Friday, June 19, 2015

Amazing Adventures: The Gumshoe and Cat and Mouse

The news has come down that all of the Amazing Adventures books will ship together on the same date! We're still pinning down the exact date, but in honor of the forthcoming expanded second print, here's some thoughts on one of the most popular classes...the Gumshoe.

The Gumshoe's Cat and Mouse ability is an exceptionally useful class ability that can often be overlooked in game, especially if the nuances of its use aren't understood. Some people have wondered if Cat and Mouse is nothing more than a glorified perception check. In some ways it is, and in some ways it's not, but consider that most abilities in the SIEGE engine are basic Ability Checks. It's what you DO with them and how you USE them that makes a difference. That being said, here are some tips and advice regarding this ability. 

1. If you have a gumshoe in the party, no one else should add their level to Wisdom or Intelligence checks to search a crime scene for clues. While this may seem odd to some, it is really no different than, say, a fighter in C&C trying to sneak alongside a rogue. While people can be very perceptive, the Gumshoe is trained to toss a scene for evidence. 

2. Likewise, when tracking down leads, only the gumshoe adds her level to rolls to question witnesses, deal with contacts or otherwise pull information from the mean streets. Now, this particular guideline is nebulous--it could be easily argued that Hooligans or particularly Socialites have a similar ability. This is reasonable, though Hooligans are questionable. Not all of them are streetwise and know the people to talk to and the places to go.

3. Cat and Mouse also relies upon a degree of inspiration and instinct. This means that if the party is stumped and all else has failed, the Gumshoe can make a Cat and Mouse check to come up with a sudden inspiration or catch something they've missed up till now. Alternately, this ability is a catch-all that may not even require a roll for the GM to feed clues and information to the party--that is, "With your skills as an investigator, it occurs to you that..."

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