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Paul

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PostSubject: Questions about Proficiencies   Tue Jan 25, 2011 9:49 pm

Last night I asked about the percentage increase for herbalism's synergy with healing/first aid. I know you've played this system for years, and probably have a formula, however for future reference: how does one determine the percentage bonus applied for synergic proficiencies?

Also, where can I find the description for Wilderness Lore?
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Jonathan

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PostSubject: Re: Questions about Proficiencies   Wed Jan 26, 2011 1:42 am

The bonus will always be a random amount determined by how I feel the herbalism proficiency will benefit that particular use of the first aid skill. Not to worry, it will always be a bonus, it just might not always be the same percentage.

That said, having the herbalism skill will always allow you to perform a 'neutralize poison' manuever, provided you can get to the afflicted individual within 1 round. Upon a succesful first aid check, the poisoned individual will get to roll a saving throw at +2. A neutralize poison spell may still be applied after, should the skill check or saving throw fail.
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kubera

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PostSubject: Re: Questions about Proficiencies   Wed Jan 26, 2011 12:19 pm

We really should build tables for some of the more prolific skills showing those things that should be expected at certain levels.

Blacksmith would be an easy one, at each skill level (or % barrier) list those things that should be automatic, things beyond that skill would still require a roll to accomplish.
With those things deemed automatic making the roll would be considered a creating a higher quality product and those making the roll by -25, -50 (what ever we decide) would be considered a Master Work, and of the quality to be enchanted.

At bare minimum there should be a fixed list of + and - modifiers for the making of mundane things.

A weapon smith should not have to roll at level 5 to make a simple knife/dagger, it should be auto. But to make a beautiful Damascus blade, a 40 times folded blade, a blade from exotic alloys or a blade good enough to enchant they should require a roll/and the additional skill of alchemy/(metallurgy)

likewise an alchemist should be able to make a variety of mild tonics, salves, balms, pain killers, non magic medicines starting from level 1, even though the % might only 8 or less. A little higher these cures work better and deal with tougher ailments, and allow poisons to be made.

Eventually magical potions- That said I don't thing rolling for each potion even makes sense. Once they hit a certain level of skill they would take a block of time, several/many months and a bunch of money and study the process for one particular potion. At the end of that period they roll to see if they've learned how to make said potion.. At that point they know how to do it successfully and only a major Fubar should screw up the potion.. The way it is, even a powerful 10th level alchemist probably only gets things right 40-50% of the time. Who'd buy a product like that and how many alchemist would survive the process?
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Jonathan

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PostSubject: Re: Questions about Proficiencies   Thu Jan 27, 2011 12:51 pm

I generally require skill checks only when the action falls outside of the normal everyday action. If you take a riding proficiency, then you don't have to make the skill every time you get on a horse. If you want to vault onto your horse and ride away, however, it's skill check time.

This being said, a skill such as first aid will always require a check, as no two situations are ever the same when dealing with wounds.

I would agree with the blacksmith/weaponsmith example. By the time you have reached level 5, you could consider the person to be of journeyman skill. Everyday items would be made without having to roll a skill check. Out of the ordinary stuff (items suitable for enchanting, damascus steel, etc.) would need checks.

Magic though, is different. An alchemist would certainly be able to whip up analgesic creams and the like with no trouble, but not potions. This is because (wait for it) they're magic. Magic is difficult. If it were easy, everybody would do it, and there would be no need for alchemists. Potions must be created to exacting recipes or the resultant concoction will not work (or worse). This is one of the reasons that potion ingredients are a highly guarded secret.
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kubera

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PostSubject: Re: Questions about Proficiencies   Thu Jan 27, 2011 2:26 pm

I don't claim potions are not hard, which is why an alchemist would need to spend big money and extensive time to learn a single potion.. Many alchemist would be pricks and leave out one step or ingredient when teaching all but their most trusted students so when people leave tutelage they would need to experiment to perfect their formula.

If you can't attempt potions until skill 8 or 10 the vast majority of journeymen would never qualify, those that did would need to invest time and money to properly learn each and every mixture.. there would never be a glut of potion makers, and scarcity of ingredients would further limit both production and the study required to learn the skills.

Perhaps with potions it should be a straight roll to learn the formula costing x number of months and x 1000s of gold. should they pass the roll they have learned the formula correctly and then each successful potion of that type raises their proficiency until they reach the max allowed,, leaving a 10% chance of failure regardless.
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SteveL
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PostSubject: Re: Questions about Proficiencies   Thu Jan 27, 2011 2:48 pm

The 2nd ed. book Player's Option: Spells & Magic has a decent magic-item creation system.
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kubera

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PostSubject: Re: Questions about Proficiencies   Thu Jan 27, 2011 3:51 pm

I'll have a look at the spells and magic book but of course I went off track, this conversation was not so much about making potions as knowing what mundane things people with various skills are capable of and how synergies add up, and of course its not entirely clear which skills have synergies or interdependence.

Example, it was not until this last adventure that Jonathan implied that alchemy encompasses metallurgy and therefore required for some higher level smith work. I would have assumed alchemy required at the smelting stage more than the smith stage. Not that it impacts me now but had I reached 10 in weapons smithing only to find I was missing a needed skill to make special sword I might be kinda pissed.

So what other skills need to be used in tandem,
Herbalism and first aid,
First aid alone would allow you to sew up a wound but to treat infection/ or ease pain you'd need premade meds or herbalism. Not only should herbalism modify the roll for first aid but perhaps it should also be rolled separately for 1 additional HP gain.

Alchemy and herbalism, if you can't identify the herbs its hard to make medicine.

Wilderness lore and herbalism,, you can't harvest plants if you can't find them

I'm sure their are many more.
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kubera

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PostSubject: Re: Questions about Proficiencies   Thu Jan 27, 2011 3:54 pm

I don't know the legal definition but my belief is ,



Wilderness
lore entails knowledge of plants and animals in those areas of the world you
are familiar with. With this skill you
can identify species, comment on their life cycles and behavior, know how to
hunt, dress and prepare their carcasses, or know what part of a plant (if any)
is edible and how to prepare it. This
should also give you various survival skills like finding water, building a
shelter, and while not a specialists, skills in fire building, trapping, tracking at a penalty.
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Jonathan

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PostSubject: Re: Questions about Proficiencies   Fri Jan 28, 2011 1:02 pm

kubera wrote:
I don't know the legal definition but my belief is ,



Wilderness
lore entails knowledge of plants and animals in those areas of the world you
are familiar with. With this skill you
can identify species, comment on their life cycles and behavior, know how to
hunt, dress and prepare their carcasses, or know what part of a plant (if any)
is edible and how to prepare it. This
should also give you various survival skills like finding water, building a
shelter, and while not a specialists, skills in fire building, trapping, tracking at a penalty.

Yes. Sorry Paul, I kept forgetting to respond to the Wilderness Lore definition.
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Paul

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PostSubject: Re: Questions about Proficiencies   Sat Feb 26, 2011 2:06 am

I was looking through some old game notes yesterday, and I came across a version of the non-weapon proficiency rules used in this game. It was almost identical save that each main character class had a different number of points allotted per level (19 for a magic-user, 18 Rogue, 17 for priets, 16 for warriors), and there was a difficulty chart ranging from routine (+30) to absurd (-70). Was this the original version of the NWP rules, or something I altered? I honestly can't remember.
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PostSubject: Re: Questions about Proficiencies   Sat Feb 26, 2011 3:10 pm

It seems like you've stumbled upon a version of what I use. I use the Rolemaster (Arms Law, Character Law, etc.) system with some changes. The chart you describe sounds exactly like the manuever chart they (Rolemaster) uses. The original AD&D NWP system used a D20 proficiency check against the appropriate stat (INT, WIS, whatever) with modifiers as decided by the DM.
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Paul

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PostSubject: Re: Questions about Proficiencies   Sat Feb 26, 2011 7:24 pm

Jonathan,

I was using the d20 check for non-weapon proficiencies for my 2nd edition group during the early to mid-90s, but at some point Kubera must have shown me an early version of the system we use in your game. I had readjusted the charts to include the non-weapon proficiencies from the various players' handbooks, so that must place my notes around 1993-1994 or so.

Three questions: when did you start using this system, and when and why did you drop the difficulty ratings?
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PostSubject: Re: Questions about Proficiencies   Mon Feb 28, 2011 2:08 am

I probably started using this system in the late '90's. With the concept of levels of knowledge, I (usually) don't feel that you need to add a difficulty rating to it. The more you know about a subject, the easier it is to talk about it, and the more likely you are to know about the more esoteric aspects of said subject. Often, I will give people with knowledge in overlapping areas a chance at knowing the information at a reduced chance. (i.e. a person with skill in the occult NWP can usually use this knowledge at a 50% reduction in chance when trying to remember information pertaining to religion)
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SteveL
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PostSubject: Re: Questions about Proficiencies   Thu Mar 03, 2011 2:53 pm

Rolemaster's Character Law skill system, which I adapted into my Cells & Serpents rules in the late 1980s, uses a base probablility to model an action's difficulty--something like 80% for easy, etc.--as determined by the DM. To this is added the PC's skill modifier (the sum of his ability modifier and an accumulated skill value).

Example: If climbing a rope is medium difficulty (say, 40%) and the PC's mountaineering is 12% (2% for 11 DEX + 10% skill), the overall probability of success is therefore 52%.

I can't remember how much I changed the Rolemaster rules for my own use. SH (Regnar on this board) used my system before switching to D&D3e. Jonathan uses the same system, more or less--but it looks like he dispensed with the base probability idea, keeping it closer to D&D2e's non-weapon profiency mechanic in that respect. Mathematically, this reduces skill effectiveness for all but high-level characters. For example, Mopar, who is a 7th level fighter, has Brawling 12, but even with an ability bonus of +6 (the average of his STR and DEX is 13), his overall skill is only 48%; in D&D2e, a 1st-level character would have a 65% probability of success based on an ability of 13. (A problem with D&D2e's system is that NWP's don't really improve as characters gain class levels.) Using the climb rope example above, the PC's probability of success in Jonathan's rules would be 12% instead of 52%.
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Paul

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PostSubject: Re: Questions about Proficiencies   Thu Mar 03, 2011 8:51 pm

SteveL wrote:
Rolemaster's Character Law skill system, which I adapted into my Cells & Serpents rules in the late 1980s, uses a base probablility to model an action's difficulty--something like 80% for easy, etc.--as determined by the DM. To this is added the PC's skill modifier (the sum of his ability modifier and an accumulated skill value).

Example: If climbing a rope is medium difficulty (say, 40%) and the PC's mountaineering is 12% (2% for 11 DEX + 10% skill), the overall probability of success is therefore 52%.

I can't remember how much I changed the Rolemaster rules for my own use. SH (Regnar on this board) used my system before switching to D&D3e. Jonathan uses the same system, more or less--but it looks like he dispensed with the base probability idea, keeping it closer to D&D2e's non-weapon profiency mechanic in that respect. Mathematically, this reduces skill effectiveness for all but high-level characters. For example, Mopar, who is a 7th level fighter, has Brawling 12, but even with an ability bonus of +6 (the average of his STR and DEX is 13), his overall skill is only 48%; in D&D2e, a 1st-level character would have a 65% probability of success based on an ability of 13. (A problem with D&D2e's system is that NWP's don't really improve as characters gain class levels.) Using the climb rope example above, the PC's probability of success in Jonathan's rules would be 12% instead of 52%.

Thanks for filing in some of the gaps. Perhaps Kubera showed me your version at some point in the early 1990s. My notes appear to be from 1992-1994.

If I could reach my I.C.E. stuff I would take a look at the actual charts. I played both Rolemaster and MERP around 1984, but the game didn't last long. Though the quality of their products was fantastic, we found the game cumbersome compared to AD&D; however, we did steal quite a few of their ideas and slimmed them down.

If I were to use this non-weapon proficiency system, I'd reintroduce the base probability as they appear in my notes:

Routine: +30
Easy: +20
Light: +10
Medium: 0
Hard: -10
Very Hard:-20
Extremely Hard: -30
Sheer Folly:-60
Absurd: -70

The conditional adjustments reflect skill level and in-game situations quite well.

You've noted one of the factors I hate about non-weapon proficiencies: the lack of improvement as one increases in level. That said, if a PC does have a skill ranking of 10% in rope use (2 ranks. +8, Dex 11, +2), they should have a chance during active play (mundane actions would not require a roll, save for odd situations). Mopar's skill in brawling would shine at his current level. Time to roll some dice and ponder.

I have just read my notes again, and I can't find what ranking a class skill would receive at 1st level e.g. rangers' tracking ability.




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Paul

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PostSubject: Re: Questions about Proficiencies   Thu May 19, 2011 11:10 pm

Jonathan,

As we discussed, Carrow wants to transplant saplings, plant some tree nuts, acorns and the like, and grow a proper sylvan copse in Cirdastan. Would the NWP Agriculture include horticulture and permit me to accomplish this task? Would something like this come under Natural Science's umbrella, or a combination of Agriculture and Natural Science?

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