thirtythr33 wrote:I was thinking 1 player would change out an SA every 2-3 session, not every player.
Okay. But if one player is changing an SA every 2-3 sessions, then let's do the math on it. We'll assume one player changing one SA every 3 sessions. Let's say there are four players, 5SAs each. In the course of 15 sessions (which was your objection), only 5 of those SAs would change, leaving 15 unchanged. So why are we worried about an SA being resolved within 5?
thirtythr33 wrote:The problem I have with what you are saying is that in play the SA goals very typically are going to fall into quest arcs.
This can sometimes happen, but it isn't universal. It's actually a bit of a pitfall of the current system, as it's very easy for the GM or players to accidentally wind up using SAs as quest markers.
thirtythr33 wrote: Not everyone has a good SA all the time, and you don't often jump back and forth between multiple quest lines.
This is actually exactly what I do in play. Rather, as a GM I go out of my way to try to make as many plots relate and intersect as I can. It also helps to look at things from a kind of apocalypse world perspective with the whole threats/fronts thing. If the players have spent too much time on one thing or another, hit them where it hurts with something else. I generally try not to focus in on a single plot for very long unless we're close to resolving it.
To see this in action, it's useful to look at shows like Justified or Sons of Anarchy to some degree. The characters all have major plots they are pursuing, but there's always other stuff related to those plots dragging them in this direction or that.
thirtythr33 wrote:For example, in the Floating City game, we discussed the setting and the players wrote up their SAs. I then constructed a scenario with the intention of trying to get many of the players SAs and Flaws to be applicable as possible. As it turned out, the game has very much become focused around Marco, who has 3 SAs which are very applicable to the main goals of the story and is triggering one any time he has to roll dice. The other players only really have 1 applicable SA, and sometimes none. I would expect this to remain true until they have completed their current goals and brought to justice the villain they are tracking down, and then Marco will clear out 1 or more of his SAs and the players will adopt a new quest which will revolve around a different character's SAs. Things have gone slowly for PBP, but I would expect this quest line to take 3-5 real life sessions.
I haven't caught up enough to offer a fair critique, so I'll offer that I generally try to avoid plots that fall into questing format. It's hard to do in such a way that the quest-giver doesn't wind up being more important to a single character than the others, or winds up being that character's quest with the other players tagging along. Again, apocalypse world works wonders for GMing this sort of thing. The best results tend to come from plots that are "here's a problem, it affects all of you, what are you going to do about it?" The players sort it out from there.
thirtythr33 wrote:Not at all. Currently, if you have 5 agi and 0 skills you are rolling 5 dice out of a potential 10. Under your proposed system if you have 10 agi and 0 skills you are rolling either 10 or 0 dice out of a potential 10. Similarly, 1 agi and 5 skill will be rolling 6 dice out of 10 vs 1 agi and 10 skill will be rolling 10 or 1 dice out of 10 again. By combining the Attribute and Skill you are averaging out any min-maxing that has been done and greatly reduce the amount of times you roll 10 or 1 dice (which will feel silly if it happens all the time).
Yeah, I still see this from the opposite perspective. If you are combining dice, then as a player it's in your interest to make sure you try to wheedle any skill roll you make into an agility+X roll because you can use your agility to balance out whatever roll you need to make. Because the GM has discretion in what attribute is being called for, I as a player have room to try to influence him to rule that in my favor.
If attributes are rolled on their own, then there's a very narrow window of situations where I can go "no, this is totally an agility roll." Objectively far, far fewer than if it's a combined X+Y roll, because anything where a skill is involved, there is no attribute being rolled.
thirtythr33 wrote:I like how there are multiple different kinds of carrots.
It's definitely a plus.
thirtythr33 wrote: One carrot gave you heaps of dice to do cool stuff
Technically still would. It just would ensure those dice came up only when important - didn't you advocate this in the beginning? That SAs should only fire when something life and death was on the line? Making SAs expendible assets would actually do that without requiring GM oversight.
thirtythr33 wrote:and the other carrot was how you advanced your character or got special effects.
Not really. As the rules stand now, getting an SA from a Flaw is already functionally identical to getting SA points from an SA because you park the SA point earned by the flaw under one of your SAs. In turn, that same pool of dice is used to earn bonus dice, advance your character, or get special effects. The line between the two only exists in how they are earned, not how they are used.
thirtythr33 wrote:Cutting out the bonus dice makes the Flaw carrot and the SA carrot the exact same same.There's no real difference between the two, you roleplay a certain way and you get character points (which can be spent of special effects optionally).
I'm not sure how they aren't the same now, save for that they are two different behaviors. One is pointing towards a goal or conviction the character has, one is pointing at a character defect. Both are incentives to play towards those things. Both then earn SA points that are parked under a specific SA, provide bonus dice for that SA, and then are burnt for narrative effects or advancement.
thirtythr33 wrote:One neat thing about the bonus dice is that they FORCE a particular character to be a cool badass every now and then;
Kinda.. but only insofar as that the character made the choice to do a thing in the first place. Then again, if we put any kind of cap on the SA points as an expendable pool, they'd be forced to spend them or lose them anyway.
thirtythr33 wrote:Would you rather spend 5 dice to get a +5 to this one roll, or spend 5 dice to increase a skill 2 ranks, forever?
The cost for skill advancement is 5, 4, 6, 8, 10. So the real question would be "what are the consequences for failing this roll?" If you're keeping to the "we don't roll for trivial things" idea, then having +5 dice to throw down could be very, very tempting, compared to increasing the skill from 1 to 2 dots.
More realistically, what I imagine from the change would be that SAs will be used fairly often as bonus dice, but in smaller amounts. If I have a pool of points to spend, my temptation will be to grab one or two bonus dice when something important is on the line and spend those more frequently. If something isn't as important to me, I'll let it pass. If something's maaaassively important, then I dump dice into it. Meanwhile, every so often I dump something into boosting some skill or ability.
Of course, if we really wanted we could fix this as well by decoupling advancement from SAs. Leave the SA pool completely dedicated to burning for narrative benefits and bonus dice, and make skills/attributes/proficiencies advance organically through use. This was something I've been thinking of as an optional system anyway, because I've always been fond of the idea.