Started by JackTheOwner, July 05, 2010, 08:08:13 AM
QuoteLet's see... I remember thinking about this when writing those Abilitylists, I had some logic that went into it...Ah, yes - as I write in the front matter, in the part that discusses thegeneral Ability lists, shooting things is not a standard method ofconflict resolution in Near. You can throw rocks and such with Sports (V)when that's deemed useful, but having a bow and using it is not sufficientin resolving conflicts by itself. Note that this doesn't mean that it'snot useful - you can cause circumstance penalties or such with a bow evenif you don't have an Ability for it yourself, for instance. You can also shoot a bow with a hunting Ability, especially whenyou're hunting and not part of some bow-wielding infantry unit orsuch. The important point is that while bows might exist, be knownand used occasionally, the "cultural genre" of these nations does notexpect conflicts be get resolved by the bow alone - it's not apotential "venue of conflict" as I say in the book.Looking at individual cultures, while most of those will probably knowwhat a bow is and might even use them now and then, they don't reallyusually consider the bow an important part of either identity or conflict,and therefore we don't either - you can shoot your bow all day long, butthe fight will come down to the melee anyway as far as the Maldoriteinfantry captain is concerned. There are cultures where the bow is part of the "cultural narrative",most prominently the Oranides from the 5th movement: for thosearchery is one of the manly skills, and it is therefore practicedpurposefully - for the Oranides archery is important enough for us towaste character sheet space (and mental space) on it as well, youmight say. The Maldorite fight will never be resolved by the archer'sskirmish, while a similar battle in Orania most definitely would; theMaldorite swashbuckler won't free his friends from captivity with atrick shot, while the Oranide could.I'm personally comfortable handling archery like this in my play becauseof the theoretical approach I take on Abilities, treating them aspotential venues of conflict and so on. I see no contradiction in the factthat a Maldorite campaign will see bows being used as little more than theoccasional skirmish weapon and hunting tool that creates circumstancepenalties, while an Oranide campaign will dedicate an either Ability tothe matter. If a campaign involves both Oranides and other peoples, thesituation is clear-cut enough: the Oranide character has the culturalfocus on archery to make it a crucial turning point in conflicts, whileothers do not. If somebody really wants to try to resolve things witharchery without ever having practiced it as a discipline, feel free tomake the check at 0 level of Ability.Also, because I recognize that not everybody will agree with me about thespecific importance of archery for Maldor, Ammeni, Khale and other suchplaces, there's no reason not to add it to a campaign. By putting itbehind a Secret wall you can keep it the mysterious and prestigiousexceptional discipline I imagine myself:Secret of the BowThe character comes from subculture among his nation that uses the bowregularly - backwoods Maldorites, swamp-dwelling Zaru hermits or such. Hehas the Ability Archery (I) at Mediocre (0) and can improve it normally.The character also gains a bonus die to trick shots and shootingcompetitions with the bow.Actually, I can totally get behind that approach. It's not been an issuein our play so far, but if somebody wants to play a bow-wielding Maldoritepeasant, that would be my play.