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Old 12-27-2011, 08:59 PM   #1
fsmall
 
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Default Power Grappling Perk - What Good Is It?

I've been going over the grappling rules and power grappling perk and I'm trying to figure out how useful the grappling perk really is. At first it seemed awesome, then I actually read the rules (damn that) and now it seems decidedly unawesome. Maybe I'm missing something, or maybe I'm just expecting too much from a perk. The character I had in mind for this is planned to be DX-11 and ST-16, but wasn't planning on putting more than 8 pts in wrestling in the near future. Here's what I've come up with...

Power Grappling allows you, when making strength rolls that normally get a strength bonus from a grappling skill, to waive the bonus and make a strength based roll instead, but does not apply to rolls to hit or active defenses. Wrestling, without any perks, gives you a maximum +2 bonus to strength for knowing wrestling at DX + 2. Since almost all of grappling-related moves can be strength-based rolls in the first place, the perk provides no benefit until you know the skill at DX + 3 or higher; thus the perk is useless until you have 12 or more points in Wrestling. This is great for a wrestling based character, but not so great for a character that has wrestling as a secondary skill.

The other bonus for power grappling is that you can base normally DX-based grappling skills on strength. However, most grappling skills can be based on either strength or your grappling skill - and again this is of no benefit until you have at least 12 points in a grappling skill. The only exception I've found to this is "Shift Grip" in Martial Arts that is normally based only on DX or a grappling skill. This would automatically get an effect +5 from power grappling for the above character (DX-11 but ST-16), but is the only skill that I've found like this - all the rest would require at least 12 points in wrestling before any benefits were gained.

So, Am I missing something?
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Old 12-27-2011, 09:45 PM   #2
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Default Re: Power Grappling Perk - What Good Is It?

In those Quick or Regular Contests, you can replace a ST roll (which may get a bonus from your Wrestling skill) with a ST-based Wrestling roll. Seems to me that your ST 16, DX 11 character will actually get more benefit with lower skill, since you wouldn't be giving up the default ST bonuses from high Wrestling skill.

Even with 8 pts in Wrestling (DX+2), you should be seeing an improvement of +3 on those Contests with the perk, if I'm counting right. But dinner's on, must post.
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Old 12-27-2011, 09:48 PM   #3
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Default Re: Power Grappling Perk - What Good Is It?

It's great for a dedicated wrestling character but not so good for anyone else. Sounds like a perk...
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Old 12-27-2011, 10:15 PM   #4
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Default Re: Power Grappling Perk - What Good Is It?

Try Power Grappling with Judo, which has several benefits but NOT the +2 to ST in a grapple. -GEF
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Old 12-28-2011, 01:00 AM   #5
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Default Re: Power Grappling Perk - What Good Is It?

Using an ST-based grappling skill roll rather than a straight ST roll when trying to break free is, IMO, totally worth the price of admission, especially if you have gobs of skill.
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Old 12-28-2011, 03:38 AM   #6
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Default Re: Power Grappling Perk - What Good Is It?

Is this a trick question?
  1. Power Grappling requires 10 points already in a style, or 20 points in a non-styled combat skill set. If your stile is not primarily about grappling, why does it include the PG perk? If it is, how is it that you do not intend to get 12 points in it? If you're a non-stylist, why are you taking a grappling-specific perk if you only have 8- points in grappling?
  2. Mmmmm, ST-based Feints in a Grapple before an Arm Lock.
  3. The already mentioned idea of getting Judo with this Perk.
  4. If you do the grappling skill at +3 or higher (as you should), and have a strong discrepancy between ST and DX, you get rather good benefits.

Really, Power Grappling is useful if you intend to have unequal levels of ST, DX, skill.
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Old 12-28-2011, 12:18 PM   #7
DouglasCole
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Default Re: Power Grappling Perk - What Good Is It?

Quote:
Originally Posted by fsmall View Post
At first it seemed awesome, then I actually read the rules (damn that) and now it seems decidedly unawesome.
Power Grappling depends on the right mix of stat, skill, and techniques.


Quote:
Power Grappling allows you, when making strength rolls that normally get a strength bonus from a grappling skill, to waive the bonus and make a strength based roll instead, but does not apply to rolls to hit or active defenses.
Good summary.

Quote:
Wrestling, without any perks, gives you a maximum +2 bonus to strength for knowing wrestling at DX + 2. Since almost all of grappling-related moves can be strength-based rolls in the first place,
No, they can be ST rolls, not ST-based rolls. A takedown, for example, allows a roll vs. ST, DX, or the best grappling skill. Given your example below, if you have Wrestling at DX+2, you would get to roll [Edit: Double-counted something, now fixed] vs. ST+2, DX, or DX+2 (Wrestling) using RAW, or ST (waive the ST bonus), DX, or ST+2 (ST-based wrestling) with Power Grappling. Power Grappling in this case is a wash. But if your ST is higher than your DX, this perk (which is only one point, after all) is worthwhile. Say you have ST 11, DX 10, Wrestling-12. That's ST 13, DX 10, Wrestling-12 with RAW, or ST 11, DX 10, Wrestling-13 with PG.

Examples for Wrestling at DX and DX+1 rolling ST, DX, or best grappling skill.

ST 11, DX 10, Wresting-11. RAW is ST 12, DX 10, Wrestling-11 (roll vs ST best case), or Power Grappling is ST 11, DX 10, Wrestling-12 (ST-based Wrestling is best case)

ST 11, DX 10, Wrestling-10. RAW is roll vs ST 11, DX 10, Wrestling-10 (ST is best). PG gives ST 11, DX 10, Wrestling-11 (ST or Wrestling, if it matters)

ST 16, DX 10, Wrestling-10. Meh. Rolling vs ST in both cases.

ST 16, DX 10, Wrestling-12. RAW is ST 18 as best case, PG is ST-based Wrestling-18. So you're right, you gain nothing until DX+3 (12 points), but in cases where you only get to roll skill rather than ST (Judo Throw, as mentioned), it's always better to have PG and roll vs a higher ST than DX.

Quote:
the perk provides no benefit until you know the skill at DX + 3 or higher; thus the perk is useless until you have 12 or more points in Wrestling. This is great for a wrestling based character, but not so great for a character that has wrestling as a secondary skill.
This is mostly true, but consider Arm Lock. It usually gives you a choice between Arm Lock and ST (including the Wrestling bonus). Arm Lock is crazy-cheap to buy up: An Average Technique, and for four points, you get it at up to Wrestling+4. Wrestling is already DX+2 (see above) at least in most of our discussion here, so you're talking either ST+2 or DX+6. Power Grappling allows the roll to apply the Arm Lock to be ST-based, meaning you roll ST+6 instead. So for that point in Power Grappling, this is a four-point bonus over not having it. It still means that you need ST to exceed DX by the amount of the ST bonus you'd get from Wrestling, but your ST 16, DX 11 guy would be rolling vs Arm Lock-22 in that contest to damage the arm, rather than a (still-impressive) Arm Lock-18 based on DX.

Quote:
The other bonus for power grappling is that you can base normally DX-based grappling skills on strength. However, most grappling skills can be based on either strength or your grappling skill
Not "based on," but rather "you may roll ST or skill." This is a semantic difference, but an important one. Adding your training to your ST (Relative Skill Level plus ST) is a big boost for high ST characters . . . and recall ST is twice as cheap as DX. With 80 points, you can be ST 18 or DX 14, and that one point in Power Grappling means that except for getting that initial grab (an attack roll, including many attack rolls vs. techniques to hit), your follow-on techniques will be very powerful: DX is 20 per level; skill is 1-4 points, ST is 10 points, Lifting ST is only 3 points (!), and that's the go-to point sink for grapplers. So PG + ST (and more so PG+Lifting ST) is a much more point-efficient way to get a nasty wrestler than DX. You're still going to want high skill for the hit and things like keeping your balance, and of course defenses, but PG allows you to be VERY strong, moderately to average DX, and skilled, and be a very dangerous wrestler. Just like real life.

The original poster is right on with one thing, though: Power Grappling benefits those who are strong and skilled. Not just strong. Just like real life. It is defined (correctly) as the trained ability to apply power/strength while grappling.
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Last edited by DouglasCole; 12-28-2011 at 02:34 PM. Reason: This post had one error, and needed a few clarifications. If TKD is going to call me an expert, I'd better be right. :-)
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Old 12-28-2011, 02:12 PM   #8
Peter V. Dell'Orto
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Default Re: Power Grappling Perk - What Good Is It?

Quote:
Originally Posted by DouglasCole View Post
Power Grappling depends on the right mix of stat, skill, and techniques.
For what it's worth, Doug probably understands the grappling rules and interaction of perks, skills, stats, and techniques affecting them better than anyone else, period. I saw this thread and figured it would save time to just wait for Doug to answer.

:)
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Old 12-29-2011, 04:45 PM   #9
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Default Re: Power Grappling Perk - What Good Is It?

Thanks for the replies - they have been most clarifying. One item I missed was the perk's application to techniques.

One followup question - can the power grappling perk really be used in context of a feint before making a grapple? That would seem to be a big benefit for the proposed character, although somehow it doesn't seem realistic. After all - you're not yet in contact with your opponent when you make the feint - but I will of course defer to the experts on this. :-)
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Old 12-29-2011, 05:05 PM   #10
DouglasCole
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Default Re: Power Grappling Perk - What Good Is It?

Quote:
Originally Posted by fsmall View Post
Thanks for the replies - they have been most clarifying. One item I missed was the perk's application to techniques.
It's subtle, but important. And did we mention Judo Throw? :-)

Quote:
One followup question - can the power grappling perk really be used in context of a feint before making a grapple? That would seem to be a big benefit for the proposed character, although somehow it doesn't seem realistic. After all - you're not yet in contact with your opponent when you make the feint - but I will of course defer to the experts on this. :-)
You can always use a ST-based Feint, called a Beat (see Martial Arts, pp. 100-101), which targets one particular defense. It's subject to restrictions, but it's allowed even without Power Grappling.

You can employ a ST-based Feint (a Beat) after a grapple as well.

I'll have to check my notes and books. if this ST-based feint applies to the defender's roll in a Contest. Though I'm literally writing the/a book on grappling in GURPS, my memory isn't good enough to keep all the rules in my head all the time.
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