[2.0] Read and Write

Muir

Fighter
Looking for a bit of clarification here.

Why is Read/Write still so expensive under the new rules? For a skill that grants no game abilities save to serve as a pre-requisite for Read Magic, I'm not sure how to justify it as a 6 point skill for classes not 'intended' to be casters.

Any chance we can convince the team to simply change the cost on Read Magic, if balance is required there, and make character literacy a roleplaying choice, given that the racial penalties to it have been removed?
 

AlikVanmil

Newbie
Looking for a bit of clarification here.

Why is Read/Write still so expensive under the new rules? For a skill that grants no game abilities save to serve as a pre-requisite for Read Magic, I'm not sure how to justify it as a 6 point skill for classes not 'intended' to be casters.

Any chance we can convince the team to simply change the cost on Read Magic, if balance is required there, and make character literacy a roleplaying choice, given that the racial penalties to it have been removed?
Note: read & write is also the pre requisite skill needed for: herbal lore and healing arts. But that aside, it is such a throw away skill. I for one would like to see it gone completely, as the number of times I've given someone a note to read and they respond with "oh I can't read" literally makes me sick with anger. (Seriously I've developed an eye twitch) Because with all the elaborate bs plot lets them put in their back story about being a general's son who is a master strategist but apparently never learned to read.

So in short. Read and write as a skill = rage
 

Muir

Fighter
Read/Write is something the owners are currently discussing.
Glad to hear it. It bugs me because it's one of the only build-bought skills that (at least as I've always been told) isn't lost when you're under effects that cause you to lose game skills, and because it is the hardest bit of metagaming we will ever ask of our players. Human brains are pattern-recognition machines, and pretending -not- to read things at a glance is very difficult.
 

mythic

Knight
Owner
Calgary Staff
That being said, we are looking for ideas on what to "replace" R/W with. We have bantered about a few suggestions (we don't want to just jack up the cost of Read Magic) but this is one area we would love input on.

One of the suggestions was an ability that would be required to touchcast, or one that allows spells to be touchcast on an unconscious person with the skill that does not pop defenses.
 

Alavatar

Baron
Situation:
Read/Write is being discussed to be removed from Alliance, but the owners want to maintain the current build cost for the follow-on skills (Read Magic, Healing Arts, Herbal Lore).

Target:
Create new skill(s) that could replace Read/Write as prerequisites for Read Magic, Healing Arts, and Herbal Lore. The new skill(s) must be something that makes sense to the follow-on skill, stand-alone, and something that could be lost when the character loses "game abilities".

Proposal:
  • Suggestion A: 3 new skills
    • Detect Magic - Character may detect magic at will. This skill allows the character to discern if a noun has magic on it. Prerequisite to Read Magic.
    • Triage - Character may heal 1 Body per minute of roleplay. A character may not be healed above 10 Body with this ability. Prerequisite to Healing Arts.
    • Apply Contact Poison - Character may apply a contact poison to an object. Prerequisite to Herbal Lore. (Does Herbal Lore still need a prerequisite?)
    • Pro of 3 skills - Customized to each of the 3 follow-on skills
    • Con of 3 skills - More build to branch out to other things
  • Suggestion B: 1 new skill
    • Dungeoneering - Character has knowledge of applied magics and poisons. The character can detect (but not identify) battle magic, ritual magic, potions, scrolls, and poison upon close inspection for 3 seconds.
    • Pro of 1 skill - Simple replacement to R/W
    • Con of 1 skill - Generalized for 3 independent branches
  • Suggestion C: No replacement, increase Build cost of Read Magic, Healing Arts, Herbal Lore
    • Pro of no replacement - No more R/W!
    • Con of no replacement - Branching out costs more build
  • Suggestion D: No replacement, no build increase
    • Pro of no Build increase - No more R/W! No new skills. Characters have some extra build.
    • Con of no Build increase - No new skills. Characters have some extra build.
Just some ideas.
 
Currently R/W is a pre-req for three chains: Earth / Potions, Celestial / Scrolls, and Alchemy.

In order to best maintain the current cost structure, it would be best to simply replace R/W with a 3-point skill that is an appropriate pre-req to all three chains.

Here is my recommendation.

Sagecraft (same cost as R/W for all classes): This skill can be taken multiple times. One rank of it is a pre-req for all the things that R/W used to be a pre-req for. Each rank of Sagecraft may be treated as a rank of Alchemy, Create Scroll, or Create Potion when crafting, but only up to the number of ranks the character has in the associated skill.

In short, it is a flexible crafting skill that still requires the normal crafting skill as well (and is only really meaningfully flexible if the character has ranks in multiple crafting skills). If the character has no ranks in crafting skills, the end result is a character has spent the exact same build for the exact same benefit they currently have (since R/W is about to become free). If the character has at least one rank in a crafting skill (something this will encourage), they effectively get a second one "free." I think this will especially be a boon to new players looking to play alchemists.

The above suggestion is my most conservative suggestion. There are two possible changes that I think could be made that would beef up the skill, but still not harm game balance, in my opinion.

-Option 1: Sagecraft counts towards total ranks in Create Scroll and Create Potion for the purpose of determining advanced benefits (casting in darkness and I forget the other one).
-Option 2: Sagecraft may be treated as a rank of all three crafting skills mentioned when crafting (again, still limited by actual ranks).

The second option may seem overpowered, but it only cuts the cost of 6 total ranks of skills (2 of each) by 1/3 and crafting skills are easily the most underpowered skills in the game. I don't think the game will suddenly break if pure artisans are knocking out 50% more crafted items a day. But, like I said, my proposal is the original wording and those are just potential sweeteners.

Finally, unless I am mistaken, for every class except for Templar, Sagecraft will always cost equal to or more than a rank of one of those three skills.

-MS
 

Muir

Fighter
Situation:
Read/Write is being discussed to be removed from Alliance, but the owners want to maintain the current build cost for the follow-on skills (Read Magic, Healing Arts, Herbal Lore).

Target:
Create new skill(s) that could replace Read/Write as prerequisites for Read Magic, Healing Arts, and Herbal Lore. The new skill(s) must be something that makes sense to the follow-on skill, stand-alone, and something that could be lost when the character loses "game abilities".

Proposal:
  • Suggestion A: 3 new skills
    • Detect Magic - Character may detect magic at will. This skill allows the character to discern if a noun has magic on it. Prerequisite to Read Magic.
    • Triage - Character may heal 1 Body per minute of roleplay. A character may not be healed above 10 Body with this ability. Prerequisite to Healing Arts.
    • Apply Contact Poison - Character may apply a contact poison to an object. Prerequisite to Herbal Lore. (Does Herbal Lore still need a prerequisite?)
    • Pro of 3 skills - Customized to each of the 3 follow-on skills
    • Con of 3 skills - More build to branch out to other things
  • Suggestion B: 1 new skill
    • Dungeoneering - Character has knowledge of applied magics and poisons. The character can detect (but not identify) battle magic, ritual magic, potions, scrolls, and poison upon close inspection for 3 seconds.
    • Pro of 1 skill - Simple replacement to R/W
    • Con of 1 skill - Generalized for 3 independent branches
  • Suggestion C: No replacement, increase Build cost of Read Magic, Healing Arts, Herbal Lore
    • Pro of no replacement - No more R/W!
    • Con of no replacement - Branching out costs more build
  • Suggestion D: No replacement, no build increase
    • Pro of no Build increase - No more R/W! No new skills. Characters have some extra build.
    • Con of no Build increase - No new skills. Characters have some extra build.
Just some ideas.
My biggest problem with this is Detect Magic. It was removed as a spell for a reason, and that being that it causes a lot of holds.
 

Draven

Count
Seattle Staff
Marshal
Ditch potion crafting.

Have a single purchase of Craft Scroll (Celestial) or Craft Scroll (Earth) be requisite for C/E casting. Have Read Magic be the pre-requisite for both of these.

This would increase the build cost for all races with a penalty to Read Magic, but not necessarily a terrible one. Kyn are already considered the most powerful race of 2.0 (and probably rightfully so), so this would slightly offset that, at least as far as kyncasters are concerned.

This would also offset some resource-differences between E and C casters, which isn't necessarily a terrible thing.
 

Alavatar

Baron
My biggest problem with this is Detect Magic. It was removed as a spell for a reason, and that being that it causes a lot of holds.
Make it require close inspection for 3 seconds outside of combat.

Regardless, it was just an idea. This community loves to give ideas, so there may be some golden nuggets for the owners to grab among the chicken nuggets.
 
Make it require close inspection for 3 seconds outside of combat.

Regardless, it was just an idea. This community loves to give ideas, so there may be some golden nuggets for the owners to grab among the chicken nuggets.
The time isn't the really the problem. The problem is that the ability can only be meaningfully used in very specific places (wherever a magic item list is present). If you find an item that has been accidentally dropped in the woods, your detect magic skill simply can't function, because the nearest magic item list is most likely at logistics.

-MS
 

Alavatar

Baron
The time isn't the really the problem. The problem is that the ability can only be meaningfully used in very specific places (wherever a magic item list is present). If you find an item that has been accidentally dropped in the woods, your detect magic skill simply can't function, because the nearest magic item list is most likely at logistics.

-MS
I guess East Coast does it differently from West Coast. We just look for the Magic Item Phys Rep number on the Phys Rep. Since we don't put Merchant Items in the MI database (we have a separate spreadsheet for Merchant Items which everyone with the Merchant skill carries), the Merchant Number is distinctly different from MI numbers, so differentiating between magic items and mundane items is as simple as just examining the item.

Even if you have the problem you stated, it wouldn't be that different from how Merchant works now for valuable items.
 

Gilwing

Baron
Alliance Logistics
I guess East Coast does it differently from West Coast. We just look for the Magic Item Phys Rep number on the Phys Rep. Since we don't put Merchant Items in the MI database (we have a separate spreadsheet for Merchant Items which everyone with the Merchant skill carries), the Merchant Number is distinctly different from MI numbers, so differentiating between magic items and mundane items is as simple as just examining the item.

Even if you have the problem you stated, it wouldn't be that different from how Merchant works now for valuable items.
Every MI should also have an associated value along with its magical properties (0 CP is a value). When MI would expire, players using the merchant skill would trade it into logistics for the IG value of the item. Also (maybe it is a EC/WC thing) in chapters I've played in (7) there have been items that were handed out (with a number on them, because no number and/or no tag its technically not an IG item as per the rules) that weren't magical but had a number on them.

Back on topic Seth I like Suggestion D hehe. But either way having a replace skill would work but not 3 separate ones, because you now will make people spend more build for the same things they have (Ex. Alchemy 3 and Read Magic).
 

mythic

Knight
Owner
Calgary Staff
It would need to be a single skill as a replacement. We want to keep costs the same across the board.
 

Alavatar

Baron
Every MI should also have an associated value along with its magical properties (0 CP is a value). When MI would expire, players using the merchant skill would trade it into logistics for the IG value of the item. Also (maybe it is a EC/WC thing) in chapters I've played in (7) there have been items that were handed out (with a number on them, because no number and/or no tag its technically not an IG item as per the rules) that weren't magical but had a number on them.
Tangenting for a little longer ;) . The way the WC operates is:

There is a spreadsheet for valuable items that has a character code (alpha character and two numeric characters such as A67) and a value associated with each code (relatively random); one chapter also appends the code with the chapter code (i.e. ORE-V90). Every item that is not a production item, but has value, has that number, including a Magic Item if the base phys rep is considered valuable. This is usually written on the phys rep in marker, on an attached tag, or etched on. All WC chapters have adopted this spreadsheet and have been using it for the past decade (or longer) without a problem. Also, it has been standard practice for the Merchant Code spreadsheet be given to all who have the Merchant skill, to be used on-your-honor (no searching for a Logistics person or Plot person to look in the MI database).

Magic Items have a separate Magic Item number on the phys rep, usually marking the item in the same way as for Merchant items, and is always distinctly different from the Merchant Code convention. If a Merchant code is not on the item it has a value of 0. Thereby, being able to tell if something is magic (or valuable) upon simple inspection of the item.

Honestly, I didn't even know that chapters outside the WC did things differently until about 2010 (when I had started playing in 2000).

ON TOPIC

I am not sure a skill can be made that replaces R/W as a single skill that can still function as a prerequisite for 3 distinct skill trees. Perhaps something called "Scholarship" that allows the identification of things like reagents, catalysts, magic items (not Identification, but identification as a magic item, or not if that is too much trouble for non-WC chapters), potion vs. poison vs. gas globe, etc.?
 

Draven

Count
Seattle Staff
Marshal
Awh, nobody even wants to discuss the "Earth Scrolls" instead of "Earth Potions" option.

Sadness!
 

mythic

Knight
Owner
Calgary Staff
Awh, nobody even wants to discuss the "Earth Scrolls" instead of "Earth Potions" option.

Sadness!
Main concern is the amount of paper we have to print for scrolls vs. potions. I get 5 scrolls per page. I get 55 potion tags to a page. Those costs add up over time.

I also like the flavour of potions, scrolls and alchemy gas. It would not feel as "high fantasy" if we dropped potions. Those are kinda iconic. :)
 

Draven

Count
Seattle Staff
Marshal
Main concern is the amount of paper we have to print for scrolls vs. potions. I get 5 scrolls per page. I get 55 potion tags to a page. Those costs add up over time.

I also like the flavour of potions, scrolls and alchemy gas. It would not feel as "high fantasy" if we dropped potions. Those are kinda iconic. :)
Divine Caster scrolls are also iconic.

:-|
 

Gilwing

Baron
Alliance Logistics
Main concern is the amount of paper we have to print for scrolls vs. potions. I get 5 scrolls per page. I get 55 potion tags to a page. Those costs add up over time.

I also like the flavour of potions, scrolls and alchemy gas. It would not feel as "high fantasy" if we dropped potions. Those are kinda iconic. :)
scroll tags are smaller then potion tags. If you are refering to the scroll rep, yes its paper but you also have to buy potion reps too. Unless of coruse you get players to donate.
 

mythic

Knight
Owner
Calgary Staff
We print out full reps for our scrolls. ;-)
 
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