Thursday, May 28, 2009


The third section of a character/reference sheet is the one that will vary more from one setting to another, as stated above. It's the "module" that allows for fine customization. So I'd better present the three different version of this section separately.

Ajsalium. In the fantasy setting of Ajsalium PCs will have some special powers that clearly make them stand out from the common man. Some examples have been provided before (a cleric's "prayers", a paladin's "lay on hands", and a fighter's "tactical maneuvers"); more examples would be the ability of a druid to polymorph into an animal shape, a thief's ability to pick pockets unnoticed or the night-unstopable rage of a barbarian. All these powers will be listed in the appropriate section of the Ajsalium compendium dedicated to the character classes, and the way they are used explained there, so there's no point in going into more detail here. The way I plan to run Ajsalium this is the part that will likely be used the least, with combat and skills taking the prominent part of the game.
Absolutely, this is a ripoff from the Dungeons & Dragons game, and when talking about this I'm specifically thinking on the third edition of said game (which is the best one, in my humble opinion).

Necronomicon. For this investigative horror setting, this section of the character sheet will likely be the most used. Here there will appear some real-life areas of expertise, such as economics, history, mechanics, intimidation, computers, flirting, chemistry, biology... A list from which to select will be provided; every expertise will have an associated skill from which it "originates" (SOC and KNO will be the most common ones). The number of expertises related to any given skill stat cannot be higher than the score of that skill; for example, someone with a KNO of 2 will only be able to select up to two expertises related to Knowledge. In game, they are used just by stating they are used, as if they were always successfull. The GM will reveal any clues, but only if he had arranged there was some clues to be found using that expertise. Also, characters may "invest" in extra points for their expertises; stating they want to employ one of those the GM should give extra information when revealing the clue, information that may clarify the importance of the clue, or even another clue that would make the characters come closer to their goal, or embark them on a side quest.
Again, this is not original, but copied from the "Gumshoe" system used by Pelgrane Press (as mentioned in an earlier post). I liked their reasoning than an investigative game should be about interpreting the clues and not about finding them.

Galaxtar. To be honest, I haven't given this part much thought, but so far I've settled for what would be an "advanced skills" rule. As with the expertises of Necronomicon a list of possible areas of (science-fictioned) expertises will be provided, and as above, those will be related to any of the seven basic skills. Again, maximum number of expertises associated with a skill will be limited to the score of said skill. The way to use these expertises will be similar to the way of using skills, with the only difference of adding three scores: the skill die roll plus the expertise's stat plus the associated skill's stat. This will result in significantly higher results, thus allowing the accomplishment of much more difficult actions. Thus will be reflected the heroic achievements of science fiction heroes against life threatening dangers.
Not to break a norm, this is too a ripoff, more or less, from the "Codex" system used by Margaret Weiss Productions.

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