Thursday, January 22, 2009

[House Rules] Skill System Adjustments

We are incorporating a few changes to skills as presented in the core Savage Worlds rule book. Some alterations are being made in the hope of streamlining an already narrow system, while other aspects are being added to better flesh out what is already there.

Removed Skills:

Guts is no longer a skill in the Future Perfect campaign setting. It is our position that everything governed by a Guts skill roll in a non-horror setting can be handled with a simple Spirit roll. Instead, Guts may be taken as an Edge if so desired. Requiring a Spirit of a d6 or higher, the Guts Edge will offer a bonus of +2 to all Spirit rolls involving fear resistance or personal morale.

Altered Skills:

Language skills no longer have die type ratings. They are acquired normally as if purchasing a new skill, but any language skill check is handled with a Smarts roll. They never have to be advanced, requiring only the initial purchase. All characters begin play with their Native Language for free.

Firearms may be split into two distinct skills: Small Arms and Gunnery. The Small Arms skill governs the use of man-portable firearms. The Gunnery skill is used when operating emplaced weapons or large, immobile weapon systems mounted on vehicles. This skill alteration remains pending.

Healing has been changed to Medical, and in addition to the capacities of the Healing skill, it also includes the use of Medical Technologies and the surgical implanting of bio/cybernetic systems.

Lockpicking has been changed to Security. In Future Perfect, it has been changed to a Smarts-based skill, though in settings with less advanced technologies it should remain Agility Based.

New Skills:

Hacking (Smarts) involves the attempted defeat, exploitation, and/or alteration of the security capabilities of a computer system. More than just basic computer use (which is handled with a Smarts roll, or occasionally, Investigation), Hacking allows system intrusion and the non-standard use of a system in both legal and illegal ways.

Performing Arts (Spirit) is used for various performing arts including dancing, singing, and playing musical instruments. This skill may also cover acting if performed within certain formalized settings, but casual acting attempts intended to fool or trick another person should use the Persuasion skill.

Sleight of Hand (Agility) is used in situations where deftness, manual subtlety, and subterfuge are in order. Such tasks as picking pockets and feats of prestidigitation are governed by this skill. In many cases, use of Sleight of Hand may require an opposed roll against another character's Notice skill.

Visual Arts (Spirit) is used when attempting most forms of visual expression from drawing and painting to sculpture and graphic design. In some cases, this skill may also be used for art forgery.

Zero Gravity Maneuvering (Agility) is used when attempting to make physical actions in zero gravity or to control one's movement.

Expanded Skills:

Knowledge (Astrogation): The art of stellar navigation, including how to calculate the complex mathematics behind FTL travel.

Knowledge (Battle): Knowledge of how battles are fought, lost, and won. It addresses tactics as well as history, providing a broad, general knowledge of military systems past and present.

Knowledge (Engineering): Knowledge of how technology is designed, tested, and manufactured. This skill often is used when inventing new technologies or improving upon old ones.

Knowledge (History): The general knowledge of the past, its peoples, places, and important key events.

Knowledge (Life Sciences): The broad knowledge of the various sciences involving living beings, including biology, ecology, genetics, biochemistry, etc.

Knowledge (Physical Sciences): The broad knowledge of the various physical sciences including physics, chemistry, geology, meteorology, astronomy/astrophysics, etc.

Knowledge (Politics): The knowledge of current political personas, events, issues, and tensions.

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