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Old 08-18-2014, 05:50 PM   #1
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Default [Basic] Advantage of the Week (#6): Ally; Ally Group

Last Week: Affliction
Next Week: Altered Time Rate

This week we look at the Basic Set Advantage Allies, found on p. B36-B38, and expanded upon in Powers p. 41. By default, Allies are Mundane Social Advantages with a point cost that varies according to their CP value and Frequency of Appearance value. Once again, I am going to have to ask that you read the book due to the length of the material on it; without factoring in Modifiers, the cost can already vary from 1 CP for an Ally that shows up on a 6 or less*, built on 25% of the cost of the character to which it is allied up to 40 points for a character that shows up all the time (no roll required) and is built on 150% of the CP value of the character to which it is allied. Note that a the "Constant" Frequency Of Appearance level is normally reserved for characters that are physically attached, implanted, worn like clothing, etc.

Allies that lack certain Enhancements are their own characters: NPCs that the GM controls, but favorably disposed towards you. They are agreeable but not guaranteed to constantly agree with you, and can occasionally cause you some trouble. If you abuse them, you risk losing them (and all the points invested in them), though parting amicably or losing one through no significant fault of your own results in a replacement Ally eventually showing up.

If you want several allies that (in game terms) are identical and interchangeable enough to share a single character sheet (examples in the text are an army of low-grade thugs or robot drone swarm) you can buy them as an Ally Group instead of individual Allies. This adds a multiplier to the cost, ranging from six for a Group of size 6 to 10 to 12 for a group of 51 to 100, at which point each further tenfold increase jumps the multiplier by another increment of six: 100,000 such Allies would give a multiplier of 30. RAW indicates that an Unusual Background may be in order and that large enough groups (exactly how much depends on the circumstances) may qualify as a Patron instead.

There are Allies that can be Exotic or Supernatural, and though I can't think of any good examples that aren't better represented with a different trait, even Mental or Physical. Familiars are covered on p. B38, and the Summonable Enhancement (+100%) can be used to create a fleshed out, traditional fantasy "summoner" or something a bit more modern like Pokémon, Yu-Gi-Oh or the dozens of other similar series.

Some Allies can also function as Dependents; if that is the case you calculate their value as each and add the CP values together. The GM will roll against both factors each session; if the character shows up as an Ally, they help you out and cause only the level of trouble appropriate to the character, if they show up as a Dependent then they'll inconvenience you in the appropriate manner. An Ally/Dependent hybrid can fail to show entirely, of course, and can even show up as both Ally and Dependent at the same time (Robin both assisting Batman while also needing to be rescued by him seems like a good example).

So do you allow Allies in your campaigns? Have you ever taken an Ally? In either case, how did it work out? Have you come up with some interesting uses of Modifiers for Allies? I seem to recall within recent memory a thread debating Contacts, and whether their cost made sense in light of Allies. This got me thinking; should "Patron" and/or "Contact" really be Modifiers to "Ally"?
My GURPS Fourth Edition library consists of Basic Set: Characters, Basic Set: Campaigns, Martial Arts, Powers, Powers: Enhanced Senses, Power-Ups 1: Imbuements, Power-Ups 2: Perks, Power-Ups 3: Talents, Power-Ups 4: Enhancements, Power-Ups 6: Quirks, Power-Ups 8: Limitations, Powers, Social Engineering, Supers, Template Toolkit 1: Characters, Template Toolkit 2: Races, one issue of Pyramid (3/83) a.k.a. Alternate GURPS IV, GURPS Classic Rogues, and GURPS Classic Warriors. Most of which was provided through the generosity of others. Thanks! :)

Last edited by Otaku; 10-28-2014 at 03:03 PM.
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advantage, advantage of the week, allies, ally group, aotw, basic, familiars

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