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New Jack of All Trades
#21
Enh, personally, I have yet to encounter a need for Tech 3. It comes down to play style and what you end up encountering.

I originally bought Firearm because I wanted a gun, but didn't want to burn two dots to get it. I'm pretty happy with my Revonix360, so at some point I'll burn the X{ to drop the Firearms tree and pick up JOAT 1&2, just so I have something a little extra. JOAT3? Maybe. Not really worried about it. I love me some Tech 1 & 2, having gotten to use both this past weekend, but I'm really not concerned with filling that tree up.

Again, I think we need to divorce ourselves of the idea that we must have 15 points of skills.
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#22
Perhaps an idea would be to allow any previously unchosen skill with JoaT, even if it is from a lower level.
1: Pick one from Armor 1 or Shield 1
2: Pick one from Firearms 1, Melee 1, Throwing 1, Armor 1 or Shield 1
3: Pick one from Nurse 1, Medic 1, Firearms 1, Melee 1, Throwing 1, Armor 1 or Shield 1
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#23
I apologize for a poor choice of wording, Ron, I don't mean to say it's a bad design choice, but not the ideal I would strive for.

John, I don't understand why wanting to be able to spend the full 15 XP on a character can't be a desirable goal. We're constrained to only 5 trees - this is a hard choice. Each of these trees has 3 abilities - shouldn't we want all of those dots to be interesting? I want spending my XP each game to be a choice - is this a useful ability to me? Between these two options, which do I feel I will use/benefit from more? I want it to be hard to decide, but I want to have the eventual goal of filling out all five trees and feel like it was worth it. Character growth through the character sheet is an enjoyable thing.

I have comments on redundant powers, but that's for another thread and their effects on that goal.

Something I'm not understanding is why increasing the access to level 1 abilities beyond medic and nurse is undesirable - does this somehow negatively impact the game? I don't see why these basic level abilities are being resisted.

To reiterate my recommendations to add to JoaT3 and their conferred powers:

Communications 1 - allows better utilization of a media device, without ever giving the opportunity to control channels.
Counselor 1 - allows ability to give En away, but not ever give a real counseling session. Perhaps not let it benefit from nurses either?
Gadgeteer 1 - Worn Gadgets to round out a cyborg or let someone use their NV Goggles, a fun character addition, but none of the remote items.
Hacker 1 - Not useful for offense, but could allow a character to better defend their own account or attempt to root around and solve their problems hamfistedly
Medic 1 - Use of medkits and a few basic Sense powers - useful!
Merchant 1 - Grants a business account - thats interesting
Nurse 1 - I don't see a need to remove it - but just being able to help the fairly rare counselor isn't super useful, but medkit use is.
Science 1 - the amateur citizen scientist, discovering En or HP levels is useful for Energy Transference Psychics in particular, but knowing HP of enemies can be useful to any combatant.
Technician 1 - Lockpicking!

It's further balanced by the fact that none of these could stack with any of the full trees, that you can only get the jack tree once, and that you can only choose one of these. You're trading mastery of any subject for a basic knowledge of Defense, Offense, and Something Else. I think this helps the tree present a series of really interesting character options that will help it find an important role in several, but hardly every character.

It still doesn't make Jack the end-all be-all tree. I'd still like to see (Non-stacking) Vigor/Endurance 1 at Level 1 or 2 for characters who aren't interested in the prop requirements or don't need another weapon, but my larger focus is on level 3.
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#24
As a cop I choose to put 3 points into Jacks for the first game. I picked Medic 1 thinking it would be great to be able to use med kits and help triage the people going into the medical facility. But during that 1st game I used it zero times. There was always someone near by that could do that, so I stayed out of their way. Before game 2 I took the chance to swap that point into Nurse 1 and I was very glad I did. Sure outside of combat there are nurses to go around for the counselors, but during they are all busy helping the surgeons. So that's where I came in to fill the gaps. I can serve as a fighter when short handed or I can help a counselor give people their EN back. Just throwing that out there.

That said I don't feel strongly about this one way or the other. Change it or don't, I found a way that works for me and loved it. Just try to remember that not everything will ever work how we planned and just need to adjust to the flow. That's why we'll win this war and the bugs wont!


PS Having a reason to sit in on counseling sessions is really nice. Remember the Agency is always watching.
Agent Lee
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#25
(09-22-2015, 07:36 PM)Mr. F Wrote: John, I don't understand why wanting to be able to spend the full 15 XP on a character can't be a desirable goal. We're constrained to only 5 trees - this is a hard choice. Each of these trees has 3 abilities - shouldn't we want all of those dots to be interesting? I want spending my XP each game to be a choice - is this a useful ability to me? Between these two options, which do I feel I will use/benefit from more? I want it to be hard to decide, but I want to have the eventual goal of filling out all five trees and feel like it was worth it. Character growth through the character sheet is an enjoyable thing.

So, I wrote this out and on reread realized it will probably read as super-confrontational. Please understand nothing is further from the truth. I just lack whatever words or methods of coaching it to ensure it reads like we're talking about abstract philosophy rather than legislation on a national level.

I tend to feel that the logic that leads to changes such as you suggest could generally be used to undo any number of rules as defined: "Why does using a shooting gadget require three points rather than 1? I only want to use shooting gadgets and don't care about the rest! You're forcing me to spend my XP slots suboptimally for how I want to play! There's nothing wrong with wanting to play superoptimally, is there?!?", etc. That manner of logic can be used to undo pretty much everything about the game ("Why only fifteen points?" "Why can't I buy the Science path twice?" "Why only five paths?", etc.). I don't know that it's a strong cause for change.

In my mind, the only two strong causes for change are when the rules make the game mechanically unplayable, or when the rules fail to reflect the world design of the writers. The situation you describe with JOAT3 is neither of those. "I want something else" is, in my worldview, a soft cause for change. At the point where the writers acknowledge your desires, I don't see it as a reason to continue to harp on about it, whether or not they act on your suggestions. As best as I can infer, the writers want that lack of options to factor in to your decision making process (much as any or all of the other limits exist).

I get that maybe for someone, that lack of desire to spend their fifteenth point on Medic/Nurse 1 might be the difference between them continuing to attend the Spite games or not. I fully support that if that's the thing that makes or breaks the game for them, they definitely need to seek entertainment elsewhere, in much the same way that if the fact that we use Nerf rather than Airsoft, some people will look down on the game (hell, on some level, I still do). But once I've said my piece on Airsoft vs Nerf and the writers acknowledge it, if I want to keep playing I really should accept their decision unless I can actually bring new reasons to the table.
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#26
I have no dog in the fight, and don't really care, but a concept I find interesting would be a JoAT I and JoAT II.

JoAT I would be the "combat" version, with Armor or Shield at 1; Firearms, Thrown, or Melee at 2; and Medic, Nurse *or Endurance* at 3, since those are all combat oriented.

JoAT II would be the "peace" version, perhaps with Tech or Gadget at 1; Counselor or Science at 2; and Hacker, Merchant or Vigor at 3.

Not unlike buying option packages when purchasing a car (Towing package, power package, etc.).
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