Skills, and why I struggle with them


When I started in RPGs, there were really no skills, not as we know them. Well, there were what the thief got in AD&D, but you’d have to be crazy to rely on those. Seriously? Pick pockets at less than 15%? I never really noticed the lack of a skills system in play until just about every game published thereafter contained one. Sometimes they were a call to ‘realism’ with pages and pages of the things, and in the case of Rolemaster I’m just talking about the character sheet. Sometimes they were pithier, but still, a laundry list of things you could now do with your PC.

My personal sweet spot for the skills list has topped out at about 15 or so in the past, but actually I’m increasingly looking to get that down to sub 10 where possible. Better, lose skills entirely and put the onus back on…

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