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Talking about Gaming the Irish Way!

Sep 4, 2019

Episode 556

This week's hosts: Shane, Eoin, and Savage

This week the party sit down to talk about RPG skill systems. Whether you spend your points or eke out an extra percentage almost every system tackles the measure of aptitude and learning in similar ways. What are we carrying forward as learned behaviours and when should we retrain our thinking on skill systems? Let's find out.

Show notes:

It's your boy Savage back on the show this week and writing these notes too! I think it's fair to say that the timestamps are a rough guide rather than exact locations.

07:45 - Basketweaving. Why? Does anyone know? We'd love to find out but we can't trust the internet so send us your best conspiracy theories.

08:30 - Diplomancy - The dark art of converting fidget-spinning into a great trade-deal.

09:45 - GAME BREAKERS!!! (See previous episodes here and here)

10:40 - Where will we put everything that isn't hitting and shooting things? In the bag of holding that is the skill list. We should stop doing this.

13:45 - Vision/sensory-based skills. If we are doing these why not stick in walking and chewing gum as well?

14:45 - Skill systems feel like they are stuck in a time warp. Are we missing some crazy cool innovations in skill systems? Let us know.

16:40 - Being whimsical with your skill points. Shouldn't mention that time I took ship navigation during a WW2 game in the Russian interior...

17:15 - Percentage based skill systems in non-Euclidian space.

18:00 - Always learning the right way.

19:00 - Skill Granularity. How many ways might I jump this gap?

20:00 - The land-locked surfer. Why do characters ever find out they are randomly good at something?

21:15 - Ask me how I got these points in Animal Husbandry...

22:00 - Issikay - Magical adventures in learning on the job.

22:45 - DnD Cartoon credit roll here

23:30 - Skill Silos and class buckets no one else dips into.

24:30 - All or nothing skill proficiency

25:45 - The Pot Pourri of skill specialisations.

27:00 - I'm only the best gun-slinger in the world when I have this specific gun but thankfully it just happens to be on my equipment list. Fancy that?!

29:30 - Old WoD for all its faults has a great build-a-pool skill system allowing the player to come up with novel combinations of attributes and skills.

30:45 - Highlander II RPG has a 'Jump to Another World' skill. Look it up. True fact.

31:30 - Best and Worst section. Expect to see more of this sort of thing. Why yes, I am a hack fraud.

34:15 - He who holds Field-craft can build an empire of dirt.

35:15 - The FATE skill pyramid. One of those places where the skill/combat system overlap reveals it's limits.

36:30 - WHFRP - I'm wearing the wrong sort of shoes for sneaking over this sort of carpet. But it's really 50/50...

37:15 - Don't get me started on Monopoly...

38:00 - Even demi-gods of battle need some hobbies.

38:45 - The early Horus Heresy books went to some lengths to point out how much time Space Marines spent polishing their... helmets. FOR THE EMPEROR!!!!

40:15 - A vain attempt at positivity...

41:15 - This may be our highest 'Willy-Nilly' count to date.

45:15 - But wait, the Editor is me!!!

Do you have a favourite skill system or did you ever find an unusual way of leveraging your points in basketweaving? Send us an email to 

You can leave comments below or on twitter through @adventuringpty 

The hosts can be contacted by email at 

The Adventuring Party is released under a Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial Share-Alike version 3 licence