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Old 02-11-2020, 08:54 PM   #1
maximara
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Default Quadruped Golem question

I have been calculating the energy cost for Quadruped 3e only Golems using Appendix Z Golem Construction System for GURPS and was wondering something.

The article states "Quadruped forms have the disadvantages Horizontal and No Fine Manipulators, and ST and DX above 10 were purchased with the No Fine Manipulators limitation for energy costs. If you want a standard man-sized golem, you can stop here."

But using ST-5 and DX-2 on the Clay golem is [-70] or -140 energy points which would put the energy cost below the 130 minimum (110 energy). Adding HT+1 results in a golem that is exactly 130 points.

But why didn't the author use Quadruped [-35] rather then the Horizontal and No Fine Manipulators combo for [-40]?

More over is the math right? For example an Adamant golem has ST 35 and DX 12 which is 290 points (250+40) from ST 10 and DX 10 and the total for the Golem is given as 814. The quadruped adjustment is -302 ((290*-0.4-35)*2) or -312 ((290*-0.4-40)*2) but this results in either 502 or 512 points not the 518 given.
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Last edited by maximara; 02-12-2020 at 05:56 AM.
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Old 02-12-2020, 12:47 PM   #2
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Default Re: Quadruped Golem question

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximara View Post
ST and DX above 10 were purchased with the No Fine Manipulators limitation for energy costs.
That seems odd to me, I always figured you would buy down ST/DX to zero and then buy your entire ST/DX with the NFM discount.

Does that mean there's no NFM discount for a ST 10 / DX 10 person?

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximara View Post
using ST-5 and DX-2 on the Clay golem is [-70] or -140 energy points which would put the energy cost below the 130 minimum (110 energy). Adding HT+1 results in a golem that is exactly 130 points.
Was there a specific reference to a ST 10 DX 9 HT 15 golem somewhere?

I think maybe you erred in calculating -70 ? -5 ST [-50] and -2 DX [-40] totals [-90]

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximara View Post
But why didn't the author use Quadruped [-35] rather then the Horizontal and No Fine Manipulators combo for [-40]?
I think the author possibly forgot there was a Quadruped metatrait on B263 which is worth fewer points as a discount since it countains the 5 points Extra Legs advantage.

Using the term Quadruped when that's absent could be confusing. It seems they did remember to keep Extra Legs in mind when writing it, as it's one of the things mentioned (between Extra Arm and Flexibility) as optional add-ons.

I think they just wanted the baseline template to be a little more clumsy than actual quadriped animals tend to be.

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximara View Post
More over is the math right? For example an Adamant golem has ST 35 and DX 12 which is 290 points (250+40) from ST 10 and DX 10 and the total for the Golem is given as 814.
Before we even calculate whether or not the Q Energy is correct, maybe we should first check to see if the base Energy is correct...

814-250=564 more energy...

There's a CP*2+250 formula for energy costs, so a template being 290 higher should result in costing 580 more energy.

I'm not sure why you're counting up the Adament from base 10 to get 290 points...

I would count it up from the Clay's baselines. The difference between ST 15 and ST 35 is only 20, so that's 200 points and the difference between DX 11 and DX 12 is 1, so that's 20 points. So we have a +220 character points in these 2 respects.

Some other stuff you didn't calculate: as they compare to a Clay, Adaments are also +1 IQ (20 points) and +1 HT (10 points) and +12 DR (60 points) and these extra 90 points would bring us to +310.

That means I would expect the energy cost to actually be 620 higher. Well, 624 actually, since they are also +4 character points in skills.

564 instead of 624 is a gap of 60 points. My best guess is that author Steven E. Ehrbar perhaps forgot to apply the cost of DR to the Adamant golem.

F22 actually mentions "Its DR is semi-ablative (see pp. B46-47), but damage never
reduces it below DR 9" so actually I could recalculate the DR costs based on this.
DR 9 [45]
DR 3 (Semi-Ablative -20%) [12]
That only saves me 3 points bringing the gap down to 57 though, so it's not much help...

One thought that comes to mind is perhaps extra golem DR might be assumed to include "Can't Wear Armor" so that only Chalk/Clay/Cotton/Flesh/FPS/Paper/Porcelain/Wax/Wool golems would be able to wear body armor.

It would definitely make sense to take the "Tough Skin" discount on DR for golems. They have "Immunity to Metabolic Hazards" after all, so who cares if scratch-poisons or skin contact affects them?

Both those together max it out to -80% so we can drop the semi-ablative idea, and 12 DR only costs 12 points instead of 60.

Accounting for that difference in an Adament Golem should be simpler. One thing that comes to mind is HP. That's 2/level so perhaps we could be -6 to HP to cover the gap?

But is that realistic?

- - -

Clay Golems (200lbs) are homogenous, B558 actually says 125/216lbs should have 40/48 HP... so we already know baseline golems are a bit on the low-HP side when it comes to what structures normally would be... having merely 15 HP based on their ST.

For realism, an extra 30 HP [60] would make sense to pad out golems to B558 guidelines. How could we pay for that?

The 2nd paragraph has 2 aspects relating to HP
"destroyed if reduced to -HP"
"a golem lasts until reduced to 0 HP or until its creator commands it to cease functioning"

B137 "Unnatural" (which Clay Golem has) covers the 1st part, but there is no reflection of the 2nd part in the template which I've noticed. Normally at 0 HP you would be able to continue functioning if you pass HT rolls each second, which doesn't seem like an option for a golem.

Fragile: Unnatural worth -50 would be the equivalent price of "Easy to Kill 25"...
"Hard to Kill" and "Hard to Subdue" are priced the same...
So maybe "Fragile (auto KO at 0 HP)" should also be worth -50 like Unnatural?

That would at least pay for +25 HP...

To cover the remaining 10 point spread...

Clay Golems are already Dead Broke, but it occurs to me that the M59 template hasn't exactly optimized the investment in social disadvantages.

In B28 terms seems to assume a Clay Golem is "0 Status" since they don't gain/lose points in their template... but wouldn't -2 (serf or street person) actually make sense for them?

B265 has a "Cost of Living" for example linked to status, which is 100 for serfs and 600 for status 0. I imagine a golem doesn't have much in the way of ongoing COL... "Doesn't Need to Eat or Drink" would presuambly factor into that somehow, right?

B266 "patch of sidewalk" or "room in a flophouse" is also what you would probably expect for golem storage, rather than the "large apartment and a car" of status 0.

That would perfectly cover the remaining -10 points and even everything out!

- - -

Adament Golem is 500lbs (and presumably still homogenous) and the 343/512lb amounts of HP are 56/64 HP suggested for Homogenous Objects. With ST35 they presumably only have 35 HP (HP bonuses are not listed for golems in the Pyramid chart).

If I add the +30 HP that I have suggested above to the Clay Golem template (since HP is never addressed, but then neither is their status or their auto-KO at 0 HP, which pays for this perfectly!) this would bring Adament up to 65 HP, which is too high.

If I applied the -6 HP that I've suggested, this reduces it to 65 to 59 which falls within the acceptable range.

Of course, this encounters a NEW problem...

F22 and M53 both suggest it has TRIPLE the HP (not just triple the DR) of an equivalent weight of STONE. One third of 12 DR would be 4 DR... which happens to be the DR of Gold/Granite/Lead all of which have ST 20. I would say "Granite" sounds like the closest match to "Stone", and Gold/Lead golems are heavy whereas Granite Golem is 500lbs like Adament Golem so it makes for the easiest comparison.

If using my suggested +30 HP formula (estimating golem HP based on weight) I give Granite Golem 50 HP, we would expect Adamant to have 150 HP. To get there from 65 HP (+85) they get from adjusted ST 35+30HP costs [170]...

I don't know if this is really the ideal approach though. The problem I have with that is that in many cases HP is used to function as a stand-in for mass (reducing knockback, for example) but Adamant doesn't actually weigh more than Concrete... both golems are 500lbs.

I wonder if instead of buying 75 extra HP to emulate the guidelines if maybe Injury Tolerance: Damage Reduction would work better. It costs merely [50] to get a damage divisor of 2, so if I merely bought +10 HP [20] for the Adament Golem (total 75 HP) then with an injury divisor of 2 they would function very similar to a 150 HP creature, but for the cost of only [70] instead of [170].

One other thing that comes to mind is that Adamant is a more valuable material than Clay. Clay Golems already have Social Stigma: Valuable Property [-10] (B156) but I would assume one made of Adamant might have something atop that since it's not just "hey I'm a useful servant" but also "and I can be broken down into stuff to make walls and armor and weapons out of".

Actually not sure why Valuable Property is a fixed cost, I could see that potentially varying based on HOW valuable you are. For example: in some cultures women might be worth more than golems, and in other cultures, golems might be worth more than women, depending on supply/demand.

Maybe the way to do that might be to give them an "Enemy" social advantage, where the enemy is people who want to break them down into Adament building components?

B135 lets you claim up to -60 points in Enemies, so that would nearly pay for the entire [70] cost of HP+Damage Reduction I proposed for beefing up the Adament relative to Granite HP. Any idea on where to get the extra 100 points?

The only problem there is I don't think Damage Reduction helps with calculating Cover DR, so this would prevent the Adamant Golem from having triple the cover DR (claculated by both HP and DR) of a Granite Golem like you would expect them to. Having 150 HP makes someone really hard to knockback though (since HP can sub for ST). Is there some way to maybe get "very easy to knockback" to compensate here? Having triple the HP for purposes of cover DR shouldn't mean that a 500lb Adament Golem is harder to knock backward than a 500lb Granite Golem...
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Old 02-13-2020, 09:06 PM   #3
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Default Re: Quadruped Golem question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plane View Post
That seems odd to me, I always figured you would buy down ST/DX to zero and then buy your entire ST/DX with the NFM discount.

Does that mean there's no NFM discount for a ST 10 / DX 10 person?
Since NFM is both a limitation and a disadvantage you don't get the limitation discount on ST and DX
as the base costs are [0] each so there is literally nothing to adjust but there still is the disadvantage discount for [-30] or [-50] for no limbs.

Yes, having NFM as both a limitation on two stats as well as a straight disadvantage is a royal pain but that is how the thing is set up. Joy.

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Originally Posted by Plane View Post
Was there a specific reference to a ST 10 DX 9 HT 15 golem somewhere?
No, it was a creation of mine, "To make things easier for GMs a Base Golem that needs ''exactly'' 130 energy to make is provided."

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plane View Post
I think maybe you erred in calculating -70 ? -5 ST [-50] and -2 DX [-40] totals [-90]
Uh, where is that "-2 DX [-40]" coming from?
"Clay Golem; Attribute Modifiers: ST+5 [50]; DX+1 [20]; IQ-2 [-40]; HT+4 [40]." (Magic pg 59)

To get a base golem that is exactly 130 energy one needs
ST-5 [-50]; DX-1 [-20]; HT+1 [10]. [-60]*2 = -120 energy.

Add that to the clay golem and you get 130 energy, the absolute minimum.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plane View Post
I think the author possibly forgot there was a Quadruped metatrait on B263 which is worth fewer points as a discount since it countains the 5 points Extra Legs advantage.

Using the term Quadruped when that's absent could be confusing. It seems they did remember to keep Extra Legs in mind when writing it, as it's one of the things mentioned (between Extra Arm and Flexibility) as optional add-ons.

I think they just wanted the baseline template to be a little more clumsy than actual quadriped animals tend to be.
It still makes things a mess.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plane View Post
Before we even calculate whether or not the Q Energy is correct, maybe we should first check to see if the base Energy is correct...

814-250=564 more energy...

There's a CP*2+250 formula for energy costs, so a template being 290 higher should result in costing 580 more energy.

I'm not sure why you're counting up the Adament from base 10 to get 290 points...
To make the later Quadruped calculations for the GM saner.

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Originally Posted by Plane View Post
I would count it up from the Clay's baselines.
I have a minor in math though in setting things up I can totally FUBAR things. Spent way too much time on setting up The Golem of Prague as a lens of Magic's Clay golem because I kept missing that Unnatural [-50] was replaced by Fragile (Unnatural) [-50] and was banging my head trying to figure out where I was messing up.

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Originally Posted by Plane View Post
Some other stuff you didn't calculate: as they compare to a Clay, Adaments are also +1 IQ (20 points) and +1 HT (10 points) and +12 DR (60 points) and these extra 90 points would bring us to +310.
Since I was using the Base Golem as the baseline (hence the name) the math is different but should get the same results if set up correctly.

Adament (Base Golem adj)
ST 35; ST+25; [250]
DX 12; DX+2 [40]
IQ 9; IQ+1 [20]
HT 15; NA
Skills 12; [2]
DR 12; DR+12; [60]

250+40+20+2+60=372 or 744 energy. Add in the 130 and you get 874; as you say 60 less than what we are given.

For the Quadruped Golems the reason for for the Base Golem's existence becomes clear - you going to have to buy down the ST and DX to 10 and then buy them back up at 60% of their original point totals.

So why not have a golem that starts there and use a very simple ([ST]+[DX])*-0.4-35 formula rather then having that extra step?

I mean for the Adament Golem you are still going to be use ((250+40)*-0.4-35) and get [-151] or -302 energy. Add that to the 874 and you get 572 but even subtracting [60] doesn't get us to 518 but 512 instead. Using the 814 we are given we again get 512 not 518. So something there is wonked. Yes, it works out to be 3 points but it is in the wrong direction to be Adament's Semi-Ablative DR as that would be [-6] not the [6] difference I am getting.

So, I'm not even sure where that 518 coming from. There is a reason my math teachers were always in "show your work" mode. Heck, it is something I do with the write ups I do on the GURPS wiki so if I do FUBAR the math someone can more easily spot the error and correct it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plane View Post
F22 actually mentions "Its DR is semi-ablative (see pp. B46-47), but damage never reduces it below DR 9" so actually I could recalculate the DR costs based on this.
While one should ideally do this it is just more thing for an GM who wants to make golems of his own to worry about sofor their sanity I ignored it and given the benefits are negligible it was a good move.
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Last edited by maximara; 02-13-2020 at 09:27 PM.
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Old 02-14-2020, 10:20 AM   #4
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Default Re: Quadruped Golem question

You know, what would really benefit that chart is if prior to the "Energy" and "Q Energy" columns if he had first stated the character point pricing of the templates.

We can of course calculate those intended amounts (subtract 250, the cost of 0-point clay golem, and then divide the remainder by 2, the quotient is the CP total) but it is an added hassle, especially for convenient comparison with checking the totals for the modifiers to attributes/DR/skills.

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximara View Post
Since NFM is both a limitation and a disadvantage you don't get the limitation discount on ST and DX

as the base costs are [0] each so there is literally nothing to adjust
I guess why I was thinking this is that you might have situations like designing a power to buff your NFM allies.

Affliction (Advantage: Unrefined Strength +30%) [13]
"Unrefined Strength" being short for Striking ST +1 (No Fine Manipulators -40%) [3].

This discounted pricing makes sense if you use Affliction on someone with ST 10 or higher, but does that mean it should not be discounted if you use it on someone with ST 0 to 9 and would not work on them since the full price was not paid for the enhancement?

The idea of attributes being an option under the "Advantage" enhancement for Affliction is introduced

Looking at H61 it seems like you're right though, the "Cat" template only applies NFM discount to the DX it buys, only things with 10+ ST like the Bear applies it there.

It still feels right to buy it down to 0 and buy the entire quantity with a discount though...

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximara View Post
No, it was a creation of mine, "To make things easier for GMs a Base Golem that needs ''exactly'' 130 energy to make is provided."
Ah okay. Would you be reducing the estimated weight (200lbs for ST 15 clay) to go along with it then? That would help in lowering the HP it ought to have.

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximara View Post
Quote:
I think maybe you erred in calculating -70 ? -5 ST [-50] and -2 DX [-40] totals [-90]
Uh, where is that "-2 DX [-40]" coming from?
"Clay Golem; Attribute Modifiers: ST+5 [50]; DX+1 [20]; IQ-2 [-40]; HT+4 [40]." (Magic pg 59)
I was getting -2 DX [-40] because you were lowering the DX 11 default for the spell to DX 9 for your custom.

You had typed:
using ST-5 and DX-2 on the Clay golem is [-70]

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximara View Post
To get a base golem that is exactly 130 energy one needs
ST-5 [-50]; DX-1 [-20]; HT+1 [10]. [-60]*2 = -120 energy.
Add that to the clay golem and you get 130 energy, the absolute minimum.
That math works out, yeah. Though it seems more complicated to mess with BOTH the ST and HT when you could just tweak one or the other for 10-point increments.

Or just ignore them altogether becase DX-3 [-60] would be the simpelst way to reduce energy costs to the minimum while staying within the default guidelines for ST.

"Smaller Golems" further down the page actually specifies a 130 energy golem already though, giving them ST 8 (-70) for SM-2 (25lbs) which sucks because to get down to 130 they only had to reduce to ST 9.

Seems like they didn't reduce DX at all, which might make sense for a small golem (you want them for fine-tuned work) but if you were doing a cheaper template for a normal-sized golem you'd want higher ST.

They suggest ST 11 for a SM-1 (85lb) golem which they don't reduce to 130 (energy cost is 170).

I'm thinking maybe a simple way if you want to keep the costs minimized is basically for each SM change to swap 2 points of ST for 1 point of DX, so that small golems are agile but weak and large golems are strong but clumsy. HT could remain consistent.

One major problem I have with "No Fatigue" trait is that HT is actually still full cost, despite it's pricing including FP, which is basically worthless

Zombies 67-68 breaks down the pricing as basically being [-30] buying FP down to 0 from the default 10 for ST 10 beings, then having "exempt from all involuntary FP drains" [30].

Using the pricing for Resistant/Immunity for "there are effects that cause FP losses that these things canít prevent, such as attacks that inflict fatigue rather than injury" basically throws purchasing Damage Resistance (Common -40%) under the bus though...

B46 specifies "standard damage type" as one of the "Common" options... but then I do notice it specifies:
one of burning, corrosion, crushing, cutting, impaling, piercing, or toxic
Fatigue seems to be the only type absent there... so while "Fatigue Attack" is a "damage type" it perhaps is not a "STANDARD" damage type, and so you can't actually have DR against it?

In that case, I guess "Immune to Involuntary FP drains" is the only protection you can have which is specific to just Fatigue Attack?

I guess I figured that normal (non-limited DR) would still reduce the Basic Damage of Fatigue Attack so that only the Penetrating Damage would be subtracted from FP.

I'm not sure what the 15/10 point versions of resistant to that would be, maybe -3 or -8 to the basic damage?

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximara View Post
To make the later Quadruped calculations for the GM saner.
Ah I think I get where you're coming from now, the idea being to design a baseline ST10/DX10 golem, which explains why you'd use HT to round out the price since HT doesn't have NFM-influenced limitations.

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximara View Post
For the Quadruped Golems the reason for for the Base Golem's existence becomes clear - you going to have to buy down the ST and DX to 10 and then buy them back up at 60% of their original point totals.
I inferred right! (I wrote my prev statement before reading this)

My wrong assumption (that we could buy ST and DX up from 0 using the -40% NFM discount, not to mention size discount) is probably why I didn't understand this purpose initially.

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximara View Post
So why not have a golem that starts there and use a very simple ([ST]+[DX])*-0.4-35 formula rather then having that extra step?
That definitely simplies the formula, though it would lead me to want to avoid golems with ST or DX of 9 or less entirely, even if it might make sense for the SM-2 "Smaller Golems" option.

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximara View Post
I mean for the Adament Golem you are still going to be use ((250+40)*-0.4-35) and get [-151] or -302 energy.

Add that to the 874 and you get 572 but even subtracting [60] doesn't get us to 518 but 512 instead.

Using the 814 we are given we again get 512 not 518.

So something there is wonked. Yes, it works out to be 3 points but it is in the wrong direction to be Adament's Semi-Ablative DR as that would be [-6] not the [6] difference I am getting.

So, I'm not even sure where that 518 coming from.
You don't subtract -35 for the "Quadriped" template in basic. You subtract -30 for NFM and -10 for Horizontal, totalling -40. The golems here aren't priced with the +5 "Extra Legs" advantage.

This would tweak from -151 to -146 and -302 to -292. This tweaks from 572 to 562 energy, and subtracting 60 reduces it to 502...

Which is still not 518 (I've moved even further in the wrong direction) so I'm now even more confused than you...
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Old 02-14-2020, 02:09 PM   #5
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Default Re: Quadruped Golem question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plane View Post
You know, what would really benefit that chart is if prior to the "Energy" and "Q Energy" columns if he had first stated the character point pricing of the templates.
I think the author figured that since Energy was 2*[point cost] that a point column wasn't needed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plane View Post
Ah okay. Would you be reducing the estimated weight (200lbs for ST 15 clay) to go along with it then? That would help in lowering the HP it ought to have.
The Base Golem is only for making figuring point and energy cost easier for the GM. It doesn't help in any other regard.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plane View Post
That math works out, yeah. Though it seems more complicated to mess with BOTH the ST and HT when you could just tweak one or the other for 10-point increments.
Tweeking ST out of 10 defeats the whole purpose of the Base Golem. :-)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plane View Post
Zombies 67-68 breaks down the pricing as basically being [-30] buying FP down to 0 from the default 10 for ST 10 beings, then having "exempt from all involuntary FP drains" [30].
I worked on the assumption that all the author had in front of them was the Basic Set and Magic and so restricted myself to those two books. But you are right it is kind of wonked to have that a [0] feature.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plane View Post
Ah I think I get where you're coming from now, the idea being to design a baseline ST10/DX10 golem, which explains why you'd use HT to round out the price since HT doesn't have NFM-influenced limitations.

I inferred right! (I wrote my prev statement before reading this)

My wrong assumption (that we could buy ST and DX up from 0 using the -40% NFM discount, not to mention size discount) is probably why I didn't understand this purpose initially.
I tend to think three steps ahead but forget to really make sure my explanation of those steps is understandable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plane View Post
You don't subtract -35 for the "Quadriped" template in basic. You subtract -30 for NFM and -10 for Horizontal, totalling -40. The golems here aren't priced with the +5 "Extra Legs" advantage.
But why? The Quadruped template is right there in the Basic Set p 263 so why use this weird [-40] think? It almost like the author didn't understand why Quadruped was priced the way it was. Extra Legs spells out that If you can walk on a limb but cannot use it to manipulate objects, it is a leg in GURPS (for legs that double as arms, see Extra Arms, p. 53).

In fact when you actually think about it just NFM and Horizontal by themselves simply doesn't make sense for a Quadruped. All that combo does is give you a a creature that has to use its arms as legs. It does not mean the creature actually has four legs.

I should mention that GURPS Dragons came out June 2004 some six months before GURPS Magic came out in December 2005 and the 4e version of dragons that are Quadrupeds all have:

ST+x (No Fine Manipulators, -40%); DX+x (No Fine Manipulators, -40%) and Disadvantages: Quadruped [-35]

as part of their package. So GURPS Dragons definitively demonstrates that Quadruped [-35] not [-40] is the standard which matches what is on Basic Set p 263.

In fact, I have no idea why the author is ignoring what Morphology Meta-Traits says and doing his own thing with his nonstandard [-40] because, unless I somehow messed up on the PDF search of the Basic Set, the value for Quadruped is [-35] and GURPS Dragons, which predates his other source (GURPS Magic), confirms this.

So again why come up with this weird nonstandard meta-trait version of Quadruped especially when you don't even take the trouble of explaining why dumped the Extra Legs (Four Legs) [5] part of the trait. Heck, look at all the reasoning I went through when doing D&D Lich in GURPS with regard to nearly every aspect of it. Would it have been so hard to to put in at least a sentence regarding why the Extra Legs (Four Legs) [5] part of Quadruped meta-trait was dropped/ignored?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plane View Post
This would tweak from -151 to -146 and -302 to -292. This tweaks from 572 to 562 energy, and subtracting 60 reduces it to 502...

Which is still not 518 (I've moved even further in the wrong direction) so I'm now even more confused than you...
As I implied before the author should have shown his work, if only for one golem, so we could see just what he was doing (and see if it was right). As it is we might as well be looking at a Magic 8 ball for answers. It seems to be that the math is totally messed up and we are going to have to refigure everything. Wonderful.

Oh another piece of math fun is that Size can effect the cost of Strength for -10% for each +1 to SM (Basic Set pg 12)
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Last edited by maximara; 02-14-2020 at 03:39 PM.
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Old 02-14-2020, 03:34 PM   #6
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Default Re: Quadruped Golem question

Do you think maybe we should recalculate the weights of golems based on what weight homogenous creatuers should have at their assigned ST (assuming HP is same) rather than give a HP bonus to match the guidelines?

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximara View Post
I think the author figured that since Energy was 2*[point cost] that a point column wasn't needed.
It's not though, it's 2*cost plus 250.

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximara View Post
The Base Golem is only for making figuring point and energy cost easier for the GM. It doesn't help in any other regard.
If we defined a base golem then we could redefine others as templates which apply to that base.

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximara View Post
Incorrect: "Morphology Meta-Traits ... Quadruped: You are a four-legged creature with no arms (a “centauroid” would simply take Extra Legs – plus Hooves, if equine). Extra Legs (Four Legs) [5]; Horizontal [-10]; and No Fine Manipulators [-30]. -35 points" (Basic Set p 263)

I searched through the PDF of the Basic Set and that seems to be the only place where Quadruped is given a point total. Yes, the term appears elsewhere in the book but those appearances do not give a point total. So I have no idea where this [-40] Quadruped is coming from as it doesn't seem to be coming form the basic set.
It's coming from Appendix Z that you linked to.
Quadruped forms have the disadvantages Horizontal and No Fine Manipulators, and ST and DX above 10 were purchased with the No Fine Manipulators limitation for energy costs.
Quadruped forms ironically do NOT have the quadruped metatrait from B263, they only have Horizontal/NFM. There's no mention of Extra Legs at http://www.sjgames.com/pyramid/sample.html?id=5553 in respect to Qs.

That's fine with me because that metatrait is ill-defined to begin with (should produces 2 handless arms + 4 legs, since NFM is not No Arms) for Extra Legs to use existing non-leg limbs (whether an arm, a tail, a striker...) should probably be noted distinctively, whether that gives a Limb -20% discount like with Striker or whehter it's considered a -0% modifier.

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I should mention that GURPS Dragons came out June 2004 some six months before GURPS Magic came out in December 2005 and the 4e version of dragons that are Quadrupeds all have:

ST+x (No Fine Manipulators, -40%); DX+x (No Fine Manipulators, -40%) and Disadvantages: Quadruped [-35]

as part of their package. So GURPS Dragons definitively demonstrates that Quadruped [-35] not [-40] is the standard which matches what is on Basic Set p 263.
Not everything has to meet that standard though.

Being Horizontal already basically makes you quadripedal, you can have that with NFM or not.

Extra Legs is supposed to reflect horizontals with decent balance even though mechanically it should mean you're running on 2 arms + 4 legs, since horizontal means you need to put your arms (handed or handless) on the ground to run.

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In fact, I have no idea why the author is ignoring what Morphology Meta-Traits says and doing his own thing with his nonstandard [-40] because, unless I somehow messed up on the PDF search of the Basic Set, that value for Quadruped is [-35] and GURPS Dragons, which predates his other source (GURPS Magic), confirms this.
He doesn't call out the metatrait/template though, he calls out 2 of the 3 components.

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Oh another piece of math fun is that Size can effect the cost of Strength for -10% for each +1 to SM (Basic Set pg 12)
Maybe that's worked into "Larger Golems" at the end? Haven't checked.
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Old 02-14-2020, 05:54 PM   #7
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Default Re: Quadruped Golem question

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One thought that comes to mind is perhaps extra golem DR might be assumed to include "Can't Wear Armor" so that only Chalk/Clay/Cotton/Flesh/FPS/Paper/Porcelain/Wax/Wool golems would be able to wear body armor.
I'd argue the reverse. Golems are basically humanoid or animal-shaped mobile statues. That means you could up-armor golems with a tough body structure like stone or metal as long as you're willing to have an even slower golem.

By contrast, golems made from fragile or brittle materials might suffer damage if they were up-armored with anything other than flexible, non-metallic armor and golems made from flimsy materials might suffer damage or collapse under the weight of heavy armor.

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It would definitely make sense to take the "Tough Skin" discount on DR for golems. They have "Immunity to Metabolic Hazards" after all, so who cares if scratch-poisons or skin contact affects them?
This seems appropriate, but it means they might be vulnerable to supernatural effects which would otherwise be stopped by DR.

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I don't know if this is really the ideal approach though. The problem I have with that is that in many cases HP is used to function as a stand-in for mass (reducing knockback, for example) but Adamant doesn't actually weigh more than Concrete... both golems are 500lbs.
I assume that metal golems are like bronze statues - hollow inside. That limits weight and mass of material required.

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Actually not sure why Valuable Property is a fixed cost, I could see that potentially varying based on HOW valuable you are. For example: in some cultures women might be worth more than golems, and in other cultures, golems might be worth more than women, depending on supply/demand.
Social Stigma is more about freedom of action, legal protections, and civil rights than specific value to your culture. "Value added" to Social Stigmas should take the form of other social advantages, like Status or Social Regard.

Example, both a medieval queen and a female serf share Social Stigma (Valuable Property), but the queen has SS 5-7 based on her personal political clout. Meanwhile, the serf has SS -2 in addition to her Social Stigma. Everyone can push her around, even male serfs, and she has almost no agency to fight back. If she's Beautiful, that probably makes her extremely valuable property. She's still chattel, but if she's clever she can leverage her good looks to wrangle better deals for herself and otherwise make her life less miserable.

Of course, if being highly valuable or low value property gives you more or less agency, then it makes sense to make it a variable cost Social Stigma, say, -5 for a -1 Reaction if you're highly valuable property (i.e., serious consequences happen to anyone who steals or abuses you), and -15 for a -3 Reaction if you're low value or expendable property. That puts you at the same level as outlaws who have no civil rights. If you get killed, nobody cares. If you get injured, you're just as likely to be abandoned as cared for.

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Maybe the way to do that might be to give them an "Enemy" social advantage, where the enemy is people who want to break them down into Adament building components?
That seems more campaign dependent than a built-in template feature. After all, golems don't just come into existence on their own. A free golem might have enemies, but a golem owned by a powerful wizard is likely to discourage would-be golem scavengers.

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B135 lets you claim up to -60 points in Enemies, so that would nearly pay for the entire [70] cost of HP+Damage Reduction I proposed for beefing up the Adament relative to Granite HP. Any idea on where to get the extra 100 points?
Realistically, what metal gets you as compared to stone is Not Brittle, and no semi-ablative limitation to DR. If tougher materials have more favorable metaphysical properties, then improved attributes and secondary traits are justified. They could easily burn up 100 points, say IQ +1 [+20]; DX + 1 [+20]; HT: +2 [+20]; Basic Speed: +1 [+20]; Will: +4 [+20]
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Old 02-14-2020, 06:13 PM   #8
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Default Re: Quadruped Golem question

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That's fine with me because that metatrait is ill-defined to begin with (should produces 2 handless arms + 4 legs, since NFM is not No Arms) for Extra Legs to use existing non-leg limbs (whether an arm, a tail, a striker...) should probably be noted distinctively, whether that gives a Limb -20% discount like with Striker or whehter it's considered a -0% modifier.
Actually AIUI the way the meta-trait is designed reflects how GURPS defines arms and legs.

"In GURPS, a limb with which you can manipulate objects is an arm, regardless of where it grows or what it looks like."

In fact, Extra Arms. has the limitation Foot Manipulator (-30%) where the “arm” is really an unusually dextrous leg.

"If you can walk on a limb but cannot use it to manipulate objects, it is a leg in GURPS. [...]The human norm is two legs, which costs 0 points. It costs points to have more than two legs" (Basic Set pg 54)

Per this Horizontal [-10] and No Fine Manipulators [-30] alone would result in two limbs that could not function as legs ie they don't support your weight, they are effectively Paraplegic, or something else that prevents them from being used as legs in the manner GURPS defines them.

Hence the need for the Extra Legs [5] - it's not really extra legs in terms of number limbs as you think rather but allows two of your limbs to function as legs.

So not only is the author messing up his Energy cost math he is effectively creating quadruped Golems with 4 limbs that can only really use 2 of them as legs ie crippled Golems. Wonderful.
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Old 02-15-2020, 12:19 PM   #9
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In fact, Extra Arms. has the limitation Foot Manipulator (-30%) where the ďarmĒ is really an unusually dextrous leg.
The "cannot walk" aspect of that (B53) is sorta confusing though. Like for example, if you have Extra Legs (B54) you can continue to move (half speed) if you lose a leg, so I assume you could keep moving if you were using it as an arm too.

It seems like, if you had just Extra Arm (Foot Manupiulator -30%) [7] and don't buy extra legs, that it might mean two possible things:

1) you have grown a 3rd leg (and require ALL THREE to move around, it is not a spare like if you took Extra Legs) but you can lift it up and use it as an arm.
2) you have 2 legs, but can lift one of them up to use it as an arm
Then of course there is how we represent "Modifying Beings With One or Two Arms". There are two possible disadvantages here:

Foot Manipulator [-3]
Foot Manipulators [-6]

In the first case, you have 1 normal arm, and your 2nd arm is actually using both your legs as an arm.

In the 2nd case, you have NO normal arms, but you can use both of your legs as a pair of arms.

Normally you need an advantage to be Switchable to use Temporary Disadvantage though. I wonder if FM is the reason many often forget this?

I think buying Switchable would NORMALLY make sense, since you are actually getting an advantage here in a way. Having the forms of Lame representing missing limbs as switchable actually has a benefit: protecting them from harm. Similarly, having a switchable Extra Arm would ALSO protect the arm from harm when it is switched off.

Why I think Switchable wasn't charged was basically because "your arm is your leg and your foot is your hand" counteract the normal benefits acquired from switchable limbs: in neither state is either limb actually protected from harm.

Another thing is I'm supposing you don't get the normal benefit of Legless, which is getting points for reducing your Basic Move down to 0 (as B141 instructs).

I would normally do that, if taking Legless as a temporary disadvantage, but that would make pricing more complicated so I can see "switchability is free" as a simple compromise. +10% offsets the -10% you would get for taking Temporary Disadvantage: -2 to Basic Move.

B141 "Legless" seems wrong form of Lame to take if it was just one Extra Arm. Normally it means you are missing BOTH legs, so getting a -30% discount would seem like you need to use both your legs to fulfill the job of 1 arm.

The -20% you'd get for Temporary Disadvantage: Missing Leg(s) seems more appropriate if you're left with 1 leg you can still stand on (and which can still be hit).

This also happens to be the exact value of "Limb -20%" for Strikers (introduced in GURPS Martial Arts) which upgrades an existing arm or leg to 'Striker' status instead of generating a new striker limb.

For ONE extra arm that is a Foot Manipulator, this should actually be Missing Legs [-20] which actually means missing LEG (singular) for humans.

You have lost some, but not all, of your legs.
For a human, this means you have one leg.
It should probably be titled Missing Leg(s) since plural only applies if they had more than one to begin with... but in that case I would think it would actually be Negated Advantage: Extra Legs... weird.

So you could do:
Extra Arm 1 (Temporary Disadvantage: Legless -30%) [7]
Extra Arm 1 (Temporary Disadvantage: Missing Leg -20%) [8]
Extra Arm 2 (Temporary Disadvantage: Legless -30%) [17]
Looking at this, it seems cheaper to just by the middle one twice for [16].

If somebody who already had a Missing Leg got smacked with Affliction (Disadvantage: Missing Leg+20%) [12] would it do nothing at all, or stack with their existing to upgrade their disadvantage to Legless? I guess that's the question as to whether or not that's feasible.

Kind of like what happens if you have a One-Handed Man who gets hit with Affliction (Disadvantage: One Hand +20%) [12] if they would be unaffected, or lose their remaining hand and be upgraded to No Fine Manipulators?

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Per this Horizontal [-10] and No Fine Manipulators [-30] alone would result in two limbs that could not function as legs ie they don't support your weight, they are effectively Paraplegic, or something else that prevents them from being used as legs in the manner GURPS defines them.
I'm not understanding how you're reaching that conclusion. One thing to keep in mind here is that legs are not the only things you can stand on.

B139:
You can use one hand (if you have hands) while standing on your other limbs
That stands out as intentional: a quadriped human for example, is most comfortable "standing" using 4 limbs: 2 legs and 2 arms.

Ground Move is 0 if not using both of your arms to stand on: you need to "sit" if using both hands, but can remain "standing" on all 4 limbs if only using 1 hand.

"I can run on 2 legs and 2 arms as fast as someone without this can run on two legs" seems to be a built-in benefit to Horizontal.

It seems kind of weird to allow that without giving a creature long arms (the length of legs) or short legs (the length of arms) to keep their limbs of roughly equal length, and the angle of torso level. Otherwise you'd expect their torso to be at a decline (shoulders lower than hips) like when humans "bear walk" or else require some inefficiencies (non-straight legs, feet behind hips instead of under them, wide feet outside of hips instead of under them) that would make walking more tiring.

I could actually see considering that as a perk (making the other effects of Horizontal maybe worth -11?) since there are benefits to being able to do that:
*B385 you take up two hexes, which can be useful if you want to present/deny just the upper or lower body to an enemy's reach.
*B389 for purposes of blocking line of sight for smaller creatures, you count as kneeling while standing
**this weirdly, mentions no benefit to sitters, but I imagine they should enjoy at least this benefit, as kneeling would presumably keep you taller than sitting/crawling would. MA99 for exampel has similar benefits/drawbacks for attacking standing foes in the 1st section of those in a kneeling or sitting posture.
**crawlers on the other hand, I wonder if perhaps should count as lying, as MA99 gives them similar (-2) penalties as lying down in respect to upper body and lower body hit locations. I would also assume crawlers take up 2 hexes like liers but Basic doesn't emphasize that.

Plus I would imagine that for some purposes (say for example, being easier to kick or harder to Punch) that hands would operate similar to feet while doing a "four limbed stand" (or walk/run) using the arms.

One thing I'm not sure of is how it works for a bear switching between 4-limbed stand and 2-limbed stand, like if that takes a Change Posture or something.

Given how it blocks line of sight similar to kneeling, I'm thinking maybe if using the MA99 rules ("Postures, Hit Locations, and Techniques") that a creature like a bear doing a 4-limbed stand might perhaps use some of the rules for kneeling in terms of how easy some locations are to hit.

Like for example "Remove- 1 from the hit location penalty to attack the neck, face, eye, or skull of a kneeling or sitting man". This doesn't apply to a bear on it's legs, but I could see why perhaps it ought to apply to a bear standing horizontal on it's legs+arms.

Similarly, instead of getting the above-mentioned benefit, a bear perhaps should get the kneeling benefit (Remove -1 from the hit location penalty to attack the feet, legs, or groin of a standing man) when doing a 4-limbed stand?

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Hence the need for the Extra Legs [5] - it's not really extra legs in terms of number limbs as you think rather but allows two of your limbs to function as legs.
There isn't a "need" for it though. The point of it is largely that you have spare legs so that if 1 is injured, you can continue on the remaining ones.

Semi-Upright (B153, found on B456 for Bears, B552 says it applies to apes too but it looks like they got left out of the ape templates) works in a similar way except you're reduced to 60% Move instead of 0% move when running on hind legs.

Bears do not have Extra Legs, what this means is for 100% Move a bear runs on 2 legs + 2 arms. That's why it says "all of your limbs" instead of "all of your legs".

Semi-Upright basically has the built-in benefit of "I can run at 100% Move while using my hands". Though I'm not sure what that is. I expect it SHOULD have similar effects as Horizontal even though B385/B389 only mention Horizontal and not Semi-Upright.

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So not only is the author messing up his Energy cost math he is effectively creating quadruped Golems with 4 limbs that can only really use 2 of them as legs ie crippled Golems. Wonderful.
You do not need Extra Legs to stand on your arms. B456 the Brown Bear does this with Semi-Upright. The only difference with the Q-golems (Qolems?) is that since they're Horizontal, they can't move at all on 3 legs, while a bear is able to move at 60% of his max speed while on his hind legs.

That seems a bit generous IMO... B456 assigns "Move 8" to a Grizzly for example, -40% to that is 4.8 (rounds down to 4) which means that a Grizzly can run on his hind legs at 4 yards (12 feet) per second? If B153 were intended as (40% of Move) instead of (-40% to Move) this would be 3.2 (rounds down to 3) which is STILL pretty fast, but at least it's a step in the right direction.
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Old 02-15-2020, 03:09 PM   #10
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Default Re: Quadruped Golem question

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You do not need Extra Legs to stand on your arms. B456 the Brown Bear does this with Semi-Upright. The only difference with the Q-golems (Qolems?) is that since they're Horizontal, they can't move at all on 3 legs, while a bear is able to move at 60% of his max speed while on his hind legs.
Uh why can't the horizontal Golems move at all on 3 legs? I have seen dogs walk and even run on three leg (the fourth injured or missing) snd there are several videos on you tube (such as Three-Legged Dog~Gene Burnett) that also show this

I should mention that the Elephant appears in the Basic Set and one of its traits is "Quadruped (but replace No Fine Manipulators with One Arm)". This give an indication of how the various components of the Quadruped meta-trait interact with each other.

I know William H. Stoddard (who post here from time to time) had a hand in the Basic Set and wish, if that was the additional material he worked on and he still remembers (it's been 14 years), that he would explain the reasoning behind the Quadruped being written up the way it was.

In any case I am going from what Quadruped is in the Basic Set (and in every other book it appears witha point value) not some weird version the author didn't even take the time to explain. First rule of these things, stick to the rules as much as possible.
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