Skill review

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Plot
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Skill review

Post by Plot » Fri Jan 22, 2016 11:10 pm

We've play tested some new ones and have a whole mess of others. What do you think about them?

Did the new skills pan out or have we not had enough time to play with them?


This discussion will be closed at 2300 est, Friday January 29th.

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Ander
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Re: Skill review

Post by Ander » Sat Jan 23, 2016 1:55 am

Could we have a short summary of the skills being tested?

Plot
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Re: Skill review

Post by Plot » Sat Jan 23, 2016 1:58 am

Okey dokey, these skills aren't in alphabetical order, but they're the skills that are being added. We'll spend the rest of 2015 playtesting them, and review them during the 2016 rules discussion. With the caveat that if any of them become or are OP, they'll be modified in the mean time, and Karma spent on them will be refunded to the character. 

Layered Armor
“The only thing better than a bullet proof vest? Two bullet Proof Vests!”
Cost Adept 7, Agent 5, Fixer 6, Magician 8, Soldier 3
Cap Adept 2, Agent 3, Fixer 3, Magician 2, Soldier 5
This is a cooperative skill that works with Armorer. This skill will not aid you if you have not purchased the Armorer skill. 

Effect: Each purchase of this skill increases your benefit from the Armorer skill by 1 (one), thus allowing you to either wear additional suits of armor or gaining a better benefit from a suit of armor you're wearing. You must physrep each suit you're wearing appropriately. This skill does not stack with EXO armor. 
Example, Brandy the Soldier has 3 buys of armorer and 4 buys of Layered armor. Each buy of Armorer is worth 9 (5+4 from Layered Armor) meaning she may wear and benefit from 32 points of armor (9x3+5base).


Heroic endurance
Cost Adept 3, Agent 5, Fixer 6, Magician 5, Soldier 3
Cap none
This is a limited skill, and may be purchased per two buys of Health. 

Effect: Usable once per day per purchase when shot, you may resist the 30second Ballistic stun and continue to act normally; even bleeding out yelling for help or crying to your momma. The call for this use is 'Endure'. Please note, you're not able to use this skill to resist other types of stun, such as Chemical Stun or Elemental Stun. The Karma you spend on this skill may be turned in toward the Adrenaline Rush skill.


Marksmanship -Type-
"When you're low on ammo and they're wearing too much armor, shoot 'em where they aren't." 
Cost: Adept 10, Agent 6, Fixer 8, Magician 7, Soldier 4
Cap: Unlimited
This skill requires proficiency in the type of weapon you're taking precision marksmanship with. 

Effect: Once per day per purchase, you may call "direct" when firing your chosen weapon type (Allowed "types" includes: Black Powder, Bow, Crossbow, Pistol, Rifle, Shotgun or Sniper Rifle).
A missed shot still expends your daily use of this skill, so don't miss.
This skill stacks with other skills -except Vital Shot- and equipment which modify or replace damage types. No additional effect occurs if you're already able to call "direct" as a result of skills or equipment. 


Trick Shot -type- 
“Some times, you just NEED them to drop something, trip them up a bit or push that lever across the room full of zombies or shoot a rope being climbed. 
Cost: Adept 9, Agent 5, Fixer 7, Magician 6, Soldier 3,
Cap: Unlimited
You may only purchase one Trick Shot per two buys of Marksmanship -Type- and you must purchase Trick Shot of the type you have the perquisite buy of Marksmanship. 

Effect: Once per day per purchase of this skill you may make a trick shot when firing your chosen weapon type. (Allowed “types” include: Black powder, Bow, Crossbow, Pistol, Rifle, Shotgun or Sniper Rifle.) “Call Disarm (what you're disarming them of)” OR “Entangle 5 count”.A missed shot still expends your daily use of this skill, so don't miss. 
Common tricks are Disarm and Trip. You're welcome to creatively use this skill, game staff or crew bosses will thumbs up or thumbs down whether or not it's successful. 
Note: Don't plan on being able to disarm a critter of it's claw or trip a caterpillar. Also, this skill may not be used to mimic any other skill. 


Take Cover!
“For when your grenade gets thrown back. Doesn't help you much if one goes off in your pocket.”
Cost: Adept 7, Agent 6, Fixer 8, Magician 7, Soldier 4
Cap: Adept 1, Agent 2, Fixer 1, Magician 1, Soldier 4 
Each purchase of this skill allows you to use it 1 time per day. 

Effect: You must physically drop prone (or at least to one knee) and remain that way for 3 seconds when caught in an AoE (Area of effect) explosive Effect (ie, a grenade or dynamite blast). As long as the source of the explosive was not physically touching you, damage is reduced by 50% (Half). Note that non-blast effects (radiation, poison gas) will affect you as normal and limbs may still be crippled as normal. You are however immune to the Explosive Stun when you use this skill. If you are so unfortunate as to be caught in the radius of an explosion which deals more than 100 points of damage, this skill will have no effect if you use it. You'll still expend the skill use, though. YOU MAY CALL A USE OF THIS SKILL DURING A HOLD IF A BOMB BAG DETONATES.

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Ander
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Re: Skill review

Post by Ander » Sat Jan 23, 2016 2:07 am

Ah yes, I remember those now. I have used *counts on fingers* none of these. I think I'll leave this discussion to people who have actually tried them.

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Jay Belarpin
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Re: Skill review

Post by Jay Belarpin » Sat Jan 23, 2016 7:58 am

Honestly, I don't think any of these have come up yet, though a few NPCs had some of these at the last event. It's just too soon to review these.
As all of this happened, Bill poured a drink.

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jazzman831
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Re: Skill review

Post by jazzman831 » Sat Jan 23, 2016 10:24 am

Here's my two Allins:

Layered Armor
Conceptually and mechanically this is one of the weaker new skills. The idea of wearing two sets of armor at the same time doesn't really make sense to me, and practically it could be difficult to physrep. Then there are issues with what order the armor is damaged in, and what happens if you are only wearing one suit of armor, but it's value is higher than your maximum total, etc.

That being said, it doesn't seem gamebreaking in any way, and I may pick up a buy eventually. I'd say leave it for now until there's a reason not to, but consider shoring up the description.

Heroic endurance
I love, love, love the idea of spreading out the cost of expensive skills! We need more of these!

The only thing I might consider changing (and I'm biased, because I want to use Heroic Endurance to build towards Adrenaline Rush) is changing the prerequisite to one buy of health. That being said, if it stayed at 2 I wouldn't be terribly upset about it.

Marksmanship -Type-
This is on my shortlist of skills to buy. The obvious downside is that it's potentially a lot more devastating in an NPC's hand than in a PC's hand (though arguably this is true for any use-per-buy skill). I do wonder if the categories are too specific. I would consider joining them to match the weapon proficiencies (bows/crossbows, pistols, longarms, black powder).

Trick Shot -type-
Trick shot is fun, but it requires a pretty big karma investment to have a "cool but not more powerful than what already exists for less" power. I would say, in addition to combining the types as mentioned above, reduce the prereq to one buy of Marksmanship.

Take Cover!
I'm not really sure what the purpose of this skill is. It seems like in a lot of cases, 50% of damage will still be enough to lethal in many cases. Plus the price seems high for Adepts, who can for only 1 karma more dodge 100% of the damage. The only reason I might take it is because of an off-label use N8 told us about -- being able to jump on a grenade, shielding others from the damage. This seems like something Jebediah would do.

I don't think there's any downside to the skill, but I don't see any reason for it, either.
-Jebediah the Proud

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Swordguy
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Re: Skill review

Post by Swordguy » Sun Jan 24, 2016 12:33 pm

I also feel that these haven't been around long enough to get a fair shake. If anything, none of them are clearly OP, and a fair number could do with a cost adjustment or a buff. With that in mind, here's what I think of them so far:

Layered Armor:
This has been pretty "meh" for me the whole time, largely because I haven't had the karma to do anything about it. I do - technically - wear two armor physreps anyway. My Interceptor Armor is obviously armor, and my load-bearing vest technically counts as well. Anyone wearing load-bearing gear under a trenchcoat would be eligible for it as well. It's a nice bonus, but honestly, I'm not sure it's worthwhile just because when I get shot, it's by people throwing headshots out there (because when you see the guy in all the armor, who wants to spend time eating through that shit when you can just headshot somebody down?).

Heroic Endurance:
I mirror Jazzman's post. Spreading out the cost of Adrenaline Rush is great, and it's certainly useful. I'm just rarely in a position to take bullet stun, due to the aforementioned "see guy in armor, Headshot" issue.

Marksmanship <type>
I have it, I use it. It didn't do what it was intended to do, because NPCs forgot that Bullet Stun was a thing, so being able to call "10 Ballistic Direct" didn't matter so much. Therefore, I'm unsure how to grade it. I think it's appropriately written in terms of limiting it by weapon type. I feel that "per-day" abilities that aren't at the level of "takedown/headshot" are generally too expensive in general, though. Assuming one miss, for about the same cost as one headshot I can shoot 10 Direct damage at three guys, hit two of them doing 10 damage each and may or may not deal Ballistic Stun...or I can buy the Headshot and have a guarantee of dropping one guy in a single hit. (Bullet Dodge doesn't enter into it, since ANY of the above may be Bullet Dodged anyway.)

Oh, and yes, I agree that "per-day" abilities, in general, favor NPCs over PCs when NPCs are constructed under the same rules as PCs. The issue is that NPCs have no reason to conserve their skills for later in the day, while PCs do. That said, all of the fixes for it are really clunky at best (NERO Cincy would randomly cross out skills on your card to show that your NPC had already used stuff that day, but it's a time sink to do this), so I'm unsure how to do anything about it, except charging NPCs +1-2 karma for ALL their skills to make up for it ("yes, you can blow all your skills in one module, but you have less in the first place")

Trick Shot <type>
I might buy it once, but it's very situational. In theory or at a game table I think it would work better. In practice (from using it as an NPC), the things that are trying to kill me are running at me, or they're behind cover and shooting. In the former case, Entangle-5 doesn't help much, because by the time they take the effect and stop, they're on top of me, so I can't keep shooting; I have to back up and by the time I do that, they've counted 5, dropped the effect, and are running at me again. Disarm *usually* doesn't help because if somebody is running at me to hit me, they're an Adept and they're using boffer claws, so there's nothing to disarm. In the latter case (behind cover), Entangle does *actually* nothing, because hey, they're behind cover and pretty much stationary already. Likewise, Disarm just means they drop their gun...so they drop it, duck behind cover, wait a couple seconds, pick it back up, and I just spend 3 karma to gain 3 seconds of not being shot at.

There's certainly situations in which I can MAKE Trick Shot useful. I can come up with a TON of hypotheticals. But they're all really, really specific situations, and few of them seem likely to come up in practice. I consider this probably the weakest and least-useful of all the relevant new skills.

Take Cover
See, this one I LOVE. 50% damage from a 50-point grenade means that my armor will entirely soak it, or at worst I've taken some Body damage. Wearing 25-30 armor over 22+ Hit Points makes this skill worthwhile, and it's something that makes Soldiers ACTUAL tanks against some damage type, because *everyone* else falls down when a grenade goes off at their feet unless they're a mage with a lot of mana pumped into a shield. If there's a lack of utility, it's largely because NPCs rarely use explosives (there's a good reason for that...), so PCs don't get a lot of mileage out of it. I would argue that you should be immune to the effects of limb damage as long as you're not actually touching the 'nade, though. And, yes, I agree this is not a skill that is in any way useful for someone wearing 10 armor and with 8 Health.
Mission, Method, Morals...all negotiable.

Plot
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Conclusion

Post by Plot » Fri Jan 29, 2016 11:38 pm

Marksmanship will be simplified to its associated weapon skill.


Trick Shot will be reduced slightly in cost and have the prerequisite of only a single buy of Marksmanship of type per buy.


Layered Armor will be worded better. The flavor text of "wear two sets of armor" was not meant to be literal.
Layered armor was meant to allow PCs to benefit more from the armor they wear or, yes, wear a second suit and alternate which suit breeches etcetera.


The remaining new skills will remain as is, until we have a chance to see them in play on both sides of the field.

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