History Main / UselessUsefulNonCombatAbilities

7th Apr '18 3:38:55 AM DavidCowie
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* ''VideoGame/KingdomsOfAmalurReckoning:'' Lock Picking, Dispel and Mercantile.
** Lock Picking and Dispel (effectively magical lock picking) get you more loot, but there is already loads of loot lying around unprotected. There are a handful of side quests which require you to pick hard locks or Dispel wards, but you have Prismere lock picks and SaveScumming for those.
** Mercantile gets you better prices in shops, but you can usually find or make better gear than you can buy, and MoneyForNothing is in full effect.
29th Mar '18 9:02:03 PM nombretomado
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* Skills in ''Franchise/StarOcean'' generally tend to be of the "Skippable" variety. ''HOWEVER''... if you take the time to invest in skills, you'll wind up ''highly'' rewarded with free items that restore HP & MP, infinite experience, building ''the best items in the game'', and [[GuideDangIt learning your relationship values]].

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* Skills in ''Franchise/StarOcean'' ''VideoGame/StarOcean'' generally tend to be of the "Skippable" variety. ''HOWEVER''... if you take the time to invest in skills, you'll wind up ''highly'' rewarded with free items that restore HP & MP, infinite experience, building ''the best items in the game'', and [[GuideDangIt learning your relationship values]].
20th Mar '18 10:43:22 AM BeerBaron
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*** '''Mercantile''' is an aversion here. Because the game makes a separate skill roll for each attempt, you can simply set the price of an item to whatever you want then spam the accept key until the merchant accepts. While each failure makes it less likely to succeed, you will eventually get a 'critical' success that will get the merchant to accept no matter what. Further, the disposition drop will will reverse itself if you leave the conversation and then re-enter it.

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*** '''Mercantile''' is an aversion here. Because the game makes a separate skill roll for each attempt, you can simply set the price of an item to whatever you want then spam the accept key until the merchant accepts. While each failure makes it less likely to succeed, succeed and drops the disposition of the merchant, you will eventually get a 'critical' success that will get the merchant to accept no matter what. Further, the disposition drop will will reverse itself if you leave the conversation and then re-enter it.



*** '''Security''': It governs your ability to pick locks, but picking a lock is a [[LockpickingMiniGame mini-game]] based more on ''player'' skill than anything else. A high Security skill makes it somewhat easier (and saves you from breaking as many lockpicks), but a skilled player can easily pick even the highest leveled locks with a minimum Security Skill. Notably, this is not the case in ''Morrowind'', where the success of picking a lock is up to the Random Number God. A higher Security Skill increases your odds of picking it, while having too low of a security skill will make it impossible to pick higher leveled locks.

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*** '''Security''': It governs your ability to pick locks, but picking a lock is a [[LockpickingMiniGame mini-game]] based more on ''player'' skill than anything else. A high Security skill makes it somewhat easier (and saves you from breaking as many lockpicks), but a skilled player can easily pick even the highest leveled locks with a minimum Security Skill. Notably, this is not the case in ''Morrowind'', where the success of picking a lock is up to the Random Number God.RandomNumberGod. A higher Security Skill increases your odds of picking it, while having too low of a security skill will make it impossible to pick higher leveled locks.
19th Mar '18 10:38:01 AM BeerBaron
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*** '''Speechcraft''': You can easily max out a target's disposition with a custom-made [[CharmPersom spell or potion]] when required, making Speechcraft unnecessary. Through ''Oblivion'', it is also possible to simply [[ScrewTheRulesIHaveMoney bribe them]] over and over to increase their disposition. (Quite easy to do with all of the series' MoneyForNothing as well.)
*** '''Mercantile''': In most games, even with a maxed out Mercantile skill, it is nearly impossible to haggle for an item for more than a few percentage points over/under it's base value. And as mentioned above, the series has more than enough money available for you to acquire without having to do bother with this. Mercantile was dropped as a skill as of ''Skyrim'', where its effects are folded into a somewhat less useless Speechcraft skill tree.

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*** '''Speechcraft''': You can easily max out a target's disposition with a custom-made [[CharmPersom [[CharmPerson spell or potion]] when required, making Speechcraft unnecessary. Through ''Oblivion'', it is also possible to simply [[ScrewTheRulesIHaveMoney bribe them]] over and over to increase their disposition. (Quite easy to do with all of the series' MoneyForNothing as well.)
*** '''Mercantile''': In most games, even with a maxed out Mercantile skill, it is nearly impossible to haggle for an item for more than a few percentage points over/under it's base value. And as mentioned above, the series has more than enough money available for you to acquire without having to do bother with this. Mercantile was dropped as a skill as of ''Skyrim'', where its effects are folded into a somewhat less useless more useful Speechcraft skill tree.



*** '''Etiquette''' and ''Streetwise''': These skills make nobles/scholars and commoners/underworld types (respectively) respond to you more positively, and may get them to give you extra information and hints. Realistically, they don't help very much. If you need additional information out of them, there are much better ways to gain it.

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*** '''Etiquette''' and ''Streetwise''': '''Streetwise''': These skills make nobles/scholars and commoners/underworld types (respectively) respond to you more positively, and may get them to give you extra information and hints. Realistically, they don't help very much. If you need additional information out of them, there are much better ways to gain it.


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** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]'':
*** '''Willpower''' is a rather useless Attribute. One of the only things it affects is your maximum Fatigue, which is also affected by other stats. It also controls your rate of Magicka regeneration, but it's more effective to increase your Intelligence so you have more Magicka in the first place. In addition, mages often take Atronach birthsign which give you additional max Magicka and a chance of absorbing enemy spells, at the cost of your Magicka regeneration.
*** '''Security''': It governs your ability to pick locks, but picking a lock is a [[LockpickingMiniGame mini-game]] based more on ''player'' skill than anything else. A high Security skill makes it somewhat easier (and saves you from breaking as many lockpicks), but a skilled player can easily pick even the highest leveled locks with a minimum Security Skill. Notably, this is not the case in ''Morrowind'', where the success of picking a lock is up to the Random Number God. A higher Security Skill increases your odds of picking it, while having too low of a security skill will make it impossible to pick higher leveled locks.
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Skyrim]]'':
*** '''Lockpicking''': Just like Security in ''Oblivion'', for the exact same reason.
19th Mar '18 7:55:47 AM BeerBaron
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* There are several examples from ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls'':
** ''Speechcraft'': You can easily max out a target's disposition with a custom-made charm spell, making speechcraft unnecessary, assuming you just don't bribe them until they like you.
*** ''Etiquette'' and ''Streetwise'', from ''Daggerfall'': Supposedly, Commoners and the Underworld liked Streetwise better; supposedly, Nobles and Scholars liked Etiquette better; realistically, if that NPC isn't going to tell you something, he isn't going to tell you something.
** ''Mercantile'': Most dealers quit as soon as you ask for one single drake under the total price, which makes haggling useless, which makes it nigh-impossible to increase your Mercantile skill [[GuideDangIt unless you use a Mercantile]] GameBreaker [[GuideDangIt guide]].
*** ''Morrowind'': Or simply set the price as whatever you want and spam the accept key until they accept. (The game makes a separate skill roll for each attempt. They do get harder, but you'll critically succeed eventually. Oh, and the disposition drop will reverse itself if you stop talking to them and then reenter conversation.)
** ''Medical'': You recover more health points per hour you sleep. Why was this worth making into a leveling skill?
** ''Acrobatics'': In ''Morrowind'', you can eventually jump over buildings if you drop all your stuff, but aside from being a streaking superman, there's not much reason to do so. Levitation also makes it pointless, and potions of rising force are quite common.
*** ''Jumping'' was more useful in ''Daggerfall'' when it was an actual Skill and there could be pits in odd places in a dungeon. Bad jumping skill also forced you to reduce or stop all horizontal momentum and jump completely vertical, either stalling you or dropping you down the pit/hole. Or worse: casting you into the void ''through'' the wall.
*** ''Languages'', from ''Daggerfall'', is like that. Most people might see no use in learning how to - for example - speak Orcish when they are dungeon enemies and, at least in the beginning, will attack you anyway. However, take Orcish as a Minor skill and use it once before you attack that Orc Sergent; you're now leveling two skills in virtually the same amount of time you're leveling one.

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* There are several examples from ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls'':
** ''Speechcraft'': Recurring series examples:
*** '''Speechcraft''':
You can easily max out a target's disposition with a custom-made charm spell, [[CharmPersom spell or potion]] when required, making speechcraft unnecessary, assuming you just don't Speechcraft unnecessary. Through ''Oblivion'', it is also possible to simply [[ScrewTheRulesIHaveMoney bribe them until they like you.
*** ''Etiquette''
them]] over and ''Streetwise'', from ''Daggerfall'': Supposedly, Commoners and the Underworld liked Streetwise better; supposedly, Nobles and Scholars liked Etiquette better; realistically, if that NPC isn't going to tell you something, he isn't going to tell you something.
** ''Mercantile'': Most dealers quit as soon as you ask for one single drake under the total price, which makes haggling useless, which makes it nigh-impossible
over to increase your Mercantile skill [[GuideDangIt unless you use a Mercantile]] GameBreaker [[GuideDangIt guide]].
*** ''Morrowind'': Or simply set
their disposition. (Quite easy to do with all of the price series' MoneyForNothing as whatever you want and spam the accept key until they accept. (The game makes a separate skill roll for each attempt. They do get harder, but you'll critically succeed eventually. Oh, and the disposition drop will reverse itself if you stop talking to them and then reenter conversation.well.)
*** '''Mercantile''': In most games, even with a maxed out Mercantile skill, it is nearly impossible to haggle for an item for more than a few percentage points over/under it's base value. And as mentioned above, the series has more than enough money available for you to acquire without having to do bother with this. Mercantile was dropped as a skill as of ''Skyrim'', where its effects are folded into a somewhat less useless Speechcraft skill tree.
** ''Medical'': ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIDaggerfall Daggerfall]]'':
*** '''Etiquette''' and ''Streetwise''': These skills make nobles/scholars and commoners/underworld types (respectively) respond to you more positively, and may get them to give you extra information and hints. Realistically, they don't help very much. If you need additional information out of them, there are much better ways to gain it.
*** The various '''Language''' skills, such as Giantish, Impish, Orcish, etc. A higher skill score in them gives you a chance to avoid combat with the creatures who speak it. Practically speaking, it isn't very useful. One minor use is that using the skill potentially allows you to level up several skills at once, increasing the rate at which you gain character levels. For instance, you can speak to an Orc to increase the Orcish skill, then (succeed or fail) attack him anyway to increase your combat skills.
*** '''Medical''':
You recover more health points per hour you sleep. Why was this worth making into Given that time is only a leveling skill?
factor in a select few {{Timed Mission}}s, there is no real benefit to healing more quickly in fewer hours of sleep.
** ''Acrobatics'': In ''Morrowind'', ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind Morrowind]]'':
*** '''Mercantile''' is an aversion here. Because the game makes a separate skill roll for each attempt,
you can simply set the price of an item to whatever you want then spam the accept key until the merchant accepts. While each failure makes it less likely to succeed, you will eventually get a 'critical' success that will get the merchant to accept no matter what. Further, the disposition drop will will reverse itself if you leave the conversation and then re-enter it.
*** '''Acrobatics''': You
can eventually jump over buildings if you drop all your stuff, at a high skill level, but aside from being a streaking superman, the fun of it, there's not much reason to do so. Levitation also makes it pointless, is a better alternative, and potions of rising force Rising Force are quite common.
*** ''Jumping'' was more useful in ''Daggerfall'' when it was an actual Skill and there could be pits in odd places in a dungeon. Bad jumping skill also forced you to reduce or stop all horizontal momentum and jump completely vertical, either stalling you or dropping you down the pit/hole. Or worse: casting you into the void ''through'' the wall.
*** ''Languages'', from ''Daggerfall'', is like that. Most people might see no use in learning how to - for example - speak Orcish when they are dungeon enemies and, at least in the beginning, will attack you anyway. However, take Orcish as a Minor skill and use it once before you attack that Orc Sergent; you're now leveling two skills in virtually the same amount of time you're leveling one.
common.
11th Mar '18 6:17:14 PM gophergiggles
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* ''[[VideoGame/LegoAdaptationGame Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures]]'' gives you the ability to hide under barrels or bushes to slip past enemies. This is ''entirely'' useless as enemies are easy to just fight head-on and there is always some sort of puzzle that must be solved to progress through the area which can't be done while hiding. At most you'll try it ''once'' just for the novelty of it.
8th Mar '18 5:22:08 PM AnotherDuck
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* The use of that skill is situational.
28th Dec '17 7:55:07 AM Cryoclaste
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* ''{{Pokemon}}'':

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* ''{{Pokemon}}'': ''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}'':
23rd Dec '17 9:22:23 PM Antronach
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** The Illuminate ability raises the random encounter rate, and does nothing in battle. In most cases, you ''really'' don't want the wild encounter rate to be any higher than it already is, and when you want to find Pokemon the base encounter rate is usually fine.

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** The Illuminate ability raises the random encounter rate, and does while the Stench ability lowers it. Unfortunately they did nothing in battle. In most cases, you ''really'' don't want the wild encounter rate to be any higher than it already is, and battle when you want to find Pokemon they were introduced, were ultimately outclassed by Sweet Scent's out of battle ability and Repels respectively, and in ''Emerald'' were outclassed by other abilities having extra effects that mimicked the base encounter rate is usually fine.two abilities while having actual in battle uses. Fortunately Stench got upgraded later on to do the same thing as a King's Rock, but Illuminate has had no such luck.
21st Dec '17 8:37:18 PM MinimumRage
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* The old RPG ''VideoGame/{{Wasteland}}'' had a few of these. Some skills were useful, like Rifle, Energy Weapon, Perception, and Brawling. Some had limited use, like Demolitions, Swim, and Gambling. And then there were Metallurgy (two uses: to identify free money in a mine, to diagnose a car's issue--and an NPC you could recruit could just fix it himself), Cryptography (one use, though it's to get a lot of good stuff), and Bureaucracy (that one makes sense actually).

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* The old RPG ''VideoGame/{{Wasteland}}'' had a few of these. Some skills were useful, like Rifle, Energy Weapon, Perception, and Brawling. Some had limited use, like Demolitions, Swim, and Gambling. And then there were Metallurgy (two uses: to identify free money in a mine, to diagnose a car's issue--and an NPC you could recruit could just fix it himself), Cryptography (one use, though it's to get a lot of good stuff), and Bureaucracy (that one makes sense actually). The ultimate example: the IBM DOS port has a Combat Shooting skill, which can only be bought at character creation. No one--not even Brian Fargo, the man who ''created'' the game--can figure out what it does; hackers and others have come to the conclusion is does absolutely, positively ''nothing''.
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