Author Topic: Character Building Guides  (Read 451 times)

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Offline Dougansf

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Character Building Guides
« on: January 25, 2021, 09:00:55 AM »
Hi all,

I'm undertaking a new character in RMSS. I'm trying to make a social infiltrator, starting off Thief, but could change Profession later on.

I'm finding a distinct lack of character creation guides out in the wild. I have a builder for the math, that's not the problem. I'm interested in any resources to help guide the thought process and Dev point spending to get from A to B.

Thanks

Offline jdale

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Re: Character Building Guides
« Reply #1 on: January 25, 2021, 10:02:57 AM »
Figure out the character's role. You did that already. Figure out the profession. Thief is a good choice for social infiltrator. Depending on the campaign and the role, you may or may not have room to choose a race.

Think about the skills you'll need for your role, and their categories and stats:
* Artistic-Active (Pr/Em/Ag) Acting
* Awareness-Searching (In/Re/SD) Lie Perception, Observation, Surveillance
* Communication (Re/Me/Em) Lip Reading, languages
* Influence (Pr/Em/In) lots of them
* Subterfuge-Stealth (Ag/SD/In) Hiding, Stalking
* Urban (In/Pr/Re) Contacting, Mingling, maybe Streetwise
* possibly others, e.g. combat skills, movement, climbing, lockpicking, etc.

That informs what stats to emphasize. For example there's a lot of Intuition in there that might not have been an obvious stat to focus on. Empathy and Presence almost as much, which was a little more obvious. (Note, the stats may be different if you are using the third stat optional rule.)

If you're doing point-buy for the stats, don't be afraid to have some low ones. A 21 stat sounds terrible but it's only -2 to a skill, and that penalty will go away very quickly as you advance in levels (probably by 3rd or 4th level). Also, the only difference between a stat of 31 and 69 is the chance of a better potential -- unless it's a development stat. If you don't need a bonus, 31 costs 38 fewer points than 69 and gives the same result.

If you aren't using an optional rule to determine your number of development points, emphasize your development stats (Ag, Co, Me,  Re, SD). Your DP will be the average of these five stats, so here a 69 is way better than a 31. If you can sink some non-development stats and free up points, you'll have more DP for the character's entire career. That's a little harder here, where In, Em, and Pr are all relevant, but you don't have to boost them all to the same degree. Having a +3 in one stat and a -1 in another is the same as having a +1 in both, but will save a lot of stat points. Here, I would probably pick either Empathy or Presence to be terrible at. Low empathy suggests a character who does not care about others, while low presence suggests a character who tends to be mousy and overlooked; either of those could make sense here depending on what you want to do.

Look through the training packages. Training packages give a big DP advantage in RMSS, you want to find at least one that's a good fit, possibly two if that leaves you enough points to fill in the gaps. You can double up and get skills from a TP and also buy them to get a higher bonus (or better cost).

For skills where you can purchase the skill and the category, if there are a bunch of skills in the category buy the category up as much as possible. E.g. Influence. If there's only one and you have to make a choice, you get a little more benefit from buying the skill. But be sure to get at least one rank in each.

Use hobby ranks to get the expensive skills, or to double up for more starting ranks.
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Offline Dougansf

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Re: Character Building Guides
« Reply #2 on: January 25, 2021, 11:03:22 AM »
Thanks for your suggestions and quick response.
What your opinion on double-buying? Generally, I don't do it unless it's the same cost at all ranks (ie 2/2/2).

We're using a flat 90 Dev points per level, and 18 Secondary Skill points to round things out.
Point buy for stats, but 700 instead of 660. Fixed potentials.
We're all playing Numenorain from the Second Age, so slightly modified High Man.

I'm starting out Thief, I currently have the following layout for attributes.
I noticed the dominance of In and Pr, but also Re snuck in there, and it's something we don't get a racial bonus for.

Offline jdale

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Re: Character Building Guides
« Reply #3 on: January 25, 2021, 01:57:05 PM »
Those feel like reasonable stats. There's not one single key stat here so it doesn't make sense to push any of them over 91, you have to be pretty well-rounded.

I would double-buy key skills if there are enough points. For a combat character that might be a weapon skill, body development, etc. For this character, again you need to be pretty well rounded, but it might be worth it especially for the categories where you will buy many of the skills. For example, Urban only costs you 1/2, if you are point limited it might be a better deal to pay 2 DP for +2 to three different skills than 3x1 DP for +3 for each one of them (assuming you already have at least one rank in each).
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Offline markc

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Re: Character Building Guides
« Reply #4 on: January 25, 2021, 02:28:07 PM »
a) In most games you cannot switch professions.
b) In general it is skills and profession bonuses that define how good you will be in an area, followed by skill type (everyman to restricted) and stat bonuses.
c) What skills are important in your influence campaign? IMHO these vary greatly by game world, setting and GM. So I would ask them what is important to making sure your PC can do what you would like them to do.
d) Ask about Talents and Flaws and if they would help in any way. Note sometimes flaws can be actually positive and not negative in some political situations, ie negative reaction to social group can bring people together and be a political group (ie against rat catchers guild).

Sorry have to go.
MDC 
Bacon Law: A book so good all PC's need to be recreated.
Rule #0: A GM has the right to change any rule in a book to fit their game.
Role Play not Roll Play.
Use a System to tell the story do not let the system play you.

Offline Dougansf

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Re: Character Building Guides
« Reply #5 on: January 25, 2021, 02:43:25 PM »
a) In most games you cannot switch professions.

I know. The GM is providing the profession changes at certain special occasions.
I'm torn between staying Thief or going Magent, but ignoring the spell lists. Just having access to the Power skills is more important in this game.

c) What skills are important in your influence campaign? IMHO these vary greatly by game world, setting and GM. So I would ask them what is important to making sure your PC can do what you would like them to do.

I'm working with him now, more closely than I've made any other character with him over the 15 years of playing together. :D

d) Ask about Talents and Flaws and if they would help in any way. Note sometimes flaws can be actually positive and not negative in some political situations, ie negative reaction to social group can bring people together and be a political group (ie against rat catchers guild).

Good point, though so far there are a lot of cases where many of those wouldn't be worth points in his eyes. Worth asking.

Offline markc

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Re: Character Building Guides
« Reply #6 on: January 25, 2021, 03:09:45 PM »
Buying more then 1 rank?
This is very dependent on what skills are important in the game, often how many ranks you have in the skill and category, talents and other bonuses you might have.

RM in general requires more interaction between GM and players when creating PC's for better play results and hyper specialization or not having a skill or two can also be problematic in games.
You said you are working with your GM which is the best way to solve issues before the occur. Also just telling the GM what you are trying to do and provide sample PC or level build can prevent play issues.
I have ad players come to me with ideas that do not work in the game(s) I have planned or of very limited use. At times the player said they wanted to continue on and try it and it worked to a small extent on other times they quickly fell behind the power curve because they were putting too many DP into areas that did not apply to the adventures.

IMHO general player guides for RM (RMSS/FRP more so then RM2) are problematic as there are lots of variables (setting specific, house rules, adventure specific rules, etc) vs games in which there are few options.

MDC     
Bacon Law: A book so good all PC's need to be recreated.
Rule #0: A GM has the right to change any rule in a book to fit their game.
Role Play not Roll Play.
Use a System to tell the story do not let the system play you.

Offline markc

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Re: Character Building Guides
« Reply #7 on: January 25, 2021, 03:29:46 PM »
One other big things I just remembered was Profession: (Relevant to idea), some GM's rely heavily on this skills and in other cases it is nonexistent and IIRC the cost per rank can be high for many professions.

Switching Professions and the game mechanics are IMHO huge in your over all build, especially the profession bonuses and skill classifications so you may want to try and do a build out to various levels to provide to your GM for analysis. I can almost guarantee that things will change so you may want to do a 60 point build and leave 30 DP for changes, the 60 points are for skills you think are vary important to the game.
Is the GM allowing DP to be spent on Talents after PC gen? ie in some games as a house rule if you want to take advantage of "Law enforcement powers" you have to spend DP to gain the talent to represent time and effort spent in using and acquiring the powers of office but in some other games it is simply an award for role-playing.
MDC
Bacon Law: A book so good all PC's need to be recreated.
Rule #0: A GM has the right to change any rule in a book to fit their game.
Role Play not Roll Play.
Use a System to tell the story do not let the system play you.

Offline Dougansf

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Re: Character Building Guides
« Reply #8 on: January 25, 2021, 04:45:45 PM »
No DP for Talents, but sometimes we’re infused with extra power and gain more Talent Points that way. That said, some of the more social Talents and Flaws would make more sense as DP.

There are also occasional training perks and incentives depending on where and widow we study under.