redlaco wrote:With point-buy systems, you can select a template (with GM approval) and it gives you a pool of points from which to select powers.
Actually what I like best about GURPS is that an experienced player doesn't really need a template anymore - he can build his character as he wishes. Of course, templates are a good crutch for those players who do not entirely know what they're doing (either game-system or background-wise... it helps to, say, remind players whose character is supposed to be an experienced spaceer to invest in skills like "Free Fall" and Vacc Suit" - don't laugh, I have seen "experienced spacer" characters who had no idea how to get in their spacesuits, how to check their suit has full batteries and air tank, or how to get to the ship's bridge in zero-g... simply because the players were unaware that these are aquired skills. Even worse was the guy who played a spacer... carrying a large caliber projectile handgun - we had to explain to him that for one "recoil" has a whole new meaning in free fall, and for another that his black-market armor-piercing rounds were really not a good idea aboard a 2088 spaceship...)
LoneStranger wrote:I think what was meant about GURPS creating old characters is that you base the age of the character off of the levels put into skills. D20 has most everyone start in their early 20's for the most part.
Well, that's not true.
Sure, in GURPS you do have this relation between age and skills. Meaning if you want many, many points in skills, you need to be an older character. However... many players take few points in skills, and most of their points in attributes/advantages - mainly because skills are easiest to gain in play (many advantages cannot be bought after character generation, while attributes usually cost double... and skills only cost double if you have no teacher and learn them by "trial and error").
frobisher wrote: redlaco wrote:
Please explain this comment. I didn't understand what you want to say with it.
Me neither I must admit.
The clear implication of GURPS is that the checks and balances are in the character building system rather than anywhere else.
...and I still don't really understand what you meant with that comment.
As for checks and balances... sure, any good game system tries to have them in their character building system. And so far, every good system failed in some way - power-building is possible in most game systems I know of, from d20 to GURPS... and as I wrote, after the system the GM is the next line of defense.
frobisher wrote:Experience and life-path character generation systems work much better for me (Traveller, FASA Star Trek...), but then I'm more a fan of military setting SF than fantasy.
Hmmm... I know those, and I disliked some of the constraining effects... though I always thought the idea to start from the story and then do the mechanics of character building is a really good one (and a character in my campaign should better have a piece of BG fluff for every one of his skills and advantages - that's one of the things I don't like about GURPS, it encourages building a set of sdtats instead of a character in bad roleplayers... while other systems at least require a bad roleplayer to think about a story before he digs into game mechanics... I had players who showed up with characters that had no story, sometimes even no name before I reminded them that their character needs to be called something... and half of those who had either were more of an alibi-effore...)
I always say that GURPS is a system more intended for people who know what they're doing...
Of course, a inventive GM can fix that. I went well with "tell me your life story and I as GM will build your character for you" in several campaigns (though that takes a lot of time many players would rather spent playing), while the "every skill, attribute of advantage must be represented in the BG story) also works acceptably (if you add an "and approved by the GM" - especially when it comed to psionics and limitations...)
frobisher wrote:The Slayer is built on more points (15 at least rather than 10) than the Scoobies though. Making the Scoobies equal to the Slayer reduces the need for the Slayer to look after them and she just becomes a slaughter machine or they just don't need her (which kinda defeats the idea of the setting...).
Hmmm... well, if I ran a "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" setting, I would let the players build all characters at 100 points, and then take the slayer (either agreed upon with the players, or chosen by the GM without telling the player at first if the campaign goes this way, which I would prefer) and add some extra advantages and attribute increases (and I for one would not tell the slayer player about it either - just figure them into the game equations until they become obvious during playing)
Anyway, this of course has to be handled carefully by the GM to avoid exactkly this "spock syndrome" that started this discussion. I can attest from experience that it is very, very frustrating for a player when he can't do anything, and has to play sidekick for a "hero" (and in the example, I would after determining the slayer consider other "hidden talents" for the scoobies - like "OK, Anja gets to be the slayer... let's Claudia have some magical aptitude she doesn't know about, Christian can get some extra points in luck and such while I think I'll let Toni find a powerful and point-worth artifact later in the game...") That way everyone gets to have some specialized talent, and while they can't beat up the bad guys like the slayer, their speial talent can help them save the day when it's the solution to the problem (how often does buffy fail and willow fix it all with a spell or ritual? how often is it something they find in giles library that allows someone to hit the villain's weak spot?)
Same thing for other campaigns - sure the Jedi have powers beyong the other PC's ken... but an inventive GM will come up with problems where the Jedi need the other players. Sure the telepath can do things noone else can do... but other characters will be able to do things the teep never had anchance to learn (meaning he had to spend his points for telepathy, and couldn't afford the martial arts or techincal skills the scoundrel had, or the piloting and tactical skills of the soldier, or the diplomatic skills of the ambassador)
And that's why most game systems demand a disadvantage to accompany any advantage. In d20, I think telepaths have a reduced "level-up" bonus then non teeps, and the higher their telepathy power, the less they get to spend on other stuff. And in such a game system, that's hard to overcome. In a point based game system, it usually is the same - he who spends his points on psionics, special advantages or "the force" has less to spend for other stuff... however, if the GM wishes, he can easily give that player more points... however, then he needs to make sure he as GM and fate brings extra challenges to this player to make sure he pays for is points with more danger and the need for better roleplaying.