Talents are exceptional knacks, aptitudes or other feats of prowess that, through their extraordinary deeds in risky circumstances, characters can acquire after character creation. To repeat: Characters cannot buy talents with starting XP, unless the GM says otherwise.
In general, talents should be earned. That means paying with XP acquired from gameplay sessions. Ideally, a character would get a chance during a session to pull off some exceptional feat, and earn XP from it. Then the character could spend that XP to acquire a talent, to represent a new, special skill the character unlocked under adversity. If a player wants to spend future XP on a talent, it’s a good idea for that player to show how his or her character is “learning” that talent. Choices of talents can be inspired by roleplaying or combat moments that stand out strongly to you.
Maverick Sniper 10 XP “I can’t believe you even tried that shot…and I can’t believe you pulled it off!”
When Aiming at a target at Long or Extreme range, your skill check is at -1 Luck (making it more likely that your Variance Dice will be helpful).
Disciplined Sharpshooter 5 XP “I’ve never seen anyone so consistent at that distance.”
When Aiming at a target at Long or Extreme range, you roll 2 fewer Variance Dice, to a minimum of 0.
Frenzied Berserker 10 XP “The red mist comes down and the rage of my ancestors consumes me.”
If you made a Striking check to attack an enemy last turn, and make a Striking check to attack an enemy this turn, you get a +10 bonus to this turn’s Striking check and a +10 bonus to Resilience starting as soon as you attempt the Striking roll and lasting until the beginning of your next turn.
Nimble Rogue 10 XP “Slippery little bastard! Nothing can touch him!”
When Dodging against hostile attacks (not environmental hazards, such as the explosion from a missile fired at the ship you’re aboard—-this talent applies only to dodging against foes attacking you personally) you roll at -1 Luck.
Polymath 5 XP “As it happens, I learned a bit about Utir ceremonial dance during med school…”
Choose a Knowledge skill. You can use this Knowledge skill in place of any other Knowledge skill, but you roll at +2 Variance Dice when doing so.
Efficient Medic 5 XP “You’re not going to bleed out on me, not on my watch. Slap a trauma patch on it and walk it off.”
When using Medicine to restore a patient’s Condition Track while in a dangerous situation, you can restore two stages of the Condition Track with one turn’s attention instead of only one.
Lifesaving Surgeon 5 XP “No, you’re NOT dying on me now! Inject the nanopaste and massage his hearts!”
Your surgical skill is such that you have a chance to save the life of a dead patient brought to you quickly enough. Depending on the situation and the species this is usually between one and two minutes after vital signs cease. Saving a life requires a good surgical suite and plenty of medical supplies as well. If this is the case, you can make a Surgery check with a threshold of (100 – victim’s Resilience base skill) and a success returns the patient to Dying. From there Surgery can be used to restore the patient further.