Zero skill level should mean that I know nothing about it

The game does not take into account the lack of skill. Zero skill level often means “I know something about this”, not “I don’t know about this”.

For example. I can drive a car with driving skill 0. I distinguish wild berries with survival skill 0. I can assess the condition of the car engine with skill mechanics 0.

My suggestions are. Basic skill level 2. That is a choice of skills (+2 for 1 point) in the beginning of the game determines the available representations of the player of the world. Zero skill level, shows a lack of practice and of interest to the topic before the cataclysm. If a player creates a character with the skill of medicine 0, this means that the character knows nothing about the drugs and all they are for the tablets of a different color.

I’ll describe what I think of the zero level of specific skills.

Survival 0. Does not distinguish between wild berries/plants/mushrooms. Difficult to ignite the fire on the first attempt. Difficult to properly cut the carcass, it takes a long time (Who may in life cut the chicken for 5 seconds, as in the game?).

Cooking 0. Food constantly undercooked, nedovarivaetsya, it turns out good.

Shooting 0. The one who never was holding a weapon, knows nothing about the body of the fuse and switch of fire. Low accuracy of fire, a very great influence of bestowal, may blink when the shot and take the time can accidentally shoot from the received damages. Does not understand the difference between ammunition (large bullet, small bullets, 12 caliber), does not distinguish between weapons (gun, gun, gun). ??? instead damage value and variation. Limit the range is replaced with an effective range, firing on which automatic slip.

Sewing 0. Character is never attached a button. He can sew but more often gets damaged clothing, instead of a brand new and in its size.
And in General about sewing. Hand sewing is a very long process. Shoes are very difficult to repair, it is very difficult to take in. Cobbler and tailor it different professions.

First aid 0. Don’t know the difference and assignments tablets, can contaminate the wound in ligation.
About first aid. If you break a leg or cut, how much will it hurt? Week? Or you can wind up at her bandages and she immediately healed? Or overnight. In General, I am for the first-aid kits, bandages and disinfectants, only cleaned pollution and bleeding, but not compensated life. Health is restored over time in a dream. This process can be accelerated, but not instant. This is my opinion

Mechanics 0. Almost impossible to break a door or window. It is impossible to determine the status of the parts of the vehicle, if your skill is below required for its repair. It just either appears in white it or not.

Driving 0. The car starts from the first attempt. Can stall during the ride. Difficult to switch a gear-box, easy to kill the engine. My real experience in driving a 0, so check more knowledgeable people.

About the other skills I have nothing to say.

What do you think? If you like, I’ll do this my forces and time. I apologize for my English.

Jeez Louise, guys, get a room.

Since I’m bored and arguing is fun, I’ll argue each distinction individually. Here we go!

Survival 0. This person does not have any idea how to survive. They can’t tell the difference between a mushroom, a flower, and a strawberry. They have never used a cutting implement on a piece of meat before. They have never used a lighter before.

Cooking 0. Cannot boil water without burning it. Can’t heat a piece of meat until it at least looks a little burnt. Probably can’t use a microwave.

Shooting 0. Has never fired a gun before. Guns aren’t complex machines, but maybe they have a lazy eye and have never seen a single person get shot on American TV, so they don’t know which end the barrel points.

Sewing 0. Hasn’t made their own clothing before. Hasn’t fixed their own clothing. Hasn’t touched a needle. Possibly has neither seen nor worn clothing before.

First aid 0. Has never placed a bandage on their own cut before, or anyone else’s. Possibly doesn’t know that water is necessary to drink to maintain health.

Mechanics 0. Unable to look at an engine and see if it’s shiny and new, slightly damaged, or wrecked. Doesn’t know what a wrench looks like. Has never driven a car.

Driving 0. Has never driven a car, ridden in a car, seen a car before, or piloted a single thing besides their own feet.

Setting skill level 0 to ‘doesn’t know a thing’ will only make the game more aggravating. The average person has done a number of things that would at least give them a vague idea of what to do, and might be quite intelligent and be able to figure something out without necessary training. The average Cata player is a cheapskate who doesn’t buy skills, because the chargen and point cost systems both need to be looked at, seeing as since Whales, we’ve only added more things to buy.

In the end, your survivor’s a human being, not a complete moron.

The issue is that by default every single skill starts at zero.
Therefore I think that zero skill should be “I know what the average adult knows about this”, these suggestions are more along the lines of “I have amnesia”.

Are your personal message buttons broken or something?

Please stop clogging suggestion threads with arguments unrelated to the topic.

Cata has been getting easier, though there are ways to make it harder or even easier. I don’t think making skills slightly more worthless until that first somewhat easy jump from 0 to 1 is the way to ‘fix’ what isn’t necessarily broken.

I think low first aid also affects the chance of stopping bleeding or cleaning infections, though a good enough player won’t really have that problem.

Thanks for your opinion. Everyone looks from the position of his experience.
If I understood correctly:
Neg: Inadequate, Ander Hamme, Weyrling.
Pos: Clayton.

I can only speak for myself.
I do not know how to drive a car. I learned about oxicodone, tramadol, xanax etc. only from the descriptions in this game. I can’t quickly kindle a fire in nature from one match or flint. If I cook something on the pan, it foothills. So this is I, I will not hide=)
I can’t create the same character, even with zero skills he’s better than me in some occupations. But he might not be able to read.

Well the important thing to do is not to forfeit knowledge that is considered common sense. I guess that some skills can have a 0 means having no idea of how it works (electronics, computers, fabrication) but having for example 0 in mechanics and not being able to pry a door (or a crate for that matter) with a crowbar is ridiculous as well as not knowing how to change a tire.

So I guess that 0 should be what the average american is expected to know about the topic.

But this also brings other problems, like the fact that you need cooking skills for things like boiling pasta, or making sandwiches. And that driving should be a non existing skill unless you play a profession or trait that has “never learnt to drive”

I think the key to this is that skill levels need rebalancing, rather than it just being that zero skill equals completely no idea about anything.

For instance, the age old problem with cooked meat being the best sort of food whilst requiring no skill is obviously broken (possibly fixed?) and getting up to about level 2-4 in most skills gives you pretty much all the recipes.

I’d just like for it to be a slightly more even curve, where you started off with less (not nothing) but that the recipies/ability to succeed were on more of a curve. If nothing else, the bucket load of comments about balance should hopefully show the devs that it’s important.

(and seriously, chill out Clayton - you see to be constantly on the offensive on every post I see you on. Yeah Inadequate was being a bit of an idiot, but no need for the constant fire.)

I’ve removed a number of posts from this thread. Calm down, you two. I’m giving you both warnings - if it happens again, you’ll be getting time outs. Hopefully we can converse like civilized adults moving forward.

A few of these aren’t bad suggestions, but they should take in account some level of common ability based on society from before the cataclysm.

It’s quite likely that everyone will know what an over the counter drug looks like. Non over the counter drugs might be a mystery to identify, but one can easily assume that a lot of the drugs are in labeled prescription bottles when found. However, illegal drugs probably aren’t. The only problem there is that the illegal drugs in the game are all pretty distinct. No one is going to mix pot up with coke, or the likes. Still, it’s something that could be played around with. Possibly spawning medication in containers, and having them be unidentifiable when pulled out. You could also occasionally have things spawn in a mislabeled container.

Inexperience with a gun will probably cause you to injure yourself. The only problem with that and a lot of other things is how fun is it? If the failure of a task is to just repeat the task then you don’t really have gameplay, you have tedium. Roguelikes are about being hard a lot of the time, but tedium isn’t part of the equation. Having a gun kick you in the shoulder, a scope smack you in the eye, or your thumb get caught in a handgun’s slide wouldn’t be bad. The injuries could add up when a player is using an unfamiliar weapon, and this doesn’t seem as if it would be tedious, as these things would be happening in what should be tense combat situations anyways. Being unable to start a fire though could be tedious.

What I would recommend is to rather than make a player perform actions ad infinitum until they light a fire, or accomplish a task they aren’t experienced in, simply have those tasks take up more resources. Take lighting a fire use multiple matches. Cooking could occasionally give you a message about you dropping a piece of meat in the fire. This imposes a difficulty and penalty upon the player without increasing the tedium involved.

Other skills would probably be higher for almost everyone to start with. Most people would know how to drive. Car ownership is high, there’s a lack of mass transit, ect ect. As an aside, mass transit would be something nice to start seeing in the game. Bus stops in towns and by important buildings, maybe a regional metro yard and the likes would be a cool addition to the game.

Computer use is probably fine as it is, as are electronics. It’s the future, so most people are going to have enough literacy to use a computer, fiddle with their phones and pda’s, and so on. Hacking and such they won’t have, but this is pretty much how the game is represented right now.

In the end, this could be an interesting topic, but it would need a little work to make fun. I do like the idea of medicine coming in bottles though, and being pills outside of them until your first aid is high enough.

Really good idea on weapon ineptitude injuries, especially if weapons had a ‘complexity’ rating. It would be a great way of adding balance as it’d mean that you can’t just pick up the best rifle you find and use it without problem, which would give some much needed weapon grading which cata, due to it’s open world nature, severely lacks.

(Also, the fun of accidentally using laxatives instead of stimulants cannot be understated)

Or finding some rednecks oxycontin in an advil bottle and popping a handful after stubbing your toe.

As for guns, you could add a stat in the JSON that is the minimal firearms skill needed for the gun to not have a risk of injury to the player, based on how much it kicks or if its just a goofy type of gun that’s finicky. People unfamiliar with firearms would probably want to start off with .22lr and other beginner guns, until they’re skilled enough to hold a gun properly. Even then, the unexpected kick of a high caliber weapon could lead to getting scope eye, so those guns would have a higher threshold in their JSON. The game knows when hostiles are nearby, so you could make all sorts of fumbling and such be related to that, so one could still practice shooting critters around their shelter but once in combat with zombies start having issues with fumbling with the bolt, having the gun smack them in the shoulder, or forgetting to not put their thumb in the slide. This makes the damage and other penalties come at a time when they’ll actually make combat more dynamic, while not increasing the tedium of simple practice.

Might work for driving too. With nothing on the road constant course correction can just be busy work, but seeing a zombie bear and then skidding into a tree actually puts the player in a spot.

Maybe something to consider for the game in general? To illustrate my point, here’s an example.

If there are no hostiles around, this might happen.

“The weapon misfires. You grumble and work the bolt to free the dud round before resuming.” and you might take a little time to represent that, but shooting continues as normal.

but if you’ve got hostiles around.

“The weapon misfires. You frantically work the bolt to no avail!” and then the player has to manually reload, cycle, or what not.

I like the option of different processing exceptional situations, depending on the availability of dangers.

I’m not saying that shooting skill 0 means that the player will shoot yourself in the foot. But I mean that before jumping on the zombies would be good to shoot 50 rounds in the dash for the acquisition of basic skills.

For drugs, for example, add a description for the drug reading, which becomes clear his appointment book, you can find in any drugstore). In our country the description of the medicines shipped separately, and on the package itself is usually present only the name.

It could be a flag, too. Either you’ve got really high first aid, and can identify prescription pills by sight, or you have a guide book from a drugstore, or you have a PDA with the app. With out it pills are all just pills to you, and you have to go by what is on the bottle label.

The game isn’t really balanced around the idea that a skill rating of 0 means you are completely inept in that skill. It wouldn’t be impossible to balance the game this way. If every skill (or at least most skills) started at 1 (and 1 was identical to what zero is now) and you could reduce a skill to 0 in order to gain a skill point to place elsewhere (reduce a given Computer skill to 0 to gain 1 in Survival which started at 0), and 0 was truly abysmal, then that would be fine. I would have no problem with that. But that is not how the game is balanced.

You start with 8 character generation points (by default anyway) that need to be distributed between attributes, traits, and skills. Most of the time I don’t find myself spending more than two to four points on skills. That would mean my character is completely and utterly inept at just about every single skill in the game. No responsible, normal adult is quite that inept. It is extremely hard to go through life without learning basically how to do things even if you have never done them before.

Just because you haven’t driven a car doesn’t mean you don’t know that:
a) The steering wheel moves the front tires.
b) There is a gas pedal and a brake pedal.
c) There is an emergency hand break.
d) There are turn signals.
e) The seatbelt will keep you from getting flung around while driving.
f) There are multiple ‘gears’ which are better for different speeds.
g) You turn the key to start the engine.

Etc etc etc. Just because you haven’t driven doesn’t mean you don’t know the above. And if you know the above, and you have a car and an empty lot, I can pretty much guarantee that you know enough to fiddle with a car and get it moving around with minimal fuss.

I could do the same with guns. I’ve never shot a gun in my entire life, but I’ve played enough games and watched enough movies and youtube videos to have a pretty good understanding of how they work. Given a gun I might have to fiddle with it for a bit but I am absolutely confident I could load it and fire off a shot. And once I’ve gotten past that initial hurdle I don’t think it’s a leap to think that from that point forward I’m probably not going to have much trouble loading and firing that gun. It might not be accurate, but at skill 0 you’re not that accurate in the game, so y’know?

Indeed, although I’d point out that even a gun owner can give themselves a nasty shoulder bruise or a case of scope eye. Also, you probably wouldn’t know how to properly clear various types of jams, and you might struggle with loading different guns, especially tube and internal magazine weapons. That’s why I think that it’d be nice if various items had a skill threshold for their use.

edit: This made me think of a few more low skilled in combat gun messages you could get.

“You try to squeeze the trigger, but it refuses to budge. Fuck! Where’s the safety?”

“You hold the rifle away from your shoulder and squeeze the trigger. OUCH! The butt slams back against your shoulder!”

“The round fires off, but the casing is stuck like a stove pipe in the action!” (Stovepipe jam)

“You squeeze the trigger repeatedly but nothing happens!” (Magazine fails to feed a round into the chamber or round is a dud.)

“You squeeze the trigger, but nothing happens. You’re sure there’s a round in the gun!” (Hangfire)

“The gun barely even moves when you fire the weapon.” (Incomplete Discharge, firing again is dangerous!)

With enough skill, these could be changed to reflect a charactor knowing what to do. Such as:

“The casing is stuck, but you quickly cycle the weapon and free the casing.”

“The gun barely even moves when you fire! Fuck, you’d better switch to something else till you can clear the barrel!”

and so on.

I for one, would keep shooting if recoil wasn’t affecting me.

Then the gun would promptly blow up in my face, 'cause I didn’t know this until today…

Yeah, I constantly hear from my army buddies that they get more injuries from incorrect firing position/being lazy than actually being shot at, and they’re trained to use weapons well. I think the main improvement would be that this would mean there could be an item grading system which would really add a sense of progress rather than ‘find the best weapon and use it forever’

[size=8pt]I got a very complicated fun system that I think everyone will enjoy.
Better post a wall of text in the Suggestions section.[/size]

After reading all the posts (lul), this is what I understood:

Guns now have a rifle/smg/shotgun/etc skill requirement so you can use them properly. Practice your skill by reading or using easier guns so you don’t receive annoying spam messages about your misuse.

The points you get upon character creation (and the system in general) needs to be addressed.

0 skill means average human common sense. If you have had a special experience with relative skills, you probably have 1 or 2.

The messages would all accompany things you would have to react to, such as not shooting because you’ve got a bullet stuck in the barrel and the likes. I was just making examples of things that could happen in combat in a way that’d force you to change things up, and also demonstrate that you can make them a non issue outside of combat when you’re just plinking to practice.

This can go back to that one thread that was arguing about maintenanced guns.

Also, if one weapon system (firearms) gets all these flavor messages that reminds you this is a game based on real life drama, than everything else must get random flavor messages to balance out.
Your chain lighting defibrillator takes longer to charge transmodulator than usual!
You swung your knife in a clumsy way, so you spend an extra moment getting your balance!
That sewing kit is extremely awkward to attack with!
Your bow fell apart from the repeated stress on the string!
Your flinch from the pain in your bare knuckles!

Can’t we just have (f)ire weapon, receive corpses? I’ll settle for the “complicated gun needs more skill” because I like that.