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Old 09-07-2020, 01:31 PM   #81
Varyon
 
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

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Originally Posted by Donny Brook View Post
If people want fighters to be skilled with every weapon, why not just give them more points to spend on weapons? Or is there some inherent value to be gained by stripping away nuance and variation?
Nuance is good, but "just give them more points" doesn't help much with making a character who is skilled with all weapons. That's because the alternative, an ahistorically-specialized character, is far more appealing. Consider a character who has, say, skill 18 in a favored skill (Broadsword), and ~skill 14 in most other melee weapon skills. With DX 10, that's [32] in Broadsword, which gives Two-Handed Sword at 14 and Shortsword at 16, but we'll burn [1] on each to be able to treat the character as proficient in the skill, so those are covered. The character also needs Axe/Mace, Knife, Polearm, Shield, Spear, and Two-Handed Axe/Mace (the others are more specialized; this will cover pretty much all battlefield weapons). Axe/Mace 14 costs [16], Knife 14 costs [12], Polearm 14 costs [14] (buying up from the Two-Handed Axe/Mace default we'll get in a bit), Shield 14 costs [12], Spear 14 costs [14] (buying up from the Polearm default), and Two-Handed Axe/Mace costs [12] (buying up from the Axe/Mace default), for a total cost of [114]. Of course, that's a bit inefficient; +3 DX [60] drops the costs above to [20], [1], [1], [4], [2], [4], [2] [4], and [4], respectively, reducing total cost to [102] (or [87] if we can take a -0.75 to Basic Speed, negating the bonus to that from our enhanced DX) - although this means our character is a bit of a DX-monkey, which may not have been part of the concept. Of course, if the player were to decide to drop the bit of the backstory where the character was a highly-skilled soldier (or just ignore it for purposes of skills), he could take those [114] and invest them entirely in Broadsword and Shield; maintaining the -4 separation, that's Broadsword 26 [64] and Shield 22 [44], with another [6] left behind (say, for Targeted Attack: Broadsword Thrust/Eye -4 [6]). The latter character is going to markedly outperform the former in roughly 90% of combat situations (unless the GM is a jerk who frequently contrives to deprive the characters of their best weapons, but lets them have access to other weapons that "coincidentally" aren't usable with their best skills). A scheme that essentially gives more lenient defaults between the above (and/or allows you to buy them up from default for less than it costs to increase the skill being defaulted off of) would make the soldier-turned-swordmaster a more competitive character than the guy who only knows how to use a sword and shield.

Of course, there is the risk of going too far - the option where we shove all the melee weapons into a single skill will generally mean you can either build a character who is skilled with all weapons (maybe favoring a handful via Proficiency Perks), or a character who is skilled with one weapon (and has lesser skill with its defaults), and pretty much nothing in-between. Above, using Kromm's rough-draft suggestion, the generalist-who-favors-swords could have Melee Weapon 18 [40] and [4] invested in appropriate Perks to be able to use his preferred weapon designs at full skill (everything else is a 16) for the same cost as it would take for the sword-and-board specialist to have Broadsword 18 [32] and Shield 14 [12], leaving the specialist markedly below the "generalist" in nearly all instances, only tying in one (Broadsword vs Broadsword).
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Old 09-07-2020, 02:28 PM   #82
Fred Brackin
 
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

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Originally Posted by Varyon View Post
N Consider a character who has, say, skill 18 in a favored skill (Broadsword), and ~skill 14 in most other melee weapon skills. With DX 10, that's [32] in Broadsword, which gives Two-Handed Sword at 14 and Shortsword at 16, but we'll burn [1] on each to be able to treat the character as proficient in the skill, so those are covered. The character also needs Axe/Mace, Knife, Polearm, Shield, Spear, and Two-Handed Axe/Mace (the others are more specialized; this will cover pretty much all battlefield weapons). Axe/Mace 14 costs [16], Knife 14 costs [12], ).
You've missed the -3 Default from Shortsword to Knife. Just 4 pts more to go from 13 to 14.
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Old 09-07-2020, 02:31 PM   #83
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

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Originally Posted by Polydamas View Post
Rapiers are some of the heaviest one-handed swords, often had blades up to 48" long, and often had blades indistinguishable from those of longsword except for the length of the tang. Any good fencer should be able to adapt to a sword with a simple cross hilt.

Shad is just a geek with a youtube channel, not an expert on history or martial arts. He's entertaining, not someone to use as a serious source.
One does not need to be an expert on history or martial arts to demonstrate through actual practice that things are wonked.

That adapt is what learning from default is for. :-P

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Originally Posted by Varyon View Post
Nuance is good, but "just give them more points" doesn't help much with making a character who is skilled with all weapons.
The Weapon Master advantage and Bang! skills say "hi!" :-P

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Originally Posted by Anders View Post
It is not better. You don't get the weapon damage bonus and the better rapid strikes or parries. Those are what you pay for with Weapon Master, not the skill bonus. The improved defaults are just gravy.
Weapon Master is a package advantage so nothing in it is really "gravy". The weapon damage bonus isn't that big a deal until you get to more then d2 or higher in terms of damage and since rapid strikes and parries are based off a weapon skill you are getting more rather than better options ie basicly a trade off.

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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
You've missed the -3 Default from Shortsword to Knife. Just 4 pts more to go from 13 to 14.
See Melee Weapons.

The worse (other then DX default) they have is -4 to each other and buying up from default with DX/A dominating the skill sets given reasonable skill levels. Even if we go with a DX 12 that is 8 points (DX/A) for the "main" skills at 14 with 1 point on the defaulting weapons giving a reasonable 11 for the -4s and 12 for the -3 and -2s Throw in a bladed weapon 2 talent for 10/level and get 16 in main weapons with 12 and 13 for the related DX/A defaults.

I noticed no one has touched this point:
Look at the 4e conversion of the historical people from GURPS Who's Who 1 and GURPS Who's Who 2 (so no "But i don't have the book" BS) and AFAIR not that even the "warrior rulers" reach the 5 skill mark. (unless you count Shield as a melee weapon)

For example, King David ben-Jesse is as 4 weapon skills: Bow, Shortsword, Sling, and Staff. Sure Sling in terms of point is high but per the Goliath knockdown it is supposed to be high. Alexander the Great is in much the same mode and his skill points are more in the 1-4 point range
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Last edited by maximara; 09-07-2020 at 03:30 PM.
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Old 09-07-2020, 03:34 PM   #84
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

If you don't want to do it, don't do it.
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Old 09-07-2020, 05:08 PM   #85
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
You've missed the -3 Default from Shortsword to Knife. Just 4 pts more to go from 13 to 14.
Yeah, I originally had it written as Shortsword 14 and Two-Handed Sword 16, but changed it to be correct after checking what the defaults actually were, but then failed to correct Knife. I'm not certain where I screwed up to think Knife was working at a default of 9 (which would mean no discount for buying up from default, as [1] is enough to boost that to 10), however, but it was screwed up even from the beginning. Thanks for catching the error. Still, it doesn't make a huge impact on the analysis.

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Originally Posted by maximara View Post
The Weapon Master advantage and Bang! skills say "hi!" :-P
Weapon Master is inconsequential here, because we're assuming a character who has higher skill than relying on defaults would grant. For Weapon Master to be of concern, the character would probably need one that covers at least a Large Class, for [40], and would need a minimum of DX 15 [100], the two of which are already a markedly higher cost (even before buying up Broadsword), and I don't think the "free" Dabbler Perks you get with Weapon Master let you count as actually having the relevant skills (for Techniques and the like). And, yes, the higher base defaults for Weapon Master are roughly equivalent to a number of Dabbler Perks equal to twice the number of skills involved.

As for Wildcard skills, let's assume Melee! is a legitimate one (I lack PU7, as I'm not a fan of Wildcard skills, so can't check), or at least some flavor of it that would cover all the weapon skills I listed. So, our former soldier would be built with something like Melee! 14 [72] and Broadsword 18 [16] (the latter defaulting at +0 from the former), for a total of [88]. For the same investment, sword-and-board guy has Broadsword 23 [52] and Shield 19 [36], and once again is markedly superior. Certainly, the dedicated specialist should have an advantage, but it's still far too great of one (to the tune of +5 for both skills).
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Old 09-07-2020, 05:40 PM   #86
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

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Originally Posted by Anders View Post
It is not better. You don't get the weapon damage bonus and the better rapid strikes or parries. Those are what you pay for with Weapon Master, not the skill bonus. The improved defaults are just gravy.
I legitimately forget that Weapon Master includes those Dabbler effects with every characters I've ever made. I don't think I've ever had to use a weapon at default with them.

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One solution to that is treating them as techniques with around a -4 default.
I still think this is the simplest solution (and is why I repriced buying up from default to be based on 1pt per level instead of 4).
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Old 09-07-2020, 06:54 PM   #87
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

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If you don't want to do it, don't do it.
Heavens no! We're gonna spend many posts and pages explaining why you're doing it wrong.
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Old 09-07-2020, 07:14 PM   #88
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

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Originally Posted by Varyon View Post
Nuance is good, but "just give them more points" doesn't help much with making a character who is skilled with all weapons. That's because the alternative, an ahistorically-specialized character, is far more appealing.
Appealing to who? I mean just because some players want to optimize is not a justification to allow it, or even less to cater to it with rule changes.
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Old 09-07-2020, 07:30 PM   #89
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Default Re: Reducing the number of weapon skills

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Appealing to who?
Superior from a game mechanics standpoint. Sure, you can play gratuitously ineffectual characters, but why?
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Old 09-07-2020, 07:32 PM   #90
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Superior from a game mechanics standpoint.
I'm not able to discern what criteria you're applying to that assessment.
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