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October 7th, 2009, 03:14
Name a RPG where swimming is a skill, one that needs advancement, and is required for underwater areas.
I can't. I can think of some that you swim underwater, but it's automatically assumed the PC(s) can swim, some that have the skill as I suggested, but no underwater, and finally those that have an advanceable skill, still with no underwater and a distinct annoyance the rare times you actually need the skill when it fails irrespective of your skill level.
The party is only as fast as the slowest swimmer, and given that at least some will be wearing armor/toting bags of junk, I'd doubt "fast swimming" is going to be an issue. Staying afloat is hard enough in a mail hauberk. I wouldn't even want the weight of a longsword on my hip, and they are not heavy (but expensive, there's no way I'd leap into water with an Albion…).
As for maps, it's likely be ad-hoc, with the representation on screen being something entirely different from what the mapper is making. Irrespective, if he can't mark a tree, a river or body of water, or a path, then he has no business drawing the party's maps.
Either the map is useless due to a lack of detail (and thus make no sense to have the skill at all since it's unusable), or the detail is good enough that you don't need any development (thus making no sense to develop the skill further). Alternately, there's a spell/item/NPC which makes the skill a moot point.
In both cases, I feel it better to simply assume the character has enough skill to know what a tree is. Or a door. And draw some representation of it on a piece of papyrus. For swimming, they have the skill to keep afloat and even move in calm waters while loaded with 60-80lbs of weapons and armor. If they lack this skill, then they should be completely unwilling to get in the water.
If dumped in, that can be handled the same was as with a advanceable skill; with checks for each tile/time period/whathaveyou.
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