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Old 07-14-2016, 10:42 PM   #1
Tuk the Weekah
Join Date: Nov 2012
Default Simple Question, probably repetitive, on Alternate Form

So, I'm building, for the first time in GURPS, a shape-shifter. He goes from human form to a Spirit Bear form (which is much less impressive than it sounds; a Spirit Bear is ursus americanus kermodei, or a white/blond subspecies of black bear). I'm having issues costing out the Shapeshifting aspect of the character.

If you have a single Alternate Form, it costs 15 points for a racial template worth no more than your native racial template. A more powerful form costs 15 points plus 90% of the difference in cost between your native template and that of your Alternate Form.
Structurally, this says that you are paying 15 CP + 90% of the difference in cost between your base racial template and the base racial template of your Alternate Form. The required changes to the base template (your IQ of 13--IQ+3--raises the bear's IQ from 4 to 7, for instance), the additional skills that are carried over from your primary form, all your advantages & disads that port over; none of that, it is implied, counts toward the cost of the Alternate Form. You are paying from going from a human to a bear; not for going from this human to this bear.

Yet this is not the build that I have ever seen. Basically, the Alternate Form builds I've seen go from a human to this bear.

What is the correct way to cost this out?
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