Should the Big Guns skill exist?

Discussion in 'General Fallout Discussion' started by SilverStarApple/Epsilon7, May 21, 2020.

  1. Atomic Postman

    Atomic Postman Mojave Express Employee of the Month

    Mar 16, 2013
    Should there be a "Lore" skill? Something akin to the player's knowledge of history (Pre or post) or Wasteland culture. I'm thinking back to the usage of Survival checks in Lonesome Road to recognize places like Denver and the like, but more as a dedicated branch so you could reasonably be an Arcade Gannon type. Although maybe that just comes under INT.
     
  2. Hardboiled Android

    Hardboiled Android Water Chip? Been There, Done That

    850
    Jun 7, 2015
    Yeah, application of that skill would just be so unbelievably limited. Gating it behind INT and Survival when it's relevant is good enough.

    Also of course this goes without saying, but Survival needs to have some kind of effect on the chances/types of Random Encounters.
     
  3. TheGM

    TheGM The voice of reason

    Aug 19, 2008
    With how Fallout 1 & 2 distributed its guns I never cared for how it handled their corresponding weapons skills.
    Yeah strength should play a much larger factor over skills when it comes to carrying a weapon designed to be mounted on vehicles. I sure some number nerd could work out the mechanics as to how that would play out.

    I've said it before but I've always thought your special stats should play a bigger deal. why lockpick a shack door when you could just boot the fucker off the hinges with a str check or just walk through the son of a bitch with a suit of power armor? I can see wanting to pick locks to stay quiet but what if I'm not in a quiet mood? take a crowbar to that locked tool box pronto.
     
  4. Atomic Postman

    Atomic Postman Mojave Express Employee of the Month

    Mar 16, 2013
    I'm partially asking because I'm doing a rejig of my PnP system. Though in that currently there's the Prospecting Skill which is utility in that it's used for looting and salvaging, but also rolls in the character's knowledge of Old World history. Similarly Survival is both the Outdoorsman/Wildlife skill and also the character's knowledge of the Wasteland. I guess that's the fundamental problem with having a Lore/History skill, in that being knowledgeable in pre-war history and wasteland culture are entirely different fish.
     
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  5. Hardboiled Android

    Hardboiled Android Water Chip? Been There, Done That

    850
    Jun 7, 2015
    Yeah, I think that segregation is preferable to a dedicated skill. Plus, and maybe this is just me, but it feels like in an RPG (especially a tabletop one) that sort of stuff is one of the few places where player skill should be able to shine through over character skill - rewarding the player himself for asking questions, paying attention, and then making those connectios. Feels like one of the major ways for the player t oexpress agency.
     
  6. Atomic Postman

    Atomic Postman Mojave Express Employee of the Month

    Mar 16, 2013
    Yeah. I do wonder if Science could be split up into Computing and Science, or whether that's just needless segregation.

    As for Big Guns being under "Guns" but gatekept by Strength - that also works well because it gives Power Armor the perfect utility if they had the old school style massive STR boost - a normal gunslinger usually unable to slug around a minigun would want to equip PA for the purpose of being able to handle high-ordanance weapons as an infantryman which is precisely what it was invented for in-universe.
     
    • [Rad] [Rad] x 2
  7. Hardboiled Android

    Hardboiled Android Water Chip? Been There, Done That

    850
    Jun 7, 2015
    Probably unnecessary. If you did that I feel like each individual skill would be too weak.
     
  8. Gizmojunk

    Gizmojunk Venerable Relic of the Wastes

    Nov 26, 2007
    But they each have nothing to do with each other. Steal and Lockpick could both benefit from a high dexterity score, but aside from that they are unrelated skills. Steal is social stealth, lock picking is mechanical understanding, and Gambling --well technically Gambling should have been the detection of cheating-- but it turned out to indicate skill at play/winning the games. Poker, slots, and roulette have nothing in common with lock manipulation or pick pocketing.

    ___________

    @topic: Yes, Big guns have different considerations from from smaller ones.

    Skill merging in general is a bad idea for role playing games. Varied skills are a big part of avoiding homogenous charaters. When skills are merged, especially disimilar ones, the character is building up two or more skills with one expenditure, and becoming an expert in each.

    If unarmed & melee [weapons] were merged, then a fencer and a brawler of the same skill level would each other's match in both fencing and brawling.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2021
  9. Cobra Commander

    Cobra Commander Water Chip? Been There, Done That

    972
    Dec 6, 2016
    No, don't care for another combat skill.

    Can be turn into a perk.
     
  10. Gizmojunk

    Gizmojunk Venerable Relic of the Wastes

    Nov 26, 2007
    Perks should not overlap skills. Perks should be exceptions to the standard rules.

    Perks are for further (free) differentiation of the character.

    (As opposed to Traits, which come at a cost.)

    The whole point of having different skills is so that the PC cannot equally excel at everything; they MUST have limitations.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2021
  11. Atomic Postman

    Atomic Postman Mojave Express Employee of the Month

    Mar 16, 2013

    I agree that generally merging Skills is a bad idea but I think it's more that Big Guns is a particularly warped and weirdly arbitrary category - I think the division of Unarmed/Explosives/Melee/Guns/Energy Weapons is more sensical, and having the usage of "Big Guns" like miniguns and LMGs gatekept by Strength but ultimately still under the tent of ballistic firearms as a Skill makes sense.
     
    • [Rad] [Rad] x 3
  12. Gizmojunk

    Gizmojunk Venerable Relic of the Wastes

    Nov 26, 2007
    This means that every character with moderate experience with a pistol, has moderate experience with a minigun, and a flamer... and they wouldn't. It damages character backgrounds; allowing easy expertise with esoteric weaponry. The fact the there is a Small Guns is bad enough already, but to combine it, and have it cover rocket launchers too?
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2021
  13. TheGM

    TheGM The voice of reason

    Aug 19, 2008
    so the alternative should be pistol/revolver/semi-auto/rifle/bolt-action rifle skill categories? where would shotguns go?
     
  14. Gizmojunk

    Gizmojunk Venerable Relic of the Wastes

    Nov 26, 2007
    Realistically yes, [but] in practice... Small Guns should be a catch-all for consumer pistols and rifles; shotgun being a rather common consumer weapon. Big Guns could (and generally does) mean military weapons that most people have never touched much less used, much less trained in.

    D&D handles it rather well; they have common, martial and exotic weapon proficiencies. This means that some barmaids in the tavern might know how to use a three sectional staff, but not all barmaids in every tavern would be experts.
     
  15. Atomic Postman

    Atomic Postman Mojave Express Employee of the Month

    Mar 16, 2013
    I'd suggest personally putting the Flamer in either Energy Weapons or Explosives, and putting a Rocket Launcher under explosives too. The idea that someone who is adept at using an assault rifle is suddenly befuddled when passed an LMG is really silly to me.
     
  16. Gizmojunk

    Gizmojunk Venerable Relic of the Wastes

    Nov 26, 2007
    But it does neither.

    Energy weapons are not affected by gravity (in any practical sense), flamers are; affected by the wind too.

    A combined skill would again make experts at using both chemical fuel weapons and electronic/refractive weaponry.

    Demolition is in a class by itself.

    * I think a solution is to have access to more than just level-up skill points for improving skills. For instance, a thankfull grenadier could train the PC in use of a grenade launcher; thus raising the skill by some bonus amount.

    The original games had trainers. Some (but not all) skills could be improved by self study using books and manuals. The Fallout gameworld is filled with computer terminals; in Fallout1, Vree suggests skill training using them. Why not find a training course on terminal in a military base, or bombed out technical school?
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2021
  17. Cobra Commander

    Cobra Commander Water Chip? Been There, Done That

    972
    Dec 6, 2016

    It's just combat skill dude. Who cares?????
     
  18. Gizmojunk

    Gizmojunk Venerable Relic of the Wastes

    Nov 26, 2007
    Not you, that is clear. ;)

    But RPGs are about character limitations. When you build a character who trained in one skill and not another, that defines a limitation. It's a poor system that takes away from a character's limitations; doubling or tripling up skills like this means that everyone who might have known one of those skills is now equally skilled in all of them.

    With a catch-all gun skill, this means that an NPC (or PC) with no military background could drop their pipe-rifle, and pick up a flamer or rocket launcher off of a corpse mid-fight, and use it with their full proficiency; it's absurd.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2021
  19. Atomic Postman

    Atomic Postman Mojave Express Employee of the Month

    Mar 16, 2013
    Nobody is arguing for a weapon skill that broad, though. It's reasonable that someone with knowledge in how to operate an assault rifle would also know how to operate a Bozar.
     
  20. Hardboiled Android

    Hardboiled Android Water Chip? Been There, Done That

    850
    Jun 7, 2015
    Though to be honest, probably not a man-portable minigun