How to handle Profession not listed as common for SFS?


Starfinder Society

1/5

So with so many themes and options we have now, the lists of professions in the CRB are no longer enough for me.

So let's say i am going for the theme Law Officer, pick a class combine it with the Steward Officer archetype and now to add the final detail Profession Steward Officer.
I asked around and to use Wisdom seems a good choice, but i can also imaging to go Charisma based.

Do we need a clarification that no GM will deny my Profession and cripple the ability to use a situatable Profession skill instead of whatever else can be used for a skill check in a scenario?

What about other professions not listed as common, just pick a mental ability you think is the best to express how your character is tackling that particular profession?

Shadow Lodge 5/5 5/55/55/55/5 Venture-Captain, Indiana—Southern aka CanisDirus

In my region, I tell GMs and players the same thing - if it's one of the standard/listed ones, you have to go by what the books say. If it's something else, you're encouraged to go with what fits the best. That's as far as I personally go with it, but as with all things that aren't clearly defined - expect table variation.

Second Seekers (Luwazi Elsbo) 5/5 5/55/5 Venture-Lieutenant, North Carolina—Charlotte aka eddv

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The only place I get to be sort of a pain about it is if you're trying to end around a common profession - for example a cha-based corporate profession to get around having a cruddy int.

The Exchange 5/5 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Texas—Dallas & Ft. Worth aka Belafon

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Douglas Edwards wrote:
The only place I get to be sort of a pain about it is if you're trying to end around a common profession - for example a cha-based corporate profession to get around having a cruddy int.

This.

If you want to use Profession (electronic music programmer) and call it an int-based skill that’s dubious but . . . fine, I won’t stop you from using that for a Day Job check. You could have just chosen a normal int-based skill. But don’t expect to use it if the scenario has a listed check for Profession (musician).

To that end, if you choose to make your Steward Officer a Charisma-based profession, don’t try to argue that you should be able to use it if the scenario asks for Profession (soldier or mercenary).

Yeah, in real life there a wide variety of MOS. Depending on the specifics, the best stat would vary between Int, Wis, and Cha. But Starfinder pretty much defines military professions as all Wisdom.

1/5 5/5

I'm not the sort of GM to fun sponge someone that's using one of the other mental abilities for their Profession.

The player still had to invest in it.

5/5 5/55/55/5

GM Wageslave wrote:


I'm not the sort of GM to fun sponge someone that's using one of the other mental abilities for their Profession.

The player still had to invest in it.

But they had to invest less, namely in another stat.

If the rule was supposed to be you can do any profession with any stat that would be the rule but its not. I think fun sponge is a little harsh for going with a pretty clear case of going by a rules RAW and clear intent.

I think you're okay going to a slightly different but related profession, but then you have to accept that it may not apply. if your profession is defendant advocate instead of lawyer some things that a regular lawyer might make a check for by stuffing their head full of information and rules (It's illegal to own a cat on verces that's not fitted with an electrostatic collar) may not apply: being really good at appealing to a jury won't help you. This lets the player make the best judgement about how they want their character to work, keeps the professions from being completely build a bear, and lets the DM decide when a charisma based lawyer is off model enough not to apply to this situation. At worst, the DM can boil your dayjob check down to miscellaneous charisma based skill dayjobcheck.exe..

1/5

Well there is only merchenary and arguable bounty hunter listed (no soldier) and yes both wisdom if you insist that wisdowm is the base for a police/law officer then be it wisdom.

I see in general more GM's are strict about this then i expected.

The Exchange 5/5 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Texas—Dallas & Ft. Worth aka Belafon

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Tigerkralle wrote:
I see in general more GM's are strict about this then i expected.

We have a very small sample size here, so your actual play experiences may be far more lenient. But as Douglas said, we’ve seen so many players trying to do end-arounds to justify optimizing their skills we get a bit grumpy about deviations.

GM: If anyone has Profession: Lawyer they can give me a check to see if their are any loopholes in the contract.
Player: I have Profession: Trial Attorney so I’ll try.
GM: What’s the difference between Lawyer and Trial Attorney?
P: It’s like a lawyer but I have to eloquently convince judges and juries so it’s Charisma based instead of Int.
GM: So you’re saying you should be able to try any check that someone with Profession: Lawyer can, but you get to use Charisma (your key ability score)?
P: Yep!

For day jobs it really, really doesn’t matter. Call it whatever you want with whatever stat you want. We just get grumpy when players are deliberately trying to swap stats on checks they suspect will appear in scenarios.

4/5

It really depends on what you are trying to do, IMO. As an example, Profession:navigator might be Int based while Profession:sailor is Wis based. The navigator is great at checking maps and plotting the route, but cannot make the check on actually driving the boat.
On professions which don't turn up in the rulebook, you are asking the GM if the profession would even apply so I would be a bit less strict about which stat is appropriate unless it seems really obvious. (ie politician being charisma based)

1/5

I would say to practise your profession with Intelligence makes you know exactly what you are doing in a cognitive or academic way, using Wisdom seems more like going the path of practice and intuition and if you use Charisma it is all about your social intelligence!

Politician is listed as Charisma-based in the CRB! If you want to present an example for something you thing it's really obvious then please pick a profession that is not listed there. This is about those Professions not listed in the CRB.

I disagree that the work of a cop/police officer/law officer working directly on the street with citizen making them feel safe is Wisdom based. They have to do mainly social stuff and therefore i would make them in my games Charisma based. Unholstering the weapon is one of the last things in their repertoire.
Could be a clash of cultures, making me see it that way.
----------------
As for the playing in Society:

So to be on the safe side i need to know the cultural background of the people in that lodge, how they think this profession (not from CRB) is based regarding the three mental ability scores? So for characters being played on this board i should only use Professions listed in the CRB so that my GM will never ever start an argument with me about my Profession skill?
Like it's less powergaming just picking an Intelligence based Profession from the list in the CRB for Biohacker (Int as key ability), Mechanic or Technomancer? Really?

The Exchange 5/5 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Texas—Dallas & Ft. Worth aka Belafon

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Tigerkralle wrote:

So for characters being played on this board i should only use Professions listed in the CRB so that my GM will never ever start an argument with me about my Profession skill?

Like it's less powergaming just picking an Intelligence based Profession from the list in the CRB for Biohacker (Int as key ability), Mechanic or Technomancer? Really?

That's not quite what anyone is saying. If your mechanic chooses the listed Profession (electrician) and a scenario asks for a Profession (electrician) check, that's fine. If you decide that your mechanic will have the custom Int-based Profession (technical manual editor) and then claim that makes you eligible for Profession (writer) checks, that's something else.

All we are saying is that if you decide to make the custom Profession (Steward officer) a charisma profession, don't try to use that profession when the GM asks if anyone has Profession (bounty hunter or mercenary). If the GM says "it looks like this crowd is going to get violent if no one talks them down" then yes, absolutely use your charisma-based Profession (Steward officer).

Spoiler:
I'm not sure if you intended it this way, but your statement "so that my GM will never ever start an argument" includes the assumption that your interpretation is correct by default. In play it's the other way around. The GM is the arbiter and decides how something works. The argument starts when the player refuses to accept the GM's ruling.

Game Theory stuff:
No one is accusing Tigerkralle of being this kind of player. We've just seen too many meta/powergamers who think "OK, I've got max Int so all those skills are covered on my technomancer. But I've got a terrible charisma. Let me come up with some custom Profession that isn't exactly "orator" and that I can claim is Intelligence-based. That way I can use that skill when we get into a social situation." Trying to avoid game-balance factors by splitting hairs.

Sczarni 5/5 5/55/5

Tigerkralle wrote:
Well there is only merchenary and arguable bounty hunter listed (no soldier)

The Professions in the CRB aren't the only ones. There's an entire AP that uses Profession (Soldier), for example. Professions are meant to be open-ended and loosely applicable, mostly because they'll rarely come up.

1/5

Somehow this discussion has brought up gamebalance and that a gamemaster will not allow me to use that skill should i ask if i can apply [insert profession i came up on my own with more or less obvious ability score attached and happens to be my key ability maxed out]. If i get a no then i will try to give another skill a go, or ask if if i can assist a fellow PC or do nothing.

I would say for bounty hunter or mercenary it depends on the context why that profession could be used. Finding a person on the run from the law? Well a Steward Officer also knows how to find someone who does not want to be found. Improving the DC by 2 sounds plausible in that case.
(Before i will GM my next Society session i will ask my local Venture officer about raising a DC in that way, don't worry.)

To me it seems like i am getting some resistance here and fear to meet some of those people at a table, because i dare to think the very same profession is not set in stone to only be based on a certain ability.

A Trial Attorney (Cha) and a Lawyer (Int):
Both will know something about a certain section of the law, Lawyer knows waaaay more.
My gooey gamemaster heart would let the Trial Attorney also do the check, but with a penalty and no penalty for the Lawyer.
If you insist then sure give a Lawyer based on Cha also a penalty.

Oh and a trial in front of a jury is not everywhere around the world part of the judical system.

---
To be honest i am a bit shocked to see that it goes into this direction. I just wanted to know if you think that a GM will flat out refuse any profession at all if it's not listed in the CRB and then i dared to mention i see one more option for the ability score and the majority tell me: Yeah, you can totally do that, but only to get the tiny amount of pocket money you can get in Downtime!
---
Profession only good for Downtime even if it could be applied to be able to assist or even try a skill challenge for the whole party at all to achieve someting in a SFS scenario.
I can totally live with that, because with having picked the ability score i think fits best makes me feel good about my character and giving me this polished complete feeling.
---
There goes my plans to create characters for only international play-by-post here and picking unsual professions!

Dataphiles 4/5 5/55/5

As I have told a few people so far. This discussion is not worth having anymore because it has already been had.

If you deviate in any way from the listed professions whether by ability score base or a non-listed profession, expect table variation. That is all that needs to be said. It is not worth discussing with the GM if they disagree with your point. It is not a vital part of the game. Deal with the GM's choice and move on.

Sczarni 5/5 5/55/5

I'm trying my best not to interpret tone in these posts, but if I'm reading these responses the same, I think people need to calm down.

If I sat down with my Profession (Soldier), and the GM told me I couldn't roll it, my response might range from eyeroll to leaving the table, depending on my mood.

Like, there are so many other things to legitimately complain about. This need not be one of them.

1/5

My response to i can't roll that was always: Okay, asking if i can use another skill or leaning back and looking to my fellow players: More ideas from you?

Do you all think i am one of those players behaving like a child not getting the sweets in the supermarket? -.- I can understand some of the above posts then.

5/5 5/55/55/5

Tigerkralle wrote:
I would say for bounty hunter or mercenary it depends on the context why that profession could be used. Finding a person on the run from the law? Well a Steward Officer also knows how to find someone who does not want to be found. Improving the DC by 2 sounds plausible in that case.

You're right that it depends on context, but the DM has to decide that context amidst competing goals.

1) The player has made a mechanical investment of skill ranks into a skill that they know will rarely come up probably because

2) that skill says something about that characters personality and they've got a chance to show it off

3) The rules of the game do not allow for swapping profession skills to anything you want. If one profession with a different stat does everything that a listed profession (or even another skill) does, then it's violating that rule.

4) The rules of the game don't allow for a profession skill to do everything (profession starfinder) or be broader than another profession (profession Dr. McNinja)

So in order to have a charisma based Stewart officer as opposed to a wisdom based police officer that just happens to be in the stewards you'd have to think about some limitations on it. Perhaps he doesn't deal with anything lower than a "federal offense" or...I'm having a hard time separating these two honestly.

Profession Trial attorney vs. lawyer is pushing it. Some DMs might not allow that combination. Most are just going to ask for the check look at the number and move on.

Quote:
To be honest i am a bit shocked to see that it goes into this direction. I just wanted to know if you think that a GM will flat out refuse any profession at all if it's not listed in the CRB and then i dared to mention i see one more option for the ability score and the majority tell me: Yeah, you can totally do that, but only to get the tiny amount of pocket money you can get in Downtime!

Are DMs going to ban* all custom Professions? No

Are DMs going to ban YOUR custom profession? Maybe.

I think it would be a bit of a mathematicians answer to tell you no on the first question without poking around the weeds of the second.

*or relagate it to nothing more than a dayjob roll.

If the profession and nothing close to it honestly aren't there there's no problem making a new profession: Some of my characters have profession Mom, Babysitter, and Gym teacher.

If there's something close to it, I would just take that profession even with a less than optimal stat. You can pick up a cheap 20 credit profession tool kit for a +4 bonus to the skill.

Quote:
Yeah, you can totally do that, but only to get the tiny amount of pocket money you can get in Downtime!

Strawmanning peoples positions in a contentious discussion never goes well.

Quote:
because with having picked the ability score i think fits best makes me feel good about my character

See, that's what it looks like you're doing and you can't do that. You can't just say well acrobatics is as much about strength as coordination I like the idea of strength based acrobatics so I'll go with that. And you can't work around that same idea with a circe de sole charisma based perform. Lawyer is an int based skill, and you can't work around that because you don't like it. It doesn't matter if you don't like it because its mechanically disadvantageious to you or you disagree with the flavor.

Dataphiles 4/5 5/55/5

Expect table variation.

Sczarni 5/5 5/55/5

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Expect table variation, regarding what your GM determines your Profession applies to (regardless of whether it's "listed", or not).

You shouldn't expect table variation regarding whether you're allowed to take a non-"listed" Profession.

1/5 5/5

I've yet to encounter a situation where a GM insists in a draconian manner that there is 'only one way to Profession'.

And that has been an exceptionally enjoyable experience so far.

Now, granted, as a responsible player I do try bring it up at the start of the scenario so GMs aren't completely blindsided by it, and so they can at least start thinking of ways that the Profession could be viable/not-viable in the execution of the scenario.

There's also a level of restraint required in doing such a thing. The Profession cannot become the OmniSkill: Capable of handling any skill challenge!.

There have also been a couple of times where players have suggested Professions where they weren't... quite appropriate for a given skill, but their rationale was quick, understandable, and concise, and I've allowed them -- albeit at an increased difficulty.

We are still allowed to use that judgement as GMs at the table, yes?

EDIT: It also occurs to me, as I remember some of the scenarios where character Professions came up, that the GM would ask for any Professions.

During those situations, it very much seemed like the GM was not worried so much about a player doubling down on a given situation, but rather that either: A. The character was the only one that could roll anything for a given check or B. The scenario called for 'Profession' and few if any people at the table had the points to dump into one.

Sczarni 5/5 5/55/5

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That last bit stuck me as surprising when Starfinder first came out. Coming from a system where Sorcerers/Fighters/Paladins/Clerics had only 2 skill points per level, and there were more skills to choose from, I naturally saw Technomancers/Soldiers/Solarions/Mystics as suddenly having extra skill points for choosing fun things, like Profession, that really flush out a character. Virtually all of my characters have one. But a couple years in and it's becoming commonplace to sit at a table (virtual or otherwise) and be the only PC with a Profession =(

All the more reason I feel the need to defend Professions when this discussion keeps reappearing.

Dataphiles 4/5 5/55/5

"Dr." Cupi wrote:
Expect table variation.

4/5

GM Wageslave wrote:

I've yet to encounter a situation where a GM insists in a draconian manner that there is 'only one way to Profession'.

And that has been an exceptionally enjoyable experience so far.

Now, granted, as a responsible player I do try bring it up at the start of the scenario so GMs aren't completely blindsided by it, and so they can at least start thinking of ways that the Profession could be viable/not-viable in the execution of the scenario.

There's also a level of restraint required in doing such a thing. The Profession cannot become the OmniSkill: Capable of handling any skill challenge!.

There have also been a couple of times where players have suggested Professions where they weren't... quite appropriate for a given skill, but their rationale was quick, understandable, and concise, and I've allowed them -- albeit at an increased difficulty.

We are still allowed to use that judgement as GMs at the table, yes?

EDIT: It also occurs to me, as I remember some of the scenarios where character Professions came up, that the GM would ask for any Professions.

During those situations, it very much seemed like the GM was not worried so much about a player doubling down on a given situation, but rather that either: A. The character was the only one that could roll anything for a given check or B. The scenario called for 'Profession' and few if any people at the table had the points to dump into one.

I like the operative Jack of all Trades exploit. "Which profession do you want me to roll?"

1/5 5/5

Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

...which falls through if no one has an Operative at the table with that particular trick.

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