Proficiencies Feedback (v16)

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Undercrypt
Adventurer Conqueror King BackerPlayer's Companion ContributorDwimmermount BackerDomains At War ContributorSinister Stone of Sakkara BackerLairs And Encounters Backer
Joined: 2011-07-21 00:40
Proficiencies Feedback (v16)

My fondness for the ACKS proficiencies is exceeded only by my desperate need to see them organized.
There are a lot of fascinating things built into and implied by the proficiency lists. Some of them are clever and I love them. Some of them look like mistakes that seemed like a good idea at the time. Some of them just make me go, "Huh?" Almost all of those fascinating things are extremely hard to figure out without making some kind of chart tracking who can do what.
So, I made a chart. If anyone's interested, I can drop the spreadsheet somewhere accessible.
First off, I really like what the system is doing and how it's going about it. Special ability packages make it easier to design classes and build interesting, original characters.
When I looked at the lists, I was initially confused by General skills versus Class skills, because some of the General skills appear on the class lists. Once I understood how that expands the level-based class skill choices, it made more sense, but I still think the names lend toward some confusion, especially in how they're defined. Some kind of categorization beyond "general proficiencies" and "everything else" would help a great deal, I think, and some of it's already lurking there behind the lists.
Basing class proficiencies on attack bonus makes me wonder if the mage's assumed INT bonus is intended to offset that.
Bard is missing from the Proficiencies Gained table.
General vs Class: "General proficiencies, which represent trade skills and common training that is widely available; and class proficiencies, which represent specialized training only available to particular character classes." That description makes sense, but there are some proficiencies that seem to go against that thinking. For example...
On the General side, Collegiate Wizardry and Theology seem very class-specific, but they seem to function exactly like categories of Knowledge (and theology is specifically mentioned as a category in the Knowledge description)... do they really need to be separate proficiencies? Adding Knowledge (Wizardry) to the Mage and Knowledge (Theology) to the Priest/Craft-Priest class lists would help trim down the list a bit, and Knowledge is already on the General list, so access doesn't change. That would also clear up what seems to be a minor oversight where Collegiate Wizardry doesn't specify it can be selected multiple times.
Similarly, Acting appears on the General list, but isn't referenced anywhere - it turns into Performance (Acting) for the Thief and Assassin, which makes sense.
Magical Engineering (which could have a more intuitive name as it's unrelated to the Engineering proficiency) appears on the class lists of the primary item creators - Mage, Cleric, Craft-Priest - which seems appropriate for specialized knowledge of magic items. Having it as a General proficiency where any 18-year-old bricklayer can acquire a 50/50 chance to mystically intuit the properties of common magic items makes me wonder, especially when...
Running is a Class proficiency. A Class proficiency with a cruel streak, available to everyone except the divine spellcasters (presumably in heavy armor, but also denied to the otherwise athletic Bladedancer), Dwarven Fighters (presumably in heavy armor, short legs), and Mages (presumably unathletic). I'm guessing excluding Bladedancers from the list is a leftover from their heavy armor design, which means the only meaningful exclusion is Mages - the one class that really wants to avoid being in melee range.
Racial Proficiencies: They're there, they're just not obvious.

Brewing is dwarf-only and awesome, but the basic name makes it look like a regular profession that belongs in the General list - maybe call it out as Dwarven Brewing, or Ancestral Brewing, or Secrets of the Stone Keg, or... something?
Caving looks like a dwarf-only proficiency that got shared with Explorers.
Goblin-Slaying is dwarf-only and awesome, but no dwarf can get the +3 bonus because of the level caps. Alas.
Passing Without Trace looks like an elf-only proficiency that got shared with Explorers (sensibly enough).
Wakefulness is elf-only and awesome.

That's excellent, colorful stuff - I think calling it out as such would add to the flavor of the game (and be useful to future class designers). These also feel like they'd fit as General proficiencies if they were still restricted by race.
Some sort of classification system might be useful to make the long list easier to digest, even if there's no mechanical reason behind it.
Thoughts on specific proficiencies...
Apostasy: Apparently craft-priests don't have apostates. Or there is no knowledge forbidden to them. Interesting.
Ancestral Magic: Lifespan is three times longer than normal for race, but only humans (Mage, Bard) have access to it. *cough*halfelf*cough* Very nice and wizardly, even if it means using one of those precious Class proficiencies. If Racial proficiencies were General and restricted by race rather than on class lists, this would be a good candidate for a Human Racial.
Black Lore of Zahar: Winner of the Best Proficiency Name contest and full of awesome. (I'm biased.) I haven't dug through Spells yet, but from what I've glanced at, a Nature version of this might make sense.
Climbing: Only for Explorers, kind of surprised it's not an option for Assassins as well.
Combat Trickery: The five proficiencies pretending to be one. Only two classes don't get this: the Craft-Priest (who gets Fighting Style and Weapon Focus - an oversight?) and the Mage (who doesn't care). All of the class lists with Combat Trickery specify which maneuvers they're limited to - some get two, some get three, some get five. I think this might be easier to follow if each choice was a separate proficiency called out as a special maneuver. Alternatively, it could be split into two groups - Combat Power (Force Back, Overrun, Sunder) and Combat Trickery (Disarm, Trip) since that's how they're split up to the various classes.
Construction: Mini-engineering for the Fighters and Explorers (and Dwarves) class lists, with full Engineering for the Mages and (cleverer) Dwarves lists. Nice variations.
Contemplation: Only for the divine spellcasters. A nice "one more healing spell" post-combat option.
Disguise: On the list for Assassins and Bards, surprised it's not on the Thief list.
Dungeon Bashing: Second Best Proficiency Name. Appropriately limited to Fighter/Dwarven Fighter.
Engineering: The only specialist that requires four levels rather than three.
Familiar: That's... powerful. Effectively doubling the Mage's functional proficiency choices, but with most of the Mage class list centered on spellcasting (which it doesn't look like familiars do), and the familiar's proficiencies not applying directly to the Mage (nothing says they should), most of the viable options are knowledge, languages, odd things like Beast Friendship... exactly the sort of thing you night expect from a familiar. Aside from the occasional toad alchemist, of course. I don't see anything about replacing a familiar that's died short of Restore Life and Limb, so I'd expect familiars to be kept safely out of battle. Brilliant.
Fighting Style: Everyone except Mages, unsurprisingly.
Gambling: Only the Bard has both Gambling and Prestidigitation on the class list. Don't bet against the Bard.
Healing: With three levels, you might expect there to be a healing specialist who could generate income. That's got to be useful to the town.
Illusion Resistance: Only Mages and Dwarves. It could use a richer "Dungeon Bashing"-like name, like Grim Reality or Piercing Gaze or somesuch.
Land Surveying: Only Explorers and Dwarven Fighters, a little surprised it's also not on the Craft-Priest list as it seems very Dwarven. The +2 to Caving and Mapping looks like the only cross-proficiency bonus - I wonder if there should be more of those. It also seems like something every Engineer would want access to.
Language: Only on the class list for the Mage.
Locksmithing: Class list only for Thief, Assassin and Nghtblade, implying no Locksmith in the world should be trusted.
Loremastery: There's very nice interplay between between this and the Collegiate Wizardry/Theology/Knowledge proficiencies, with Loremastery filling in the gaps but only improving through experience.
Magical Music: Class list only for Bard (who starts with it), Bladedancer (dancer and music, makes sense), and... Spellsword? What are Spellswords doing with this? If it's an Elf thing, why don't Nightblades get it? Neither of the elves have the prerequisite Perform on the Class list. Odd.
Mimicry: Only Assassin and Bard class lists. Apparently the elves aren't into that.
Mystic Aura: Mage, Bard, and the elves. Presumably stacks with Intimidation and the Bard parley bonus. This might need clarification if it's not intended to be a dungeon tool (e.g., the bard walks into the bandit lair threateningly and charms the lot of the them). Very fun.
Naturalism: Edible and poison pools?
Performance: Bard and Bladedancer class lists make sense, Thief and Assassin limited to Acting for their nefarious works, but why is this on the Mage class list?
Profession: Cleric and Craft-Priest judges, but only the Mage has the all-purpose Profession on the Class list. That makes for an undertone of mage-lawyers, mage-scribes, mage-librarians... fascinating.
Prophecy & Soothsaying: I like the contrast between the Divine (friendly) and the Arcane (unfriendly) information source.
Quiet Magic: Full gagging would presumably include magical silence. It might be nice if the name suggested the gesture reduction as well... Subtle Magic, maybe? I see possibilities here for casting spells in public without being noticed.
Sensing Evil: I like the definition of Evil as nonmatching alignment.
Sensing Power: Mage, Cleric, Elves. Looks to be focused on Arcane magic so the Cleric looks out of place, but I guess the gods know what happened.
Survival: The foraging companion to Hunting. I wonder why it's not just called Foraging.
Tracking: Surprisingly not on the Explorer's (or anyone's) Class list.
Unflappable Casting: Eh. Unflappable Failing to Cast at best. I suppose a proficiency throw to cast despite damage would be too much.
Weapon Focus: Everyone except the Mage, who shouldn't be hitting things with a stick regardless.

Tavis
Joined: 2011-07-01 15:40

I love spreadsheets! You can always mail it to me at tavis@archon.co - but better still might be to upload it as a Google document and share the link here. (It's probably best to make it a public document for now rather than invite everyone one by one.)

Alex
The Autarch
Joined: 2011-06-30 18:10

So, I made a chart. If anyone's interested, I can drop the spreadsheet somewhere accessible.
ALEX: Please send the chart to alex@autarch.co, yes!
First off, I really like what the system is doing and how it's going about it. Special ability packages make it easier to design classes and build interesting, original characters.
ALEX: Thanks!
When I looked at the lists, I was initially confused by General skills versus Class skills, because some of the General skills appear on the class lists. Once I understood how that expands the level-based class skill choices, it made more sense, but I still think the names lend toward some confusion, especially in how they're defined. Some kind of categorization beyond "general proficiencies" and "everything else" would help a great deal, I think, and some of it's already lurking there behind the lists.
ALEX: Do you have a suggestion? I’m wide open to ideas as to how to better present this information, as you’re not the only person who has initially found it counter-intuitive.
Basing class proficiencies on attack bonus makes me wonder if the mage's assumed INT bonus is intended to offset that.
ALEX: Hmmm. A fair amount of thought went in to how we did this. I shall now throw back the curtains, etc. We wanted to have a system that met the following criteria: (1) If you didn’t want to use the proficiency system, but wanted to play ACKS, the classes would still be balanced. (2) If you didn’t want to use the proficiency system, but wanted to be able to use our custom class creation system (coming soon) then the system would still be balanced. That meant that the progression had to be based on something that all classes had. I chose the saving throw progression. The reason its based on saving throw progression is that in the custom class builder we use to create the classes, your saving throws are determined by where you spend the weight of your points. It avoids clever jiggering to create a mage with lots of proficiencies. It also means that if someone doesn’t want to use our proficiency system, the characters are still traditionally balanced against each other without it. Then giving bonus proficiencies for INT helps tip it back towards mages a bit (who have the worst saves) and also makes good sense.
Bard is missing from the Proficiencies Gained table.
ALEX: I assure you it has nothing do with my derision and disgust with Bards. I’ll add it back in…
General vs Class: "General proficiencies, which represent trade skills and common training that is widely available; and class proficiencies, which represent specialized training only available to particular character classes." That description makes sense, but there are some proficiencies that seem to go against that thinking. For example...
On the General side, Collegiate Wizardry and Theology seem very class-specific, but they seem to function exactly like categories of Knowledge (and theology is specifically mentioned as a category in the Knowledge description)... do they really need to be separate proficiencies? Adding Knowledge (Wizardry) to the Mage and Knowledge (Theology) to the Priest/Craft-Priest class lists would help trim down the list a bit, and Knowledge is already on the General list, so access doesn't change. That would also clear up what seems to be a minor oversight where Collegiate Wizardry doesn't specify it can be selected multiple times.
ALEX: Collegiate Wizardry and Theology were initially class proficiencies. However, no one wanted to spend a class proficiency on them! I shifted them over to general proficiencies to make it easier to choose them. I also figured that there were common archetypes (the fallen priest turned mage, the failed wizard’s apprentice turned thief) such that it was justified to make them widely available. The reason I didn’t make them generic Knowledge proficiencies is that I wanted them to have a specifically defined scope. My concern was that Knowledge (Wizardry) might be arguably used to overlap with Magical Engineering, Loremaster, etc.
Similarly, Acting appears on the General list, but isn't referenced anywhere - it turns into Performance (Acting) for the Thief and Assassin, which makes sense.
ALEX: That’s an error. It used to be a separate proficiency and I rolled it into Performance. Thanks for catching the mistake!
Magical Engineering (which could have a more intuitive name as it's unrelated to the Engineering proficiency) appears on the class lists of the primary item creators - Mage, Cleric, Craft-Priest - which seems appropriate for specialized knowledge of magic items. Having it as a General proficiency where any 18-year-old bricklayer can acquire a 50/50 chance to mystically intuit the properties of common magic items makes me wonder, especially when...
ALEX: The reason it’s a general proficiency is that Sages (0-level NPCs) can take it. But perhaps the better rule would be to allow 0-level NPCs to draw from one character class’s class proficiencies then to make such proficiencies into general proficiencies. As far as a name change, how about Magical Artificing.
Running is a Class proficiency. A Class proficiency with a cruel streak, available to everyone except the divine spellcasters (presumably in heavy armor, but also denied to the otherwise athletic Bladedancer), Dwarven Fighters (presumably in heavy armor, short legs), and Mages (presumably unathletic). I'm guessing excluding Bladedancers from the list is a leftover from their heavy armor design, which means the only meaningful exclusion is Mages - the one class that really wants to avoid being in melee range.
ALEX: Proficiencies which alter game mechanics are not supposed to be general proficiencies, for the most part. Bladedancers were not included because of the heavy armor, and also because each class only gets a certain amount of class proficiencies on their list. (There’s a formula!)
Racial Proficiencies: They're there, they're just not obvious.
Brewing is dwarf-only and awesome, but the basic name makes it look like a regular profession that belongs in the General list - maybe call it out as Dwarven Brewing, or Ancestral Brewing, or Secrets of the Stone Keg, or... something?
ALEX: Great point.
Caving looks like a dwarf-only proficiency that got shared with Explorers.
ALEX: Well, yes.
Goblin-Slaying is dwarf-only and awesome, but no dwarf can get the +3 bonus because of the level caps. Alas.
ALEX: OOPS! I need to fix that.
Passing Without Trace looks like an elf-only proficiency that got shared with Explorers (sensibly enough).
ALEX: Yes
Wakefulness is elf-only and awesome.
ALEX: Thanks!
Apostasy: Apparently craft-priests don't have apostates. Or there is no knowledge forbidden to them. Interesting.
ALEX: As noted above, there’s a limit to how many proficiencies each class gets. So, yes, I thought apostasy was less likely for craft-priests compared to human priests…
Ancestral Magic: Lifespan is three times longer than normal for race, but only humans (Mage, Bard) have access to it. *cough*halfelf*cough* Very nice and wizardly, even if it means using one of those precious Class proficiencies. If Racial proficiencies were General and restricted by race rather than on class lists, this would be a good candidate for a Human Racial.
ALEX: I’m not sure if I like the fact you’ve invented Racial Proficiencies! :P
Black Lore of Zahar: Winner of the Best Proficiency Name contest and full of awesome. (I'm biased.) I haven't dug through Spells yet, but from what I've glanced at, a Nature version of this might make sense.
ALEX: Woot.
Climbing: Only for Explorers, kind of surprised it's not an option for Assassins as well.
ALEX: Good point. I’ll take a second look.
Combat Trickery: The five proficiencies pretending to be one. Only two classes don't get this: the Craft-Priest (who gets Fighting Style and Weapon Focus - an oversight?) and the Mage (who doesn't care). All of the class lists with Combat Trickery specify which maneuvers they're limited to - some get two, some get three, some get five. I think this might be easier to follow if each choice was a separate proficiency called out as a special maneuver. Alternatively, it could be split into two groups - Combat Power (Force Back, Overrun, Sunder) and Combat Trickery (Disarm, Trip) since that's how they're split up to the various classes.
ALEX: They originally were all separate maneuvers, but since the game mechanics worked exactly the same, I consolidated them. It was incredibly repetitious.
Construction: Mini-engineering for the Fighters and Explorers (and Dwarves) class lists, with full Engineering for the Mages and (cleverer) Dwarves lists. Nice variations.
ALEX: Thanks
Contemplation: Only for the divine spellcasters. A nice "one more healing spell" post-combat option.
ALEX: Exactly
Disguise: On the list for Assassins and Bards, surprised it's not on the Thief list.
ALEX: I’ll double check whether that was an oversight or because I ran out of Thief proficiencies.
Dungeon Bashing: Second Best Proficiency Name. Appropriately limited to Fighter/Dwarven Fighter.
ALEX: Woot.
Engineering: The only specialist that requires four levels rather than three.
ALEX: Dude, it’s WAY easier to get a liberal arts degree than an engineering degree. I say this as someone who went to Law School.
Familiar: That's... powerful. Effectively doubling the Mage's functional proficiency choices, but with most of the Mage class list centered on spellcasting (which it doesn't look like familiars do), and the familiar's proficiencies not applying directly to the Mage (nothing says they should), most of the viable options are knowledge, languages, odd things like Beast Friendship... exactly the sort of thing you night expect from a familiar. Aside from the occasional toad alchemist, of course. I don't see anything about replacing a familiar that's died short of Restore Life and Limb, so I'd expect familiars to be kept safely out of battle. Brilliant.
ALEX: Thanks!
Fighting Style: Everyone except Mages, unsurprisingly.
ALEX: Right
Gambling: Only the Bard has both Gambling and Prestidigitation on the class list. Don't bet against the Bard.
ALEX: Right
Healing: With three levels, you might expect there to be a healing specialist who could generate income. That's got to be useful to the town.
ALEX: Good point.
Illusion Resistance: Only Mages and Dwarves. It could use a richer "Dungeon Bashing"-like name, like Grim Reality or Piercing Gaze or somesuch.
ALEX: I could call it Cynicism or Realism.
Land Surveying: Only Explorers and Dwarven Fighters, a little surprised it's also not on the Craft-Priest list as it seems very Dwarven. The +2 to Caving and Mapping looks like the only cross-proficiency bonus - I wonder if there should be more of those. It also seems like something every Engineer would want access to.
ALEX: I may have just run out of Proficiencies for the Craftpriest.
Language: Only on the class list for the Mage.
ALEX: Right
Locksmithing: Class list only for Thief, Assassin and Nghtblade, implying no Locksmith in the world should be trusted.
ALEX: Probably it needs a new name, like Lockpicking.
Loremastery: There's very nice interplay between between this and the Collegiate Wizardry/Theology/Knowledge proficiencies, with Loremastery filling in the gaps but only improving through experience.
ALEX: Exactly! You’ve made my day by noticing this.
Magical Music: Class list only for Bard (who starts with it), Bladedancer (dancer and music, makes sense), and... Spellsword? What are Spellswords doing with this? If it's an Elf thing, why don't Nightblades get it? Neither of the elves have the prerequisite Perform on the Class list. Odd.
ALEX: Spellswords have it because of the long tradition of elves weaving magic through their songs. Nightblades don’t have it because the total number of proficiencies for each list is limited, and I couldn’t imagine a sinister Nightblade singing a song. Perform isn’t on the class list for the same reason.
Mimicry: Only Assassin and Bard class lists. Apparently the elves aren't into that.
ALEX: No.
Mystic Aura: Mage, Bard, and the elves. Presumably stacks with Intimidation and the Bard parley bonus. This might need clarification if it's not intended to be a dungeon tool (e.g., the bard walks into the bandit lair threateningly and charms the lot of the them). Very fun.
ALEX: It is intended to have effect like that, yes.
Naturalism: Edible and poison pools?
ALEX: I don’t follow what you mean
Performance: Bard and Bladedancer class lists make sense, Thief and Assassin limited to Acting for their nefarious works, but why is this on the Mage class list?
ALEX: Some mage character concepts seemed like they needed it. I was thinking of the sort of mages you see in Game of Thrones, who use mummery and dramatic acting to enhance their status. Or a Viking mage who might chant poetry, etc.
Profession: Cleric and Craft-Priest judges, but only the Mage has the all-purpose Profession on the Class list. That makes for an undertone of mage-lawyers, mage-scribes, mage-librarians... fascinating.
ALEX: They’re good at book-learning!
Prophecy & Soothsaying: I like the contrast between the Divine (friendly) and the Arcane (unfriendly) information source.
ALEX: Thanks!
Quiet Magic: Full gagging would presumably include magical silence. It might be nice if the name suggested the gesture reduction as well... Subtle Magic, maybe? I see possibilities here for casting spells in public without being noticed.
ALEX: I didn’t want to offer both in the same proficiency, as that would be over-powered.
Sensing Evil: I like the definition of Evil as nonmatching alignment.
ALEX: That flows throughout the book. Detect Evil is the same way.
Sensing Power: Mage, Cleric, Elves. Looks to be focused on Arcane magic so the Cleric looks out of place, but I guess the gods know what happened.
ALEX: The gods know what’s up, yes.
Survival: The foraging companion to Hunting. I wonder why it's not just called Foraging.
ALEX: Um…. Good point.
Tracking: Surprisingly not on the Explorer's (or anyone's) Class list.
ALEX: That’s almost certainly an oversight.
Unflappable Casting: Eh. Unflappable Failing to Cast at best. I suppose a proficiency throw to cast despite damage would be too much.
ALEX: A surprisingly useful proficiency if you have a Wand!
Weapon Focus: Everyone except the Mage, who shouldn't be hitting things with a stick regardless.
ALEX: Right

Undercrypt
Adventurer Conqueror King BackerPlayer's Companion ContributorDwimmermount BackerDomains At War ContributorSinister Stone of Sakkara BackerLairs And Encounters Backer
Joined: 2011-07-21 00:40

First time with Google Docs, so hopefully this works:
https://spreadsheets.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AlFJwHeFC6pjdENoc2p...

Alex
The Autarch
Joined: 2011-06-30 18:10

UPDATE: Undercrypt, thanks again for your review. You prompted me to go back through the entire proficiency list and I found several more errors.
First, some game mechanics:
1. Each class gets a class proficiency list that has (42-maximum level) proficiencies in it. For instance, fighter (14th level) has 28 class proficiencies. Elven Spellsword (10th level) has 32 class proficiencies. (Level caps are in place for classes that are more generalized, but this generalization opens up a wider variety of proficiencies.)
2. If access to Profession and Performance is limited to one field, such as Performance (acting), then it counts as 1/2 proficiency.
With that in mind, I noticed that there were several errors, in particular among Assassins (28.5 proficiencies), Bard (27), Bladedancers (27), Clerics (27.5), Dwarven Craftpriests (31.5), Dwarven Vaultguards (a big oops here), Thieves (27.5), and Exploreres (29).
Assassins, Bards, and Thieves - The error occurred about v7 when I changed Acting to Performance (acting) but didn't account for the change to proficiency totals. And I can't add.
Bladedancers & Explorers - I just can't add.
Clerics & Craftpriests - The error occurred about v7 when I changed Judge to profession (judge) but didn't account for the change to proficiency totals.
I've used this as an opportunity to fix some stuff...
Assassins: I eliminated Seafaring, Diplomacy, and Locksmithing. I added Eavesdropping, Climbing, and Profession (undertaker). This puts the assassin at 28, with a more appropriate selection IMO.
Bard: Added Languages.
Bladedancer: Added Running. Now at 28.
Craftpriest: Added Performance (chanting).
Explorer: Removed Caving, per your advice. Now at 28.
Thief: Added Profession (merchant). Now at 28.
As for the Dwarven Vaultguard... Well, would you believe that by our character creation rules, he should have a level 13 level cap? He's messed up since he's at level 12. I'll have to slightly revise the class.

Undercrypt
Adventurer Conqueror King BackerPlayer's Companion ContributorDwimmermount BackerDomains At War ContributorSinister Stone of Sakkara BackerLairs And Encounters Backer
Joined: 2011-07-21 00:40

I'll ponder organizational schemes.
I shall now throw back the curtains, etc.
Ahhhh. Knowing that the number of proficiencies on the class list is determined through other parts of the character design explains a lot of the seeming oddities.
Collegiate Wizardry and Theology were initially class proficiencies. However, no one wanted to spend a class proficiency on them! I shifted them over to general proficiencies to make it easier to choose them. I also figured that there were common archetypes (the fallen priest turned mage, the failed wizard’s apprentice turned thief) such that it was justified to make them widely available. The reason I didn’t make them generic Knowledge proficiencies is that I wanted them to have a specifically defined scope.
That makes a lot of sense. Could Collegiate Wizardry be opened up to multiple ranks for the -4 prof. throw bonus like Theology?
The reason it’s a general proficiency is that Sages (0-level NPCs) can take it. But perhaps the better rule would be to allow 0-level NPCs to draw from one character class’s class proficiencies then to make such proficiencies into general proficiencies. As far as a name change, how about Magical Artificing.
Opening up class lists to 0-levels sounds like a path to madness. Magical Artificing still has that "I'm making things" connotation. Artificing Lore, maybe? Now that I stop to think about it, it's kind of odd that after 30+ years we don't have a specific word that means "non-unique magic item."
Proficiencies which alter game mechanics are not supposed to be general proficiencies, for the most part.
Makes sense. My real problem with Running is the name, I think. If it was called Armor Mobility or Adrenaline Rush or Armored Sprinting or something I don't think I would have blinked.
I’m not sure if I like the fact you’ve invented Racial Proficiencies!
I'm just the messenger, I didn't put them there. :)
Disguise: On the list for Assassins and Bards, surprised it's not on the Thief list.
ALEX: I’ll double check whether that was an oversight or because I ran out of Thief proficiencies.
I'm getting the impression that the Thief doesn't include the more social/confidence artist side of things, leaving that to the Assassin and Bard. Much more pulpy that way.
Dude, it’s WAY easier to get a liberal arts degree than an engineering degree.
Heh. No doubt. It's also the only profession that looks like it doesn't have a cap, with each rank increasing the project gp ceiling.
I could call it Cynicism or Realism.
Cynical Realism?
Naturalism: Edible and poison pools?
ALEX: I don’t follow what you mean
Exactly. "The character is familiar with edible and poison pools, healing herbs, and signs of unnatural danger..."
Some mage character concepts seemed like they needed it. I was thinking of the sort of mages you see in Game of Thrones, who use mummery and dramatic acting to enhance their status. Or a Viking mage who might chant poetry, etc.
Ceremonial magic. Of course. I really should have caught that.
I didn’t want to offer both in the same proficiency, as that would be over-powered.
It kind of looks like that's what Quiet Magic does, though, with the "minimal words and gestures" bit. I guess I'm not quite sure what situation this is intended to remedy if it's not a Silent Spell or Still Spell equivalent.
A surprisingly useful proficiency if you have a Wand!
Wands are for the weak. And, um, the better prepared. Yeah.

Undercrypt
Adventurer Conqueror King BackerPlayer's Companion ContributorDwimmermount BackerDomains At War ContributorSinister Stone of Sakkara BackerLairs And Encounters Backer
Joined: 2011-07-21 00:40

I've used this as an opportunity to fix some stuff...
Updated the linked spreadsheet with the changes mentioned.
I could call it Cynicism or Realism.
Cynical Gaze?
Here's a relatively simple tweak to clear up top-level organizational confusion. The main thing I found confusing was (a) there are General proficiencies, (b) there are Class proficiencies, and (c) there are Class lists that include both General and Class proficiencies. So...
There are two types of proficiencies: General proficiencies, which represent trade skills and common training that is widely available; and Specialized proficiencies, which represent unusual training and closely guarded secrets only available to particular character classes. Each class has a list of General and Specialized proficiencies available for advanced study and training, and these Class proficiencies form a character's areas of expertise.
It would still be nice to see the proficiencies sorted - or maybe tagged is a better word - as Melee, Arcane, Divine, Racial, etc., but that's probably unnecessary fluff. I'll try to keep the inner taxonomist in check.

Alex
The Autarch
Joined: 2011-06-30 18:10

Undercrypt, I'm stealing that language immediately. That's very helpful.
EDIT: Actually, I'm abandoning the idea of different "types" of proficiencies entirely. Instead I'm going to use the idea of different "lists" of proficiencies. You choose from different "buckets" at different times. That is actually more intuitive and closer to the underlying mechanic.
***
Proficiencies represent particular areas of expertise that your character has developed due to his background, homeland, and training. Each class has a class list of proficiencies, representing training that is particularly useful to the particular profession. In addition, there is a general list of proficiencies, which represent trade skills and knowledge that is widely available to all. Characters will learn proficiencies from both lists over time.
All characters begin with the Adventuring proficiency as well as one proficiency chosen from their class list and one proficiency chosen from the general list...
Note that some proficiencies appear on both the general list and the class lists. For example, Performance appears on both the general list and the Bard class list. This is because Performance is both a common trade skill (general list) and training that is useful to bards (class list).

Alex
The Autarch
Joined: 2011-06-30 18:10

Naturalism (G): The character is knowledgeable of common plant and animal life forms in the terrain of his homeland. The character is familiar with edible and poison plants, healing herbs, and signs of unnatural danger (such as unusual quiet, atypical animal behavior, etc.) in his known terrain with a proficiency throw of 11+. This proficiency can be selected multiple times.
Pools==foods!