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Atgxtg

Alternate Chargen Test Challenge

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Okay everybody, brace yourselves, I've had an idea.

Now, a few months back several of us discussed the idea of using DEX/2 as the default score for Dexterity skills and APP/2 as the default for Courtly skills. THis was to help make DEX and APP more useful, especially for ladies. But, non of us really know if that idea would hold up and how it would all look in play. So, I have an idea:

How about we try writing up Pendragon characters  (either 5.2 core rules or Knights and Ladies) posting them here, and seeing how they look? That way we can all see if the Knight with a high DEX and a fast track to mastery in weapon skills really balances out against one with a high CON or SIZ. With various people posting we could see various approaches to character generation too, which would give us all a better chance of spotting any problems or pitfalls.

Physical Skills (these are noted in some KAP book, I'll have to hunt to find out which book again, but I figure it's a good start for DEX skills): Boating, Dancing, Hunting, Industry, Play (instrument), Horsemanship, and weapon skills.

Courtly Skills (per p.8 of the Book of Feasts): Compose, Courtesy,Dancing, Falconry, Flirting, Gaming, Heraldry, Intrigue, Orate, Play (Instrument), Romance, Singing, Tourney

 

Note that Dancing and Play (Instrument) are covered under both, so I'd suggest using the higher of the two attributes for those skills. 

 

So let's try some chargen and see what it looks like!

 

 

 

 

 

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I'll give it a shot. Does DEX/2 give skill ranks in any weapons or just the ones the culture would normally have available? Better yet, is this Cymric 5.2 core rulebook only or Knights and Ladies?

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9 minutes ago, Username said:

Does DEX/2 give skill ranks in any weapons or just the ones the culture would normally have available?

All weapons.

9 minutes ago, Username said:

Better yet, is this Cymric 5.2 core rulebook only or Knights and Ladies?

Either, as long as you label it clearly as one or the other:

On 7/13/2019 at 5:31 PM, Atgxtg said:

(either 5.2 core rules or Knights and Ladies)

 

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On 7/13/2019 at 7:31 AM, Atgxtg said:

Okay everybody, brace yourselves, I've had an idea.

GAH! 😉

On 7/13/2019 at 7:31 AM, Atgxtg said:

Now, a few months back several of us discussed the idea of using DEX/2 as the default score for Dexterity skills and APP/2 as the default for Courtly skills. THis was to help make DEX and APP more useful, especially for ladies. But, non of us really know if that idea would hold up and how it would all look in play. So, I have an idea:

How about we try writing up Pendragon characters  (either 5.2 core rules or Knights and Ladies) posting them here, and seeing how they look? That way we can all see if the Knight with a high DEX and a fast track to mastery in weapon skills really balances out against one with a high CON or SIZ. With various people posting we could see various approaches to character generation too, which would give us all a better chance of spotting any problems or pitfalls.

Physical Skills (these are noted in some KAP book, I'll have to hunt to find out which book again, but I figure it's a good start for DEX skills): Boating, Dancing, Hunting, Industry, Play (instrument), Horsemanship, and weapon skills.

Courtly Skills (per p.8 of the Book of Feasts): Compose, Courtesy,Dancing, Falconry, Flirting, Gaming, Heraldry, Intrigue, Orate, Play (Instrument), Romance, Singing, Tourney

Note that Dancing and Play (Instrument) are covered under both, so I'd suggest using the higher of the two attributes for those skills. 

So let's try some chargen and see what it looks like!

I missed this discussion! 

I like the concept, but half seems a bit high. Off the top, /4 or /3 sounds like it would fit better (or perhaps /6 to /4 on top of base).

SDLeary

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5 hours ago, SDLeary said:

GAH! 😉

LOL!

Quote

I missed this discussion! 

I like the concept, but half seems a bit high. Off the top, /4 or /3 sounds like it would fit better (or perhaps /6 to /4 on top of base).

SDLeary

Like you said you missed the discussion. The reasoning behind it was that as currently constructed APP is pretty much a dump stat and DEX nearly so (it's major use for PKs is less important if the character has a high SIZ and superseded by Horsemanship skill if in the character is mounted). With the idea of making Lady characters more useful and playable APP needed an upgrade. By RAW is does practically nothing. On a similar note an 18 DEX isn't in the same league as an 18 STR let alone an 18 CON or SIZ. 

The idea of using half of DEX or APP as a default was designed to balance out those attributes against the others. The idea being that a player knight with an 18 DEX would start off with a lot of high combat skills and be on the fast track to knighthood and success and (hopefully) hold his own, long term, against a PK with an 18 SIZ.

Using APP/2 would give ladies with a high APP something worth having.

Stat/3 or /4 might be a better fit for an RQ type game, where the attributes play a factor in other things (such as skill improvement), but still leaves DEX and APP as dump stats in KAP. 

 

Stat/2 would up as the "most popular compromise" solution to the dump stat situation, not the ideal solution.

 

The idea of this thread is to get people trying out the variant rule to see if it actually works out as intended, especially when used by multiple people in something akin to "field conditions". My thinking it I'd rather find out it it works or not now rather than a year or two from now, after it might have worked its way into something official. 

 

So consider this a challenge to try and break this alternate chargen system! Better it doen by one of us that some stranger! (okay, okay so there is no one stranger, just people we don't know). 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Atgxtg
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This issues has other problems attached as was brought up in the fighting with an Axe without the Axe skill thread.

1. IF you start using defaults how do you handle skill advancement.

a. does the advanced skill start at the default or 1?

b. how do you handle a high Stat characters skill if it out classes a player who has the skill paid for?

example:

I make a Cymric knight character and don't put any points in Axe so it start at (0)

I make a French knight character and don't put any points in Axe so it start at (0)

I make a German knight character and don't put any points in Axe so it start at (9)

I make a Spanish knight character and don't put any points in Axe so it start at (0)

With Dex/2 and the standard 3d6+1 (max 18) a 18/2= (9)  is possible meaning that any of the other knights could have the same default Axe skill as the German knight without it being on their list. Kind of defeats the need for the list in the first place.

P.S. this gets worse with no combat skills, and low start point combat skills such as Cymric knight spear (6) and dagger (5).

 

 

Edited by tenchi2a
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Just now, tenchi2a said:

This issues has other problems attached as was brought up in the fighting with an Axe without the Axe skill thread.

1. IF you start using defaults how do you handle skill advancement.

a. does the advanced skill start at the default or 1?

b. how do you handle a high Stat characters skill if it out classes a player who has the skill paid for?

example:

I make a Cymric knight character and don't put any points in Axe so it start at (0)

I make a French knight character and don't put any points in Axe so it start at (0)

I make a German knight character and don't put any points in Axe so it start at (9)

I make a Spanish knight character and don't put any points in Axe so it start at (0)

With Dex/2 and the standard 3d6+1 (max 18) a 18/2= (9)  is possible meaning that any of the other knights could have the same default Axe skill as the German knight without it being on their list. Kind of defeats the need for the list in the first place.

P.S. this gets worse with non combat skills, and low start point combat skills such as Cymric knight spear (6) and dagger (5).

 

 

 

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6 hours ago, tenchi2a said:

This issues has other problems attached as was brought up in the fighting with an Axe without the Axe skill thread.

1. IF you start using defaults how do you handle skill advancement.

Advancement is handled normally, that is as if the skill has a value equal to it's default score. For example, if a Knight had DEX 10, and thus Axe (5) he would be treated just like any other character with Axe (5). If that character got a skill check with axe and rolled to improve it later it would go up from 5 to 6. Also, if the Knight raised his DEX from 10 to 11 then the defualt for any DEX based skills would go from 5 to 6. THis would not change any DEX based skill that was already 6 or higher.

6 hours ago, tenchi2a said:

a. does the advanced skill start at the default or 1?

I assume you mean cultural skills such as Spear Expertise or Two Handed Weapons.  Those skills are tied to culture, so someone would have to be a Cymric knight (or at least fostered by/squired to one) to get Spear Expertise, although the default would tend to make that Meta-skill moot during chargen. But it would still be useful for advancment purposes.

6 hours ago, tenchi2a said:

b. how do you handle a high Stat characters skill if it out classes a player who has the skill paid for?

The character benefits from the high stat. Now you might think this is an unfair adfvantage, but is it? Look at the advatage that a high SIZ character gets, more hit points, higher knockdown, higher damage stat, and compare it to the high DEX character.

Then consider that in standard chargen characters are built from a pool of points, so a high DEX will come at the cost of a lower SIZ, STR and CON. 

 

On top of that breadth of combat skills is as important as depth. What I mean is that having a 5 or even a 9 in a lot of skills like dagger, greatspear, flail, mace, etc. isn't as good as having a 20 skill in any one lelee weapon (like sword, spear or axe). 

6 hours ago, tenchi2a said:

example:

I make a Cymric knight character and don't put any points in Axe so it start at (0)

I make a French knight character and don't put any points in Axe so it start at (0)

I make a German knight character and don't put any points in Axe so it start at (9)

I make a Spanish knight character and don't put any points in Axe so it start at (0)

 

With Dex/2 and the standard 3d6+1 (max 18) a 18/2= (9)  is possible meaning that any of the other knights could have the same default Axe skill as the German knight without it being on their list. Kind of defeats the need for the list in the first place.

Yup, and IMO that's a good thing. The whole point of the different starting skills is cultural identity. That a German Knight has a Axe skill of 9 is nearly meaningless, because the knight wouldn't leave it at 9, or wouldn't rely on it is battle if he did leave it at 9. Likewise any of the Knights who started with it at 0 would spend time improving it before they would consider using it, except in an emergency. 

A difference of a couple of points in a skill, especially one that isn't going to be used much (if at all) due to the low rating is really just more bookseeping for an alleged benefit that won't show up in play.

For an example of this look at older version of RQ supplements, such as Apple Lane. Originally all the minor NPCs such as the various Baboons each got their own write ups, with  attribute and skill scores that varied a little from one to the next to try to individualize them. In later editions only the leader got such treatment and the rest were given generic stats. In play, players are usually not going to notice if an NPC has a 11 STR or a 12, or has club at 30% or 35%. Likewise in KAP it doesn't really matter much if one culture gets Sing 3 and another Sing 5- the difference isn't going to be noticeable unless they are doing over 20 singing rolls a session, and it would have to be well over 20 rolls for a 12 point difference to be attributed to a difference in skill and not other factors.

6 hours ago, tenchi2a said:

P.S. this gets worse with no combat skills, and low start point combat skills such as Cymric knight spear (6) and dagger (5).

Is it worse? First off to beast that 5 or 6 skill a character would have to have a 13 or better DEX, and that would come at the expense of one of his other attributes (SIZ, STR, CON or APP). A knight who starts off with a 15 DEX and a default of 8 with any weapon skill is probably still going to get his head handed to him by a knight who starts off with SIZ 16, DEX 10, Sword 15 and 5d6 damage.

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7 hours ago, tenchi2a said:

With Dex/2 and the standard 3d6+1 (max 18) a 18/2= (9)  is possible meaning that any of the other knights could have the same default Axe skill as the German knight without it being on their list. Kind of defeats the need for the list in the first place.

Atgxtg already addressed the other points, so I will just comment here: You are positing a knight who is an absolute Paragon in DEX. He should have much easier time picking up skills requiring coordination, which is what his high defaults represent. Note that the average German/Saxon is going to have DEX 8 or so, and hence a default of 4. Most Cymric knights would have a default of 5, still much worse than the starting Axe skill of 9 for the German. And like Atgxtg pointed out, if the Axe is going to be a cultural weapon for the German, he is likely to use points on it, whereas a Cymric knight might be putting those points to Spear Expertise or Sword.

I do agree that you might not necessarily need starting skill lists as such any more if you use DEX/APP defaults. I see this actually as a very good thing, since I HATE needing to check if the starting skill was 2 or 3... The players can then decide if their character conforms to a cultural stereotype and boosts Axe up, or if they prefer going with some other weapon instead and break the mold. Freedoooom!

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BTW, debates like this are exactly why I've been asking for people to create and post characters using this variant of chargen. That way we can all see the big picture and how much raising DEX or APP will mater compared to the corresponding reduction in SIZ, CON, STR and/or skill points. Does a character with DEX 18, and a default of 9 in physical skills really have that much of an advantage? In chargen? in play? 

Obviously it's all about trade offs, but we don't really know yet if the pros balance out with the cons.

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I was looking at fixing this from a completely different way.

Give all skills a default and/or a starting level based on the characters job/class/etc.This would be where the skill defaults when use without the skill and if you use experience/glory to up it and gain the skill it would start at 1+default.

example:

Clerk

Starting Skill (Knights): 0

Starting Skill (Lady): 2

Diplomacy

Starting Skill (All): 2

Axe

Starting Skill (Knights):5

Starting Skill (Lady):0

 

So a player knight picks up an Axe (no skill) he would default to 5 skill level (Martial training kicks in) and during the fight he gets a skill check.

The next winter phase he rolls for Axe and gets an advancement, so his skill is now Axe: 6.

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A good starting point would be 1/2 highest cultural starting skill rounded up.

This way the cultural identity stay relevant and your knight is not overly penalized by not having the skill.

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3 hours ago, tenchi2a said:

I was looking at fixing this from a completely different way.

I don't see how it fixes the problem though, as all Knights (and all Ladies) would have the same defaults. We'd still be left with APP as a dump stat, and DEX nearly one.

The 0 starting skill is a different problem (and IMO not as important as a PK does at least have some options, according to the RAW, while APP is next to useless).

To drudge up my original complaint, if APP Is only going to serve as descriptive text in the game, why bother tracking it as an attribute? 

 

 

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14 minutes ago, Atgxtg said:

I don't see how it fixes the problem though, as all Knights (and all Ladies) would have the same defaults. We'd still be left with APP as a dump stat, and DEX nearly one.

The 0 starting skill is a different problem (and IMO not as important as a PK does at least have some options, according to the RAW, while APP is next to useless).

To drudge up my original complaint, if APP Is only going to serve as descriptive text in the game, why bother tracking it as an attribute? 

I was trying to keep the game intact without completely have to rewrite character creation to fix the unskilled issues.

I don't see Dex and APP as broken and did not think they needed fixing by braking the skill system

Dex already has a function for movement, and APP is raw looks and provides the number Distinctive Features.

APP effects are in the roleplaying which is up to the PC and GM not the mechanics.

If your only objective it to change the system to fix 2 stats in the whole game then I don't see the point.

Most games have dump stats as you call them so I don't see this as a problem that needs fixing.

So I will leave you to it.

Edited by tenchi2a

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But if you need mechanics for APP to be worth some thing use it as a modifier.

Romance

Two knights one good looking (16) and one homely (8) are trying to woe a heiress APP (18) to a 30£ estate.

both have Romance (10) 

GM rules that do to their looks knight one gets +5 and knight two gets a -5

so now its knight one with Romance (15) and knight two with Romance (5) 

APP gets to have a major effect on the future of the knights families.

So the knight who looked at APP as a dump stat may have just lost out on increasing his lands and acquiring a beautiful wife.

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9 hours ago, tenchi2a said:

I was trying to keep the game intact without completely have to rewrite character creation to fix the unskilled issues.

You're not completely rewrting character generation.

 

Quote

I don't see Dex and APP as broken and did not think they needed fixing by braking the skill system

They are nearly worthless. 5 points of DEX do not equal 1 point of SIZ or CON.

Quote

Dex already has a function for movement,

As does STR. With 10 points of DEX needed for 1 point of Movement, and DEX on a 3-18 range the difference between a high dex and a low one is 1 point of Move. That hardly matches up with SIZ, CON or STR.. Furthermore Move is a pretty weak stat for a knight, who is going to be mounted in most fights and rely on his horse's move score instead.

Quote

and APP is raw looks and provides the number Distinctive Features.

Which themselves do nothing and have no function in the game. 

Quote

APP effects are in the roleplaying which is up to the PC and GM not the mechanics.

Then why bothering using game mechanics to track it? Really, the whole "why don't you just roleplay it" objection doesn't hold water. Why don't we just roleplay sword duels, jousts, singing, and every other facet of the game? THey could all be handled through roleplaying just as well as APP can. Probably easier, as we have more common ground as to what constitutes a high SIZ or STR than we do with something as subjective as APP.

 

And roleplaying wise, I've yet to see a guard being seduced into looking the other way by an APP score (KAP uses traits for that) or APP having any  impact in the game other than bragging rights  among the players for who scored with or wedded the prettiest girl.

Quote

If your only objective it to change the system to fix 2 stats in the whole game then I don't see the point.

The point is that:

1) DEX is nearly useless in game, so nobody spends character points on it. It's major function in the game for knights is to resist knockdown. There are some other uses but most of those won't be attempted by armored knights, and probably not by unarmored knights either.

2) APP is virtually useless. Other than its being used for seating at feasts, and to resist the effects of aging by spreading around the point loss, it serves no function and could be dropped and replaced with a character description.

Both of these things lead to players pretty much ignoring or even buying low on DEX and APP in order to have more points to spend on STR, CON and especially SIZ. 

Another problem with this is with lady characters for whom APP and DEX tend to be thier best stats. In game terms Lady Grocery Bag (APP 4, Flirt 15) is going to be more successful than Lady Helen (APP 22, Flirt 4). 

 

But if neither of those are enough for you, consider this: If the stats serve no significant purpose then removing them would streamline and simply the game making it easier to play. APP is about as useful in Pendragon as Armor Class is.

 

 

Quote

Most games have dump stats as you call them so I don't see this as a problem that needs fixing.

Few games have stats that serve no game purpose, like APP does. Even something like D&D, where CHA isn't all that important for most characters, still has use among Bards, Sorcerors and Paladins. In KAP the APP stat isn't useful to anybody.

Then you probably haven't considered lady player character much. As they stand now, attributes are nearly pointless for them. That high APP that is supposed to be important in some way, isn't. Courtly skills completely override APP and DEX. 

Quote

So I will leave you to it.

Okay. I don't mind discussing or debating this, but this isn't supposed to be the thread for that. We had a thread for that awhile back. This is supposed to be a thread for testing the idea out and seeing what the results look like.

I'd honestly love to see you write up a character or two using this alternate method and use it to validate your objections. 

Edited by Atgxtg

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I'm not really a fan of using DEX/2 or APP/2 as a base for Melee skills, as it would mean people that invested a few points in a skill are likeley to lose them if they grow the appropriate characteristic.

I also disagree DEX is as useless as APP is, as it basically covers all Agility and Stealth skills from other BRP games.
It can be useful if you use Feint a lot, but you need to reach a very high level in DEX to make it reliable.

Concerning APP, it would be possible to borrow the Generic Conflict rule from Revolution D100 and use APP as a base value for "Social Hit Points" and/or "Social Damage" in social situations. Alternatively, Social Hit Point could be a function of a personality trait instead.
 

Edited by Mugen

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On 7/13/2019 at 5:31 PM, Atgxtg said:

Physical Skills (these are noted in some KAP book, I'll have to hunt to find out which book again, but I figure it's a good start for DEX skills): Boating, Dancing, Hunting, Industry, Play (instrument), Horsemanship, and weapon skills.

Courtly Skills (per p.8 of the Book of Feasts): Compose, Courtesy,Dancing, Falconry, Flirting, Gaming, Heraldry, Intrigue, Orate, Play (Instrument), Romance, Singing, Tourney

I used the above skills, although personally I would add at least Swimming to the DEX Skills, and take Falconry, Gaming and Heraldry out of the APP skills. But be that as it may.

I used KAP 5.2 for simplicity, and ignored Family Characteristic and Traits & Passions for now, focusing just on Statistics and Skills. Two miscellaneous points have gone to stat increases, while two have gone to +5 to two skills, leading to a total of 20 skill points added. And yes, I know the CON is low, but those points need to come from somewhere. (Although I could easily have taken the +5 First Aid and used that to get CON 13.)

 

1. DEX -centric: Awareness 15, Courtesy 10, Orate 10,  Intrigue 10, +5 Horsemanship, +5 Sword, +5 Lance, +5 First Aid

image.png.f723133e8a9bd580747199b75723db00.pngimage.png.371a34bcd66bbdeef92d8f3aa82207ee.png

2. SIZ & STR centric (i.e. our campaign's typical starting knight now): Awareness 15, Courtesy 10, Orate 10,  Intrigue 10, +5 Horsemanship, +5 Sword, +5 Lance, +5 First Aid

image.png.06d7d3ca65c8afc6d437d1b413b6757a.pngimage.png.ec5a9fe6852d00c410d47d980b1342c5.png

3. APP centric: Awareness 15, Faerie Lore 10, Folk Lore 10, Hunting 10, +5 Horsemanship, +5 Sword, +5 Lance, +2 Courtesy, +2 Orate, +1 Intrigue

image.png.700e1c9efefa50d6d10f69a98946cc33.pngimage.png.9c81180540b7627f25d7202ed0da45a0.png

The biggest thing to note is that thanks to the flat 15 and 10 in beginning skill assignments, those with high defaults (DEX & APP) tend to lose out, as their default becomes immaterial, and indeed discourages them from picking their own high default skills. It would be better to change it to +10 (max 15, excess points returned to the pool to be assigned to other skills) and +5 to three non-combat skills. This way, the high APP character could actually pick APP skills to further play to his strengths, rather than pick non-APP skills to maximise the benefit. Similarly with DEX character; especially a new weapon would become an easier pick for the DEX character compared to others, whereas now, anyone with half a brain will use the flat 15 to get their Axe or Mace from 0 to 15 for maximum benefit regardless of DEX, rather than get mere 5 points of benefit by going from Sword 10 to 15.

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22 hours ago, Mugen said:

I'm not really a fan of using DEX/2 or APP/2 as a base for Melee skills, as it would mean people that invested a few points in a skill are likeley to lose them if they grow the appropriate characteristic.

Yup, and tha'ts a valid argument. As a counter argument, I'll point out that with DEX/2 and APP/2 as a base people won't invest a few points into a skill, not only because they could be "lost" if the attribute is improved, but also because it's a waste of points. Somone who raises both Dance and Flirt from 5 to 6 is sorta wasting their points anyway, unless they like using a skill with a 70% chance of failure.

22 hours ago, Mugen said:

I also disagree DEX is as useless as APP is, as it basically covers all Agility and Stealth skills from other BRP games.

DEX is nearly as useless as APP. Yes it does cover some Agility skills (Dancing and Boating are sperate skills) and and all Stealth skills from other BRP games, but knights don't use Agility skills much(other than the ones that remained skills)  or Stealth at all in KAP. Even if they wanted to, which they probably wouldn't due to the armor penalty. 

22 hours ago, Mugen said:

It can be useful if you use Feint a lot, but you need to reach a very high level in DEX to make it reliable.

And play an older edition, as the double feint tactic was removed from KAP. If I still existed, I probably wouldn't even have brought DEX into the conversation. It will still be a poor cousin to SIZ or CON, but Double Feint did keep DEX quite useful and relevant. But, apparently it caused problems. 

22 hours ago, Mugen said:

Concerning APP, it would be possible to borrow the Generic Conflict rule from Revolution D100 and use APP as a base value for "Social Hit Points" and/or "Social Damage" in social situations. Alternatively, Social Hit Point could be a function of a personality trait instead.
 

It's an idea. I really wouldn't mind if we reopened the original thread or started a new one to explore other alternative or solutions to the (alleged) problem of APP and DEX reatively low value in KAP, or even if a solution is needed. IMO Ladies need to get some game benefit from a high APP score. As it stands now, as noncombatants SIZ and STR are fairly meaningless for them, CON doesn't help them to survive their biggest life threatening circumstance, childbirth, DEX doesn't do anything for them, except maybe allow them to sneak up close enough to eavesdrop, and APP gets a lot of lip service but has no fictional value. A lady with APP 4 and high Courtly skills will completely dominate a lady with APP 20 and low Courtly skills. Worse still  a lady with APP 4 and low Courtly skills can hold her own against a lady with APP 20 and low Courtly skills. At least with the defaults the APP4 character will have to work harder to make up for her low APP score, and the high APP character will get a little more social tolerance from her good looks. 

 

But again, this is the wrong thread for that, but I'm willing to consider other approaches. 

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17 hours ago, Morien said:

I used the above skills,

Yea! Some explames, thanks.

Quote

although personally I would add at least Swimming to the DEX Skills,

I think I would too. 

Quote

and take Falconry, Gaming and Heraldry out of the APP skills. But be that as it may.

It's a oint. Problem is though, APP probably wouldn't help many skills other than Flirting, but probably just influences how others behave. For instance the APP 22 lady probably inst any better at intrigue, but men might tell her things to try an impress her. So manybe she gets a little extra help when out hawking, opponents let her win, and so forth. 

 

Quote

The biggest thing to note is that thanks to the flat 15 and 10 in beginning skill assignments, those with high defaults (DEX & APP) tend to lose out, as their default becomes immaterial, and indeed discourages them from picking their own high default skills.

Yeah, and it seems high DEX looses out worse than high APP, as there is more reason to use differernt courtly skills in a situation than there is to use different weapons. For example someone would  flirt, gossip, play a game etc. a court, but a knight would have little reason to use sword, axe, mace, spear, flail, etc. in one fight. 

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It would be better to change it to +10 (max 15, excess points returned to the pool to be assigned to other skills) and +5 to three non-combat skills. This way, the high APP character could actually pick APP skills to further play to his strengths, rather than pick non-APP skills to maximise the benefit. Similarly with DEX character; especially a new weapon would become an easier pick for the DEX character compared to others, whereas now, anyone with half a brain will use the flat 15 to get their Axe or Mace from 0 to 15 for maximum benefit regardless of DEX, rather than get mere 5 points of benefit by going from Sword 10 to 15.

It's the easy chargen nature of the picks in KAP5. It's quicker and simplier than spending points from previous editions, but makes this rule variant kinda moot -at least with the RAW.  

Edited by Atgxtg

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15 minutes ago, Atgxtg said:

DEX is nearly as useless as APP. Yes it does cover some Agility skills (Dancing and Boating are sperate skills) and and all Stealth skills from other BRP games, but knights don't use Agility skills much(other than the ones that remained skills)  or Stealth at all in KAP. Even if they wanted to, which they probably wouldn't due to the armor penalty. 

I have always used Hunting for Stealth out of doors, and Intrigue inside. There are many examples of knights hunting without armor (including on foot, for certain types of game) in literature, as well as sneaking in or out of rooms. In fact, in the Tristram literature, these are iconic scenes. These type of skills would be central in a 'court-centered' campaign that is more inclusive of lady PCs, so I'd definitely accommodate them in the rules. My experience is that players spend points on skills they ended up using. But Intrigue, Hunting, Dancing, etc., will be increased by players if the campaign swings that way. Have a player knight fall in love with a lady would wants a perfect courtier (dancing, singing, gaming, orate, etc.), and see what happens.

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1 minute ago, jeffjerwin said:

I have always used Hunting for Stealth out of doors, and Intrigue inside. There are many examples of knights hunting without armor (including on foot, for certain types of game) in literature, as well as sneaking in or out of rooms. In fact, in the Tristram literature, these are iconic scenes. These type of skills would be central in a 'court-centered' campaign that is more inclusive of lady PCs, so I'd definitely accommodate them in the rules. My experience is that players spend points on skills they ended up using. But Intrigue, Hunting, Dancing, etc., will be increased by players if the campaign swings that way. Have a player knight fall in love with a lady would wants a perfect courtier (dancing, singing, gaming, orate, etc.), and see what happens.

Which would make DEX even less useful, as even more of it's functions are superseded. 

 

I'm not saying I'm opposed to your use of Hunting and Intrigue, only that it makes DEX  even less important.

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Every system has its faults, at least to some.  The idea behind using stats as baseline defaults would be to make them more valuable and not be see as a dump event.  To some, the idea of losing DEX leading to losing skill level, is not based in real life.  For those of us who are above middle-age, just try to do the stuff we did when we were much younger. I can't benchpress what I used to, do all the acrobatic maneuvers, and so on. So, at least to me, making skills stat-based makes sense and if you lose stats, those skills suffer.  

Trying to fit each skill into a base stat is more problematical as KAP does not have an Intelligence based stat. So, this is where I see problems lie.

Just my two denarii.

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9 minutes ago, Hzark10 said:

Every system has its faults, at least to some.  The idea behind using stats as baseline defaults would be to make them more valuable and not be see as a dump event. 

In theory, although as Morien's example points out, the ability to just set some skills to 15 at chargen kinda bypasses the baseline idea. 

Right now DEX and APP could be dropped from the game with little effect, especially with jerjeffwin's idea of using Hunting and Intrigue Only knockdown on foot would be affected much. Not only does this cause problems for  those characters for which APP is supposed to be important (i.e. Ladies for whom all attributes are practically worthless). but the dump stat nature of DEX and APP means PKs have even more incentive to max out SIZ. If it weren't for the aging table, and the fear of being bedridden and dying from low attributes, the typical starting PK could easily be:  SIZ 18, DEX 3, STR 18, CON 21, APP 3

9 minutes ago, Hzark10 said:

To some, the idea of losing DEX leading to losing skill level, is not based in real life.

We didn't intended on stat loss resulting is a reduction in skill. For several reasons, including simplify of use, once a skill is  above STAT/2 it is essentially independent from the stat. 

9 minutes ago, Hzark10 said:

  For those of us who are above middle-age, just try to do the stuff we did when we were much younger. I can't benchpress what I used to, do all the acrobatic maneuvers, and so on. So, at least to me, making skills stat-based makes sense and if you lose stats, those skills suffer.  

Oh, logically it certainly makes sense for skills to decline or be limited somehow by attributes. That's why professional athletes can't compete forever - at least not at their peak performance level. They might have the same (or even greater) knowledge and skill as they had before, but don't have the physical ability to use the skill at the same level. 

9 minutes ago, Hzark10 said:

Trying to fit each skill into a base stat is more problematical as KAP does not have an Intelligence based stat. So, this is where I see problems lie.

Yes, it is one of the hurdles. In RQ/BRP we have INT and POW to use to help with skills. KAP doesn't and it makes some things more tricky. It partially why Greg couldn't get a "General Knowledge" skill to work. Basically what he wanted was something like an Idea roll, but as a skill it could become too broad and encompass everything.

But we don't need to make every skill stat based, just do something to make DEX and APP useful. 

9 minutes ago, Hzark10 said:

Just my two denarii.

Thanks, appriciated. Its odd though that this thread was really supposed to test out a months old possible solution to the issue, but instead just seemed to bring up more debate than the original thread.

 

Once again, I'll point out that I'd love to see other ways to address this issue. While there are some people who think everything is just great the way it is now, the consensus had seemed to be that APP is a dump stat, most PKs max out SIZ,  and DEX isn't important. Considering how chargen has been going for my groups in KAP5+, I'm considering just giving the PKs 24 points to spend between SIZ and CON and dropping DEX, STR and APP.

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2 hours ago, Atgxtg said:

It's the easy chargen nature of the picks in KAP5. It's quicker and simplier than spending points from previous editions, but makes this rule variant kinda moot -at least with the RAW.  

Yep. If you are just dealing with a pool of skill points, then it is not an issue.

The fixed skill levels, while quicker, do tend to mess things up when dealing with higher starting skills. Even with something like K&L. If you have a character with a skill natively at 9 (whether cultural or stat default), they are less likely to use a 10 for that skill than someone with the same skill at 2. Hence, you might end up with an 'erroneous' result that most X are better than most Y, in a skill that Y are supposedly better than X.

The +10 & three at +5, points in excess of 15 added to the 10 skillpoint pool would keep it still relatively quick and easy, while giving full benefit to higher starting skills, whether from defaults or cultural starting skills. Or you might rewind like back to 4th edition and simply give people 35 skill points (which might, actually, be a bit too much especially if the higher defaults, generally 5+ instead of 2 or 3, already in play). I am not too bothered by the higher defaults, though, since skill of 5 is still something you don't want to rely on, but at least it gives the PKs some chances of success... Also, it keeps the 'default result' the same for the skills the knight chooses to focus on: 5+5 = 10 and 5+10 = 15.

 

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