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 How to use skill groups at character creation

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Stampede
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PostSubject: How to use skill groups at character creation   Sun Jul 18, 2010 1:32 pm

Hi there,

I'm sure this will be handled differently by different GMs and I talked about that with one, too. Nonetheless I'd like to discuss the topic here to get some more oppinions:

I guess it's best to start with an example. Assume a soldier, a guy with military experience and training. I'd assume that a character with this background would have at least a basic knowledge of the most weapons and combat styles (tonfa, martial arts, knive combat). So I would first increase the groups accordingly:

Close Combat 2 (-20BP)
Firearms 2 (-20BP)

Furthermore I'd assume that a soldier specialises on specific weapons, e.g. assault rifles and semi-automatic pistols. So I'd increase the single skills (thereby resolving the groups, in the future it's not possible to improve the groups anymore unless all skills are back on the same level, see core rule book p.106 and p.264):

Blades 2
Clubs 2
Unarmed Combat 4 (-8BP)

Automatics (Assault Rifles) 5 (+2) (-14BP)
Pistols (Semi-Automatic) 5 (+2) (-14BP)
Longarms 2

IMHO the rule on p.264 is not entirely clear if that is allowed at character creation time, is it?
I believe that Skill Groups have been introduced for the sole purpose of reflecting a characters basic knowledge in a specific field, and therefore the proposed way to improve the skills is valid. But as mentioned before it's not clear from the rules and I already had discussions regarding this. So any ideas, cons, pros?

Yours
Stamp
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Kesslan
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PostSubject: Re: How to use skill groups at character creation   Sun Jul 18, 2010 2:23 pm

My understanding of 4th ed Skill groups is that it was always an all or nothing, this is why skill groups cap at 4 in CG but can go all the way to 6 out side of character generation. You are not intended to buy up a group to a point and then break it in CG. It is however acceptable to buy up a skill group, and then break that group afterwards and before you get it to level 6 (Or if you have purchased an aptitude to a skill that belongs in that group, the group would break when you raise that one skill to 7 as the rest can not go that high).

They clarified this somewhat in SR4A and later editions of SR4 to the point I'm pretty sure they say you flat out cant do what your proposing (but I could be mistaken on that one, I'd have to double check). The intention however is most certainly that your not supposed to buy up and break up a group in CG. Or once it's been raised to 6 unless a specific skill can be raised to 7. IE to be able to buy specialties for all the skills in a group you'd have to buy the group to level 5, break the group by raising individual skills to 6 and then you could apply specialties. (Or buy a group to 6, buy an aptitude skill to 7 and then apply specialties)
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PostSubject: Re: How to use skill groups at character creation   Tue Jul 20, 2010 9:22 am

Actually to better answer your question, here's the official ruling right out of the SR4 FAQ:

When can you break up a skill group into its component skills? Can you break it up during character creation? Can I break apart a skill group in order to buy a specialization for one of the skills?

At character creation, skill groups may not be broken up into individual skills for further improvement. Specializations may not be taken for skill group skills at character creation.

After character creation, you can break apart a skill group whenever you want. Any time you improve a single skill within a skill group, including taking a specialization for a skill in that group, th
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PostSubject: Re: How to use skill groups at character creation   Tue Jul 20, 2010 9:27 am

Ah very nice, thanks for the answer. Must have missed it taking a look at the faq myself.
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