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Old 02-10-2015, 09:26 PM   #1
d1060
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Sao Paulo, Brazil
Default Point cost suggestion for a new disadvantage

Hi all.

I plan on introducing a new disadvantage on my Fantasy campaign, and would like to know what do you guys think in terms of how much points should it grant. It's a disadvantage tailored to unaging or very long-lived characters:


RESISTANT TO CHANGE: -X? POINTS

Mortal races have plastic minds that can adapt to many situations while also optimizing its use of memory, perception, and the many types of intelligence so as to better serve the individual. However, every physical brain has its limits. Most magical and unaging beings get to live well beyond the point that a physical brain is able to withstand. After its brain has reached a certain capacity, in order to protect itself, the brain greatly diminishes its ability to process new information. This causes the individual to become resistant to change.

"Resistant to change" is a special case of “Cannot Learn” (p. B125). A character with this disadvantage can learn and improve skills, techniques, familiarities, DX, IQ and mental advantages normally, but only up to a certain limit. This limit is 200 character points spent overall in the items above. After 200 character points, the character’s brain finds it much harder to learn something new. In order to improve something, the character must spend double the character points. This goes up to 400 character points spent on mental traits, over which limit the character will have to spend three times the character points, and then up to 600 character points, over which limit the character will have to spend four times the character points, and so on…

This resistance can be overcome through magic. A character that is resistant to change can be enchanted to increase this 200-point limit. This requires a mage that knows both “Enchant” and “Lend Skill”. Such a mage could enchant the character as if he were enchanting an item. Each such “enchantment” would cost 300 energy points, and would thus increase the limit by one character point. If that enchantment is performed in a character that had already gone over the 200-point limit, such character would gain the extra points spent as unspent character points.

This enchantment is instantaneous. It alters the target character and then fades away. Therefore, its effect will not be negated by 0-mana areas and cannot be dispelled.

When a character increases his 200-point limit, this increase also applies to the other layers of change resistance. Thus: a character with a 201-point limit would pay double character points for improvements from 202 to 402 points, would pay triple from 403 to 603, and so on…

This disadvantage will be gained by any mortal character that starts to extend his life through magic, as soon as he reaches the 200-point limit in mental traits. Mortal characters that go over this limit but are not extending their lives through unnatural means do not suffer the ill effects of this disadvantage.
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Old 02-10-2015, 11:03 PM   #2
Purple Haze
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Default Re: Point cost suggestion for a new disadvantage

I would call it zero.

First, it is a campaign feature so it does not disadvantage any character relative to any other.

Second, 200 points is an enormous number of points in skills, at that point they are better off buying stats or talents anyway.
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Old 02-10-2015, 11:07 PM   #3
The Benj
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Platform Zero, Sydney, Australia
Default Re: Point cost suggestion for a new disadvantage

Quote:
Originally Posted by Purple Haze View Post
I would call it zero.

First, it is a campaign feature so it does not disadvantage any character relative to any other.
It advantages mortals over immortals.

Quote:
Second, 200 points is an enormous number of points in skills, at that point they are better off buying stats or talents anyway.
It does include stats, like it says.
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Old 02-10-2015, 11:08 PM   #4
The Benj
 
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Location: Platform Zero, Sydney, Australia
Default Re: Point cost suggestion for a new disadvantage

But 200 points is a huge number of points.
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Old 02-11-2015, 09:38 AM   #5
malloyd
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Default Re: Point cost suggestion for a new disadvantage

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Benj View Post
But 200 points is a huge number of points.
If it doesn't apply to everything - i.e. there are lots of perfectly reasonable things for immortals to spend their points on - then it is a zero point feature - it's a vastly weaker restriction than Taboo Traits.

If it does apply to everything it's effectively a -2x(campaign starting point budget-200) point disadvantage - the number of additional points immortals need to start even, given that all their points above 200 count only half value. But it's a pretty pointless thing to give them this drawback and immediately neutralize it by handing out enough points to compensate.

More generally, if it does apply to everything, or even just a lot of stuff, this sort of thing has no possible fair value. No matter what value you assign to it some players get cheated at some point - it might be at character creation, it might be after everybody has earned a lot of points, it might be the players that take it, or the ones that don't, but it's unavoidable any time you mess with the relative value of character points for different characters. Sooner or later somebody will be upset by the "unfairness" of your point rewards, and your only defense - "well when the campaign started/after we have been playing a while they were/will be unfair in the other direction" is not going to help.
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Old 02-11-2015, 11:13 AM   #6
Dustin
 
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: The former Chochenyo territory
Default Re: Point cost suggestion for a new disadvantage

This sounds like more trouble than it's worth - the reason you're having trouble costing it is there's no reasonable cost. I would recommend not trying to enforce this mechanically, but instead asking players with relevant PCs to roleplay this as part of their culture if they pick one of these races.
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Old 02-13-2015, 07:53 AM   #7
ArchonShiva
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Montréal, Québec
Default Re: Point cost suggestion for a new disadvantage

You're trying to slow advancement of immortals, correct? I don't think you have the right approach.

For starters, giving e.g., 20 points for this essentially means that said beings get 210 points for the price of 200, which really isn't what you mean to achieve.

I think what you want is to use buckets of points (Pyramid #65) for immortal beings, with a very unfavorable exchange towards the stuff you mentioned - so that their huge pools of suypernatural abilities cannot be trivially converted to tons of mundane skills.

As for the disadvantage, I'd call it a 0-point* unusual background: Humans may have more flexibility across the board, but their access to exotic abilities is highly restricted. Immortals are hardly at a disadvantage.

Also, if you do stick with your original idea, don't make it 200 points; make it a percentage of the character's total points value.

*Actually, you may want to charge points for it, if it allows buying stuff like DR and innate attacks and other stuff that humans wish they were allowed to buy.
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Old 03-15-2015, 09:43 PM   #8
d1060
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Sao Paulo, Brazil
Default Re: Point cost suggestion for a new disadvantage

Thank you all for your feedback. I have pondered the pros and cons of my idea and decided to scrap it as it was.

Your help was invaluable.
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Old 03-15-2015, 11:02 PM   #9
Captain Joy
 
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Location: Heartland, U.S.A.
Default Re: Point cost suggestion for a new disadvantage

With regards to long-lived character stuff, you should check out Reducing the value of "flavor" traits on Reverend Pee Kitty's MyGURPS page.
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