Difference between revisions of "Book:Character Creation"
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Players need to create characters before they can join the game. One could create a one-armed, colorblind, psychic carpenter who charges into battle wielding his oversized pipe wrench. One could create a charismatic brigand, robbing from the rich, giving to the poor, and wearing fantastic tights.
Characters can be classic or original, simple or complex; the choice is the player's.
The Character Sheet is the central item to the Immortal Legacy game. It is where you keep track of your character's condition, abilities, hurts and health, weaknesses, strengths, possessions, contacts, and anything relevant to staying inside that character and playing the game. As such, you should get to know it pretty well, as you'll need to reference it fairly often. At the end of this book is a blank character sheet which you may photocopy or scan and make copies of.
Now let's take you through the steps of creating a new character.
| To create a character for Immortal Legacy, just follow these steps.
Step One: The Big Idea
Alright, this is where it all begins! Step One is all about defining your character: description and back-story, behavior, goals, and beliefs. Before you worry about any game rules or hard numbers, you should have a good idea about the narrative side of your character.
The first thing you should do when creating a character is to come up with a Concept. Concept is what the character does. This means you need a rough idea of what kind of character you want to play. Some example Concepts might be orphan, soldier, farmer, witch, magician, bounty hunter, or diplomat. Concept can also very easily be the character's occupation, and many times is. Remember: most people in Immortal Legacy don't go off to become famous or notorious — that's what makes heroes and villains special. So maybe your character would pick up a trade somewhere along the line; most people know one. More elaborate Concepts might be blind child prodigy musician, genius inventor, or daredevil archaeologist.
Alignment is the next of these questions you have to ask about the character. Alignment is what the character believes. Not necessarily a concept of spirituality or religion (though these can be alignments), it's more about the character's limitations. Alignment is probably the least important of the three, so if you can't come up with anything, don't worry, there aren't any rules that correspond to your alignment.
Ask yourself: is the character lawful or opportunistic? Does she believe in Government or Anarchy? Does she subscribe to the idea of Good and Evil? Which one does she believe she is (and which one is she really)? Spiritualist or Materialist? Industrialist, Entropist, or Naturalist? Animalist or Humanist? Religious or Atheist? Hedonist or Pragmatist? Egoist or Altruist? Liberal or Conservative? Fascist? Socialist? Communist? Use some of these if you like. (Do you need to look up any of these?)
Motivation is another integral part of defining what purpose your character has. Motivation is what your character wants. This serves a number of functions in the game. First off, it lets the GM in on what you, as a player, desire out of the game. If your character wants to become rich and make the world a better place, there are a number of ways the GM can go about challenging you with this. Or if his aims are narrower, such as wanting to recover your ancestral sword of his forefathers' time, the GM can look for a way to slip something into the plot. Second, it helps give you a reason for playing. There are no "winners" in role-playing games; winning is about having fun. But having a goal can't hurt. There is no list of suggestions for motivations, but here are some ideas.
Is your character running from something or someone? Does the character want to acquire something? For whom will he acquire it? Is the character protecting someone or something? Is he hiding someone or something? What about revenge? This is an old classic. Hate and Love are very strong concepts. Who or what does the character Love or Hate? If that is too strong, what about Like or Dislike? Does the character have an occupation? Is he happy? What changes would the character like to bring about? What impact would he like to have?
Personality is great for describing how to role play your character. Personality is what your character is like. It's a listing of traits that describe your character's behavior and what people might say about her. Personality helps a player get a feel for how to role play the character's actions and reactions, speak as the character, and represent the feel of the character. Choosing a Personality for your character is very simple — just choose at least one of the Personality Traits listed below. The less Traits you choose, the more one dimensional and predictable your character will be. The more you choose, the more dynamic and three dimensional. Choose as many as you like, but keep in mind that it will be more difficult to accurately role play your character if you choose conflicting traits or too many.
Here are two examples of the above information for some familiar characters.
Jack, the titular character from Jack and the Beanstalk. Jack was told to go to the market with a cow and sell it. Instead he came home with magic beans which grew and allowed Jack to find the castle of a giant in the clouds, from whom he stole several things. Ultimately, Jack dispatched said giant. If your character was Jack, you might pick "poor farm boy" as your Concept. For Personality, you might put "Curious, Gullible, Opportunistic". Curious for his desire to investigate the giant's castle, gullible for being sold magic beans, and opportunistic for taking what he thought was a good haul from the giant. His Motivation might be "To attain wealth." Finally, his Alignment might be "Egoist, Supernatural", for he was a bit selfish taking from someone else and he had enough belief in magic beans to bring them home to his mother instead of cash for the cow.
King Arthur, the legendary British leader. Depending on which book you read, or movie you watch, Arthur's character differs a bit. In any case, it is undisputed he was a just, powerful ruler with knights at his command, and a drive to protect his domain. If King Arthur was your character, you might choose "destined ruler" as your Concept. His Personality could be "Charismatic, Humble, Responsible", all traits you could see in many depictions of Arthur. For Motivation, you might put "Defend Britain", for surely that was his ultimate goal. Lastly, his Alignment could be "Justice, Faith, Duty", for he was a King that ruled with the law, honored the call of his maker to find the Holy Grail, and served with a sense of duty.
Step Two: It's Alive!
After choosing a Concept and completing step one, which is all about who your character is, you can now move on to step two, which deals with what your character can do in the game.
One of the most important choices a player can make about his or her character is the character's Race. With it comes possible boons and hindrances as well as a starting place for behavior, appearance, and physical traits. For more information on races, flip to the Races chapter located later in this book, which details many playable races for Immortal Legacy.
These are your character's core statistics. Every character and creature in Immortal Legacy has these 12 Attributes. They describe your character's natural potential and innate talent. Attributes have ranges from 1–10, with 1 being the lowest possible score and 10 being the highest. Non-human races have maximums that are higher or lower than 10, so it's important to first choose a Race.
At character creation, you receive 60 points to divide up between the 12 Attributes as you see fit, however your GM might give you more or fewer.
Any Attribute (not Skill) with a score of zero means the character is out of commission, one way or another. So, you need a rating of at least "1" in each Attribute. Even then, that's very low. A character with a "1" in Muscle would be near dead and a character with a "1" in Intellect would be near brain-dead. So it might be a good idea to have at least two in everything to start off with.
Below, Attributes are categorized into the categories of Physical, Mental, Social, and Spiritual.
|“||Skorna gripped her battle axe and sneered at the enormous bear in front of her. The beast roared as it stood on its hind legs, towering over her. Skorna couldn't help but smile as she lunged towards the mountain of teeth and fur and buried her weapon in its flank.||”|
This attribute represents a character's raw strength and power.
This affects how much damage is inflicted in combat and helps with tasks of brute force. Pull yourself up from a ledge, hold a door shut against intruders, lift a boulder above your head, or crush your opponents' skulls like little tin cans.
A strong character need not have giant, rippling muscles. One could have above-average strength thanks to genetic experimentation, cybernetic implants, or supernatural powers. A pig-tailed nine-year-old with a Muscle of 8 is a perfectly acceptable and interesting character concept.
A character with a poor Muscle score is a wimp, barely able to carry a backpack, and always needs others to open the pickle jar.
A character with a good Muscle score is a powerhouse: capable of untold feats of strength.
Some examples of muscular people include weightlifters, furniture movers, and Hercules.
|“||The court minstrels played a lively tune at the palace ball. The captain of the guard found a dance partner in Cyrilla, who danced as though the wind itself carried her. When the music stopped, he bowed respectfully and walked away with a smile. She walked away with his coin purse and the keys to the dungeon.||”|
Agility represents a character's physical reflexes and dexterity. In layman's terms, it is how fast and flexible someone is.
This stat comes into play during combat when dodging obstacles or blows, juggling knives, leaping a chasm, and depriving others of their wallets.
A character who is agile doesn't necessarily have to be small and lithe. A huge character that is fast with sharp reflexes is frightening indeed.
Characters with poor Agility scores are oafs: clumsy, slow, arthritic, and rigid. Characters with good Agility scores move fluidly: they're quick, graceful, and balanced.
Examples of highly agile folks include circus acrobats, contortionists, and cheetahs.
|“||The jungles of Jerothden were like soup; thick, damp, and hot. Drinnin hacked through the brush with a crude blade, blazing a trail for his weary companions. They staggered forward, drenched in sweat and gasping for air. He whistled an upbeat melody as he plowed onward like a team of oxen.||”|
Endurance is basically how tough a character is.
There is a big difference between being strong and being fit. A muscular person who is not fit could lift something very heavy, but will tire easily and could not run a marathon. Meanwhile, someone who does not look very strong, but is fit, could keep on running long after the unfit person has become exhausted.
This attribute comes into play by reducing the amount of damage sustained in combat, and when testing to see if one can continue doing something strenuous like treading water or holding one's breath. It can also be a measure of one's pain threshold.
A character with a poor Endurance score is a delicate flower who tires easily, is constantly sick, and always gets nauseated on carnival rides. A character with a good Endurance score has an iron stomach, a high tolerance for pain, and an active immune system.
Some examples of highly endurant people include soccer players, masochists, and Atlas.
|“||Beneath the light of a brass oil lamp, Lioraine pored over ancient tomes in the vaults of the Congress Arcanum. She had worked through the night, meticulously recording formulae and deductions on sheets of parchment. Finally, Lioraine set down her quill and beamed. The secrets of an ancient ritual were now hers to command.||”|
Intellect is a character's raw brain power.
Call it IQ, learning curve, or smarts, an intellectual character has an easier time remembering information, thinking in abstract ways, analyzing data, learning new things, and solving puzzles or mysteries.
Intellect is used to tinker with machinery, perform surgery, and create works of art.
A character with a poor Intellect score is a buffoon for whom learning and problem solving is impossible, and who rarely gets a punchline. A character with a high Intellect score is possessed of an active mind which analyzes situations and information with frightening speed.
Some examples of highly intellectual people include detectives, scientists, artists, and Merlin.
|“||Phineas sat in the solar of his manor house with an old friend. They watched a fire crack and pop in the hearth as they exchanged stories. A servant ferried two goblets of wine over to Phineas and his guest. As he was about to enjoy his first sip, Phineas noted an unusual look in his friend's eyes. He tossed the assuredly poisoned goblet aside and withdrew his dagger.||”|
This attribute is essentially a mix of wisdom, experience, foresight, and empathy.
A character who can do complex calculations in their head may not have the chops to tell when someone is lying to them. Where Intellect is book smarts, Insight is street smarts.
Insight helps characters understand what others are feeling, planning, or trying to communicate. It also lets characters call on their vast stores of knowledge.
A character with a poor Insight score is a naïve, dense, gullible sap, and is the first in line for a fraud's snake oil. A character with a good Insight score is a fountainhead of wisdom, able to read others like books, and is always the first person friends call for advice.
Among Insightful people are numbered bartenders, diplomats, psychologists, and Odin.
|“||Crouched on a thick tree bough, Akare lurked above the forest road, obscured by foliage. He sat motionless, waiting. A pair of soldiers on horseback trotted up the road. Akare wondered to himself if his quarry would be able to deliver any last words before his short swords found him. He smiled to himself, drew his swords, and dropped from the tree.||”|
Ever hear of a villain in a story who was "cunning?" This means that person could seize opportunities and could decipher how to plot and scheme to make things work.
Cunning helps in aiming attacks during combat. Cunning can be used for hearing, seeing, or finding what others might not. Cunning allows you to leverage all the good hiding places.
A character with a poor Cunning score is oblivious, easily-surprised, and has to stare at those 3D optical illusions for hours. A character with a good Cunning score is a cognitive master who can identify important minutia at a glance, eavesdrop on distant conversations, and never loses his car keys.
Iago from Othello is one of the most cunning characters ever. Also numbered among the cunning are hunters, lawyers, and Loki.
|“||With a gentle shake of his spice mill, Tolgo's preparations were complete. He carried the aromatic bisque to the dining table where the ambassador had been waiting in candlelight. Tolgo ladled a serving into the porcelain bowl before his rosy-cheeked guest. She smiled intimately at him. The quickest way to the heart is through the stomach, which meant those state secrets were as good as his.||”|
Charm is the measure of a character's likeability.
If you're benevolent and charming, you can carouse with the best of them and make good first impressions. If you're nefarious and charming, you can bribe the pants off a politician and make people offers they can't refuse.
Charm helps with getting others to follow your lead, seducing the king's daughter, and herding cats.
A character with a poor Charm score is a real drag: unlikable, bashful, boring, or annoying. Characters with a good Charm score are the life of the party: amicable, sociable, and guiding.
Those with great charm: sterling conversationalists, courtesans, animal trainers, and Hathor.
|“||The raucous tavern brawl came to an abrupt end as Celeste raised her voice in song. It rang out melodic and beautiful. Combatants began to relax and put down their makeshift weapons. All eyes turned their gaze to the songstress, whose otherworldly voice drew out a serenity in the hearts of those listening. She took a small bow and breathed a sigh of relief as her spell activated.||”|
Presence is the measure of how striking a figure you present to the world.
This has a lot to do with physical appearance and body language, but quite a bit to do with how one speaks as well.
Having a good Presence allows a character to deliver flawless performances, intimidate opponents, and assume the guise of another.
A character with a poor Presence score is overlooked, easily-forgettable, completely nonthreatening, and makes a bad public speaker. A character with a good Presence score is always noticed, always remembered, excels at acting and orating, and brings saloons to screeching halts with a step through the door.
Some examples of folks with a strong presence include models, gladiators, motivational speakers, and Zeus.
|“||Lagash glanced across the room. His friend was overwhelmed by a pair of armor-clad soldiers — two against one; hardly fair. He put his fingers to his lips and trumpeted a shrill whistle. The soldiers snapped their heads in his direction just in time to see Lagash raising a blatantly obscene gesture. He dug his hooves into the ground and brandished his horns while they charged in his direction.||”|
Persuasion is, quite simply, the ability to get people to do what you want them to do.
This does not necessarily have to do with how one speaks or acts, but encompasses everything about how someone pulls others' strings.
Persuasion comes in handy when trying to haggle for a better price, planting rumors, teasing opponents, or trying to convince the king he'd be better off naming you as heir.
Characters with poor Persuasion scores can't lie to save their lives, rarely get what they want, and fall short at good come-backs. Characters with a good Persuasion score are manipulative and convincing: they make great liars, negotiators, and insult comics.
Persuasive people are those such as politicians, diplomats, con artists, and The Sirens.
|“||It was more mist than creature, and it seemed to ooze from the open sarcophagus. The specter raised spindly digits and its mournful eyes seemed hollow. Gwen didn't run, in fact, her demeanor barely changed. She closed her eyes and recited a silent prayer. Her sword was readied in an instant. To grant such a spirit rest would be a great honor.||”|
This one is self explanatory. Bravery, valor, morale, guts.
Courage helps in deciding initiative in combat, or if a character can react quickly enough to avoid some nasty pitfall. When a character comes up against something truly frightening or dangerous, their Courage will be tested to keep from running away or being paralyzed with fear. Courage can also help keep a character safe from vile curses and from the attacks of ghostly foes.
Characters with low Courage are cowardly, nervous, trembling shells of human beings, always afraid of what's around the next corner. A character with a high Courage score is heroic, tenacious, and laughs in the face of certain death.
Some who might be thought courageous are enlisted soldiers, firefighters, exorcists, and Thor.
|“||Brem stood face to face with the eldritch thing from the Deep Worlds. Boy, it was certainly weird-looking. His pals writhed around on the floor gibbering some nonsense about the end of days. The creature cocked what passed for a head to the side quizzically, then loosed a maddening howl. Brem snarled, unimpressed, and howled right back.||”|
Psyche is a term for the mental and spiritual clarity of a character.
Whenever a character experiences something horrific or traumatic, Psyche is what keeps them grounded and rooted in reality. Psyche also aids in seeing through illusions and detecting supernatural phenomenon.
A character with no Psyche has gone (or maybe always has been) completely raving mad. A character with a poor Psyche score is mentally fragile, easily unhinged, and a prime target for madness. A character with a good Psyche score is mentally stable, able to withstand the freaky and unnatural as if it were commonplace.
Some examples of people with high Psyches include counselors, oracles, mediums, and Odysseus.
|“||A beam of light shot from the end of the sorcerer's crooked wand and struck Grek with a thud. It was the strangest sensation; he could feel the spell trying to shape his body like clay. With a grimace of effort, Grek flexed his scaly muscles and broke free of the vile magic — he liked his body just the way it was.||”|
Self-Control represents a character's spiritual discipline.
If someone loses control of themselves, they usually end up in trouble. Self-Control may be called on when a character is taunted, presented with temptation, or are trying to "put the gun down." It also aids in resisting supernatural compulsion such as mind control, teleportation, or being turned into a pig.
A character with a low Self-Control score is unable to resist temptation: easily persuaded, addicted, angered, or dominated. A character with a high Self-Control score is a moral powerhouse: calm, behaved, steadfast, and restrained.
Popular self control gurus include anyone who walks on hot coals for fun, ascetics, marital artists, and Ma'at.
Speed is a measurement of how many feet per second your character can move about. The Speed score is generally determined by a creature's Size. All playable races detailed in this book have a Speed of 10, which is almost 7 miles per hour. You can try to move faster than this by making a Dash check (see Chapter 6: Skills)
A creature's Size represents its mass and how much space it occupies. The table below lists the Size levels, as well as some typical weights (in pounds), and typical heights (in feet). Size is more about a creature's mass than its dimensions, therefore there are examples which may fall outside these ranges.
The Size gets subtracted from Attack Rolls and Evasion Rolls. Therefore, a positive number is a penalty and a negative number is a bonus. When creatures of different sizes engage in combat, the smaller one is harder to hit and inversely, the larger one is a bigger target. Your Size is also used to calculate your Weighted Damage score, since an attack from a larger creature deals more damage than one from a smaller creature. See Chapter 10: Combat for more information about attacks and damage.
You must also apply your Size score to a few skill checks, such as certain uses of Stealth, Perception, and Search. In feats of strength, larger creatures are many times stronger than smaller ones, so certain uses of Might, Grip, and Gymnastics allow larger creatures to add a bonus for each point in Size difference. See Chapter 6: Skills for more information about the involvement of Size in various skill checks.
|Size||MUS||HP||Typical Weight||Typical Height||Example|
|−5||−25||3||0.5–2||0.25–0.5||Bat, gray squirrel|
|−4||−20||5||2–10||0.5–1||Human infant, brown rat, cottontail rabbit|
|−3||−15||10||10–25||1–1.75||Human toddler, falcon, house cat|
|−2||−10||20||25–50||1.75–3||Lynx, beaver, border collie|
|−1||−5||25||50–100||3–5||Firna, grey wolf, cheetah|
|0||0||30||100–250||5–7||Human adult, mastiff, wild boar|
|1||5||35||250–500||7–9||Kulgeri, Gorilla, black bear, bull shark|
|2||10||40||500–1,000||9–11||Grizzly, tiger, bottlenose dolphin, alligator|
|3||15||55||1,000–2,500||11–13||Horse, bison, tiger shark|
|4||20||75||2,500–5,000||13–16||Hippopotamus, white rhino, great white shark|
|5||25||100||5,000–10,000||16–20||Juren, elephant, stegosaurus, colossal squid|
|6||30||200||10,000–25,000||20–25||Tyrannosaurus rex, triceratops, orca|
|8||40||675||50,000–100,000||30–40||Sperm whale, humpback whale|
|9||45||1250||100,000–250,000||40–60||Argentinosaurus, fin whale|
|10||50||2500||250,000–500,000||60–90||Amphicoelias fragillimus, blue whale|
|11||55||5000||500,000–1,000,000||90–150||Rampaging radioactive reptilian monsters|
Step Three: I Know Kung Fu!
What good is a role-playing character without nifty powers and skills? Fortunately in the Immortal Legacy game, anything you want your character to do or have (from picking a lock to hurling fireballs to poison immunity) is available for purchase à la carteThese abilities come in the form of skills, trumps, and special powers. A character can gain access to more abilities in return for choosing faults, which help define the character’s limitations.
Skill ranks represent a character's expertise and experience with a given activity. The more ranks in a skill, the better the character gets. Regular skills are used for mundane tasks, such as climbing or hiding, while Weapon Skills enable a character to better pose an offensive threat.
At character creation, you receive 25 skill ranks to spread out over your skills. Don't forget about Occupations, Weapon Skills, and Elemental Skills! There are too many of these to put them all on the sheet, so be sure you aren't skipping them. They are important! Skills are detailed in Chapter 5.
Trumps, Faults, and Special Powers
At character creation, you receive 15 Expoints to purchase Trumps and Special Powers.
Trumps can be purchased to customize your character with benefits and bonuses. Some trumps can be purchased multiple times, granting further benefits each time. Trumps are detailed in Chapter 7.
Faults can be chosen to further give your character a personality, and with that come hindrances. Because they cause your character some difficulty, faults give you more Expoints to use on other things. You can use the points from faults to buy attributes (which cost 6 points), skills (which cost 2 points), trumps, or special powers. Faults are detailed in Chapter 8.
Special Powers are supernatural abilities your character can utilize. Unlike trumps and faults, you purchase special powers in ranks up to a maximum of 5. Each rank brings more powerful abilities. Special powers are detailed in Chapter 9.
Spellcasting is one of the available special powers. By casting spells, characters can throw fireballs, breathe underwater, and fly through the skies. Once characters have access to the realm of Magic, they can learn its wonders by locating or researching magic spells. Spells are powered by one or more Elements, and can behave a little differently depending on the Element used. A character has no limit to the number of spells they know, but specializing usually makes for a more powerful character at the expense of diversity. The rules of Magic are detailed in Chapter 13, and spells are detailed in Chapter 14.
Health Points (or HP) are a measure of a character’s very life force. Their decline could be due to all sorts of physical problems: injuries, disease, old scars, etc. Simply put, Health Points represent how much "life" the character possesses.
A creature's Size determines how many health points it has. Most characters begin the game with 30 Health Points, so long as they're about human-sized. Damage in combat lessens the character's remaining HP. When you rest, you gain back health. When health reaches zero, a character becomes unconscious. When health drops below zero, a character dies. It's curtains, ya hear? Curtains!
For more information about how to lose or gain health, see Chapter 4: Life and Death.
Action Points (or AP) represent the number of activities you can perform during your turn in combat. Everything costs AP, from swinging a sword, to launching a spell, to grabbing a monkey out of your pocket. Most everyone starts off with 6 AP. See Chapter 9: Combat for more details on AP and its usage.
Magic Defense (or MDEF) is a character's supernatural fortitude in opposition to magic power. Think of it as invisible armor that keeps out spells. Some races start with MDEF points. See the Magic Defense entry in the Trumps chapter for more details.
Magic spells and abilities are fueled directly by Magic Points (or MP), which represent the raw pool of magic power available to a character. A character might refer to this as mana.
MP is used to power special abilities, much the same way as gasoline is used to power cars. Every character has an MP score, whether or not they have the ability to cast spells, or any other special abilities.
Characters begin the game with 10 MP. Those capable of casting spells must choose which Attribute is tied to their magical talents, and they can add the score of that Attribute to their total MP. For example, if Lioraine chooses Intellect as her Casting Attribute, and she has 8 points in it, she begins the game with 18 MP. See Chapter 13: Magic for more information about MP and its usage.
Spirit Points (or SP), are the inner reserve of supernatural power that is inherent in every being. A character might refer to this as ki.
SP are harnessed through meditation and self awareness. They are used to enable great feats of strength and bravado, and to defy what is thought normally possible.
Characters begin the game with 10 SP. Those capable of wielding spirit power (by taking the Harness Spirit Trump) can add their Self-Control score to their total SP. For instance, if Bram has the Harness Spirit Trump, and he has 6 points in it, he begins the game with 16 SP.
Fate is the force that guides all life, whether it's counted as favor or disfavor of the gods, good or rotten luck, mere chance, or a destiny predetermined by a prophecy. Whatever the case may be, each individual has a knack for escaping or not escaping dangerous situations. Dice rolls in general, the cornerstone of role-playing games, are a question of Fate.
Characters begin the game with 3 Fate Points, and may never have more than 5 Fate Points at any time.
You can use a Fate Point to allow any one of the following:
You can use a Fate Point to re-roll a failed roll once (though the GM may allow re-roll after re-roll costing point after point of Fate, we suggest just limiting it to one re-roll), or force another character or enemy to re-roll the dice (Fate has saved your neck, so to speak, by a hair's width).
You can use a Fate Point to attempt an act of bravado and heroism in game. Using a Fate Point in this manner gives the character a +10 bonus on any roll before you roll it, or you can use a Fate point to add a +5 after you roll it. This reflects the character's ability to use strength and courage to overcome a dramatic situation.
Health Points into Magic Points
Magic-users may call upon their Fate when MP are spent. Spending a Fate Point allows the spellcaster to use her body as fuel, exchanging 5 Health Points where 1 MP would be due (this is described further on in the chapter on Magic).
Step Four: Done, Done, and Done
Now there are just a few finishing touches to be made regarding your new character.
The spaces marked Sexuality, Age, Weight, Height, Hair, Eyes, and Skin, are there for you to fill in a little bit about what your character looks like. Some players also enjoy coming up with detailed descriptions of clothes, scars, tattoos, and so on. Your character can be as simple as you like, but the more time you spend on rounding them out, the more realized they will be.
Some players start with a name, other players end with one. However you do it, you will need to come up with a name for your new character. And do try and make it appropriate to the setting and maturity level of your gaming group, okay? Grumblebutt the Gaseous might be a little silly, while Joe the Blacksmith doesn't have much flair.
Inventory and Wealth
Brains, brawn, and bravado might not cut the monstrous mustard by themselves, hero. Sometimes the difference between an early grave and eternal glory is what kind of gadgets and gear your characters have on them. This is where you write down all the things you buy, find, or maybe even steal. See Chapter 11: Equipment for all the goodies you can acquire.
Filling in the Gaps
If there are things on your character sheet that are not yet filled in (possibly in the Attack and Defense sections), don't despair. The chapters which follow will give you more detailed information regarding the game rules and you will be able to fill those empty boxes in.
As game time passes, you may feel the need to beef up your character. It also makes perfect sense in-game — a soldier would spend time working out to up his Muscle, a monk spends his life attempting to refine his Self-Control. As characters progress through the storyline, they gain experience, which is represented in the game as Expoints.
Short for Experience Points, Expoints are a measure of how your character has evolved. What pitfalls have they overcome? What monsters have they slain? What villains have they defeated?
At the end of every game session, the GM should decide how much experience to give to the players, with variance depending on how well each character did. If a character took little part in the events, contributed little, and the player was distracted, the player deserves few Expoints.
Your character sheet has an entry for Expoints Earned and Expoints Spent.
At the end of every game session, the GM should decide how many Expoints to award each player, with variance depending on how well each character did.
Granting Expoints Fairly
The GM awards Expoints and Fate Points at the end of every game session. If a character took little part in the events, contributed little, and the player was distracted, the player deserves few Expoints.
Expoints should be granted based on the following factors.
- Showing up. If people show up and play, they deserve an Expoint. Every session. More tyrannical GMs may overlook this rule if a player comes especially late or is more disruptive than helpful, but generally that kind of behavior will only lead players to leave the group.
- Contribution to in game events. Despite whether the character single handedly defeated the super villain or simply helped the others cross an obstacle on their way to the villain's lair, if the character took an active part in events, an Expoint should follow.
- Role-playing. If the player did an admirable job in playing through his character's personality, motivation, and background, an Expoint point should be awarded here. To be honest, some players are great gamers, but horrible role-players. Don't worry so much. If they make a concerted effort to speak, act, and think like the character, even if it comes off poorly or not at all, an Expoint may be given.
- Dramatic Milestone. If the characters reach a climax or overtake an important plot point in the story through their deeds, an Expoint can be given out for each one.
- Challenges Overcome. GMs can hand out Expoints for each encounter survived or challenge met. Sometimes more or less Expoints will be earned depending on how the challenge was overcome. For instance, if the group steals the horses from the peaceful people of River's End, one Expoint is given to each player, but if the group negotiates with them for the horses, two Expoints could be given. If the players slaughter the entire population of the town and take the horses for themselves, maybe no Expoints are given.
Expoints are used like game stat currency. You can spend them to increase and augment almost anything about a character.
- Increasing an Attribute by one costs 6 Expoints.
- Increasing a Skill rank by one costs 2 Expoints.
- You can spend Expoints to gain a new Trump.
- Special Powers
- You can spend Expoints to gain new Special Powers or to upgrade existing ones.
- Health Points
- The Tempered Trump allows you to increase your maximum HP.
- Action Points
- The Nimble Combatant Trump allows you increase your AP.
- Magic Points
- The Magic Point Trump allows you to increase your MP.
- Spirit Points
- The Spirit Point Trump allows you to increase your SP.
- Fate Points
- Your GM can award Fate Points as you play the game for anything from a good decision to a funny quote.