In Praise of Average

Roleplay Rescue’s Blog

I’m a big fan of players starting with a lower baseline of power and ability in any game intended for the long-term. Because I am increasingly disinterested in short-term, one-shot, or single-session play this means I am easing power levels downward in my games. Another way of looking at it is that I prefer to start with an “Average Person” and see what interesting things players can do.

In GURPS, the average human being is defined with the mid-range values for Attributes on a 3d6 roll, namely 10. In other words, you are Strength 10, Dexterity 10, Intelligence 10, and Health 10; you roll 10 or less on 3d6, which is about 50/50 odds. Simple.

The first effect is that having any increased Attribute, training in a Skill, or amazing Advantage feels significant. For example, increasing Dexterity or Intelligence to 11 means you just got 12.5% better at everything…

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