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Adaptive Science does not allow you to skip the 1st Tier. It does allow you to get extra Knowledge and Science traits when creating your faction.
Interestingly enough playtesters complained about this trait a lot early on (and traits like this) because they were getting in lots of games and after creating your faction you are getting progression and mission awards. So several found it not worth the extra costs for the trait.
In reality what it does is allow you to get further into the Knowledge and Science traits quicker. Since many of them are Armory traits you can even use it for equipment or weapons making it even more efficient and a solid way to reach 2nd tier or traits that would otherwise be harder to reach.
So there is a trade off on this one. Personally I like it and I have seen many people using it for what I mentioned above.
Interesting! Followup question: I am currently builing a Fey faction that fluffwise has a lot of human warfare elements to it.
- I have build a T3 class with Forbidden Lore --> Scientific Adaptability --> Advanced Melee Weaponry -Evolutionary Branch.
- Adaptive Science combines the Scientific Adaptability trait with the Melee Combat Specialist trait into a single trait that belongs to both branches.
Q: Does Forbidden Lore give the rest of my faction acces to both branches of the "combined trait", or only to the Scientific Adaptability branch?
Even though Adaptive Science makes the trait count as both branches, you still only have permission through Forbidden Lore to unlock the single branch "Scientific Adaptability" in this case.
What is nice though is that through the traits there if you take them as Class Traits you can really open up a wide variety of traits through it and get all sorts of access to different weapons and armor throughout Humanoids. A very solid concept build.
Alright, Thanks for Clearing that up!