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Attributes as Skill Modifiers


The problems, and a proposed solution:

Characters in the Palladium system don't have very much differentiation; those with vastly different attributes have only a few differences in gameplay, and those within an OCC generally have little variation. To address this, I will modify the base skill percentages as a function of appropriate game attributes. In short, I will recommend certain attributes to add directly to the base skill percentage for a particular skill. To balance this effect and preserve the population's average skill percentages, I will subtract 10% (about equal to the average attribute) from the standard base skill percentage for each attribute I add.

Luckily, the skills are already categorized by subject. This means that I can make these bonuses the same for each skill category; some categories may need to be further divided into two or three groups, and some skills may need to be recategorized. These changes should be pretty straightforward as an end result. Keep in mind that if this were a full system revision one wouldn't know that the base skill percentages had been altered, but only that you have to add your character's attributes during generation. The end result of this revision is that characters with several high attributes will greatly outperform their low attribute counterparts, but average characters will see relatively little change.


Base Skill Percentage Modifiers by Category (HU2)

Academic Categories: +IQ, +ME; -20%
Communications
Espionage
Mechanical
Technical, w/o Art, Language, Photography
Pilot Related
Rogue: Computer Hacking, Safecracking
Wilderness: Boat Building, Carpentry
Basic Electronics and Mathematics; First Aid

Accessible Categories: +ME; -10%
Wilderness
Domestic: Fishing

Advanced Categories: +IQx2, +ME; -30%
Electrical, w/o Basic Electronics
Medical, w/o First Aid
Science, w/o Basic Mathematics

Artistic Categories: +IQ, +MA; -20%
Domestic, w/o Fishing
Technical: Art, Language, Photography
Rogue, w/o Computer Hacking, Safecracking

Military: Practical: +ME, +PP; -20%
Camouflage, Parachuting, Trap/Mine Detection
Military: Theoretical: +IQ, +ME; -20%
All those not in Military: Practical

Physical: +PS, +PP, +PE; -30%

Pilot: +ME, +PP; -20%
Pilot Advanced: +IQ, +ME, +PP; -30%


Why is ME so prevalent in this revision?

This attribute reflects, among other things, a character's ability to pay attention during long hours of studying, and therefore the ability to obtain more benefit from a given amount of time spent learning that skill. This would apply to most skills; in some ways it seems more appropriate than a scholastic IQ bonus. In my experience the highest grades tend to go to the hardest workers, and not to the smartest students.

I think ME is a great attribute, possibly the most important description of a character one can make. Role playing may have outlets for physical strength and speed, as well as intelligence, but the sheer will to succeed should never be underestimated.