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Old 05-08-2021, 03:35 PM
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Default Design Discussion: House Rules

Has anyone ever seen an RPG system that uses different types of intelligence as a base attribute or for skill resolution?

I've often thought that intelligence as an attribute in RPG's is problematic. An intelligent player can RP an unintelligent character, but it doesn't really work the other way around (same with Charisma), does it? I digress.

Anyway, discussing the way that T2k v4 handles languages got me thinking about how RPG's often approach and use INT as an attribute and how it's not very realistic (in that it's overly simplistic). There's a theory of multiple intelligences (8 or 9, depending on who you ask) that makes some sense. I think it could a more realistic, accurate way of using it in a rules set.

I'd like to see a system where players have to allocate a set number of INT points between the 8 or 9 types of INT. Individual skills (which could be learned) would then receive boosts based on what kind of INT they primarily require to perform and what the PC's rank is in each.

For example, one type of INT is Visual-Spatial (how good someone is in maneuvering through space and visualizing things). This could be applied to navigation (map reading), forward observing, driving, parachuting, boating, diving, maybe engineering and architecture, and other skills.

Linguistic-Verbal INT could be applied to learning and speaking foreign languages, writing, diplomacy, and communications.

Logical-Mathematic INT could be applied to accounting, cryptography, engineering, architecture, anything requiring mathematical calculations, and/or number sense really.

Bodily-Kinesthetic INT would be crucial for athletes, dancers, hand-to-hand combat, throwing- almost anything with a major physical requirement (driving), really.

Musical INT- singing, playing instruments, recognizing tunes

Interpersonal INT- persuasion, diplomacy, leadership, acting, deception

Intrapersonal INT- not sure how this one might be applicable to conventional RPG skills, actually. Dealing with stress, trauma- coolness under fire, maybe? Is this Wisdom, by another name?

Naturalistic INT- horticulture, animal handling, hunting and foraging, herbal medicines, tracking, weather forecasting

Pedagogical INT- teaching, training,

I guess it wouldn't cover everything (which would apply to the Intrusion skill, for example), and there is some overlap. Maybe some skill resolutions would use the average score of two types of INT, or one of the types of INT and another attribute (for example, grapping would use both Bodily-Kinesthetic INT and physical STR).

In a game like T2k, some would definitely be more useful than others (Bodily-Kinesthetic v Musical, for example). Some, like Intrapersonal INT, would replace tried-and-mostly-true attributes like Charisma.

I'm just kind of thinking out loud here. I'm interested in your thoughts on this concept and, of course, any house rules that you've found work for you when running T2k.

-
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Old 05-09-2021, 10:37 AM
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To a certain extent, Eclipse Phase does this. As a transhumanist game strongly influenced by the Altered Carbon novels, one of its conceits is that your psyche can be loaded into multiple bodies over the course of play. Character creation generally treats body as equipment, so physical attributes are somewhat abstracted in favor of attributes representing your ability to use your current physical form to maximum capacity. The first edition list (I don't have my second edition copy handy):

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eclipse Phase 1e, p. 123
• Cognition (COG) is your aptitude for problem solving, logical analysis, and understanding. It also includes memory and recall.

• Coordination (COO) is your skill at integrating the actions of different parts of your morph
to produce smooth, successful movements. It includes manual dexterity, fine motor control,
nimbleness, and balance.

• Intuition (INT) is your skill at following your gut instincts and evaluating on the fly. It includes
physical awareness, cleverness, and cunning.

• Reflexes (REF) is your skill at acting quickly. This encompasses your reaction time, your gut-level
response, and your ability to think fast.

• Savvy (SAV) is your mental adaptability, social intuition, and proficiency for interacting
with others. It includes social awareness and manipulation.

• Somatics (SOM) is your skill at pushing your morph to the best of its physical ability, including
the fundamental utilization of the morph’s strength, endurance, and sustained positioning and motion.

• Willpower (WIL) is your skill for self-control, your ability to command your own destiny.
I believe some of the later Shadowrun editions tried to split the 1e-3e Intelligence attribute into multiple attributes, but Shadowrun is one of those properties where I do have very strong edition-related opinions, so my personal SR collection stops with 3e.

- C.
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Old 05-09-2021, 11:03 AM
3catcircus 3catcircus is offline
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One could go the Mythus/Dangerous Journeys route... 18 attributes, if I recall.
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Old 05-10-2021, 08:56 AM
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During one lecture on pedagogy I was attending to I was contemplating on using the Bloom's taxanomy as a basis for a task resolution system. In this system the attribute list was following the three domains of the taxonomy (the cognitive domain (knowledge/intuition-based attibutes), the affective domain (emotion-based attributes) and the psychomotor domain (action-based attributes).

Unfortunately the series of lectures ended before I was able to finish the system
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Old 05-10-2021, 02:14 PM
unipus unipus is offline
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I think the standard 6-attribute system has a lot of flaws and has mostly persevered through sheer inertia.

Numerically ranking intelligence and charisma are both troublesome, in their own way. Roleplaying a character with very different aspects from the player can be interesting, but for the most part players prefer to actually come up with solutions to puzzles, traps, mysteries and plans, for instance, rather than roll dice and be handed the solution.

I come from a school -- hard-learned over time from too much time and effort spent doing the opposite -- of less is more. My own system I've been working on has only four base stats (I considered using three, as Stackmouse said) and replaces Intelligence with Insight. This is not just a renaming exercise; your character can be as smart or dumb as you want; I don't care, just roleplay it. But if you need to test for something related to your capacity to understand things specific to the game setting and themes, then Insight is where we look.

Likewise, Charisma is out. In its place is Persona, which is more of a measure of your ability to influence, motivate, and your overall force of will. How that works out isn't limited to charisma in the traditional sense and you're free to present your character however you want.
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Old 05-11-2021, 06:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unipus View Post
Numerically ranking intelligence and charisma are both troublesome, in their own way. Roleplaying a character with very different aspects from the player can be interesting, but for the most part players prefer to actually come up with solutions to puzzles, traps, mysteries and plans, for instance, rather than roll dice and be handed the solution.

I come from a school -- hard-learned over time from too much time and effort spent doing the opposite -- of less is more. My own system I've been working on has only four base stats (I considered using three, as Stackmouse said) and replaces Intelligence with Insight. This is not just a renaming exercise; your character can be as smart or dumb as you want; I don't care, just roleplay it. But if you need to test for something related to your capacity to understand things specific to the game setting and themes, then Insight is where we look.

Likewise, Charisma is out. In its place is Persona, which is more of a measure of your ability to influence, motivate, and your overall force of will. How that works out isn't limited to charisma in the traditional sense and you're free to present your character however you want.
I like both of those approaches.

What do y'all think about the Cascade Skill system in v2.2. I think I like it. It makes sense, intuitively at least.

I don't want to hijack the v4 rules thread so I'll continue the approaches to handling language skills (speaking/listening v. writing/reading) discussion here. I think cascading the the two sets of language skills is probably the way to go. Writing and speaking are different skills, but not completely different, and fluency in one is a naturally boost to developing competency in the other.

-
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https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product...ula-Sourcebook

Last edited by Raellus; 05-11-2021 at 06:58 PM.
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Old 05-11-2021, 11:59 PM
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Originally Posted by 3catcircus View Post
One could go the Mythus/Dangerous Journeys route... 18 attributes, if I recall.
12 in Harnmaster/Gunmaster, plus additional derived pseudo-stats.
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Old 05-13-2021, 01:10 PM
swaghauler swaghauler is offline
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Originally Posted by Raellus View Post
Has anyone ever seen an RPG system that uses different types of intelligence as a base attribute or for skill resolution?

I've often thought that intelligence as an attribute in RPG's is problematic. An intelligent player can RP an unintelligent character, but it doesn't really work the other way around (same with Charisma), does it? I digress.

Anyway, discussing the way that T2k v4 handles languages got me thinking about how RPG's often approach and use INT as an attribute and how it's not very realistic (in that it's overly simplistic). There's a theory of multiple intelligences (8 or 9, depending on who you ask) that makes some sense. I think it could a more realistic, accurate way of using it in a rules set.

I'd like to see a system where players have to allocate a set number of INT points between the 8 or 9 types of INT. Individual skills (which could be learned) would then receive boosts based on what kind of INT they primarily require to perform and what the PC's rank is in each.

For example, one type of INT is Visual-Spatial (how good someone is in maneuvering through space and visualizing things). This could be applied to navigation (map reading), forward observing, driving, parachuting, boating, diving, maybe engineering and architecture, and other skills.

Linguistic-Verbal INT could be applied to learning and speaking foreign languages, writing, diplomacy, and communications.

Logical-Mathematic INT could be applied to accounting, cryptography, engineering, architecture, anything requiring mathematical calculations, and/or number sense really.

Bodily-Kinesthetic INT would be crucial for athletes, dancers, hand-to-hand combat, throwing- almost anything with a major physical requirement (driving), really.

Musical INT- singing, playing instruments, recognizing tunes

Interpersonal INT- persuasion, diplomacy, leadership, acting, deception

Intrapersonal INT- not sure how this one might be applicable to conventional RPG skills, actually. Dealing with stress, trauma- coolness under fire, maybe? Is this Wisdom, by another name?

Naturalistic INT- horticulture, animal handling, hunting and foraging, herbal medicines, tracking, weather forecasting

Pedagogical INT- teaching, training,

I guess it wouldn't cover everything (which would apply to the Intrusion skill, for example), and there is some overlap. Maybe some skill resolutions would use the average score of two types of INT, or one of the types of INT and another attribute (for example, grapping would use both Bodily-Kinesthetic INT and physical STR).

In a game like T2k, some would definitely be more useful than others (Bodily-Kinesthetic v Musical, for example). Some, like Intrapersonal INT, would replace tried-and-mostly-true attributes like Charisma.

I'm just kind of thinking out loud here. I'm interested in your thoughts on this concept and, of course, any house rules that you've found work for you when running T2k.

-
This takes you down the same "rabbit hole" that AD&D 2e went down with their Complete [Insert Class here] Books. Too much crunch for too little reward.

The issue I see in RAW 2.2 is with the WAY GDW used Attributes by tieing a SINGLE Attribute to a given Skill. This creates confusion on occassion like having STR for mechanics (a technical skill more appropriate to EDU). This is why I removed linked Attributes from Skills in favor of having the GM "build" a TASK PROFILE by specifying one OR MORE Attributes (properly averaged and rounded DOWN) in conjunction with a Skill. The GAMEMASTER decides what Attributes are involved in a Task. In RAW, the linking was twofold. First it gave the GM a quick guide to Skill use and secondly, the Attribute was used as a "limiter" on Skill LEVEL increases during Character creation. I was not satisfied with EITHER use and that's why I now use EXPERIENCE POINTS instead of skill levels during Character creation.

As for the Attributes; I use 8 of them. Four PHYSICAL Attributes and four MENTAL ones. My Attributes are;

Agility: A measure of hand-eye coordination and physical speed.
Constitution: A measure of fitness and endurance.
Stature: A measure of size and bulk. Used mostly for determining IF you can fit through a hole and how much BULK (I give all items a Bulk rating, not just weapons) you can carry.
Strength: A measure of lifting power and physical strength.
Charisma: A measure of your "empathy" towards other creatures as well as a measure of your ability to influence or sway other's opinions.
Education: The measure of your "LEARNED INTELLIGENCE" and acquired knowledge such as formulas, and proceedurals.
Intelligence: A measure of your "creative thinking/reasoning" skils and your advanced problem solving skills. How adaptive you are.
Willpower: Introduced as a skill in Dark Conspiracy, I made it an Attribute because of how important what it represents is to the human brain. Willpower represents both your "mental strength" against adversity AND your patience in dealing with frustration in various situations like repeated failures of a test or experiment. I gives you the resolve to push on when everything is against you.

The way I use Attributes is to combine one or more of them with a Skill or set of skills to create a TASK. I then set a Difficulty for that Task. It is very easy to combine multiple Attributes to create one half of RAW'S "ASSET." Just average the scores. I always round DOWN because I want Attributes to be the lesser of an ASSET'S score. I do this because I believe training (Skill Level) should trump "natural talent" (Attributes). This also allows the combining of different Attributes for different Skill uses. As an example...
I use STR, CON, and AGL averaged for the CLIMBING skill. You NEED all three to be a successful climber. However, WHAT IF that climber needed to rig some "makeshift" climbing gear? Why would I continue to use PHYSICAL Attributes for a Skill check to make improvised climbing gear? I WOULDN'T. I would use INT (for his inventiveness in making the gear), EDU (for his understanding of how each piece of gear works), and his WILL (for patience in overcoming obstacles to the fabrication). I'd combine these three Attributes with his Climbing skill to create the Task. So you see, by combining different Attributes, you can create a truly detailed task with only a few listed Atrributes to work with.
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Old 05-13-2021, 01:59 PM
swaghauler swaghauler is offline
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I like both of those approaches.

What do y'all think about the Cascade Skill system in v2.2. I think I like it. It makes sense, intuitively at least.

I don't want to hijack the v4 rules thread so I'll continue the approaches to handling language skills (speaking/listening v. writing/reading) discussion here. I think cascading the the two sets of language skills is probably the way to go. Writing and speaking are different skills, but not completely different, and fluency in one is a naturally boost to developing competency in the other.

-
I agree, the Cascade System is an elegant way to group "families" of skills. I actually have additional Cascades in my homebrew game. I also include...

Construction (cascade):
Carpentry
HVAC/Plumbing
Electrical
Welding/Ironworker (riveting and fab bolting)


My Small Arms (cascade)
Pistols
Rifles
Black Powder/Primitive Firearms
Belt-Fed Machineguns


My STEM (cascade)
Chemistry
Biology
Physics


I give every associate skill in a Cascade FAMILIARIZATION (Skill Level 0) when you take a Skill in the "Cascade family." This is because the Skill you took often has some proceedures, formulas, and steps in common with the other skills in that family. In addition, you would be "exposed" to the other skills in the "family" during the course of using the Skill you took at a higher level.

I also give "SPECIALIZATIONS" based on the RAW (1 to 10) SKILL LEVEL. Thus a person with Tracked Vehicle 4 could have 4 "SPECIALIZATIONS." These are SPECIFIC Models or Types of equipment that you have handled and KNOW how to fully operate. Thus, that Tracked Vehicle driver might have the M1, M60E3, T72, and Leopard tanks as his "Specializations." He would be able to just jump in those tanks and run them without need of a manual or instruction. I generally keep weapons Specializations to action types (AK, AR, pump action, bolt action, single action revolvers, etc...)

Finally, I use TW2K13's QUALIFICATION'S Rule. This is essentially a "Skill within a Skill." Using TW2K13's own description, "ALL Surgeons are Doctors BUT... NOT ALL Doctors are Surgeons." A Qualification is a "subskill" that you must buy separately from the parent skill but that "parent skill" acts as both a "gatekeeper" and Skill Limiter to a Qualification. You must have the Parent Skill and the Qualification can NEVER exceed the Parent Skill's level. Examples of Qualifications I use are...

- Rebreather as a Qualification of SCUBA.
- Hacking as a Qualification of Computer Ops.
- Tracking as a Qualification of Perception (my Observation).
- Leadership and Interrogation as Qualifications of Persuasion.
- Engineering as a Qualification of the parent skill (Construction, Chemical, Electrical, etc...)
- EOD as a Qualification of Demolitions.
- Heavy (more than 5 tons, complex transmissions) as a Qualification of Wheeled Vehicle Driver (5 tons or less).
- Heavy, Muli-Engine, Remote-Piloted as Qualifications for Aircraft/Piloting skills.
- Mountaineering as a Qualification of Climbing.
- Celestrial Navigation as a Qualification of Navigation.
- Intrusion as a Qualification of the basic Lock Picking skill.


This adds a depth to the Skill system that RAW 2.2 simply lacks.

MY EXPERIENCE POINT SYSTEM:

I use a system pioneered by TW2K13 but modified to suit my needs. I ADD IN TOTAL ALL of the following Attributes CHA, INT, EDU, and WILL to come up with the Character's Experience Points Per Term. A perfectly average Character will have 20 exp to spend EACH term. He may spend no more than the AVERAGE OF HIS MENTAL ATTRIBUTES (CHA,INT,EDU, & WILL) rounding up per SKILL. This is in addition to any EXPERIENCE POINTS (formerly SKILL LEVELS) awarded by a term's initial training (like the skills you get in basic). That's right! Skill LEVELS in the CARREERS become EXP Points. The cost to learn a SKILL is equal to the new Level being attained BUT, you MUST buy EVERY LOWER LEVEL to advance. For Example ...

Initial Skill = 1 Exp point... This gives you Level 0 "Familiarization." All related Skills in a Cascade are also given Familiarity.

Familiarization to Level 1 = 1 Exp point
Level 1 to Level 2 = 2 Exp points
Level 2 to Level 3 = 3 Exp points and so on.

Qualifications MUST be bought in the same way a parent skill is. SPECIALIZATIONS ARE NOT BOUGHT! They are simply selected [free] with GM approval.

Any Experience Points applied to a Skill which do NOT allow it to rise to a new Skill Level ARE RETAINED in that Skill after initial Character Creation, and can be used along with game EXP points to raise the Skill during play.

Last edited by swaghauler; 05-13-2021 at 02:10 PM.
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Old 05-13-2021, 06:50 PM
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Given their relative scarcity of use, I've tinkered with collecting Swimming, Scuba, and Small Boat under an Aquatics cascade.

- C.
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Find my Twilight: 2000 fan material and Twilight: 2013 unofficial support here, and my published T2k sourcebook, The Pacific Northwest, here.

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Old 05-13-2021, 11:50 PM
CDAT CDAT is offline
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One other thought for languages, understanding the gist of what is being said even if not the words. On my second deployment the Air Force broke down in Germany for a week (I think 100% fluke that it happened to be when the world cup was playing and the flight crew was HUGE fans), and my unit was put up in a hotel off base. One of the unit spoke German, the rest of us did not. But we found that we could understand enough to make do for most things (if they did not speak English and most did). My unit talked about this from time to time and figure it is because English kind of/sort of came from German? But for the game you could also look at adding that as a level if it works for you group.
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Old 05-15-2021, 03:47 AM
swaghauler swaghauler is offline
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Given their relative scarcity of use, I've tinkered with collecting Swimming, Scuba, and Small Boat under an Aquatics cascade.

- C.
I cannot do that in my game because of the way I have SKILLS modified.

SCUBA is a complex skill to learn. Along with the fact that it is sort of rare because you need to pass a 40 certification course to do it.

My Small Boat Handling is a cascade skill broken into: boats under 25m in LOA, pwcs (jet skis), and kayaks/canoes.

Swimming is what I call a FUNDAMENTAL skill. Everyone gets these at Familiarization Level (0 level) at character creation. My list of FUNDAMENTAL Skills include...

- Swimming
- Climbing
- Persuasion
- Move Quietly (replaces Recon)
- Hide (replaces Recon)
- Perception (a cascade skill including visual, auditory, touch, and taste/smell)
- HTH Combat
- Melee Combat
- Throw
- Native Language (at INT or EDU, which ever is higher).
- Possibly a secondary Language (at INITIAL EDU).

These all start at 0 Level unless otherwise specified.

Unskilled characters are still subject to TW2K13's roll 2D20 and take the HIGHER number rule. This can stack with my new BANE/DISADVANTAGE rule leaving a PC to roll 3D20 and take the highest number. Not an enviable position to be in.
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Old 05-15-2021, 10:46 AM
CDAT CDAT is offline
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I cannot do that in my game because of the way I have SKILLS modified.

SCUBA is a complex skill to learn. Along with the fact that it is sort of rare because you need to pass a 40 certification course to do it.

My Small Boat Handling is a cascade skill broken into: boats under 25m in LOA, pwcs (jet skis), and kayaks/canoes.

Swimming is what I call a FUNDAMENTAL skill. Everyone gets these at Familiarization Level (0 level) at character creation. My list of FUNDAMENTAL Skills include...

- Swimming
- Climbing
- Persuasion
- Move Quietly (replaces Recon)
- Hide (replaces Recon)
- Perception (a cascade skill including visual, auditory, touch, and taste/smell)
- HTH Combat
- Melee Combat
- Throw
- Native Language (at INT or EDU, which ever is higher).
- Possibly a secondary Language (at INITIAL EDU).

These all start at 0 Level unless otherwise specified.

Unskilled characters are still subject to TW2K13's roll 2D20 and take the HIGHER number rule. This can stack with my new BANE/DISADVANTAGE rule leaving a PC to roll 3D20 and take the highest number. Not an enviable position to be in.
So a question, and thought. Question first what do you mean by "you need to pass a 40 certification course to do it"? I did need to training to get "certified" for SCUBA, but after the military some of the people I have ran into at dive civilian dive spots did not take any formal training to start diving.

Thought, again when I was in the military I was amazed how many people could not swim at all, not the skill that amazed me the most that people could not do, but close.
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Old 05-15-2021, 11:48 AM
swaghauler swaghauler is offline
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So a question, and thought. Question first what do you mean by "you need to pass a 40 certification course to do it"? I did need to training to get "certified" for SCUBA, but after the military some of the people I have ran into at dive civilian dive spots did not take any formal training to start diving.

Thought, again when I was in the military I was amazed how many people could not swim at all, not the skill that amazed me the most that people could not do, but close.
My appologies for the confusion. I'm typing this on my S7 dinosaur in Tapatalk and the keyboard sometimes lags or misses letters or words. On a good note, I do have an actual computer pro looking over my laptop as I type this. I think I'm just getting a new one though.
Mine's 8 years old now.

A 40 hour certification is what I meant. Most reputable dive boats and excursions will NOT accept a diver without one of the two common certifications. They are both 40 hours with 16 hours as actual diving time and the rest able to be done digitally on a computer (that's the written test portion). Just about every dive shop I ever frequented offers some form of certification.

The second concept of mine that I believe is causing issues is the idea that having ANY LEVEL in a Skill equals competency. Nothing could be farther from the truth. A person with Familiarization in Swimming (0 level) has to roll a 10 or less just to doggie paddle (an EASY test). Add a little rough water (AVERAGE test) and now they have a 75% chance of failure. We are ALL born with the innate ability to swim, climb, walk, crawl and stand. IF you throw a newborn baby into water, that baby WILL SWIM INSTINCTIVELY. I'm not making this up. There are videos of it. HOWEVER, just because you can do something instinctively doesn't mean you'll do it WELL. Babies will learn to walk without our help but some will do it faster than others. We can all climb. We do it everyday. Some of us CANNOT CLIMB very high. Our fears limit our climbing ability. Those people in my game are the ones who get Familiarization in the FUNDAMENTAL Skills but never advance that particular Skill beyond 0 Level.

The reason that I even have FUNDAMENTAL Skills and give so many exp at the start is based on my belief that GDW games kind of "impair" a characters ability to do things in the World. Look at your own life experiences. Just how many skills have you acquired over the years? What my system does is give characters either a wide range of low level skills or fewer higher level skills. It's the player's choice how they spend their exp. My goal is to make it possible for members of a smaller group to still have overlapping skill sets. This is due to the fact that my groups usually number between 3 and 5. In RAW Twilight2000 V2.2, this won't cover every needed skill set. NPC's can fill in the gaps but I prefer having my PCs be as flexible in their skill sets as many posters in this forum are. Still, I always "hedge my bets" and have every player generate TWO PCs. The other PC is included in the group too but I just have them "doing something else" as the players take on missions from patrons. If PC #1 gets too wounded or captured, PC #2 steps up. I even have players who rotate their PCs in play. One of my players has two PCs who HATE each other and he roleplays them arguing or taking cheap shots at each other whenever they interact.
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