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HOMBAK house rules: character creation part3 : skills


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new episod presenting another part of Aendel background and introducing two other main characters

let's talk about skills.

I have no issue with the occupation skills. Yes, I know, no peaceful cut for hunter, etc... seem weird but there are so many possibilities for a player to "fix" it, I consider that at the end of the process it is fine.

In the same way I don't focus on the difference between homeland and occupation on their total %. The question is more "is a warrior more efficient on fighting  than a fisher on fishering." If a player wants to play a fisher, that to play a fisher able to fish, not to play a fisher able to destroy any humakti with 5 different weapons

So maybe a fisher get xx % less than a warrior, but if a fisher is able to feed 10 people with fish, that is fair.

 

1)  Background skills

Following the background rules, the pc can get skills.

With my own background creation, I propose to get 4x +5%, with a possibility to have +10 / +5 /+5, of course, each bonus must be explained by the story.

 

2) cultural weapons

It is fine to have the weapons used in an homeland.

But I am still disturbed by the fact that all pc get some “training” from all cultural weapons (or about).

Spoiler

I don’t consider a young fisher, herder or farmer had time to be trained in so many weapons, and particularly in sword (a noble status weapon in my opinion), except with a good background, implying some passion (like loyalty to the trainer, or hate to XXX because the pc is a victim who ask for revenge then trained to some weapon etc…)

But I know some players would like to have all the weapons as RAW.

So PC can choose to not take one or several weapon bonus and replace them by some different skills (if the skills are not already provided by the homeland cultural skills - however I allow bonus on the “own language”).

The "old" dorastor campaign gave me some insights : you play settlers and the campaign gives you a lot of activities that could explain to get some experience in other skills than your homeland /occupation skills.

 I propose some ideas :

For "wild" people (hunter, bandit…) anything related to the nature; including peaceful cut, or leather work, tanner work, woodwork and any skill helping them to survive and optimize their family activities.

For poor/medium workers (farmer, herder, little merchant, fisher, thief, poor crafter, poor artist…) anything related to the family: carpenter to build a house, masonry to participate on defense building of the village (or any noble request), cooking to feed their family, weaver to repair old cloths, …

For rich workers (merchant, crafter, artist, noble or anyone with a “rich” background) and scholars anything related to communication and knowledge, meaning, r/w your own language (a rich merchant or crafter family may want their children to develop more and more their business, like contract and audit, so need to read) , sing, dance, custom homeland (to negotiate with priests and nobles), speak own language (to show how not poor uneducated people they are) etc.…

 

3) cult skills

players can choose their character to be initiate to several cults or, why not (after all it is Aendel case) not initiate at all. Then there is an issue what to do with skills provided by the cults ? How to be fair ?

I propose a way I think simple:

Spoiler

1)      characters are educated more or less in a main cult (at least in the rule settings there is no full atheism). Because the parent or the village or anything. So I ask the players to choose what is this cult which “took care of” the character as a child

2)      this main cult decision provides for all pc:

  • the cult starting skills
  • meditate +5

3)      for those who are initiate of at least one cult, this main cult provides

  • cult lore (the main deity) + 15
  • worship (the main deity) + 20

4)      for those who are not initiate at all, they get two personal bonus: +15 /+20. This bonus may be used for the cult lore and worship skill but that means a specific passion to the one (the priest ?) who decided to reveal some secret to a non initiate.

5)      Now those who are initiate of a second or other cult

  • They gain no % in any skill
  • They gain the possibility to use their personal skill bonus in their cult secret skills (lore, worship, some special skills)

Then those who have one cult are exactly like the raw.

Those who have 0 or several cults have no gain or loss from a “percentage” perspective

4) Exotic skill

Some players want for their character exotic / weird skills: for example a non cultural weapon, or any language or lore unusual for the pc’s people. I see no issue, but request some background about it, with, why not a passion (you want to have a greatsword skill ? who was your teacher ? a humakti temple ? a lunar veteran ? … gain loyalty teacher…

 

 

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6 hours ago, French Desperate WindChild said:

I have no issue with the occupation skills. Yes, I know, no peaceful cut for hunter, etc... seem weird but there are so many possibilities for a player to "fix" it, I consider that at the end of the process it is fine.

Based upon the facet that Hunter occupational skill also includes missile weapon, I can sort of understand the lack of peaceful cut. To me, peaceful cut is more of a slaughterhouse type skill, where one is in direct contact with the animal -- eg: slitting throat with sharp knife. It isn't hitting a whitetail deer broadside with an arrow from 50 paces (that arrow could be landing anywhere in an 8" diameter circle depending upon wind and thin brush). A heart hit is likely going to be quick, but a lung hit is going to result in a slower death.

Ah, now that Acrobat has actually found the entry for peaceful cut in the rulebook, it just reinforces my take on the skill.

Quote

This skill is also known as butchering. It includes the ability to dismember an animal in the quickest and most efficient way, and the ability to divide up a prey animal in the traditional manner.

The hunter is probably not undertaking the "butchering" in the field beyond gutting the animal. Dismembering/dividing up the animal likely takes place back at the home village -- and might be performed by someone skilled in that (grab the herder 🙄 or a priest [sacrifices]). Fur-bearing animals caught in traps, and vermin, probably don't get "butchered", just skinned.

 

Edited by Baron Wulfraed
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8 hours ago, Baron Wulfraed said:

Based upon the facet that Hunter occupational skill also includes missile weapon, I can sort of understand the lack of peaceful cut. To me, peaceful cut is more of a slaughterhouse type skill, where one is in direct contact with the animal -- eg: slitting throat with sharp knife. It isn't hitting a whitetail deer broadside with an arrow from 50 paces (that arrow could be landing anywhere in an 8" diameter circle depending upon wind and thin brush). A heart hit is likely going to be quick, but a lung hit is going to result in a slower death.

Ah, now that Acrobat has actually found the entry for peaceful cut in the rulebook, it just reinforces my take on the skill.

The hunter is probably not undertaking the "butchering" in the field beyond gutting the animal. Dismembering/dividing up the animal likely takes place back at the home village -- and might be performed by someone skilled in that (grab the herder 🙄 or a priest [sacrifices]). Fur-bearing animals caught in traps, and vermin, probably don't get "butchered", just skinned.

 

You're assuming the hunter regularly returns to the village. And also missed/ignored the bit about the animal's soul. Notice that the main hunting cults all provide (increase) the skill. Hitting the heart (or head) for an instant-kill is very unlikely, so appropriately ending the life is important. Even moreso with traps. (At least in Glorantha, where the soul matters).

Also, I don't see Peaceful Cut the same as Craft: butchery. Whether it should be included in Survival though... 

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15 hours ago, French Desperate WindChild said:

But I am still disturbed by the fact that all pc get some “training” from all cultural weapons (or about).

It's normally a requirement to help with the defense of the village.

And you've got plenty of time when the harvests are just off growing on their own.

But yeah, I'd probably add a couple more "or" in there.

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5 hours ago, Shiningbrow said:

It's normally a requirement to help with the defense of the village.

Yes that is exactly the key point: what do you expect from non professionnal defenders ? for me a farmer has to know how to survive and defend on a battle field (at least one weapon and one shield) and to skirmish (one missile weapon). No need to be trained with weapons they will never buy/own.

 

5 hours ago, Shiningbrow said:

But yeah, I'd probably add a couple more "or" in there.

that is the only thing I propose: choice

 

14 hours ago, Baron Wulfraed said:

The hunter is probably not undertaking the "butchering" in the field beyond gutting the animal. Dismembering/dividing up the animal likely takes place back at the home village -- and might be performed by someone skilled in that (grab the herder 🙄 or a priest [sacrifices]). Fur-bearing animals caught in traps, and vermin, probably don't get "butchered", just skinned.

there are two things :

- As my favourite english teacher @Shiningbrow said: the ritual to help the animal soul to go back (peaceful cut).

- the physical cut to "save" the flesh.

I am not hunter at all, but I learnt 20 years ago (in a role playing game, how source of knowledge rpg are !) that if you don't remove some part of the body very quickly after the death (30 min 1 hour ? I don't know) the flesh will be poisoned (bile, feces, etc... I don't know exactly)

6 hours ago, Shiningbrow said:

Also, I don't see Peaceful Cut the same as Craft: butchery. Whether it should be included in Survival though... 

I see survival as the skill to eat vegetable, mushroom, worms, and other things liked by trolls 😛

If you see the peaceful cut in the double sense (peaceful soul + cut flesh) it makes sense that it is the same skill a butcher has (cut the flesh)

In another hand, if you see the butcher as the one who knows how to cut the flesh and to transform it in good food ( a merge with cateter ?) then yes I would say a butcher has craft Butchery, and I would allow something like esrolian vs heortling. You can use at 50% of your craft Butchery to save the soul or use at 50% of peaceful cut to prepare your favorite paté.

But there is also craft : cooking (a skill I allow to replace a weapon one, by the way 😛 )

In fact all of this is a big issue when you try to have a good game design. There is no good answer to specialize skills except if you allow that severals skills are linked with a lot of bonus / malus, depending of the type of action covered by the skills... Too complex to be in any rules book. Except if you want 3000 pages of disgussing rules.

Game designers have to make choice / consensus to help the majority to have fun. And after that each GM can do thing differently, according to the table priorities, I think.

 

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One thing that I am considering is allowing players to assign +25 to another two non-zero skills that have had no additions at all. No race, culture, occupation, cult, or elective choices. An opportunity to fill any gaps.

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On 5/8/2021 at 8:24 PM, Baron Wulfraed said:

Based upon the facet that Hunter occupational skill also includes missile weapon, I can sort of understand the lack of peaceful cut. To me, peaceful cut is more of a slaughterhouse type skill, where one is in direct contact with the animal -- eg: slitting throat with sharp knife. It isn't hitting a whitetail deer broadside with an arrow from 50 paces (that arrow could be landing anywhere in an 8" diameter circle depending upon wind and thin brush).

I think hunters do their variant - it's not about correct slaughtering, but about respecting the beast, thanking the animal's spirit for its sacrifice (or apologizing to it) and so on. Plus Peaceful Cut doubles as a butchery skill, and hunters definitely need that.

(I did kinda prefer the RQ3 solution with a Butchery skill and a Peaceful Cut spell, though.)

Edited by Akhôrahil
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27 minutes ago, Akhôrahil said:

(I did kinda prefer the RQ3 solution with a Butchery skill and a Peaceful Cut spell, though.)

So do I.

but the issue with the spell is that "costs" 1 CHA for nothing else than background color (or very very rare gameplay occasion) so how many players will have it, although it is moraly mandatory for anyone ? at least with a skill, no one can complain about a unpeaceful cut of CHA

 

 

 

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