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Old July 12th, 2017, 11:53 PM
joshualevy joshualevy is offline
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Default Differences between 0 and 1 level skills when you gain another level.

In Cepheus Engine, how does one go from Skill-0 to Skill-1 and how is that different from going from not having the skill at all to having the skill at 1?

For example, lets compare a character who has Computer-0 as a primary education skill to a character who does not. If both characters get the Computer skill in a term of service later in character generation, do they both have it at 1? If so, a character should try to get zero level skills in things they are never going to improve, because the minute they improve it, the zero level is worthless.

Joshua Levy
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Old July 13th, 2017, 01:47 AM
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To quote the Rules......

If a character has no level in a skill, then he is untrained and will suffer a –3 Dice Modifier when trying to use that skill.

If a character has zero level in a skill (Skill 0), then he is competent in using that skill, but has little experience. He does not get any bonus from his skill ranks when using that skill but at least he avoids the penalty for being untrained.

So, in essence, a skill level 0 means you don't suffer a -3 DM on your roll.

In your example, a Computer-0 means that they can use a computer, and possibly even use (or write) basic macros, for instance.

Untrained would mean that they can log into the internet & check their facebook, but that is about it.

Yes, in character generation, both characters would go to skill level 1.

For my usage, I'd go for level 0 in cascade skills i.e., if I am an engineer, I'd want Mechanical-0, Computer-0, and Electronics-0 as a minimum. This way, if something goes wrong in Engineering, I don't want to be rolling with a -3 DM that untrained brings to the table.

I also don't want to waste skill slots. In my CE Universe (Call of MegaCepheus Engine), characters have the same skill level restrictions as in MT (skill levels can not exceed INT + EDU).

Real life example......

The unit I deployed with for Joint Endeavor was an officer heavy notational unit that was only issued 9mm pistols. Up to that point, I had never fired one, being one of the rifle armed enlisted swine.

I was given 5 minutes of instruction literally as I was preparing to go to the firing line. A quick how to load the magazine, set the site picture, and charge the weapon. That's it. I already knew how to use a site picture, so it was simply applying what I knew to the new weapon. I promptly qualified expert (since I had no bad habits to unlearn) and did so for the rest of my career.

Auto-pistol-0.

Had I not gotten that 5 minutes of instruction, I wouldn't have been able to qualify, because I certainly wouldn't have been able to swap magazines in the allotted time, much less how to hold the weapon to get a proper site picture.

Untrained (-3 DM)


Hope that helped.
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Old July 13th, 2017, 02:11 AM
joshualevy joshualevy is offline
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Originally Posted by sfchbryan View Post
Hope that helped.
You focused on the 0 vs -3 DM rule, which I understand just fine, and which makes perfect sense to me.

The problem for me is in character generation.

Suppose character "A" learns computers in primary school (Computer-0) and then learns computers in a service. They are now at Computer-1.

Suppose character "B" learns computers in a service. They are now at Computer-1, just like character "A". That doesn't make sense to me.

Suppose character "C" learns admin in primary school (Admin-0) and then learns computers in a service. They are now have Admin-0 and Computer-1.

Why would any character follow the path of "A", when they could follow the path of "C". (And also why would any player do this?)

That is the part that does not make sense to me.

I'm thinking about a "house rule" that says something like "Moving a skill from zero to one takes less work than learning a skill at one from nothing. Therefore, when a character increases a skill from zero to one, it is assumed that they also get a new skill at zero (which they gained in the extra time available to them). This new skill must be in the same section as the skill they increased from zero to one (ie. service, specialist, or advanced education).

Joshua Levy
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Old July 13th, 2017, 09:59 AM
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Makes perfect sense to me.

Medical-0 is took a CPR class, basic first aid, a few hours of instruction.

Medical-1 is at medical assistant level. Medical-2 nurse/paramedic, Medical-3 doctor.

Learned the first in primary school say, then picked up Medical-1 in the service.

From a character every possible slot used perspective, perhaps not optimal, but I don't really see a big min/max deal here.
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Old July 14th, 2017, 01:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joshualevy View Post
You focused on the 0 vs -3 DM rule, which I understand just fine, and which makes perfect sense to me.

The problem for me is in character generation.

Suppose character "A" learns computers in primary school (Computer-0) and then learns computers in a service. They are now at Computer-1.

Suppose character "B" learns computers in a service. They are now at Computer-1, just like character "A". That doesn't make sense to me.

Suppose character "C" learns admin in primary school (Admin-0) and then learns computers in a service. They are now have Admin-0 and Computer-1.

Why would any character follow the path of "A", when they could follow the path of "C". (And also why would any player do this?)

That is the part that does not make sense to me.

I'm thinking about a "house rule" that says something like "Moving a skill from zero to one takes less work than learning a skill at one from nothing. Therefore, when a character increases a skill from zero to one, it is assumed that they also get a new skill at zero (which they gained in the extra time available to them). This new skill must be in the same section as the skill they increased from zero to one (ie. service, specialist, or advanced education).

Joshua Levy
Because most characters don't know that after they finish their prior careers they will become Travellers.

You have to distinguish between what the player knows vs. what the character knows.
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Old July 14th, 2017, 07:20 AM
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If you follow RAW, there may be many factors during character generation that thwart you getting a desired combination of skills such as

- Rolling a low EDU thus granting less background skills unless you REALLY want a specific skill at the expense of other skill choices.
- Failing to enter the career you desire to get to that combination of skills and then suffering the Draft or going Drifter and that skill is not available.
- Low EDU and the skill is only on Advanced Education for that career.
- Rolling for skills never getting that skill by the time you retire or fail to re-enlist.

As an example relating to your scenarios
Aerospace Defense and Drifter does not offer offer Computer as part of basic training or later as a service skill, only on Advanced Education. If you have a low EDU, well no Computer for you. Perhaps you should have studied it a little during school.
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Old July 14th, 2017, 08:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfchbryan View Post
Because most characters don't know that after they finish their prior careers they will become Travellers.

You have to distinguish between what the player knows vs. what the character knows.
While I agree with what you say about the difference between player and character (avoiding making this about min-maxing characters), he is making a valid CHARACTER point underneath his comment.

Two characters draw a mechanic MOS in the Army, but one had Auto shop training (Mechanic-0) in High School while the other has never held a wrench. It seems like the Character with Mechanic-0 at the start will have an easier time learning Mechanic-1 than the character who never held a wrench. It may not be unreasonable to imagine that by finishing his assignments faster or showing greater initial skill in the class that the character had either the free time or the more advanced work to allow him to advance from Mechanic-0 to [Mechanic-1, Electronics-0] in the same time it took a character with absolutely no prior mechanics familiarity to learn [Mechanic-0, Mechanic-1 = Mechanic-1].
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Old July 14th, 2017, 10:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by atpollard View Post
While I agree with what you say about the difference between player and character (avoiding making this about min-maxing characters), he is making a valid CHARACTER point underneath his comment.

Two characters draw a mechanic MOS in the Army, but one had Auto shop training (Mechanic-0) in High School while the other has never held a wrench. It seems like the Character with Mechanic-0 at the start will have an easier time learning Mechanic-1 than the character who never held a wrench. It may not be unreasonable to imagine that by finishing his assignments faster or showing greater initial skill in the class that the character had either the free time or the more advanced work to allow him to advance from Mechanic-0 to [Mechanic-1, Electronics-0] in the same time it took a character with absolutely no prior mechanics familiarity to learn [Mechanic-0, Mechanic-1 = Mechanic-1].
I offer this reason for not allowing the extra skill zero choice.

Skill bloat. There is no defined maximum number of allowed zero level skills, and a zero added to any number is still that number so they don't count against the maximum number of skill levels of (Int+EDU).

So if you are not careful, you could end up with a try JOT master with skill zero in so many skills that the character is rarely subjected to the non-skilled penalty.

Then there is the problem of fitting all those zero skills on a character sheet in an orderly, concise manner for easy correlation.

And just to be clear, we all know a player who would do this (usually the person who is a min/maxer)
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Old July 14th, 2017, 11:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by atpollard View Post
While I agree with what you say about the difference between player and character (avoiding making this about min-maxing characters), he is making a valid CHARACTER point underneath his comment.

Two characters draw a mechanic MOS in the Army, but one had Auto shop training (Mechanic-0) in High School while the other has never held a wrench. It seems like the Character with Mechanic-0 at the start will have an easier time learning Mechanic-1 than the character who never held a wrench. It may not be unreasonable to imagine that by finishing his assignments faster or showing greater initial skill in the class that the character had either the free time or the more advanced work to allow him to advance from Mechanic-0 to [Mechanic-1, Electronics-0] in the same time it took a character with absolutely no prior mechanics familiarity to learn [Mechanic-0, Mechanic-1 = Mechanic-1].
You have to keep in mind that Mechanic-1 represents about two years´ full time work. Some Auto shop training in high school isn´t going to make much of a difference.
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Old July 14th, 2017, 12:42 PM
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You have to keep in mind that Mechanic-1 represents about two years´ full time work. Some Auto shop training in high school isn´t going to make much of a difference.
That depends on what skill-0 is. That non-prof penalty suggests that it is more than almost nothing. [shrug]

For me this is a non-issue. I grant all of the general service skills at skill-0 just because I think that a character who COULD have learned that as one of the 6 skills available in their service is probably not completely unfamiliar with it. It makes more sense to me that a Pilot-2 knows Nav-0 for free just from being a scout, than he knows Halberd-0.
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