Grey stat -> grey skill at character creation?

I know that once the game is started, if you open a new skill that has a grey stat as its root, it starts out grey.

However, does that apply during character burning or does one pay 5 skill points for each grey skill without regard to what shade the root stat is?

During burning, any skill that has a root in a grey stat automatically opens grey with just 1 skill point. You only need to pay 5pts if you want a Black-stat rooted skill to be grey.

Has anyone had any issues with a grey stat -> grey skills at character creation causing an unbalanced game, if all of the other characters have black stats?

Yes, but it does depend on which stat is grey. A grey Power or Agility? Not that big of a deal, as its applications are quite limited compared to, say, Will or Perception.

Grey Weapon skills ain’t that much of a big deal, as there’s a limit to how effective they are. I mean, obstacles only go so high and there comes a point where my B8 mace is just as effective as your G8 sword. We’re both methodically slaying our enemies equally.

Grey Will, though, equals social domineering on a level most Black skills can’t compare with. Duel of Wits will go in this characters favor most of the time, and that has FAR more reaching repercussions than some combat result. Entire campaigns can be affected by this character. And social skills, a critical component of BW, will be learned quickly, possibly making other players envious.

Grey Perception is much the same. This character will learn important skills far more rapidly than his peers. Mostly, I’m referring to Wises and other academic skills. Plus, good luck having anyone try to Stealth or otherwise fool this character.

I do NOT recommend beginning with Grey Stats for new players. But single, Grey skills can work if the character concept supports it.

Maybe I’m confused… how does having a Grey stat make you learn skills faster?

Your Aptitude to learn skill rooted in that stat is less because shade bonuses apply, just as with any other skill or stat. So if you have a G6 Perception, learning Perception-based skill requires only 2 tests instead of 4 for those with B6.

In character burning, I would end up with a G3 perception instead of a B6. When I looked at the rules for advancing perception and how it required successful tests, it seemed that advancing perception would be difficult. So with my G3 perception, I would be slower to learning things than B6. However, if I had greatly overestimated the difficulty of advancing perception, that would change things.

How hard is it to advance perception in practical play?

GM: You walk into a new city, roll perception . . .

or "You are on watch, it is dark, roll perception . . .

Well, yeah, when you compare a G3 with a B6, the B6 comes out on top in terms of Aptitude, but only by one test (effectively 4 vs 5) And that 3 will become a 4 (and higher!) in no time.

Perception is one of the easier Stats to advance (maybe behind Speed and Power), as you roll it each time you want to learn a new Perception-based skill… and those are infinite thanks to -Wises. And it used to be an integral part of Range & Cover in BW Revised, but now I’m unsure in Gold. In fact, R&C ensured Perception rocketed up in no time, what with Helping and all.

This has not been my experience. In about 30 BW sessions each 2-3 hours with 2-5 players, I’ve seen a mage advance both Forte and Will (and he may have advanced both multiple times) and one player advanced power solely via practice because of the short 1 month test cycle. Perception gets rolled most sessions, but either the obstacle is low so the test doesn’t count or the obstacle is high and the test fails.

edit: and I don’t recall any other Stats to have advanced.

Yes, I have one PC in my current game who started with a Per of 3 and after 20+ sessions it’s still there, although he’s now one Challenging test away from it going to 4. He’s diligent about testing it and I’m very scrupulous about setting fair Obs and letting him roll it a lot, but he just can’t seem to advance it. Advancing Per is really, really hard.

Is Perception as a testing stat gone from Range and Cover in Gold?

No, but the rules surrounding its use have changed. (I think; I haven’t played Revised, and the one time I ran R&C in Gold [standard small sample size warnings], Hold never came up in favor of speed, stealth and steel based maneuvers).

Yeah, Per is used if you are performing the Hold action in Gold R&C. Ive run about 5 R&C’s in my limited experience of running BWG and have found that my players tend to use the Hold action. It’s used at least once each exchange, usually twice. Guess it just depends on the strategies your players like.

It’s no longer the obvious best maneuver is all, especially with the skill-base ones and Perception not being open-ended anymore.

This was quite an intentional change, as it was totally bonkers before.

That’s how I had imagined it. The requirement for successful tests at the correct Ob really push the difficulty up.

The reason that Per requires successful tests in BWG still is that you can use Beginner’s Luck to generate the obstacles you need fairly easily.

Not in my experience, stormie. Trying to use BL to generate the needed Obs results in impossible tests. Like, right now, my friend’s guy needs an Ob 4 Per test to advance his Per. How exactly is he supposed to generate 8 successes??

He needs to Help someone that can achieve that Ob. Or he needs Faith’s Aid miracle, or take his time, or use Artha, or use Sorcerous benefits or Linked Tests.

Granted, it’s hard, but not crazy impossible.