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Old 02-26-2021, 01:56 PM   #21
larsdangly
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Default Re: IQ gain and free talents?

I don't know if others would find this house rule attractive, but one thing I've done to open up the talent-point economics is to let people take flaws (from the ITL Companion) in exchange for talent points rather than stat points (which I don't allow).
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Old 02-26-2021, 03:35 PM   #22
hcobb
 
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Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Pacheco, California
Default Re: IQ gain and free talents?

Quote:
Originally Posted by larsdangly View Post
I don't know if others would find this house rule attractive, but one thing I've done to open up the talent-point economics is to let people take flaws (from the ITL Companion) in exchange for talent points rather than stat points (which I don't allow).
Do you waive IQ requirements for flaw-granted abilities?
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Old 02-27-2021, 02:06 AM   #23
David Bofinger
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: Sydney, Australia
Default Re: IQ gain and free talents?

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Originally Posted by larsdangly View Post
let people take flaws (from the ITL Companion) in exchange for talent points rather than stat points (which I don't allow).
I'm not a big fan of rewarding players for taking flaws because their value depends so much on the nature of the campaign.

For instance: A character takes the handicap Claustrophobia. In a game which is largely about expeditions underground that could be really crippling. On the other hand the game might be set on the Lognom Steppe, where the character spends much of his time riding a galloping dinosaur and rarely walks inside anything more substantial than a yurt. In which case the points given for the disadvantage are largely free.

Either way we risk players trying to weasel out of having their weakness activate, or GMs thinking they have to bring handicap X into the game somehow no matter how that distorts the story.

I would rather wait until something bad happens because of the handicap, then give the character (if they suffered personally) or the party (if it suffered as a whole) a reward they can use during play. Perhaps a fraction of a wish, or of some weaker form of a wish, perhaps a wish that must be used before you can earn another. The benefit should more or less equal the consequence.
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Old 02-28-2021, 04:27 PM   #24
larsdangly
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Default Re: IQ gain and free talents?

I don't have any house rules for flaws beyond the ones I said; so, it is a simple exchange: take a 2 point flaw and now you have 2 extra talent points to do with what you want, within the constraints of all the rest of the RAW (implying that IQ prerequisites still apply).

I understand not liking flaws as a general concept because it is true that they end up being a way that you can 'game' the other constraints on character creation and advancement, which means players will almost always feel they are functionally required (because if you don't take them you are just leaving initial resources on the table). And, while some players are so bored with min-max logic that they choose flaws to help create a character, it is true that many will just pick stuff that they know won't really be a bother. All of this contributes to why I find character generation in GURPS to be intensely irritating.

On the other hand, I haven't seen this option in TFT do much of anything to drive grade inflation in my game. Players mostly don't bother, and the addition of a talent point or two at creation doesn't really buy you access to combat powers that were otherwise unreachable. So, it is more like an irrelevant bit of color.
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Old 03-09-2021, 06:09 PM   #25
Jack O'All Trades
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Default Re: IQ gain and free talents?

I've been using a house rule that allows IQ upgrades to count for a talent/spell point, but also allow the purchasing of talents directly. I've also broadly reduced the curve of XP because over a year of play I think it's fun to have some advance in ability no matter how high level you've gotten. However such a change is not necessary and is up to what you like. (I also apply an in-universe "learning period" though I'm not sure how much that has really affected the game).

What I think is nearly objectively true, however, is that if you allow IQ upgrades to increase Talent or Spell points, then it should *always* be cheaper to just get a talent or spell. Even the very first attribute point. That way, there's a meaningful choice to either upgrade talents (you want to be a skill monkey!), IQ early on (you want to be a skill monkey but are taking the somewhat slower route to more advanced abilities), or to upgrade other attributes (you're fairly happy with what talents you have, and will probably only switch to buying talents when Attributes are very expensive and/or there are specific talents you want to get). It avoids the issues where characters essentially must increase attributes first to the exclusion of talents until they are high level. In my own campaign, this has resulted in players choosing all 3 of the aforementioned options, and usually with varying choices by each player in response to the events of the game.

So, if you're using RAW attribute upgrade costs, what I'd do is pick something like 80 XP as the cost for a talent point. All you 'lose' is that for the prohibitively high attribute costs, where players are incentivized to pick talents anyway, they will get more talents XP. You can easily slow that rate by adjusting the XP gain or applying learning periods as I do. That said the supposed threat is that characters will start to all have all of the talents, but even at only IQ 8 reaching that point will take ~ 1920 XP (excluded Guns, Mundane Talents), and if you're at that point in the game I think you'd probably want most low IQ barbarian warrior types to pretty much have all of those talents (all the weapons, horsemanship, swimming, etc) or just consider whether you really wanted to play for this long with only 3 talent point changes/~1 attribute change (or even less!).
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Old 03-15-2021, 02:02 AM   #26
Steve Plambeck
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Default Re: IQ gain and free talents?

Long and hard have I pondered these matters since Legacy came out, writing up, rereading, and then tearing up every house rule I could come up with to reconcile the old way of handling IQ and talents with the new way, and with what actually feels right to me. Total attributes getting out of synch with total XP feels dead wrong. Increasing IQ but not getting to add a new talent (gaining a "Talent Point", or TP for short) feels even worse, a real inequity. But the ability to increase overall talents and speed up their acquisition, as compared to original ITL, does seem like a very desirable outcome, yet I still don't like how Legacy goes about it. So here's my latest stab at it, a compromise I'm fairly sure I can live with. Feel free to poke holes in it.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Initially, each new PC starts with Talent Points (TP) equal to their starting IQ (so far that's RAW under both old and Legacy ITL, but here the resemblances begin to end). Wizards may also know one Spell per point of IQ, separate from Talents, and all characters may know as many Talents as they can afford with their TP. [Side note: in my game wizards have to buy an expensive wizardry talent, so they still have only about half the room for non-magical talents as a non-wizard would. The benefit here is that all Talents can cost the same TP for everyone at all times.]

The TP you started with may be increased in only one way: every time a character increases its IQ Attribute 1 point, it receives two (2) additional Talent Points. (For wizards, increasing IQ by 1 point also means they may now choose one additional Spell in addition to having these 2 more Talent Points.)

As the XP cost for increasing any Attribute goes up steeply the higher the number of total Attributes the character already has, it becomes proportionately more expensive to increase IQ (and by extension, Talent Points) the more advanced a PC becomes, but at least you get two additional TP for whatever you pay for one point of IQ. And while the XP cost to increase an Attribute depends on a PCís total Attribute Points, that total never includes Talent Points. Talent Points donít count when adding up oneís Attributes.

This can result in two characters, after theyíve been advancing awhile, having different numbers of Talent Points even when they have the same total count of Attributes. Two 37-point characters, even starting with the same IQ, wonít have the same number of Talent Points if one has been spending their XP to increase ST or DX while the other has been increasing IQ. It will have cost both of them the exact same number of XP to get to 37 total Attributes, but depending on how often they used those XP to increase IQ over the other Attributes one figure could end up with more Talents than the other.

EXAMPLE: Two PCs, Bran and Mak, each start with 32 points and choose Attributes:
_ BRAN: IQ 10, ST 11, DX 11 (total 32)
__ MAK: IQ 12, ST 10, DX 10 (total 32)
Starting with IQ 10, Bran has 10 Talent Points to spend on his starting Talents. Mak, starting with IQ 12, begins with 12 Talent Points.

Bran and Mak have both gone on adventures and accumulated just enough Experience Points to each increase two Attribute Points. Bran, starting at IQ 10, elects to increase his IQ +2, which comes with 4 Talent Points (2x2); his TP total now goes from 10 to 14, although heís only raised his IQ to 12 -- this is the same thing as happens in Legacy ITL when a figure spends XP directly on TP. Mak wants more ST, so he spends his XP increasing his ST from 10 to 12; increasing ST does not come with Talent Points, so Makís total TP stays at the 12 he started with.

Both are now 34-point characters. Both have spent the same number of XP to get to 34 points. And both Bran and Mak are now IQ 12. But Bran now has 14 Talent Points to Makís 12! Thatís reasonable because Bran chose to spend his XP on his mind, while Mak chose to spend the same amount of XP on larger muscles.

A note of each PCís original starting IQ on their character record sheet means that you, or the GM, can double check the arithmetic later to be sure the PC has the correct number of Talent Points. Their total Attributes and total XP will jibe exactly as they did in original TFT.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Some consequences:

Future Talent Points will always cost more, because the requisite IQ increase will cost more.

The "tax shelter" effect of paying a flat XP cost for Talents later in a career is gone. There will always be trade-offs, without a gamey reason to increase attributes first and talents later, nor a gamey reason to start at the highest IQ you'll ever need and never increase IQ again.

The rate at which an existing figure can add new Talents is double what it was in original ITL, making talent-heavy characters a possibility just as in Legacy ITL.

And lastly, the inequity is eliminated when a PC earns and spends what can be large amounts of XP on increasing IQ, and still has to go out and earn even more XP before they can take the Talent they were increasing their IQ to obtain in the first place. If an IQ 8 figure raises their IQ three times to be eligible to learn Fencer, they don't have to hunt down 1500 more XP before they take Fencer. Or an IQ 10 figure that's going after Chemist isn't told no, sorry, after earning the considerable XP necessary to get to IQ 13.
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Old 03-15-2021, 06:59 AM   #27
Terquem
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Idaho Falls
Default Re: IQ gain and free talents?

I like the above approach and would add, only for my own game that is, that increasing TP do not automatically allow the selection of new talents. Just as when a character increases ST they do not automatically get handed a new weapon (they must seek out the weapon and either buy it or find it in a dungeon). I would require the character to seek out a trainer or spend some time on their own, and either pay a dollar cost associated with the training or provide some service to the one doing the training. This way there is an "in game" as well as a meta cost for each new talent.
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Old 03-16-2021, 12:48 AM   #28
Steve Plambeck
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Default Re: IQ gain and free talents?

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Originally Posted by Terquem View Post
I like the above approach and would add, only for my own game that is, that increasing TP do not automatically allow the selection of new talents. Just as when a character increases ST they do not automatically get handed a new weapon (they must seek out the weapon and either buy it or find it in a dungeon). I would require the character to seek out a trainer or spend some time on their own, and either pay a dollar cost associated with the training or provide some service to the one doing the training. This way there is an "in game" as well as a meta cost for each new talent.
Thanks, I agree, and I'd have mentioned that too but my post was too long already :) Original ITL already had some such stipulations about learning new talents and spells, and I always used them, but unfortunately they didn't make it into the new edition. It's only reasonable, and more realistic, to enforce a learning/training period for the acquisition of any new skill. The skill doesn't become active until both the XP has been shilled up AND the learning period has been satisfied (with plenty of room there for the GM to allow partial use or a limited attempt to try something that has been nearly if not quite completely mastered).
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Old 03-16-2021, 05:37 PM   #29
Skarg
 
Join Date: May 2015
Default Re: IQ gain and free talents?

Yep. I like requiring characters to actually spend the time and find the trainers and/or books/equipment/circumstances needed to learn new talents and spells. I quite like the original spell-learning options and rules.

(Er... except for the parts about experience costs for stopping studying a talent being studied, and the part about forgetting things to make "room" for more studies.)
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Old 03-16-2021, 09:44 PM   #30
zot
 
Join Date: May 2018
Default Re: IQ gain and free talents?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Plambeck View Post
Long and hard have I pondered these matters since Legacy came out, writing up, rereading, and then tearing up every house rule I could come up with to reconcile the old way of handling IQ and talents with the new way, and with what actually feels right to me. Total attributes getting out of synch with total XP feels dead wrong. Increasing IQ but not getting to add a new talent (gaining a "Talent Point", or TP for short) feels even worse, a real inequity. But the ability to increase overall talents and speed up their acquisition, as compared to original ITL, does seem like a very desirable outcome, yet I still don't like how Legacy goes about it. So here's my latest stab at it, a compromise I'm fairly sure I can live with. Feel free to poke holes in it.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Initially, each new PC starts with Talent Points (TP) equal to their starting IQ (so far that's RAW under both old and Legacy ITL, but here the resemblances begin to end). Wizards may also know one Spell per point of IQ, separate from Talents, and all characters may know as many Talents as they can afford with their TP. [Side note: in my game wizards have to buy an expensive wizardry talent, so they still have only about half the room for non-magical talents as a non-wizard would. The benefit here is that all Talents can cost the same TP for everyone at all times.]

The TP you started with may be increased in only one way: every time a character increases its IQ Attribute 1 point, it receives two (2) additional Talent Points. (For wizards, increasing IQ by 1 point also means they may now choose one additional Spell in addition to having these 2 more Talent Points.)

As the XP cost for increasing any Attribute goes up steeply the higher the number of total Attributes the character already has, it becomes proportionately more expensive to increase IQ (and by extension, Talent Points) the more advanced a PC becomes, but at least you get two additional TP for whatever you pay for one point of IQ. And while the XP cost to increase an Attribute depends on a PCís total Attribute Points, that total never includes Talent Points. Talent Points donít count when adding up oneís Attributes.

This can result in two characters, after theyíve been advancing awhile, having different numbers of Talent Points even when they have the same total count of Attributes. Two 37-point characters, even starting with the same IQ, wonít have the same number of Talent Points if one has been spending their XP to increase ST or DX while the other has been increasing IQ. It will have cost both of them the exact same number of XP to get to 37 total Attributes, but depending on how often they used those XP to increase IQ over the other Attributes one figure could end up with more Talents than the other.
The main hole I see in this is that if two characters have the same IQ but started with different IQs, the one that started with a lower IQ will have more talent points.

Example:

Bubba and Mary have exactly the same stats: ST 12, DX 12, IQ 12 but Bubba has 16 TP and Mary has 12 TP because Bubba started at IQ 8 and put 4 points into IQ and Mary started at IQ 12 and put her points into other attributes.

One alternative might be to make every IQ point above 8 count for 2 TP. This gives starting characters more TP but the same IQ is always worth the same TP.
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