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Author Topic: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?  (Read 2242 times)

Hammerhead

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AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« on: 13 October 2021, 16:43:57 »
Hey, everybody.  In a peculiar twist, my small gaming group is looking to add MORE cronch to our game, and are eyeballing the Quirk rules from AToW.  Crazy…

Anyway, I was wondering how to approach the idea of character point based Quirks in relation to the list of “factory” Quirks from the Battlemech Manual.  The Wolverine, for example, in the Manual has more than 5 positive quirks (the cap as I understand it in AToW) and only 1 negative (so nowhere near balanced point values).  So if a character has a Wolverine, but wants to use AToW character points to buy some more, how is this handled?  As I understand it AToW says no more than 5 positive and 5 negative total, with no more than a 5 net positive points after all is done, unless I’m misreading.  If these are just considered separate from the factory quirks, that could add up to a whole lot of positives…

How are you all dealing with this, if you are at all?  Is there an official response that I’ve been unable to find?  Am I misunderstanding tge whole thing?

Thanks!

Daryk

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #1 on: 13 October 2021, 19:28:59 »
Personally, I would apply the AToW limits above and beyond the vehicle's inherent quirks.  I don't think there's an official ruling on that, but most vehicles that have a net positive set of quirks make up for it in other ways (e.g., the barely armed Ostscout).  As always, the caution in the description of the quirk ("Gamemasters are also well advised to temper such features within reason") applies.

victor_shaw

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #2 on: 13 October 2021, 21:14:59 »
I personally would not allow any positive quirks. 

guardiandashi

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #3 on: 13 October 2021, 22:02:23 »
the simple answer is to use the Quirks as a cost adjustment for the price of the mech.

lets say for the sake of argument that you have a mech with a net +5 quirks then the mech would likely cost an extra 500 xp than one with a net +0
if the mech has +6 and minus 1 for the stock mech and you add "gremlins" (which is more of a character trait ) it would effectively reduce the cost by 3 trait points (300 XP)

I realize thats not the best example but it gets the idea across

Daryk

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #4 on: 14 October 2021, 03:30:59 »
The problem I see with that is that just taking those points and investing them in more tonnage will usually get you the next weight class up...

guardiandashi

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #5 on: 14 October 2021, 04:07:59 »
The problem I see with that is that just taking those points and investing them in more tonnage will usually get you the next weight class up...

its more useful if you can take some negative traits on the vehicle to make it cheaper.

for example lets say you get the em interference on lets say a marauders ppc's 2 ppc's -1 point for each, and exposed weapon linkage for the ac5 this combination would reduce the effective cost of the marauder by 4 IE 400xp so said marauder would effectively count as a 3pt trait instead of a 7 point trait on the general vehicle trait table.  of course you would also need at least 2-3 points in custom vehicle to make sure you get to PICK a MAD-3R marauder at the beginning of the game.  and I would also make sure the GM is ok with it, and develop a plan to eventually repair/retrofit (IE pay off) at least some of those negative traits/quirks
because there is no way for example that I would allow you to just spend cbills and repair time to "fix" those quirks for "free" in game if I was running the game.

Hammerhead

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #6 on: 14 October 2021, 15:24:38 »
its more useful if you can take some negative traits on the vehicle to make it cheaper.

for example lets say you get the em interference on lets say a marauders ppc's 2 ppc's -1 point for each, and exposed weapon linkage for the ac5 this combination would reduce the effective cost of the marauder by 4 IE 400xp so said marauder would effectively count as a 3pt trait instead of a 7 point trait on the general vehicle trait table.  of course you would also need at least 2-3 points in custom vehicle to make sure you get to PICK a MAD-3R marauder at the beginning of the game.  and I would also make sure the GM is ok with it, and develop a plan to eventually repair/retrofit (IE pay off) at least some of those negative traits/quirks
because there is no way for example that I would allow you to just spend cbills and repair time to "fix" those quirks for "free" in game if I was running the game.

On a related note; I was thinking of either not allowing EM Interference or expanding it to include the “Improved” electronics quirks and possibly the Command Mech and both Computers, (as well as requiring any Mech that had it to have one or more of these) as we generally play SW Era so far.  Otherwise it strikes me as an easy way to get free points if your ‘Mech doesn’t have any  systems that are affected…

Edit: stupid spelling…
« Last Edit: 14 October 2021, 15:26:48 by Hammerhead »

victor_shaw

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #7 on: 14 October 2021, 16:00:18 »
This is where IMHO AToW's point system and the game as a whole fails .
The fact of the matter is the system tries to do to much in the game. While it is necessary for creating a starting character to have set guidelines. When it starts dictating game play it has gone to far. The Vehicle Quirk rules are presented to add flavor to the stall set of numbers that are a Mech nothing more. It is like I have said before regarding Rank, the system is a set of guidelines for making a character and should not be come a straitjacket to the PC or GM in telling their stories.

Daryk

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #8 on: 14 October 2021, 18:13:41 »
Quirks are weird enough that you really should have to spend some "karma" to get them fixed properly.  I don't think it's a problem, really.

guardiandashi

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #9 on: 15 October 2021, 12:23:39 »
Quirks are weird enough that you really should have to spend some "karma" to get them fixed properly.  I don't think it's a problem, really.
I don't really disagree.

but to use an example, of what I mean by too cheesy to allow.
lets say for the sake of arguement you made a char with said em interference marauder.
you start the first game session and buy up 2 replacement PPC's with either personal or unit cash, and swap them out for the "new" ppc's and say that the EM interference was due to "damaged" ppc's that are now sitting on a workbench being rebuilt. you just effectively got rid of a major "bug" in your battlemech for "cheap"

now if you roleplay it and you are picking up parts here and there and spend some XP to buy off the negative perk/trait, or get rid of it after multiple game sessions dealing with and/or having the possibility that the negative trait will kick in then I have a lot less issues with it.

victor_shaw

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #10 on: 15 October 2021, 13:32:57 »
I don't really disagree.

but to use an example, of what I mean by too cheesy to allow.
lets say for the sake of arguement you made a char with said em interference marauder.
you start the first game session and buy up 2 replacement PPC's with either personal or unit cash, and swap them out for the "new" ppc's and say that the EM interference was due to "damaged" ppc's that are now sitting on a workbench being rebuilt. you just effectively got rid of a major "bug" in your battlemech for "cheap"

now if you roleplay it and you are picking up parts here and there and spend some XP to buy off the negative perk/trait, or get rid of it after multiple game sessions dealing with and/or having the possibility that the negative trait will kick in then I have a lot less issues with it.

And that's what I was talking about. It's a mechanical issues with the Mech that should not have been a perk/trait for the PC in the first place. The player should never have gotten any points for it to began with because it had nothing to do with the character. It was an issues with a piece of equipment. At most it should be a direct reduction in the cost of the Vehicle trait that can't be used for anything else.

Example: Vehicle (BattleMech) 600 points - Vehicle Quick (EM interference)-100 points = 500 points, and the should be the end of it for points. And that should be it for points. After that anything having to due with this should be handled in an in-game as a in universe problem having nothing more to due with the RPG point system.

So with the above example the player starts the game with a Marauder that they paid 500 XP for then during the course of the game they buys 2 new PPCs cost (250,000x2)= 500,000 C-Bills (the equivalent to 800 points in wealth) to fix the issues with the Mech. You see the player getting off easy, where I see the complete opposite here, in that the PC is getting ripped off by the system for a 100 point reduction of cost that would take 700 points to fix. Again this is the problem with the AToW point system, most of it seems like it was written in a vacuum separate from the rest of the BTU games (which it was).
« Last Edit: 15 October 2021, 13:41:42 by victor_shaw »

victor_shaw

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #11 on: 15 October 2021, 13:50:47 »
AToW seems to be trying to emulate the GURPS point system. What the writers don't seem to understand that that SJG has a editor thats only job is to go through the numbers and make sure that everything is balanced per point. They also don't get that in GURPS after character creation in-world changes are in-world only and don't cost the player xp points.

Example: While in GURPS it cost XXX character points to get a cyber arm + enhancements points, after Character generation it cost xxx credits and whatever time the surgery takes only.


Daryk

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #12 on: 15 October 2021, 18:17:17 »
See, in my opinion, the PC doesn't get to pick what specific part needs to be replaced to fix the problem.  Only the GM knows what's really wrong with that incredibly complex piece of machinery (the 'mech as a whole), and demanding a player pay "karma" to FIND it is totally legit.  If players want to play whack a mole by replacing various bits and bobs, I would chalk that up to a "money pit" scenario (e.g., shiny new PPC, SAME problem).  Sinking personal blood, sweat and tears into finding the problem (by spending hard earned XP) might just turn up that it was an extra safety cut-out blanking out the power installed by a tech 150 years ago to keep a pair of bad PPCs from doing MORE damage to the electronics.

victor_shaw

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #13 on: 15 October 2021, 22:32:58 »
See, in my opinion, the PC doesn't get to pick what specific part needs to be replaced to fix the problem.  Only the GM knows what's really wrong with that incredibly complex piece of machinery (the 'mech as a whole), and demanding a player pay "karma" to FIND it is totally legit.  If players want to play whack a mole by replacing various bits and bobs, I would chalk that up to a "money pit" scenario (e.g., shiny new PPC, SAME problem).  Sinking personal blood, sweat and tears into finding the problem (by spending hard earned XP) might just turn up that it was an extra safety cut-out blanking out the power installed by a tech 150 years ago to keep a pair of bad PPCs from doing MORE damage to the electronics.

And while I agree the players should have to find out what's wrong.
I totally disagree on it being driven by XP, it should have to do with roleplaying not some arbitrary amount of experience point.
The player should have to used his technical skills (or hire a tech) to find and isolate the problem then fix it.

Again this is the issues with AToW, trying to link everything to point values. While this is find during character creation, after that XP should only be used to rise skills and attributes. Everything else should be roleplayed and gained or lost accordingly in game and not just by throwing XP at it.

Daryk

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #14 on: 16 October 2021, 04:11:09 »
I suppose it comes down to what you consider XP to be.  For me, it's the "blood, sweat and tears" I mentioned above.

victor_shaw

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #15 on: 16 October 2021, 09:30:02 »
I suppose it comes down to what you consider XP to be.  For me, it's the "blood, sweat and tears" I mentioned above.

You miss understand. I'm not saying that XP is not "blood, sweat and tears" as you put it. But its not some "mystical, magical force" that make your complications go away. You don't automatically no longer have an Enemy just because you spend some XP, You have to "Kill, Depower, or Convince" in character to get rid of them. You don't automatically regrow a leg because you spend XP. You have to gather the money and have it regrown or rebuilt in character to remove the trait.

The issues is this idea that Positive/Negative Traits are just some numbers to be bought or bought-off. They are just RPG plot points that you pay for or get XP for during character creation to make your characters more unique at creation, and should have to be role played to remove or gained after the fact.

If your Mech has the "EM interference" quirk, it was a point bonus you gained before you started the game, not so mystical force that follows you through out the game. It can be overcome in-character just like any other problem without just throwing XP at it.

And as I said earlier, Vehicle Quirks are flavor for the Mech (good or bad) like a PC's Traits to make an otherwise boring set of numbers pop and come to life. They are not some magical force that needs to be overcome by expending XP. The reason a Marauder has Exposed Weapon Linkage is because of a design decision or flaw and it adds character to the design, not some XP reason.

Overall, I think the issues here is by design or lack of better explanation, AToW gives the idea that everything can be fixed out-of-game by just spending some XP, when all off these issues can and should be addressed in-character during the game and handled like the story plot points they are.

Daryk

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #16 on: 16 October 2021, 09:50:55 »
Ah, I think I see the issue...  I'm not at all saying that simply spending the XP will fix problems with 'mechs.  I'm saying the in-character "fix" has to be backed by expending XP.  Simply doing the "obvious" by replacing the PPCs shouldn't be enough to fix a quirk.  For me, it's not "or": it's "and".  E.g., just replacing the PPCs with C-Bills and tech time means the problem is still there.  Sitting down with the tech team and going over the problem from the PPC to the cockpit (blood, sweat and tears) might just find the root cause, but STILL require the PPCs to be replaced (or some other just as expensive technical procedure).

As a GM, I want to see some player effort expended, not just a line item in the monthly maintenance budget.  Quirks are the sorts of things that elude factory engineers for CENTURIES.  Fixes to them should almost universally be one-offs.  Just because it works on Angie's 'mech doesn't mean the same fix will work on John's.

victor_shaw

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #17 on: 16 October 2021, 09:54:18 »
Another place were this issue pops up, is the Rank trait.
Again this is a pre-game XP expenditure that sets you position within their set or existing command structure. It is not and should not be used to determine your worth as a commander in-game. If a PC is part of a Mercenary group and they have the highest Rank trait in the group, they are the commander of the group. It doesn't matter if they call themselves a lieutenant or a colonel, no one in-universe is going to look at their record and see they only spent 500 XP on the Rank trait and determine they can't be a colonel because of this. That is the danger of a point based system. When it is used to make decisions in-game, it can take over the Narrative and force PCs and NPCs to act out of character just to push the point system.


Daryk

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #18 on: 16 October 2021, 10:04:20 »
Rank is exactly the same for me as a GM: in-character actions have to be backed by XP expenditure to make them "stick".  "And", not "or".   If in-character actions outstrip XP expenditure, that rank is a brevet that can stripped at any time.

victor_shaw

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #19 on: 16 October 2021, 10:09:46 »
Ah, I think I see the issue...  I'm not at all saying that simply spending the XP will fix problems with 'mechs.  I'm saying the in-character "fix" has to be backed by expending XP.  Simply doing the "obvious" by replacing the PPCs shouldn't be enough to fix a quirk.  For me, it's not "or": it's "and".  E.g., just replacing the PPCs with C-Bills and tech time means the problem is still there.  Sitting down with the tech team and going over the problem from the PPC to the cockpit (blood, sweat and tears) might just find the root cause, but STILL require the PPCs to be replaced (or some other just as expensive technical procedure).

As a GM, I want to see some player effort expended, not just a line item in the monthly maintenance budget.  Quirks are the sorts of things that elude factory engineers for CENTURIES.  Fixes to them should almost universally be one-offs.  Just because it works on Angie's 'mech doesn't mean the same fix will work on John's.

Again I don't 100% agree.
The example about the "The reason a Marauder has Exposed Weapon Linkage" is a point were I was trying to say some things can't be fixed, as you said its an engineering issues that you except when you buy the Mech since its a outstanding vehicle besides that issues. and adds flavor to the mech.

On the other issues, "I'm saying the in-character "fix" has to be backed by expending XP". Why?

For the "EM interference" quirk it's not a engineering issues that effects the entire Marauder line. It's a issues with a specific Mech (yours) that should be able to be fixed with some elbow troubleshooting, grease, and cash. Again the XP system in any RPG is not supposed to be the fix for everything that happens. It's supposed to represent "Experience" gained through your adventures to raise skills and attributes. Anything else in the game should be handled through roleplaying or in-game actions/resource expenditure

victor_shaw

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #20 on: 16 October 2021, 10:18:58 »
Rank is exactly the same for me as a GM: in-character actions have to be backed by XP expenditure to make them "stick".  "And", not "or".   If in-character actions outstrip XP expenditure, that rank is a brevet that can stripped at any time.

Again, Why

What you are describing is not roleplaying it's "point management"
They point of the "point system" is to make a somewhat balanced PC at character generation not to be the guiding force that directs their every move for the rest of the campaign.



victor_shaw

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #21 on: 16 October 2021, 10:39:20 »
If a character has the Enemy trait and kills said enemy in-game. They don't have to pay XP just to get rid of the trait.
The factor that gave them the trait is gone, so they have effectively removed the trait in-game.

If a character has the Vehicle Quirk trait that is not a engineering issues with the design and fixes it in-game. They don't have to pay XP just to get rid of the trait. The factor that gave them the trait is gone, so they have effectively removed the trait in-game.

If a character doesn't have the Contact trait and works to set up a Contact in-game. They don't have to pay 100+ XP just to get the trait. The factor that gives them the trait was gained during play, so they have effectively added the trait in-game.

Again, the point system is there to help create balanced PCs at the start of the game, not to be managed with XP during the game.

Some examples:
1. Your character starts the game with a medium mech, then during the course of the game buys or takes as salvage a heavy mech. They don't have to pay XP to raise there Vehicle level to Heavy. This was achieved during in-game play.

2. you start the game with a 100 c-bills of equipment, then your group raids a weapons depot during an adventure and you pick 2,500 c-bills worth of new equipment. They don't have to pay 100 XP just to use the equipment. This was achieved during in-game play.

3. You start the game with D/B/B equipment (0 XP), then during the course of the game buys or pick up equipment that is D/C/C. They don't have to pay 200 XP just to use the equipment. This was achieved during in-game play.
« Last Edit: 16 October 2021, 10:43:04 by victor_shaw »

Daryk

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #22 on: 16 October 2021, 11:11:18 »
Again, with those examples, I see temporary situations affecting characters.  If they want those things to "stick", I'm going to extract some XP.

0) Just because you kill an enemy doesn't mean they were friendless or without family to carry on the grudge.  If a player spends the XP, sure, the vendetta ends.  If they don't?  Some other NPC picks it up.

1) When they eventually get shot out of that heavy 'mech, if they want another heavy to be provided by the unit, that only happens if they've spent the XP.  Otherwise, the unit only happens to have a medium available ("Hmmm... your contract says...").

2) Again, if that 2,500 C-Bills of stuff gets damaged or destroyed, don't expect the unit to cough up to replace it unless some XP has been sunk into insurance or favors from the quartermasters (as examples).

3) Same as above.  The unit won't have access to restricted equipment unless they expend capital (financial, political, criminal, or otherwise) on obtaining the licenses (real or forged) necessary to freely obtain it.

To me, XP is shorthand for all the business/political/familial/etc. tricks necessary to make sure a character can KEEP what they get.  Anything they don't spend blood, sweat and tears on can be taken from them as easily as they took it from whoever they got it from.  If they're willing to roll the dice continuously, they shouldn't be surprised when they eventually roll snake eyes.  Conversely, if they sink XP into improving a trait, that advantage will have some systemic protection.  That said, a blatant war crime will have consequences, but even those can be quantified (a new Enemy, a Bloodmark, etc.).  In that situation, the player will gain some XP, but unless they're willing to live with the consequences, they'll bank them to pay off the negative traits when they role play themselves out of the situation.

Again, "and" not "or".

victor_shaw

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #23 on: 16 October 2021, 13:13:32 »
Again, with those examples, I see temporary situations affecting characters.  If they want those things to "stick", I'm going to extract some XP.

0) Just because you kill an enemy doesn't mean they were friendless or without family to carry on the grudge.  If a player spends the XP, sure, the vendetta ends.  If they don't?  Some other NPC picks it up.

1) When they eventually get shot out of that heavy 'mech, if they want another heavy to be provided by the unit, that only happens if they've spent the XP.  Otherwise, the unit only happens to have a medium available ("Hmmm... your contract says...").

2) Again, if that 2,500 C-Bills of stuff gets damaged or destroyed, don't expect the unit to cough up to replace it unless some XP has been sunk into insurance or favors from the quartermasters (as examples).

3) Same as above.  The unit won't have access to restricted equipment unless they expend capital (financial, political, criminal, or otherwise) on obtaining the licenses (real or forged) necessary to freely obtain it.

To me, XP is shorthand for all the business/political/familial/etc. tricks necessary to make sure a character can KEEP what they get.  Anything they don't spend blood, sweat and tears on can be taken from them as easily as they took it from whoever they got it from.  If they're willing to roll the dice continuously, they shouldn't be surprised when they eventually roll snake eyes.  Conversely, if they sink XP into improving a trait, that advantage will have some systemic protection.  That said, a blatant war crime will have consequences, but even those can be quantified (a new Enemy, a Bloodmark, etc.).  In that situation, the player will gain some XP, but unless they're willing to live with the consequences, they'll bank them to pay off the negative traits when they role play themselves out of the situation.

Again, "and" not "or".

Then as my gaming buddies would say "you are a rules lawyer GM not a roleplaying GM"
You are not "Roleplaying" you are "Point managing".

"To me, XP is shorthand for all the business/political/familial/etc. tricks necessary to make sure a character can KEEP what they get."

No, and just No.

After Character creation:

XP is the accumulated experience you gain for raise your skill and sometimes your attributes.

Your finances are based on the jobs you do in-character.

You contacts/connections are based your social interactions (skill use not XP) and the palms you grease (money not XP) that you do in-character.

1) No, they get what the unit has available or what they can afford not what they payed for at Character Creation. If the unit doesn't have a Medium mech just laying around, and all they have is a light mech you get what you get. Again this is were total dependence on the point system fails. As new Medium Mech doesn't just spring into existence because they got blown out of theirs. Again, you are paying XP at character creation to have the ability to start with that Mech class, it in no way means that you have the right to always have that Mech class during play. On the opposite side, it also doesn't limit you on what you can obtain during play.

2) The Wealth trait in no way saids that you will always have that money or that financial level of  The Wealth Trait Table indicates how much starting cash per the entry.

the character receives based on the TP score of this Trait, but does
not establish the equipment ratings the character may access, nor
does it establish any pay rates or extra income a character may
receive during game play. Any unspent money may be carried
over into general game play for later use.


So, no this is not some ongoing money reward and yet it takes XP. So the points spent on it during character creation even by RAW no effect on whether you can or can get that cost of equipment again.

3)"The unit won't have access to restricted equipment unless they expend capital (financial, political, criminal, or otherwise) on obtaining the licenses (real or forged) necessary to freely obtain it."

And why does any of this have to do with XP?
A PC can easily buy or obtaining the licenses trough in-game/in-character interactions. Pay the right people, make the right skills rolls and your done.

Same as above, but the RAW do allow a GM to use them in play if they want (or IMHO if to lazy).
Though this Trait is primarily used during character creation, the gamemaster
may use this level of equipment access throughout game play




"To me, XP is shorthand for all the business/political/familial/etc. tricks necessary to make sure a character can KEEP what they get.  Anything they don't spend blood, sweat and tears on can be taken from them as easily as they took it from whoever they got it from.  If they're willing to roll the dice continuously, they shouldn't be surprised when they eventually roll snake eyes.  Conversely, if they sink XP into improving a trait, that advantage will have some systemic protection.  That said, a blatant war crime will have consequences, but even those can be quantified (a new Enemy, a Bloodmark, etc.).  In that situation, the player will gain some XP, but unless they're willing to live with the consequences, they'll bank them to pay off the negative traits when they role play themselves out of the situation."

So you are ignoring the purpose of negative traits (extra XP) to make this work. Because all Banking XP is doing is giving the illusion that the characters are getting xp for the trait, but in truth it is just the same as if you just gave then the Enemy trait during game play and then removing it when they accomplished what is necessary to remove it.


Daryk

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #24 on: 16 October 2021, 13:48:17 »
If you see it as "the same", why are we arguing?  ???

victor_shaw

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #25 on: 16 October 2021, 14:41:11 »
If you see it as "the same", why are we arguing?  ???

The point is in the example you gave, your own argument is showing that the points are not really changing hands, they are just giving the illusion that they are.

As for the others, IMHO and from what I have read in the RAW (which are poorly defined) the point spent on Traits in character creation have nothing to do with the game once it starts, they are only their to help make balanced starting characters. After that, Roleplaying takes over and they are gain and lost by in-character interactions and not point expenditures. If you dumb the game down to a point system, what is the incentive for good roleplaying? All the characters have to do is make contracts, get payed and and spend their XP to get rid of the Traits. And before you go off on they have to roleplay the actions that lead to the Trait removal. Then you have started double-dipping (Something players tend to hate). Know not only do they have to preform the actions would normally fix the issues, paying off a debit/obtaining a license/fixing the mechanical issues, they also have to wait until they have the XP to pay it off. I'm sorry but if that was the way any GM my players or I where going to run with ran their game we would never play with them.

Roleplaying is about Playing a role in character, it is never about arbitrary point systems totals that you have to meet for you in game actions to have lasting effect. If I buy a license for a weapon, and run through all the proper channel, I should not also have to pay XP to gain the item since it's higher level then I started the game with.

If I spend days/weeks (in-game) tracking down a new informant, rolling Streetwise after Streetwise Skills, paying off the bartenders/Hoods and then Negotiation after Negotiation skill rolls to setup a new contact. I should not have to spend 100+ XP on it as well. The work was all done in-game and that should be all-she-wrote.

As I said, point systems are ok(though they never seem to work right) for creating a new character, as you don't have the Roleplaying background yet on the PC to justify what they have and don't have at the beginning, but after that they serve no purpose as the player now has the opportunity to earn said Contacts/Ranks/Equipment/ETC. through roleplaying.

« Last Edit: 16 October 2021, 14:44:03 by victor_shaw »

Daryk

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #26 on: 16 October 2021, 14:56:45 »
We skin the cat differently, that's all.  You call it "double dipping", I call it "blood, sweat and tears".

monbvol

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #27 on: 18 October 2021, 11:46:35 »
I will say Design Quirk is in my top three of traits that I do not like as presented.

I don't see why you can't spend enough time, money, and effort to eventually get rid of negative ones or get new positive ones instead but at the same time I take Daryk's point of the process should be both something role played and extensive enough that it could be deemed effectively XP spent in name too.  Or else it does become a loophole to get 'free' XP at character creation.

victor_shaw

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #28 on: 18 October 2021, 14:36:43 »
I will say Design Quirk is in my top three of traits that I do not like as presented.

I don't see why you can't spend enough time, money, and effort to eventually get rid of negative ones or get new positive ones instead but at the same time I take Daryk's point of the process should be both something role played and extensive enough that it could be deemed effectively XP spent in name too.  Or else it does become a loophole to get 'free' XP at character creation.

Like I have always said, there is nothing wrong with making the players pay for it, but don't make them pay twice.
IMHO, were AToW truly fails as a system is in the point system trying to do to much, to often, while being to generic.

Don't get me wrong, GURPS one of my favor game system (those its hell on the GM) use a point system. The major difference is that SJGs goes out of their way to insure that every point is balanced vs. each other for character/universe creation. then the system steps back and lets you roleplay from then on out.

For a point system to work you have to put in the effort to make sure the points you spend/get for one trait/skill/attribute/Etc. is balanced with the points you spend/get for another. On top of that you need to separate Character creation points (both mentally and system wise) from advancement in the game. And live with the fact that characters are not going to and should not stay balanced after Character creation. And that what you start with from Character creation is just that, what you start with and you are not entitled to keep it or automatically replace it because you paid for it at the start of the game. And finally, the system needs to have a point range that can both handle the range/types of options without over burdening the GM/PCs with waste points.

AToW fails on all these points.
1. Point cost in the system are not unique and are just set numbers. All trait/skill/attribute/Etc. are treated the same DEX, STR, CHA are all the same Acting, Security Systems, Surgery are all the same in the point system.
2. The point system likes to override Roleplaying as written, yes I know you can ignore this, but as written is does.
3. They system gives GM/PCs this feeling that I paid for its mine till the end.
4. The system also gives the feeling that it punishes players for not "wasting" points on something they got during play.
5. They system point levels are ridiculously high for the sake of being high. As most of the point totals are just 3rd ED points with a zero or two added.

Overall, the system fails to be an effective point based system on all the points that you need for a point based system. What's sad about it is that with a point ranges half to two-thirds as high they could fix most of these issues.

The above needed to be said for my point below.

From the earlier example: the "EM interference" quirk is a -100 XP negative trait, not much in this system. If the player was to replace the PPCs as described earlier, the player would be paying around 500,000 c-bills for the PPCs and what every the going rate for a Mech/tech.
Now if we look into the point system at the trait that covers money for equipment (Wealth) we see that to have that many c-bills is a +800 XP trait. So, at least to me by the Traits as Written if the player has earned the money to pay for this in game, their in-game actions have already surpassed the -100 XP they earned from the negative trait by 700 XP. Why would they then have to pay 100 more XP to get rid of the trait.

This is where again AToWs point system fails due to its unbalanced nature and want to control the in-game balance. Because of the generic nature of points in the system and the complete lack of balance, getting 500,000 c-bill can get rid of a negative trait, but you wind-up have to use 800 XP worth of in-game resources to do it.

monbvol

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Re: AToW Vehicle Quirk rules and Battlemech Manual list?
« Reply #29 on: 18 October 2021, 15:07:08 »
Like I have always said, there is nothing wrong with making the players pay for it, but don't make them pay twice.
IMHO, were AToW truly fails as a system is in the point system trying to do to much, to often, while being to generic.

Don't get me wrong, GURPS one of my favor game system (those its hell on the GM) use a point system. The major difference is that SJGs goes out of their way to insure that every point is balanced vs. each other for character/universe creation. then the system steps back and lets you roleplay from then on out.

For a point system to work you have to put in the effort to make sure the points you spend/get for one trait/skill/attribute/Etc. is balanced with the points you spend/get for another. On top of that you need to separate Character creation points (both mentally and system wise) from advancement in the game. And live with the fact that characters are not going to and should not stay balanced after Character creation. And that what you start with from Character creation is just that, what you start with and you are not entitled to keep it or automatically replace it because you paid for it at the start of the game. And finally, the system needs to have a point range that can both handle the range/types of options without over burdening the GM/PCs with waste points.

AToW fails on all these points.
1. Point cost in the system are not unique and are just set numbers. All trait/skill/attribute/Etc. are treated the same DEX, STR, CHA are all the same Acting, Security Systems, Surgery are all the same in the point system.
2. The point system likes to override Roleplaying as written, yes I know you can ignore this, but as written is does.
3. They system gives GM/PCs this feeling that I paid for its mine till the end.
4. The system also gives the feeling that it punishes players for not "wasting" points on something they got during play.
5. They system point levels are ridiculously high for the sake of being high. As most of the point totals are just 3rd ED points with a zero or two added.

Overall, the system fails to be an effective point based system on all the points that you need for a point based system. What's sad about it is that with a point ranges half to two-thirds as high they could fix most of these issues.

The above needed to be said for my point below.

From the earlier example: the "EM interference" quirk is a -100 XP negative trait, not much in this system. If the player was to replace the PPCs as described earlier, the player would be paying around 500,000 c-bills for the PPCs and what every the going rate for a Mech/tech.
Now if we look into the point system at the trait that covers money for equipment (Wealth) we see that to have that many c-bills is a +800 XP trait. So, at least to me by the Traits as Written if the player has earned the money to pay for this in game, their in-game actions have already surpassed the -100 XP they earned from the negative trait by 700 XP. Why would they then have to pay 100 more XP to get rid of the trait.

This is where again AToWs point system fails due to its unbalanced nature and want to control the in-game balance. Because of the generic nature of points in the system and the complete lack of balance, getting 500,000 c-bill can get rid of a negative trait, but you wind-up have to use 800 XP worth of in-game resources to do it.

For me that all comes across as you are letting yourself get caught up on the numbers and are charging XP without actually saying you're charging XP.

Still I can't disagree some traits are pretty terrible to actually make logical use of as they are now.  How I order them does seem to change from time to time but I do tend to agree that as they stand as written Rank, Title, Wealth, Equipped, Vehicle(Design Quirk by extension) are the big ones for me for needing fixed going forward.