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Old 09-14-2019, 12:28 AM   #1
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Join Date: Sep 2019
Default Skills for TL0 Aliens

I was wondering what kind of skills would an TL0 alien race have. They are a smaller race SM-2 of jungle dwelling insectoid gatherers. They can climb around the tree canopy, have telescopic vision and an acute sense of taste and smell. They are hard of hearing and have a poor sense of touch though. Eight limbed with stalked eyes giving them peripheral vision, as well as a barbed tail. They are playful, curious and are not easily frightened.

Sorry for the trait dump but yeah I'm just looking for ideas for skills that would be common in a race like this. So far I was thinking they need Brawler for the tail and Area Knowledge(Jungle) because it's their home. Other than that though idk what skills would be good general skills that most members would have or which ones, though fit the theme, are to specialized to be used species wide.
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Old 09-14-2019, 01:57 AM   #2
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Default Re: Skills for TL0 Aliens

Are they foragers, hunters, fishers, herders, gardeners, some combination, or something more exotic that doesn't have a human analog?
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Old 09-14-2019, 02:11 AM   #3
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Default Re: Skills for TL0 Aliens

Does the species have any predators? Dealing with something that is trying to kill you means they might develop a counter.

Consider how they eat, a fruit eating herbivore might have area knowledge or naturalist.

Survival (jungle) is likely either way.
They might have skills relating to construction if they have to build shelters.

Any tool use?
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Old 09-14-2019, 07:53 AM   #4
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Default Re: Skills for TL0 Aliens

Honestly, the short answer is that if a race has achieved TL10, they won't have a lot of holes, and they'll have a lot of specialists. Unless they have an exotic psychology, they're going to have scientists, engineers, builders, laborers, or some equivalent to fulfill those tasks. It's pretty necessary to achieve that level of sophistication.

Unless... They have a hive mind? They have an unusual lifespan and don't need to specialize? They make extensive use of cyberware and slot skills into their heads as needed? They've given control over to an AI? or... something else... Honestly, it's mostly about the TL.

Even the physical skills are pretty much going to run the gamut. Look at the crazy stuff that humans regularly do. We have no business with contortion, SCUBA, aerobatics, or lifting. But we do it anyway.
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Old 09-14-2019, 08:33 AM   #5
Join Date: Feb 2016
Default Re: Skills for TL0 Aliens

I think the OP said TL 0, not TL 10.
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Old 09-14-2019, 08:40 AM   #6
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Default Re: Skills for TL0 Aliens

Climbing would seem like a natural choice.
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Old 09-14-2019, 08:46 AM   #7
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Default Re: Skills for TL0 Aliens

And if they live in the canopy but have a poor sense of touch, they're going to need Acrobatics or some other skill with breakfall to help survive the regular unplanned trips to the ground.
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Old 09-14-2019, 09:48 AM   #8
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Default Re: Skills for TL0 Aliens

TL0 actually covers a wide range of abilities and life styles. whswhs's question about how they get food is a fantastic one.

A few other questions are worth asking:

Are they tool users? If they can use sticks as tools, a variety of skills become possible. Spears can be useful for dealing with foes you don't want to get close enough to to sting. You can also throw them. Tools also let you make fire and thus pottery, along with weaving baskets to hold food in. All of these require supporting skills.

Do they have any domestic animals? These can really change up life, and add some skills as well.

Do they swim?
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Old 09-14-2019, 10:29 AM   #9
Join Date: Jun 2013
Default Re: Skills for TL0 Aliens

Low Tech has some info for TL0, you may want to take a look there - if their needs and capabilities are anything like humans, they’ll likely have many of the same skills. Brawling is a good fit for their tails, but it may be appropriate (at least at later TL’s, but you may be able to fit it into TL0) to have a dedicated Tailfighting skill. This would basically be Boxing, but replacing fists with the tail. If their tail normally lacks poison, they may coat the tip in something akin to curare (even if they have poison, this may stillbe worthwhile if it’s less metabolically expensive to produce and/or is more effective than their natural poison). They probably have Performance skills and similar for entertainment purposes, although depending on how far along they are in TL0 (I’ve heard TL0 covers roughly as much technological advances as TL1-4) they may be unable to support dedicated entertainers, making it a side hobby for some tribesmen.
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Old 09-14-2019, 10:35 AM   #10
Join Date: Sep 2007
Default Re: Skills for TL0 Aliens

Their musicians are keen on tuned percussion, made mostly out of different types and sizes of wood from their native environment, originally evolved thanks to whacking things with that barbed tail.

Hard of Hearing means their concerts can often get quite loud. (Interestingly, that disad gives no penalty to musical skills per its description, and a poor sense of touch might actually come in handy if you're pounding the beat out of some hollowed tree trunks. You need that much more energy to feel the beat. Their amps won't go up to 11 once they invent them; they'll start there.)
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