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Old 07-29-2021, 08:39 AM   #31
bocephus
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Default Re: Limiting skill points

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Originally Posted by johndallman View Post
Intensive training is from p. B293. An hour of it counts as two hours of normal training. Doing intensive training continuously for months or years at a time is not really plausible for human beings.
It is, it's just very rare because:
Humans have to pay to exist beyond training
Humans require social interaction/fun
Humans have a broad range of needs to be healthy (physical, emotional and intellectual)

In game terms its also horribly unrewarding for a PC, but 100% typical of an NPC. For a PC to do this would be silly unless everyone around them so valued this skill/skill set that they were willing to deal with all the other crap to have this available. (IMO this approaches a henchman more than a PC but I suppose its possible to be a PC).

A topical example is Olympic competitors. It is increasing rare to see a top world competitor that is a family person, with an unrelated hobby/education and unrelated job.

Simone Biles is a great example. She has done amazing things with her body by training intensely and more intelligently than anyone before her. However, you see it comes with a price. She's had an emotional breakdown, she herself says she doesnt have normal relationships. She has said in interviews that her entire life revolves around gymnastics.



Now to the original poster, the question has been posed a couple times and not really answered by the original poster.
Is it really necessary to have a "rule" to cover this in play?

It seems to me that you're just trying to resolve the skills issue with regard to an immortal having unlimited skills. This is best handled by giving them some kind of wild card for skills that has to do with time and exposure. If this character has been walking among the normal people then its feasible they could have picked up a few skills.

I assume you're modeling a vampire or something, you can always just say they roll default or a flat skill of 12 for anything you want to say they know.

If your dead set on modeling it instead of just declaring it by GM fiat you have some other considerations.

1) How old is the creature
2) How much actual intellectual interaction does it have with humans
3) How interested is it in learning for the sake of learning, as opposed to learning to be better just at the things it needs.
4) What is its IQ/Will
5) What possible restrictions on this creature might your world setting impose?

You could model this as:

Learned Skills not seen used for more than 100 years (default)
Learned Skills used in the past 100 years 1pt level
Learned Skills used in the past 50 years OR skills that were once known at a Master level but not used in more than a 100years 2pt level

Or you just assign values as you encounter the need to have a value.

Dracula isn't usually portrayed as a high skill character, He has a couple master skills like maybe Savoir-Faire and fast talk or diplomacy, perhaps Entrallment for dealing with humans, but he's usually hopelessly stuck in a outmoded lifestyle.
He might have/had sword skill but does he use it today? Has he lost some of that skill for lack of using it? Has he replaced it with something modern? Does he care enough to bother?

Even and ancient creature wouldn't have much of a leg up on any modern tech. In the past 50 years we have gone from Black and white broadcast TV to streaming video on handheld devices. Your entity has the same potential exposure *I* do to these technologies. Accounting has become about taxes and laws that once applied (ownership of Dracula's castle as example) may not actually be recognized any more, whats a vampire to do.

In a med fan setting where its the 2000yr old elves, you have a whole different issue. How do you NOT learn all manner of stuff in that time? Perhaps they are genetically incapable of recognizing boredom. It may be perfectly normal to sit and just gaze at the water for days at a time... they don't see this as strange, neither are they motivated to be productive daily. Unlike those short lived chaos monkeys that have figured out a way to used controlled explosions to lob balls of iron at a perfectly beautiful wall, they can recognize beauty given the time to ponder it.
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Old 07-29-2021, 08:47 AM   #32
whswhs
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
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Default Re: Limiting skill points

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Originally Posted by bocephus View Post
Even and ancient creature wouldn't have much of a leg up on any modern tech. In the past 50 years we have gone from Black and white broadcast TV to streaming video on handheld devices.
More like sixty years. Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color started around then; I just checked Wikipedia and it says 24 September 1961, to take advantage of color broadcasting (represented by the NBC peacock). Not that that would make much difference to a centuries old vampire.
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Old 07-29-2021, 10:20 AM   #33
bocephus
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Default Re: Limiting skill points

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Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
More like sixty years. Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color started around then; I just checked Wikipedia and it says 24 September 1961, to take advantage of color broadcasting (represented by the NBC peacock). Not that that would make much difference to a centuries old vampire.
Existed and adopted are two different things. In XX years when someone says "Oh I remember when the first quantum came out in the stores in 2029, undoubtedly someone will point out that they have existed since 2018." to be followed shortly by someone that says "Oh but it was first theorized in 1980" ...

The actual date of production is barely relevant, its the 'time that enough people are using it to where you can say its general knowledge" Operating a TV is hardly a skill, it was just meant to illustrate that having been alive for 1000 years wouldn't give you much 'experience advantage' over someone that's been alive since it was in stores.

The point I was making that mainstream adoption and thus at least a default operational understanding hasn't been around that long. An ancient human wouldn't really have much advantage over a modern person because their age/comfort level with said tech wouldn't be any better, and all their previous life experiences wouldn't help. Driving a car, flying a plane or operating a smart phone, they would have to learn right along side of everyone else.

In the broad view there is not a vampire alive today who has had more opportunity to learn GURPS than I have :) neener neener

In the specific there may well be one that has been studying and using GURPS since its inception, thus a higher skill than me, but its not because of an inherent advantage of longevity.

I could see a skill of interaction like Detect Lies or Body Language having been honed over the centuries and it would be difficult for anyone that hasn't had that level of trial and error to match it. I could also see them having to hire some teenager to set up the castle WiFi.
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Old 07-29-2021, 10:26 AM   #34
Plane
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Default Re: Limiting skill points

I don't like basing it on attributes but if you wanted to only allow skills to be bought via the study rules that'd be a very easy limit. Bonus CP could be saved for other stuff like Schroedinger's Advantage.
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Old 07-29-2021, 01:41 PM   #35
MaryAnn
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Default Re: Limiting skill points

I have done what I could. It still looks like an improvement on Iron Man, but at least she can't keep expanding the repertoire of skills without giving up the old ones.

This is the provisional result for the character

Aleksandra "Sasha" Nikolayevna Romanova, a.k.a. "The Mechanic"

Maximum number of maintainable skills

First step:
1. Use Will as a main attribute.
2. Reference its value to the speed / range table from Basic Set.

Second step:
1. Check the related advantages. Eidetic memory equals a value of 15, while Photographic memory equals a value of 20.
2. Reference the value to the speed / range table from Basic Set.

Third step:
Outcome: Find the sum of the previous values.
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Old 07-29-2021, 01:49 PM   #36
Emerikol
 
Join Date: May 2021
Location: Eastern Kentucky
Default Re: Limiting skill points

For me here is how I see reality.

The top limit on skill is related to innate talent. You can train me till the cows come home and I'm not playing major league baseball and hitting a 100mph baseball. It's just not learnable for me. So my skill at batting is never going to be what a pros skill is going to be.

Do I think that is ameliorated somewhat by early childhood development? Sure but most people by the time they start school are pretty established.

The game naturally limits the value of high skill in some ways. For example resistable spells are always 16 for the attacker no matter their skill. You could apply this to any contest of skill. Then the only value to extra ranks above 16 would be for adjusting the task in some way. For example shooting a gun at a longer range.

Another approach and one I've considered is that your max cannot exceed 2 x (Stat - 10). So a 18 IQ person would have a max IQ based skill of 26. Then I'd limit IQ increases to 1/3 more than you start with. So start with a 15 and you can go to 20. 12 can go to 16. No Talent can be more than 3 and it does raise the skill limit by the same amount.

The above approach puts a nice limit on super high end skills for campaigns where super stats and skills are not the norm. It's a limit though that the NPCs of the world would follow as well. If you want to play super powered character then adjust starting points and say that the extra points are only for stats and talent. In fact if playing supers you could just drop these restrictions entirely.
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Old 07-29-2021, 02:15 PM   #37
MaryAnn
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Default Re: Limiting skill points

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Originally Posted by Emerikol View Post
For me here is how I see reality.

The top limit on skill is related to innate talent. You can train me till the cows come home and I'm not playing major league baseball and hitting a 100mph baseball. It's just not learnable for me. So my skill at batting is never going to be what a pros skill is going to be.

Do I think that is ameliorated somewhat by early childhood development? Sure but most people by the time they start school are pretty established.

The game naturally limits the value of high skill in some ways. For example resistable spells are always 16 for the attacker no matter their skill. You could apply this to any contest of skill. Then the only value to extra ranks above 16 would be for adjusting the task in some way. For example shooting a gun at a longer range.

Another approach and one I've considered is that your max cannot exceed 2 x (Stat - 10). So a 18 IQ person would have a max IQ based skill of 26. Then I'd limit IQ increases to 1/3 more than you start with. So start with a 15 and you can go to 20. 12 can go to 16. No Talent can be more than 3 and it does raise the skill limit by the same amount.

The above approach puts a nice limit on super high end skills for campaigns where super stats and skills are not the norm. It's a limit though that the NPCs of the world would follow as well. If you want to play super powered character then adjust starting points and say that the extra points are only for stats and talent. In fact if playing supers you could just drop these restrictions entirely.
In this sense, what I have done is relate the value of the Attributes in Gaussian distribution. In this way, the maximum score of any of them is 16, within the human species. Training can produce some improvements, but not more than one point (+1), both in attributes and talents, maintaining the ceiling of 16. And when it comes to talents, the cap is 15.

Another limitation is that attributes and talents do not accumulate beyond 16, but the talents can be trained up to the level of the attribute to obtain the associated benefits (For example, the "Goodwife" talent provides the benefit of: Bonus to defaults made in your own home to repair, maintain, and protect it).

Ps. It seems that the previous link was not working. This one does work:

Aleksandra "Sasha" Nikolayevna Romanova, a.k.a. "The Mechanic"

Last edited by MaryAnn; 07-29-2021 at 02:18 PM.
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Old 07-29-2021, 03:50 PM   #38
Farmer
 
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Default Re: Limiting skill points

Hmm, I must be missing something. You've gone to all this effort to limit things, and you've linked a character with skill levels of 21 across the board (well, I think there was a 22 in there)? And you have Talents costing 2 points (are they are multiple levels - I've not used that character sheet style before so not sure I'm reading it correctly).

You've got 2,090pts in skills but only 18 in advantages (which seem under priced).

I don't get the character limits, at all. At that point level, what are you actually concerned about?
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Old 07-29-2021, 04:23 PM   #39
MaryAnn
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Default Re: Limiting skill points

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Originally Posted by Farmer View Post
Hmm, I must be missing something. You've gone to all this effort to limit things, and you've linked a character with skill levels of 21 across the board (well, I think there was a 22 in there)? And you have Talents costing 2 points (are they are multiple levels - I've not used that character sheet style before so not sure I'm reading it correctly).

You've got 2,090pts in skills but only 18 in advantages (which seem under priced).

I don't get the character limits, at all. At that point level, what are you actually concerned about?
You're right, there was a 22 up there, caused by defaults, THANK YOU! :)

The talents cost about 2 points per level, but there are two instances of them (the sheet is not complete, so the first instance of those does not appear) when the attribute is higher because they don't stack, so only the alternative "advantage" is paid (for example, the "Goodwife" talent provides the benefit of a bonus to defaults made in your own home to repair, maintain, and protect it). The first instance of talent is innate (or introduced by genetic engineering). The one that appears there is only one level, which is accumulated to the four innate levels that the character already has. That's why it only costs 2.

My concern was that this character had more than nine thousand points, many of them on skills, and she kept winning at a rate of 288 points a year (now she gains 18).

In my version of the system the social advantages are not trainable, so they do not receive bonuses to the speed of learning (such as Accelerated Learning). In this way I have managed to remove at a stroke almost six thousand points that this character had invested in skills, burning them with a conversion rate of 1:16, with the premise that obtaining social advantages has a rate of gain equivalent to Learning on the Job.

With the exchange rate, she has invested about 400 points in various allies and business contacts, and although she has maximized all the skills that "her memory can retain" now it needs to use skip slots or replace old knowledge with new one.
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Old 07-29-2021, 04:45 PM   #40
Pursuivant
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Default Re: Limiting skill points

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Originally Posted by MaryAnn View Post
Do you consider that limiting the maximum number of points that can be allocated to the purchase of skills is realistic?
Technically, it's realistic but GURPS 4E specifically did away with official rules on maximum number of skill points because it's not appropriate for all genres or even all people.

GURPS 1E to 3E had a formula which limited maximum skill points to Age x 2, with x2/x4 multipliers for Eidetic/Photographic Memory, on the assumption that each point represented approximately 100-200 hours of training or experience.

The rule was a needless complication and widely ignored. It was also dropped since the old Eidetic/Photographic Memory advantages were insanely abusable by Min-Maxers and had to be nerfed for the good of the game.

There were also optional rules in GURPS 3E supplements (Japan and Special Ops) for retaining skills, specifically martial arts and military skills, through required training. Again, it was extra "crunch" that wasn't appropriate for all genres and was mostly ignored in practice.

GURPS 4E Accelerated Learning essentially restored the point cost reduction that GURPS 3E gave to Eidetic/Photographic Memory, but only for skills learned in play via study. That makes it a balanced advantage rather than a massive point crock

Quote:
Originally Posted by MaryAnn View Post
In that case, what mechanics do you use to do it in characters with high intellectual capacities (Accelerated Learning) or immortal (Unaging)?
Remember, it's not just advantages which affect skill acquisition but also character background. Traits like Accelerated Learning or Unaging are meaningless unless you're in an enriched environment where you have the time and opportunity to boost your skills. For example, a robot with both of those traits might be a 10,000 years old but still have limited skills if it's been turned off or buried for the entire time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MaryAnn View Post
Maximum number of skill points = IQ ^ 2 * (1 + X)
Effectively what this formula does is impose a negative form of the Modular Abilities advantage on characters. If you intend to use it in play, make sure that your players are happy using this house rule.

In particular, it will bite hyperskilled characters in high point value games, making characters with moderate IQ levels but vast skill sets - like cinematic martial artists or technicians - harder to play.

Finally, if you do use these rules, consider allowing a 5-point Unusual Background which allows characters to ignore the usual limits.
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