I've probably said this before, but "Intelligence" as a concept bothers me. Never mind how problematic the real-world definition is; in an RPG it can be frustrating to play with one lobe of your brain tied behind your back, and even more frustrating to pretend you're smarter than you are. Part of the problem may be the name; other games use Cunning, Reason, Wits, Knowledge, or Learning, and yet others split the functions of INT among two or three other attributes like Magical Aptitude, Technical Aptitude, and Perception.
Since BRP already has EDU (in modern and future games, at least), I prefer to think of INT as memory, presence of mind, and/or quick thinking under pressure. Like Charisma or social skills, INT represents the difference between being a certain kind of person in the situation and being a player sitting at a table. An Idea roll to think of something represents having lived an entire life continuously in an imaginary world, not being a modern gamer who only becomes this person for one session every week or two. Under this interpretation, a person with INT 8 might be a deep thinker but slow to react and not very studious, while a person with INT 16 may or may not be "smart" but easily notices, memorizes, and (unfortunately in a Lovecraftian universe) correlates the contents of his mind.
Last edited by fmitchell; February 11th, 2014 at 00:59.
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