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Are specializations "required"?

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  • Are specializations "required"?

    Hi, I have read the sections on skill specializations several times and it reads to me as if you are Not Required to take a specialization in a skill; but that you Can Opt to take one if this is preferred as a way to get additional dice types above the linked attribute. But, have just started playing in a group that thinks the rules mean that you Must take a specialization in any skill that allows doing so. So for example, since shooting can be specialized, they think you Must choose a specialized area of shooting when you take shooting, such as pistol. But I read the rules as saying that that is just an Option; and that you should still choose to use shooting skill like in standard SWADE rules, where one general skill covered all types. Which is it? The group wants me to get a definitive answers from the writers.

  • #2
    Hi there. I'm David Jarvis of Gun Metal Games.

    Skill Specializations are a setting rule, but setting rules are always optional. It's up to the GM to decide whether or not a particular setting rule applies.

    IF the setting rules are being used, then you must specialize in, say a shotgun, or a machine gun (just examples) if you want to use those weapons without a penalty.

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    • #3
      Which skills does it not apply to? Also, would the same apply to cybernetic skill bonuses?
      Last edited by manythings; 06-29-2021, 12:59 PM.

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      • #4
        There should be a list of applicable skill specializations in the book.

        Generally, Yes, they apply to cybernetic skill bonuses. If, for example, you are using a cyberarm with a weapon implant, then you need to be specialized in that particular weapon. Though personally, I'd do a blanket "cyber weapons" skill specialization and be done with it.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by manythings View Post
          Hi, I have read the sections on skill specializations several times and it reads to me as if you are Not Required to take a specialization in a skill; but that you Can Opt to take one if this is preferred as a way to get additional dice types above the linked attribute.
          Then I am afraid that you've misread the section. (Or we did a terrible job writing it; highly unlikely but possible.)

          Skill Specialization is a setting rule. If the GM is using the setting rule then specializations are mandatory. Not every skill is has specializations (see pages 137 & 138), but many do and the various specialties are listed for each skill.

          If a character does not have the relevant specialty then subtract 2 from the Skill total.
          If a character does have the relevant specialization then the total is unaffected by specialization.

          Driving is still the skill to control all self-powered ground vehicles, but if a character tries to drive a vehicle they don't have the specialization for then Driving totals are minus 2.

          Example: Marco has Shooting with specializations in pistols and longarms. Marco's player notes this as Shooting (pistols, longarms). During a mission, Marco picks up a rocket launcher to take out a pursuing vehicle. A rocket launcher is a heavy weapon, so Marco has to subtract two from his Shooting rolls with the launcher.

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