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Old 10-27-2017, 12:38 PM   #1
Empada
 
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Default High Skill Vs Talent

Hi, this week I'm starting a new game in Fallout Setings. Characters start with 150 points and -75 in disadvantages
One of the players decided to play a doctor and spend 32 points on Physician Skill (IQ+7). with Defaults and spending only 1 point, he have Pharmacy (IQ+2) Physiology (IQ+2) Diagnosis (IQ+3) and Surgery (IQ+2). The only drawback I found is the Electronics Operation (Medical)(IQ-1)
and that cost 37 points
I have suggested him to have the Talent Healer and spend 43 points to make a "worst" doctor
with Healer 3, Physician IQ+3, Pharmacy IQ+1, Physiology IQ+1, Diagnosis IQ+2, surgery IQ+2 and Electronics Operation (medical) IQ+2

so, any suggestions on how to handle this? is it OK? I think this problem shows when a skill have a lot of defaults based on them
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Old 10-27-2017, 12:50 PM   #2
Fred Brackin
 
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Default Re: High Skill Vs Talent

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Originally Posted by Empada View Post
so, any suggestions on how to handle this?
First define your problem. Is it that you don't like that his build was so efficient? Is that why you offered him a much less efficient one?

Sadly I must say that your build was inefficient in several areas. First don't stop at 3 levels of a Talent. If a Talent makes sense for a character at all 4 levels make more sense than 3.

You also may have been spending more cp on individual skills than makes good sense once you've decided to take either 3 or 4 levels of a talent.

It's also much better to look at final Skill levels than relative levels compared to an unknown IQ. Decide on th final levels that are desired (probably somewhere between 12 and 16) and whatever build costs the fewest points is the way the system "wants" you to do it.
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Old 10-27-2017, 12:56 PM   #3
mlangsdorf
 
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Default Re: High Skill Vs Talent

I'm not sure what the problem is with a character spending 41 points - nearly 20% of his total available budget - to be really good at being a doctor. Even if this was a total point crock, what's the harm? If the game is setting in the Fallout Settings, PCs are likely to get injured a lot and a good doctor is going to be useful.

Unless the campaign is set in a hospital, and he's taking potential niches from other PCs, I wouldn't really worry about it.
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Old 10-27-2017, 01:09 PM   #4
Kromm
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Default Re: High Skill Vs Talent

I tend to agree that the one-high-skill route looks entirely fair to me. If it's crucial for some reason to insist on the Healer approach instead, I'd advise using the alternative benefit in GURPS Power-Ups 3: Talents, which is fairly impressive, as it lets Healer offset HT penalties for some fairly serious problems (nerve gas, radiation, severe bleeding, etc.).
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Old 10-27-2017, 09:48 PM   #5
AlexanderHowl
 
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Default Re: High Skill Vs Talent

It would probably be more realistic (for a given level of narrative realism...) to encourage that capable of a doctor to invest in a high IQ. For example, an IQ 14 doctor with Physician at IQ+6 will spend 80 points for their IQ and 28 points for their Physician Skill. Their defaults would give them Diagnosis at IQ+2, First Aid at IQ+6, Pharmacy (Synthetic) at IQ+1, Physiology at IQ+1, and Surgery at IQ+1. I would suggest suggest spending the 2 points for Electronic Operations (Medical) so it is at IQ. Since they have Physician-20, require them to purchase Wealth (Wealthy) because there is no legitimate reason why a doctor that talented is not wealthy (even criminal doctors who are that good make lots of money, they just need certain disadvantages to explain their circumstances).

The end result is a character who is a very talented doctor for an effective cost of 150 character points. If the character takes the entire -75 points of disadvantages, which is not actually that difficult, the character can be good at multiple things, but the character will primarily be the doctor. The only question then because why is the doctor in the party (a similarly skilled doctor could be created with IQ 12 and Physician at IQ+8).
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Old 10-27-2017, 10:48 PM   #6
Refplace
 
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Default Re: High Skill Vs Talent

I try to encourage more rounded builds but as others pointed out its a fair build.
On one hand defaults from Physician are pretty impressive but in most games thats a really narrow and mostly noncombat niche. And one adventurers are really going to find useful but outside of combat. Mostly.
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Old 10-28-2017, 08:08 AM   #7
vicky_molokh
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Default Re: High Skill Vs Talent

The whole point of defaults is to reduce cost and increase competence in secondary skills that are related to a high primary skill. In fact, other systems tend to make medicine a single skill - if anything, GURPS' trend to split subsets of a field tends to make characters less competent in a specific field than normal for RPGs.
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Old 10-28-2017, 09:41 AM   #8
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Default Re: High Skill Vs Talent

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Originally Posted by AlexanderHowl View Post
Since they have Physician-20, require them to purchase Wealth (Wealthy) because there is no legitimate reason why a doctor that talented is not wealthy (even criminal doctors who are that good make lots of money, they just need certain disadvantages to explain their circumstances).
Just wanted to point out that there are always legitimate reasons to be broke. Off the top of my head is the doctor's an alcoholic or compulsive gambler, and got their license revoked. The skills don't go away, and they may not want to sign up for the local mafia as a fallback career plan.

Or the doctor is paying four alimonies. Either way, really.
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Old 10-28-2017, 10:11 AM   #9
Kromm
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Default Re: High Skill Vs Talent

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Just wanted to point out that there are always legitimate reasons to be broke. Off the top of my head is the doctor's an alcoholic or compulsive gambler, and got their license revoked. The skills don't go away, and they may not want to sign up for the local mafia as a fallback career plan.

Or the doctor is paying four alimonies. Either way, really.
Or the doctor is the best doctor in a country where doctors aren't automatically rich, which is a great many countries in the real world. Or the best doctor in a war zone where nobody is getting paid at all. Or from such circumstances, and not licensed to practice in her or his current country of residence.

Or the doctor voluntarily went into such circumstances for humanitarian reasons and stayed there, and is functionally broke.

Or the doctor is a devout follower of a religion or philosophy that places great significance on charity or self-improvement through poverty, and gives up everything to patients in need.

Honestly, the view that all the best doctors are materialists who come from and remain in First World surroundings is a little narrow.
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Old 10-28-2017, 10:38 AM   #10
Railstar
 
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Default Re: High Skill Vs Talent

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Originally Posted by talonthehand View Post
Just wanted to point out that there are always legitimate reasons to be broke. Off the top of my head is the doctor's an alcoholic or compulsive gambler, and got their license revoked. The skills don't go away, and they may not want to sign up for the local mafia as a fallback career plan.

Or the doctor is paying four alimonies. Either way, really.
While I don't disagree with the general point, those specific examples sound more like Wealth + Debt, or a cost-of-living increase from disadvantages that requires him to live at a lower status to account for those expenses.

Then again, I can understand saying "too much book-keeping for me, a reduced effective-Wealth is easier."
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