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Old 04-12-2020, 06:10 AM   #1
Anders
 
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Default Weapon Master as part of a power

If Weapon Master is part of a power, does power Talent help you with your attack rolls using those weapons?
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Old 04-12-2020, 08:00 AM   #2
AlexanderHowl
 
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Default Re: Weapon Master as part of a power

No, though I would have it reduce defensive penalties by one per level. If I were to make such a power talent, I would have it include only Heroic Archer, Gunslinger, Trained by a Master, and Weapon Master.
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Old 04-12-2020, 08:02 AM   #3
Anders
 
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Default Re: Weapon Master as part of a power

Nah, this is part of a Chivalry talent, so Heroic Archer and Gunslinger would be really out of place.
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Old 04-12-2020, 08:17 AM   #4
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Default Re: Weapon Master as part of a power

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Originally Posted by Anders View Post
Nah, this is part of a Chivalry talent, so Heroic Archer and Gunslinger would be really out of place.
A suggestion: don't make Weapon Master part of the talent. Instead, make possession of the talent (or an Evil Knight talent) an enabler for buying Weapon Master.
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Old 04-12-2020, 03:53 PM   #5
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Default Re: Weapon Master as part of a power

No, but if you use a (say) Weapons/Martial Talent (which is technically overpriced at 15pts/level) as your Power Talent, then thematically you technically do and it does line up nicely. Powers talks about using mundane talents as power talents.
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Old 04-14-2020, 12:44 AM   #6
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Default Re: Weapon Master as part of a power

What's the power? Normally I wouldn't use Weapon Master in a power. It makes more sense as a result of training than something granted by magic for example.

An example I could think of where having Weapon Master as part of a power would be a monk who let's his god fight through him. So Weapon Master would have a divine modifier (-10%) and only work as long as he has access to divine magic.

In this case I'd say that the power talent would affect the defense aspects of Weapon Master and maybe the effective skill level for the purpose of getting the damage bonus but not actual weapon skill. This has the potential to be very unbalanced though, I would still lean on not including Weapon Master as part of a power.
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Old 04-14-2020, 02:08 AM   #7
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Default Re: Weapon Master as part of a power

I think of it for two powers. I like the idea of Bladesinging, so having Weapon Master (a sword) as part of bard-song would be nice. Then there's a chivalry talent, where you get powers from following a strict code.
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Old 04-14-2020, 05:03 AM   #8
Anaraxes
 
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Default Re: Weapon Master as part of a power

Strictly speaking, even if Weapon Master were an ability granted by the power in question (that is, there's a Power Modifier discount that applies to the WM purchase), that Power Talent wouldn't help combat skill rolls.

A Power Talent helps with activation for the power's abilities. Weapon Master doesn't have any activation rolls. It's always on and always successful, granting its damage bonuses and so on without a roll to see if WM works this time. So there's nothing for the Talent to benefit. Those combat skill rolls vs. Broadsword, etc., that themselves benefit from WM aren't abilities of the power. (Compare: if you buff yourself with a Magic spell, you don't suddenly start applying Magery to your Bow attacks. The skill roll for the buff benefits from Magery; other skills now enjoying a bonus don't add Magery again.)

If you wanted WM to have a random activation roll for some reason (say, this time there doesn't happen to be a convenient and amenable ancestral warrior spirit to possess you to direct your blade), you'd need to add a Limitation like Unreliable. That would give the ability an activation roll which would ordinarily benefit from a Power Talent. But the description of PT is pretty clear that the bonus doesn't apply to work around rolls required as part of Limitations like Unreliable.

I agree with the other posters that the most important factor in deciding whether or not the PM applies to the WM Advantage is the narrative concept. Do bladesigners train in wielding their weapon, no doubt learning their bladesongs as part of that training? Or is bladesigning a supernatural ability some people have where they're just ordinary people until the Blademaster descends upon them, possessing them to grant them the ability to fight? On a practical level, consider what happens when the bladesinger wanders into a no-mana zone or gets hit with a Neutralize ability ("Dispel Magic", being inside of a pentagram to get cut off from those warrior spirits, etc). Do they lose their WM training in such a case? Do they forget show to use a sword at all (trying to shoehorn the skill into having a PM of its own on the skill cost to justify calling it an "ability" of the power -- which I'm not even sure is legit)?

"Being part of a power" isn't the reason abilities usually get a discount for having a PM. The conventional -10% comes from the existence of countermeasures and other ability-disabling pitfalls. It's just a convenient shorthand for saying "any ability of this power must have these Limitations".

Also remember that the range of applicability of a Power Talent affects its cost. For a talent that affects all combat skills, I'd certainly put it in at least the 10 points/level bracket -- and maybe 15 just because of the importance of combat skills, regardless of number. A straight DX bonus affecting all physical skills (while singing, bladesingers get faster, better able to leap onto tables and swing from chandeliers, etc) would be 15.
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Old 04-14-2020, 05:09 AM   #9
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Default Re: Weapon Master as part of a power

That's all well and good, but look at Sorcery (which was made as a power). Talent helps all skill rolls to use the abilities - Innate Attack to help with an attack, Engineering to shore up a tunnel made with a spell, etc. So there seems to be some ambiguity. Maybe I'll just increase the cost of the Talent.
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Old 04-14-2020, 08:31 AM   #10
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Default Re: Weapon Master as part of a power

To help illustrate the difference, consider the minor effects of WM.

People mostly buy it for the +2 damage. For that effect to matter, you have to hit somebody with a combat roll, or you're not doing any damage anyway. For that case, it can seem a lot like "make a successful combat roll" is effectively an activation roll for WM.

But look at the other effects. WM allows you to buy other cinematic skills. If WM requires a successful hit with a combat skill to activate, that would say that knowing those cinematic skills also requires a successful combat roll to activate. That is, you'd have no knowledge of those skills and be unable to use them, certainly outside of combat, ready weapon in hand. But also even during combat. Those skills don't always have to do with immediate consequences of a hit -- often enough, they're needed to improve chances of a hit in the first place.

Consider the effect that WM grants improved defaults on weapon skills. Let's accept that a combat skill roll is the activation roll for WM. Now give the bladesinger an untrained weapon, so he needs those better WM defaults. What's the skill roll number he needs to make a combat skill roll with that weapon? He hasn't hit anything yet, so WM isn't activate, so it's not granting him an improved default. So he has to roll at the ordinary default. Maybe he hits anyway -- in which case WM activates, granting him the improved default. But that doesn't help, because he already hit. Suppose he missed by one. The improved default would have turned that into a hit. But he didn't hit, so he doesn't have the benefits of WM, so he does in fact miss. That whole paragraph becomes ineffective, and even nonsensical (like this example).

The analogy with Innate Attack isn't terrible. But I'd still consider WM to be an Advantage without an activation roll.

For the case of a spell requiring Engineering, there's also two rolls: Did the spell work (an activation roll benefitting from Power Talent)? Let's say yes. So, that tunnel is shaped exactly as the mage envisioned. But, did the mage have any idea of how a tunnel ought to be shaped and buttressed to stand on its own? That's a separate Engineering roll -- which doesn't benefit from Power Talent, because plain ol' Engineering skill isn't an ability that's part of a Power. It's just another thing a good mage would need to know. But even if the GM requires a roll for the quality of a created item, that's not the same thing as the activation roll for the spell. It's just an additional requirement to be successful at the overall task. The spell already replaced all the laborers, tools, and time to dig out that tunnel. It doesn't necessarily replace the knowledge to do so correctly.

There are, of course, settings where magical is less grounded, more like wish fulfillment, where the mage can just will a proper tunnel into being without having to be burdened with any knowledge of tunnels. Whether or not a setting works that way is up to the group's taste, but that does make magic more powerful and tends to make mages less well-studied (why bother if you always can do everything perfectly anyway -- put all the points into magic!), not to mention more likely to trample all over other niches in the party.

There are also settings where the magic is exactly the opposite, hardly distinguishable from skill. This is the classic Tolkien view. Is it elven magic? Elven craft? Is there a distinction between being so good at doing something, the result seems supernatural to mortals, and using magic to create an effect that's supernaturally good? Maybe all magic is just a result of really high skill levels. Rather than being separate spells, it's just that the effects when applying high skill levels have effects beyond those described in the skill text and mundane rules. Weyland the Smith is just so good at blacksmithing that he can do better than a mere Very Fine weapon, and instead produces something that gets implemented in game mechanics as an enchanted sword. In this kind of setting, you don't need skills to get a good result at your separate magic. You need the skills to have any magic at all, and you can't do anything magical that you don't already have some skill in.

But that philosophical debate is wandering away from the thread.
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