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Character GEneration system

Character Generation system

  • Total voters


which system had the best character gen system. Objectively by the weighing of Player liking in ratio to GM headaches
IMTU, a 1D+1 roll is included to determine how many terms the character serves. The survival roll is for the last term only -- failure is two years and out, without dying or accruing bennies for the failed term. This way, the character serves a minimum of one full term and has a slightly better chance of retiring with a pension.

Really this should be
CT Basic
CT/MT Advanced
MT Basic
Twighlight 2000 1st
GDW House (T2K2.0, DC, C&D)
TNE (GDW house 2.2)

TNE is career compatible, but not result compatible with the DC/T2K CG; the number of skills per term differed. (TNE was, IMO, an improvement...)

Me, best playing was T2K 2.0... as a GM.

But my players liked the CG of T2K and 2300 best, and in all cases, just above MT basic.

MT basic is slightly different (adds the Spl Duty roll, and Bonus skills on Comm, Promo, and SD, and uses more cascade skills) from CT basic. CT and MT advanced differ in about 3 entries....
Of course it is not possible to list all the house variations in such a poll as this. I feel that CT advanced/MT gives the best chance to get a usable character. My house rules include the following options:
1. Below average characters are smart enough to stay home where they are safe so I give the option to create characters whose minimum stats are 7 for the physical and intelligence. Roll 1D6 + 6 for the first 4 stats and 2D6 for education and social.
2. If you are required to have a certain skill or skills for your next promotion, you may state that you are focusing on learning that skill and you automaticaly gain 1 level in the specified skill at your next sucessful skill role. It you are transfered to a different department /branch/etc, for which you do not have the required skills for your rank, you must use your next skills recieved to make up the deficiency.
3. Garrison duty is re-rolled (but I have another option in mind). Training emplies oportunity to gain skills so you always get a chance to gain an approiate skill from training or as an instructor if you have an approiate skill at 4+. This is in addition to the normal skill roll listed and requires a roll of 6+, DM +1 if intelligence 7+.
4. If the skill roll needed is exceeded by 4 or more, gain 2 skills
5. no limits on skill levels
I have always been fond of the Advanced Character Generation Systems in MegaTraveller as a player but hated them as a Ref (too bloody complicated & rigid) until I could get those things onto a PC.

What Traveller would really benefit from is a series of point based systems that would have advantages and disadvantages after an inital couple of rolls are made. (basically only UPP & enlistment rolls)

For example, the number of skills & skill levels could be equal to (education+intelligence/2)+terms of service. Plus certain skills would carry with distinct disadvantages or those which would carry advantages which could be incoprated into a narrative format.
Well, kafka, you can always roleplay the chargen. I actually like the randomness, if it's tempered with some measure of control.

I created a merchant character (expanded CT) who failed to get his Pilot skill, and couldn't be promoted. Instead of the skill rolled, I took Gambling. It then became part of his history that he failed his Pilot's test because of a Carousing/Gambling binge. He was always looking for the shortcut to a big payoff. I then finagled the system to move him down to a Free Trader (and a temp demotion) because he was mad at the corp for his failing the test (a little projection going on). He discovered smuggling paid pretty well, and transitioned to a Pirate career for two terms.

A bunch in there is not absolutely kosher under the system. But, it makes for an interesting character - with background, enemies, connections, and complicated motives/character. (Oh, and no Int+Edu limit.)
Oh, I know, but it would be nice if the role playing was actually built into the chargen that one could assemble characters with miminal effort. As I stated in Bryan Gibson's post, I think the future of rpgs are going to move toward LARPing an interactive environments.

This is where art (computer generated scapes not in VR in the short term) and actors will fill the gap. Having a ruleset that moves us toward that rather than dice and aids in the construction of believable characters is what I lament and contemplate.
There was a mini role playing system for character gen based on a military accademy setup. I don't remember just where it was, but I think it was in one of the Journel issues.

There's a difference between message board RPGs and LARPing, IMO anyway. What you're running on the boards falls into what I call message board RPGs.


LARPing involves people interacting in person as their characters in a "live-action" environment.


Given that, are you saying that you believe that the future of RPGs is moving towards interactive environments, including examples such as LARPing and message board RPGs? Or are you being more restrictive and making Live-Action actual face-to-face interaction in costume and in character in a supportive environment as the possible future of RPGs?

Just trying to nail down some understandings based on a difference in definitions,
I wholeheartedly agree that I am running on the boards is not a LARP and I don't mean to cause confusion. What I am trying to do is get people to act more in character rather constrained by rules (other than a select few to smooth interactions).

I was actually thinking that the next wave of RPGs will involve people as Freeform evolves or devolves into something quite different. This will involve groups or individuals interconnected going somewhere where there is a structure to allow them to play out their games in a large arena. Thus far, these have been limited to things like paintball games but in the future as we begin to be able project different "environments" on large flat screens...rpgs will resemble LARPs even if individuals do not dress the part. Here am I thinking what is done already in Scandinavia or as I noted in London there is an amusement "ride" (people walking through a maze a certain block of time and encountering Ripley's Aliens).

Once computer software and the hardware big flat plasma screens becomes cheap enough to generate these screenscapes, I can see an explosion of virtual games. Without the clunky VR suits that is often associated with VR.

So, in a sense there will be few restrictions but more room for freeforming. RPGs will be about preserving their Intellectual Property and diffusing it at the same time. It's a dialectic, you see.
I will roleplay through chargen. "You're 18 years old, and you've lived on this planet your whole life. What do you want to do?" Then, we use chargen as a meta-game to quickly go through the character's life.