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Old 01-21-2010, 11:12 PM
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Default "Intuitive Senses"

pmulcahy 07-05-2005, 07:58 AM There are some people who just seem to be born with a knack for things, be it technology of various sorts, weapons, animals, etc. For example, when I was in the Army, if you put me at point you almost certainly wouldn't be amushed, regardless of the circumstances. Even if I never conciously saw or heard anything, I knew when something was up. (I liked to think it was a combination of subliminal cues and my own natural paranoia.) I also seem to have this knack with computers; I may not have seen a piece of equipment or software, but give me some time to play with it, and I'll almost certainly figure it out and have it singing and dancing. I knew a guy who was an Infantryman in the military, but he was put in the Armorer's slot due to the lack of a trained armorer; it was a fortuitious posting, because the guy had an instinctive knowledge of weaponry of all sorts, even if he had never seen the weapon in question before.

The question is, how do we account for this in the game. I doesn't seem to go under background skills.


DeaconR 07-06-2005, 05:14 AM Oddly enough, Sid Meier's "Pirates" gave me an idea for how to do this. Offer the players a sort of 'talent' at the start of character creation. For instance, in "Pirates" you can be a specialist in swordsmanship, navigation or leadership. Then give them a bonus on their dice rolls for whatever that talent happens to be.

For instance: Bob Smith is a natural linguist. You might want to work it so that he halves the amount of experience needed for learning a new language, and also give him a bonus on die rolls for using language based skills.


ReHerakhte 07-06-2005, 07:05 AM This brings up a train of thought that one of my friends and I had been discussing... he really likes the idea of traits/talents/perks/feats etc. No matter what you call them, he liked the idea that some people could have an innate sense of how to do something and some other people had a facility to learn something beyond what most people were taught. He felt sometimes the normal skill description didn't do the "talent" any justice if it was just considered a 'skill'.

His proposal was basically that in Char Gen you could buy a 'talent' for double the cost of a typical skill but that 'talent' gave you a few benefits that no amount of skill was ever going to give you.

The most obvious case he could think of was ambidexterity, his thoughts being that this isn't simply a skill you learn but something you are born with that means you can wield an item in either hand with equal facility.

In terms of learning something, it meant you had an affinity for the subject and you understood it better than most so you essentially gained further insight into the subject.

As something of a real world example, one of my grandfather's brothers had an affinity for shooting and could pick up any rifle and hit the target with it, he didn't really use the sights that much, just sighted along the barrel and had some ability to just figure out where the shot should land. He never seemed to miss the target. He wasn't the most accurate shooter I knew and didn't constantly hit the bullseye so to speak, but he always hit the target where as I would have to have the rifle zero'ed to my eye to hit.

This sort of ability doesn't get calculated into most RPGs and I think it's really because it's too hard to figure out all the possible variables. How to do you calculate that one person has an ability to work with animals while everyone else in his family does not? You make a random calculation... sure, but does that actually reflect the ability he has? It's something out of the ordinary so rules to create "ordinary" characters don't really work.

Even rules that create extrordinary characters don't really reflect this.

Unfortunately, while I have some thoughts on this, I don't actuallt have any answers.

Left pondering...


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