Poor
An old or physically feeble civilian
ST 8 (look up Swing/THrust damage, and include it for easy reference)
combat skill at defalt from DX 9 (again, look up the default from 9)

Normal
A normal civilian with no combat training or at best limited milita training, or a former warrior who has become aged and weak.
ST 10
combat skill as if it defaults from DX 11 (not saying that he has DX 11, just that defaulting from 10 gives a too low value, and putting 1 CP into it based on DX 10 gives a too high value. Also, this is RAW-legal because he can just use the Dabbler Perk.)

Fine
A trained warrior or soldier, nothing special, just your average Orc, Viking or city guard.
ST 12
Combat skill based on 2 CP and DX 11 (and he probably has DX 11)
(For a warrior retired due to a disabling or crippling injury, keep ST and DX, lower skill investment to 1 CP, and add a disad such as Chronic Pain, Lame or Wounded.)

Very Fine
This is an elite warrior, usually one who has a name and at least local fame, although of course very elite NPCs, such as Kings or ArchDruids, may be guarded by several dozen such speciments without these needing individual names.
ST 14
Combat skill based on 8 CP and DX 12

It might be useful to add slightly more detail, e.g. include both a Melee Weapon and a Shield skill, maybe give the VF dude (or dudette) 1 CP in Brawling and also give 1 CP in some highly useful Technique (that can also represent cultural flavour). But either way, pre-calculate as much as possible, so that you minimize the during-the-session workload.
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