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Old 06-03-2021, 10:55 AM   #11
Tyneras
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Kentucky, USA
Default Re: Opinions on cinematic martial arts skills?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arcanjo7Sagi View Post
The problem for me with this line of argument is that it would turn GURPS into something like D&D 4E: everyone does the same things, just change the fluff. Nothing is really unique.

But I understand the complaint: you need to have both DX and high IQ for certain character types to work (like ninjas). You can try Talents, yes, but for some, the problem will remain. Not to mention the part that is a very different mechanic from the normal rest of the system.
I must disagree, this is like saying all houses are the same because they all use concrete in their foundation. Skills and advantages operate very differently and combining them gives a tremendous range of flexibility in both effect and feel, thanks to being able to control how they interact.

As it is, the various martial arts skills are very costly, the average wuxia fight run purely off these skills would be over in seconds as everyone starts hitting zero FP. Having the controlling attributes spread out doesn't bother me, but the choices seem very random. My guess is these were very setting specific and don't translate well into generic kit.

Personally I love the Fifth Attribute (Pyramid #3/120) and would use Quintessence as the base for all these martial arts skills.

A quick off-the-cuff Flying Leap build that I have not tried to optimize:

Flying Leap
18 +9 per level
Skill: Flying Leap (Will/H)

You can jump twice as far as normal at no cost. For a cost of 1 FP you can double this again. Each extra level doubles both of these values.

Statistics: Super Jump 1 (Chi -10%)[9] plus Super Jump 1 (Costs 1 FP, -5%; Chi -10%) [9]

Technique: Direction Change
Default: Flying Leap -2, cannot exceed Flying Leap.
You can change your direction, but not total jump distance, mid-air. Each direction change after the first requires another roll at an additional -1. Failure sends you wildly off course at the GMs discretion.
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Last edited by Tyneras; 06-03-2021 at 10:59 AM.
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Old 06-03-2021, 11:12 AM   #12
Fred Brackin
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Default Re: Opinions on cinematic martial arts skills?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyneras View Post
i

A quick off-the-cuff Flying Leap build that I have not tried to optimize:

Flying Leap
18 +9 per level
Skill: Flying Leap (Will/H)

You can jump twice as far as normal at no cost. For a cost of 1 FP you can double this again. Each extra level doubles both of these values.

Statistics: Super Jump 1 (Chi -10%)[9] plus Super Jump 1 (Costs 1 FP, -5%; Chi -10%) [9]

.
Well, thaty's very like Psionic Powers but it's also an example of why I am not fond of Psionic Powers as a whole. Mostly because it adds complexity to something that could be very simple. Most wuxia/anime leapers are little different from Supers and I'd just give them raw Super Jump.

It can also add ambiguity. I find I have to read the parenthetical notations to see how the power is actually suupposed to work. Incidentally, I think you may have used the 1/minute version of Costs FP when you intended the 1/use version. That might be -10% instead of -5%.
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Old 06-03-2021, 11:33 AM   #13
Varyon
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Default Re: Opinions on cinematic martial arts skills?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyneras View Post
Flying Leap
18 +9 per level
Skill: Flying Leap (Will/H)

You can jump twice as far as normal at no cost. For a cost of 1 FP you can double this again. Each extra level doubles both of these values.

Statistics: Super Jump 1 (Chi -10%)[9] plus Super Jump 1 (Costs 1 FP, -5%; Chi -10%) [9]

Technique: Direction Change
Default: Flying Leap -2, cannot exceed Flying Leap.
You can change your direction, but not total jump distance, mid-air. Each direction change after the first requires another roll at an additional -1. Failure sends you wildly off course at the GMs discretion.
As written, it appears you'd only buy the Flying Leap skill for purposes of using Techniques like Direction Change. If you intend for Flying Leap to be rolled in order to activate the ability, consider adding Requires (Attribute) Roll (as per P162, a Hard skill can substitute for an Attribute). That's -10% IIRC; combined with Fred's suggestion to double the worth of the Costs FP Limitation, that makes it:
Super Jump 1 (Chi -10%; Requires Flying Leap Roll -10%) [8] + Super Jump 1 (Costs Fatigue 1/use -10%; Chi -10%; Requires Flying Leap Roll -10%) [7], for an initial cost of [15] and [+8] for each additional level.

As Fred also noted, of course, most characters these "skills" seem to be trying to emulate would be more accurately represented as simply having the Advantage, no rolling or expenditure of FP required - even when ability use technically does have a chance for failure and consume energy/mana/chakra/whatever, it's usually reliable enough and consumes such a small amount of the character's reserves you'd end up better off* representing them more accurately with reliable, unlimited-use Advantages and a Quirk-level Delusion: "My powers are difficult to use and drain my energy".

*It's technically more accurate to give the character a massive ER and have their powers deplete it, but given how little of a reduction Costs FP/ER is and just how much those characters tend to use their "energy-expending" abilities, you'd end up spending more points than you would just leaving Costs FP/ER off of the build in the first place.
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Old 06-03-2021, 11:48 AM   #14
Tyneras
 
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Default Re: Opinions on cinematic martial arts skills?

I agree that most of the time wuxia martial artists are just superheroes by another name. Skill is generally a non-factor until two such fighters are in a direct contest. But that's true of a lot of media, skills work 100% of the time until two people with the same skill duke it out. Unless its specifically a story about a student or apprentice or such that can't do things reliably.
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Old 06-03-2021, 12:05 PM   #15
Michael Thayne
 
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Default Re: Opinions on cinematic martial arts skills?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
I'm having trouble thinking of a wuxia/anime setting where Gurps' 1 FP/use obsession works. Pretty much anyone who can leap with superhuman ability does a _lot_ of it.

That's just for Flying Leap but at least getting 3x the jumping dstance is useful. Even if you can get Breaking Blow to work it isn't.

Just to remove the need for anyone else to mention there is an option in Martial Arts to get rid of the FP cost for Flying Leap but it lowers distance to 2x.
Do you mean the option to waive the FP cost if your margin of success is 5+? Admittedly it can be combined with the option to get only a 2x distance multiplier for +5 to skill, though relying on that trades off against being able to jump instantly without skill in the high teens.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arcanjo7Sagi View Post
The problem for me with this line of argument is that it would turn GURPS into something like D&D 4E: everyone does the same things, just change the fluff. Nothing is really unique.

But I understand the complaint: you need to have both DX and high IQ for certain character types to work (like ninjas). You can try Talents, yes, but for some, the problem will remain. Not to mention the part that is a very different mechanic from the normal rest of the system.
I would not necessarily want a system of chi powers that uses exactly the same system as Psionic Powers, but I don't think getting rid of exotic skills in favor of chi powers would make it "just like D&D 4th edition". What was so obnoxious about D&D 4e is that everyone used the same mechanics even when this made no sense with the fluff. Psionic Powers, Divine Favor, and Sorcery all offer subtly different approaches that fit their respective concepts even though they're all powers-based systems. Even if you only have a single system of powers, GURPS offers the flexibility for any given character to focus more on powers or more on mundane skills—whereas D&D 4e insisted giving even fighters and rogues "powers" that made no sense in-story.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyneras View Post
I agree that most of the time wuxia martial artists are just superheroes by another name. Skill is generally a non-factor until two such fighters are in a direct contest. But that's true of a lot of media, skills work 100% of the time until two people with the same skill duke it out. Unless its specifically a story about a student or apprentice or such that can't do things reliably.
One example I can think of of "martial arts" abilities working somewhat the way cinematic skills do in GURPS is when the Bride digs herself out of being buried alive in Kill Bill. It's clearly a feat at the very edge of her abilities, and includes a dramatic flashback to her training of the sort I suggested in the OP. But I agree that sort of thing is quite rare in fiction.
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Old 06-03-2021, 01:04 PM   #16
Tyneras
 
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Default Re: Opinions on cinematic martial arts skills?

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Originally Posted by Michael Thayne View Post
I would not necessarily want a system of chi powers that uses exactly the same system as Psionic Powers, ... Psionic Powers, Divine Favor, and Sorcery all offer subtly different approaches that fit their respective concepts even though they're all powers-based systems. Even if you only have a single system of powers, GURPS offers the flexibility for any given character to focus more on powers or more on mundane skills ...
Agreed. I think the key to a GURPS Martial Arts Powers system would be figuring out what set it apart from those other systems, something akin to the "How Psionics Work" section, a unified set of assumptions everything is built around that's clearly spelled out. Things like uncontested skill use always succeeds, letting you fly from roof to roof without and rolls or concern, or ways to gather energy on the fly instead of tapping into internal reserves, that sort of thing.
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Old 06-03-2021, 01:12 PM   #17
Black Leviathan
 
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Default Re: Opinions on cinematic martial arts skills?

I don't think we've ever used Power Blow or Breaking Blow just because the -10 makes them effectively pointless except in very extreme contexts. The CP investment to make those skills work would work so much more effectively buying an innate melee attack. We have had characters us Pressure Secrets and Pressure Points to great effect.
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Old 06-03-2021, 01:18 PM   #18
johndallman
 
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Default Re: Opinions on cinematic martial arts skills?

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Originally Posted by Black Leviathan View Post
I don't think we've ever used Power Blow or Breaking Blow just because the -10 makes them effectively pointless except in very extreme contexts. The CP investment to make those skills work would work so much more effectively buying an innate melee attack.
I have a character in my archive who used Power Blow effectively, because he had it at Will+4, making skill 24. He is a 918 point character, one of the Infinite Cabal PCs. I'd have required a good justification for an Innate Attack, but I find the esoteric martial arts skills quite acceptable.
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Old 06-03-2021, 02:13 PM   #19
Michael Thayne
 
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Default Re: Opinions on cinematic martial arts skills?

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Originally Posted by johndallman View Post
I have a character in my archive who used Power Blow effectively, because he had it at Will+4, making skill 24. He is a 918 point character, one of the Infinite Cabal PCs. I'd have required a good justification for an Innate Attack, but I find the esoteric martial arts skills quite acceptable.
I think this points to another if not problematic at least odd feature of esoteric skills, that they can be really powerful in high-powered games, and in those contexts seem to favor Reinsurance Man type builds (referring to the template in Supers) with both high DX and high IQ.
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Old 06-03-2021, 10:00 PM   #20
Michael Thayne
 
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Default Re: Opinions on cinematic martial arts skills?

This thread has me thinking: what is the best way to represent "wire-fu" abilities? Part of me is tempted to go with Flight (Gliding), which could get quite cheap when combined with other limitations. Adding the Slow limitation from Psionic Powers is tempting but I'm unclear on how it would interact with Gliding.
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