A couple of thoughts occurred to me while reading through the thread again this morning:
Resolving the wits vs. charisma (empathy?) conundrum for healing - why not have it 'float' ,e.g. use wits for physical healing and empathy for helping people recover from shock/trauma? I'm assuming here of course that mind points will be a feature of the system as they are in Coriolis? I'm all for anchoring skills to specific attributes, but there are going to be situations where mixing them up will make more sense - Agility for close combat with a dagger / rapier vs. strength for a club, anyone? One of the wits-type skills like 'Insight' could easily float the other way - one aspect for understanding 'things', one for understanding people...
Going waaaay back to the specialisation debate that started around page 2, I find myself in the 'Talent' camp. I like the idea of specialisation, I think it's a good way of discriminating characters and adding a bit of flavour, but I also don't like long lists (of skills or anything else for that matter). I played a game called 'The Void' about 18 months ago which has a similar dice pool mechanic, but it had, I kid you not, over 100 skills, including 3 different boating skills - in a SciFi Survival Horror game! It also had a monstrously long list of talents and disadvantages, which felt way overdone.
To that end, how would people feel about a single talent called 'Specialisation' or, hang on...'Mastery' that you could take to give you, e.g. a +2 to a specific aspect of a skill, e.g. Axes or Surgery? Having it as a talent, so you have to invest the XP, I think gives some reflection of the time and focus needed to hone skills in specific areas. You just pick it every time you want to specialise in something and agree what aspect of the skill it influences with your friendly GM.
Well it doesn't have a long list of skills, you get to create your own, that way you get the range of a long list, and uniqueness of options, while keeping it simple,
The only long list I want to see is of monsters, not skills, not focused sub skills, nor talents (because that just trades one list for another),
I think we're in violent agreement here - neither your free-form list of skills, nor my generic 'Mastery' need introduce 'bloat', which I think everyone on this forum seems to agree is the common enemy.
The one aspect of your model that I'm not keen on, and one reason I sit firmly in the 'Talent Camp' on this subject, is the part where you suggest introducing both sub-skills and
sub-attributes (if I recall your proposal correctly). Could it work? Yes. My concern is that it's too fundamental a change - there seems to be a common core to all the FL games, although each has it's own unique mechanics (Praying to the Icons, Pushing, etc.). It's not that it's massively complicated, but it is more
complicated. For me, this has the potential to add complexity to character generation as well and perhaps strays too close to creating a different game. I believe the Talent option stays closer to the 'spirit' of the core and would prefer to stick to a tighter list of attributes.
Each to his own though - once we get it back to our respective tables, it's our game - I'm pretty sure Fria Ligan won't send someone round to confiscate the rulebook if they think I'm doing it wrong