World War Cthulhu
Saw this at Dragonmeet yesterday, a very nice looking book indeed. Grabbed it and have been perusing it. I've noticed considerable skill level creep in these modern iterations of the venerable BRP/CoC Mythos game. The Laundry uses a system that gives around 650 points to a character compared to 6e CoC 410 and BRP from the BGB 4e 350. WWC uses a more developed system similar to Laundry but pushes the skill points total to around 1100!
I thought of Legend's 500 skill points giving character skilled enough to succeed but twice that may be going over the top. Sure we don't have the Feats and things that the other games do but still there's going to be a lot of analysis paralysis where some players are concerned.
What do people think? A good thing, a bad thing or just a normal evolution of the game system when dealing with the modern age?
Cthulhu Rising uses around 450 skillpoints and seems to do Sci Fi very well indeed.
I wonder if it's a reaction to GM's making characters roll for things where someone might reasonably be supposed to know that and it's rolling for the sake of rolling. The advice is for skill levels where someone is at a professional level is let it go unless it's dramatic. If too many players are forced to roll for non-dramatic cases is the pressure on to make characters more skilled? Most BRP games don't only give skill improvements now only for those skills actually used so that isn't a possible reason for forcing skill tests.
I interpret the point total as speaking to the tone of the game. With 1100 point characters I am envisioning super heroic characters capable of doing the impossible. But the important piece missing is the cap on how high they can purchase skills. If they are envisioning a world where everyone is making several attacks with above normal difficulty with multiple weapons, speaking several languages fluently, James Bond type cinematic heroes where they can go toe-to-toe with a minion of Cthulhu the point total may not be unreasonable. Players may be expected to niche out their characters by dumping 85+ points into 13 or less skills to be competent.
To the point of point creep, the best answer I can give you is 'maybe'.
My default assumption on whether or not a skill check is A) required and/or B) worthy of a possible skill upgrade is this; "If there is nothing at stake, there is no consequence for failure, or the players can take all of the time they need to succeed; they the answer is 'yes you can do it', but you get no skill check. The moment there is conflict, legitimate consequences for failure, or pressure to complete a task within a shorter than reasonable time frame, then roll the dice."
So you would never need to roll a Drive: Automobile roll in my game until you get into a car chase. I tend to even assume that even on icy conditions you can make it where you are going without need for a roll. Sure some people go off the road, but that in my mind would be more Luck roll than a Driving test. Now, a more involved way I would handle that would be if the characters are driving to a location on icy roads and there would be consequences for not arriving on time/being overtaken by something it would be at that point I would initiate a Luck roll to see if they make it safely. If they fail their Luck roll and get stuck, I would then allow a Drive: Automobile roll to see if they could get themselves back on the road but again ONLY if them being in a ditch would impact the outcome of an event.
But that is just me.