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  #61  
Old January 1st, 2013, 10:11 AM
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Traveller stats are the character's "I'm doing nothing" state. Like many NPC's, if they stay in that state and don't try to change, then they neither lose nor gain. However, since we're playing adventurers who are at least in theory driven to succeed they can make progress. As a person who has improved himself with age, I'm happy with the ability to do so.

Also, keep in mind that Dex is probably not a great mix with Med. Sure, you may have smooth movements normally but nervous tension will kill fine motor control. It takes education, insight, and practice to become a skilled surgeon. Skill level is a measure of how much you know about the topic at hand. Higher skill levels assume some real world experience as well as knowledge.

Statistically, if I remember correctly, a skilled person can perform a skill 5-25 times faster than an unskilled person. So higher skill levels can also let you respond faster. For example, most anyone with a target rifle, plenty of time and a basic understanding of shooting can put a round into a target at 100 yards with little effort. Add in threat of being shot back at, movement, lack of information about what's going on, and the task becomes much more difficult.

I prefer systems that let characters make progress in stats, skills, and resources.
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  #62  
Old January 1st, 2013, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Greylond View Post
And I could be interested in some form of Stat Increase Training. Body Building/Endurance training seems very possible. Education increase seems logical through some kind of type of school/training. Soc Class would seem to be the hardest to adjudicate to me, possibly involving some kind of service and/or monetary "donation." Something along with the way the U.K eventually started allowing wealthy people to purchase titles.
Depends heavily on the social structure of the mechanisms. Money buys a lot of Status in some cultures, where land, or followers might get it elsewhere. You could work your way into being a benefactor for a system and then they request your "official" leadership from the Imperium. Since there are probably a lot of Peers, a few more won't make a lot of difference.

Of course, trying to find a game that would let you do that is a totally different story!
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  #63  
Old January 1st, 2013, 10:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Greylond View Post
That's why Medic is based off of Int or Edu and not Dex...
I thought all skills could be used in multiple ways and how they were used determined what characteristic applies? Perhaps it's from a former version of Traveller, but we always used Dex for delicate surgery.

But that is beside the point, and I think you got the point. In real life if I need surgery I'd rather have an experienced surgeon with average characteristics than a scout troop leader who teaches first aid and has high characteristics.
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  #64  
Old January 1st, 2013, 10:35 AM
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Part of the issue stems from different psychologies of players. Some people like the dynamic risk and ever-present danger while others prefer to plan and scheme. To the latter, danger means a failure of planning, not a longed for challenge.

Games where you're always scrapping for credits and running from one debt to another are fun for some people but not for everyone. Games where your character makes progress, either in skills, stats, status, or resources, are enjoyable to some people.

Having a mechanism to improve is a good thing. Whether or not the DM or players use it is up to them.
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  #65  
Old January 1st, 2013, 11:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Leitz View Post
As a person who has improved himself with age, I'm happy with the ability to do so.
Don't know how old you are. I'm in the second half of my 40s.

I guess if I wasn't as physical when I was younger, I can see that my characteristics would be lower now and possibility there would be room for improvement. For me, currently I have aches and pains when I attempt a fraction of the level of activity I once had. Possibly futuristic medical care and drugs might allow for less effect of aging and a higher level of physicality for Traveller aged characters than I see as realistic in RL.

Even with the possibility of more advanced medical ability to offset the aging and injuries I've had, I know how much physical activity I was involved in and can't see improving beyond the peek I once had without totally ignoring other parts of life like maintaining expertise, job and family (Travellers don't typically have family but perhaps skills in streetwise, carouse, steward...).

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Originally Posted by Leitz View Post
Traveller stats are the character's "I'm doing nothing" state.
I accept that someones physical characteristics can change. I also believe the current characteristics are based on diet, physical conditioning and other factors. Take for example, a character that did improve physical characteristics during chargen. How did that happen? Would such a characters stats be the "I'm doing nothing" state? Didn't they have to be physically active to increase those stats and shouldn't they have to continue to be physically active to maintain their physique? To me, someone with low physical stats may be a doing nothing couch spud with poor diet, someone with average stats is engaged in average physical activity and someone with high stats spends a bit of time maintaining their physique.

One of my thoughts regarding adding a mechanism for improving is that a mechanism for deteriorating is also needed. Other than aging, Traveller doesn't have a mechanism for maintaining skills and characteristics. There is a balance to everything and more time spent on one thing means less time spent on others.

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Originally Posted by Leitz View Post
Having a mechanism to improve is a good thing. Whether or not the DM or players use it is up to them.
Agreed. It's just a game and people should play in whatever manner they enjoy. I just wanted to point out what I thought were realistic issues that contradicted the current thoughts which are about improvement. I oft, even earlier in this thread, discuss alternatives and propose solutions I wouldn't use myself. As you can tell, I'm not in favor of Traveller aged characters improving physical characteristics. However, I still would like to contribute and say that if you are considering such, you might want to balance things by also including a mechanism where a) folks that are less active can lose physical stats and/or b) time spent improving in one area might be less time spent maintaining some other aspect of your characters "life".

I guess one of the main reasons I'm against a specific - do x for y long and you improve system for physical characteristics is because it doesn't jive with aging characters. Does the system vary based on the age of the character? Perhaps a 30 year old character improves but what about a 45 year old? A 60 year old?

Last edited by CosmicGamer; January 1st, 2013 at 11:40 AM.. Reason: accidentally submitted instead of hitting the preview button
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  #66  
Old January 1st, 2013, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by CosmicGamer View Post
Should a character with high dex and almost no training and skill as a doctor really be as good, or a better surgeon than a skilled doctor with average dex? To me, no. Sure you made a really nice cut but weren't you supposed to cut over here? I can live with it but personally I wouldn't encourage methods of rolling characteristics that produce a lot of bonuses.
The only time that would happen is when a GM didn't engage brain before running that game...
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  #67  
Old January 1st, 2013, 01:46 PM
Greylond Greylond is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmicGamer View Post
I thought all skills could be used in multiple ways and how they were used determined what characteristic applies? Perhaps it's from a former version of Traveller, but we always used Dex for delicate surgery.
While Dex probably would affect it somewhat, talk to a Doctor or Surgeon and they'll tell you that in game terms it would be Int or Edu. Edu for the training in the concepts/techniques and Int for taking the training and figuring out things that aren't covered by it. I've got a Doc in my game group...

With technology assisting, i.e. some kind of robotic surgery equipment I'd expect that Dex has a lot less to do with it in a controlled environment, i.e. a Sickbay.
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Old January 1st, 2013, 02:39 PM
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In Basic (LBB1-3 only) CT there are no automatic DMs based on stats - the stats determine odds and table options during char gen and are used on a case-by-case basis for other minimal requirements and bonuses (mainly for combat). For example: in LBB1, for any careers other than Scouts or Merchants, only a character with Edu 8+ could be a doctor as Advanced Education Table with edu 8+ is the only table with Medic for these other careers. A Dex of 8+ is required for a doctor to be a surgeon. But note that this does not mean someone with medic cannot successfully perform a given surgery... that is upto the Ref and what they feel the odds are. LLB1 sets a 5+ target for low berth revival with a +1 DM for Medic 2 or above => other medic task target values are set by Ref.

In systems with a further stat based DM during a task check, one's 'level' effectively increases - making stats very powerful mechanic wise. (Liked the concept in MgT, but with 2d6 it was too much for my taste - ended up only allowing stat bonuses for non-skilled checks, offsetting the -3 penalty much like the JoT skill.)
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  #69  
Old January 1st, 2013, 03:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmicGamer View Post
Don't know how old you are. I'm in the second half of my 40s.
Older than most of my characters, and you as well.

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I guess if I wasn't as physical when I was younger, I can see that my characteristics would be lower now and possibility there would be room for improvement. For me, currently I have aches and pains when I attempt a fraction of the level of activity I once had. Possibly futuristic medical care and drugs might allow for less effect of aging and a higher level of physicality for Traveller aged characters than I see as realistic in RL.
I wasn't physical until I went into the military. Even then my level of exercise was the annual PT test until I started learning martial arts. Once I had a reason to exercise it became much easier. As I've grown older my level of activity had started going down, weight and blood pressure started going up, and fixing those things requires more thought that it used to. However, there is no set age limit that requires deterioration. It is usually our assumption that we must do less that drives our choice of doing less.

Quote:
Even with the possibility of more advanced medical ability to offset the aging and injuries I've had, I know how much physical activity I was involved in and can't see improving beyond the peek I once had without totally ignoring other parts of life like maintaining expertise, job and family (Travellers don't typically have family but perhaps skills in streetwise, carouse, steward...).
Not to turn this into a self-help forum, but check out the Paleo diet and Cross Fit. Even with significant prior physical issues you can adapt Cross Fit, Tai Chi, or some other form of activity to physically improve. Our minds, bodes, and spirits are so intertwined that reasonable improvements in one area yields positive benefits in the others.

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One of my thoughts regarding adding a mechanism for improving is that a mechanism for deteriorating is also needed. Other than aging, Traveller doesn't have a mechanism for maintaining skills and characteristics.
The aging penalties are stiff, given the limited stats you have.

Quote:
I guess one of the main reasons I'm against a specific - do x for y long and you improve system for physical characteristics is because it doesn't jive with aging characters. Does the system vary based on the age of the character? Perhaps a 30 year old character improves but what about a 45 year old? A 60 year old?
We can all improve. As we age it takes more effort and time for the same improvement, that's all.
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  #70  
Old January 1st, 2013, 07:21 PM
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Speaking of age, I think the aging in Traveller makes no sense. Given medical advances, the aging described works for about TL 6-9. I suggest the aging rules start at different ages based on TL:
TL 0 - 1 - start age 12, age effects begin at 24.
TL 2 - 3 - start age 14, age effects begin at 26.
TL 4 - 5 - start age 16, age effects begin at 30.
TL 6 - 7 - start age 18, age effects begin at 34.
TL 8 - 9 - start age 18, age effects begin at 38.
TL 10 - 12 - start age 21, age effects begin at 45.
TL 13 - 14 - start age 21, age effects begin at 49.
TL 15 - start age 25, age effects begin at 53.
Vilani of any TL just get the DMs list in V&V. I also use those same mods at a negative for Vargr IMTU.
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