Character Creation

Note: this article is a work in progress.
This page explains in detail how you create your player character. The summary below is a helpful overview. Grab a character sheet and follow these steps:  
  • Choose your name.
  • Decide on your age.
  • Choose your species.
  • Your homeland is Bridgeport County.
  • Choose your story.
  • Choose your archetype.
  • Choose your motivation.
  • Choose your big dream.
  • Choose your dark secret.
  • Spend points on your attributes.
  • Spend points on your skills.
  • Choose your starting talents.
  • Choose your starting strengths.
  • Choose your starting weaknesses.
  • Pick your gear.
  • Decide your appearance.
 

Species

All playable species are humanoid. Selecting a species doesn't have any impact on the basic attributes but instead gives you specific perks.   List of available species.  

Homeland

Player characters may have been born elsewhere and have some vague memories, but they all grew up somewhere in Bridgeport County. This is to limit the initial knowledge of the world and make travel to distant places more interesting for everyone.  

Story

The story tells who you seem to be to others. You may actually be an assassin as archetype, but are wandering the world as storyteller. You should give this some thoughts, as other players might ask and the GM might need the info for making NPCs properly react to you.
Story & Archetype: Po the Monk's story is beggar, as he roams the streets in shappy robes, asking for food. His archetype is spy, as he is gathering information for his organization.
 

Archetype

The archetypes – which can also be called “roles,” “professions” or “careers” – are based on the game world, and help the players grasp the setting. The archetype determines what type of person you are, your background and role in the group. Your archetype will influence your attributes, your skills, your starting gear and what starting talents you can learn.   Archetypes can feel stereotypical, and they are meant to be. Picking an archetype is a quick way for yourself and the other players to get an immediate feel for your character. But remember that your character is more than just his archetype. The archetype is just a starting point toward creating a unique player character.   List of archetypes.  

Motivation

This sums up why are you doing the things you do and should guide your long-term actions. It could be really unique in combination with your archetype: maybe you are an assassin but try to create a better world by killing only corrupt and evil people. Or you are trying to mend destroyed flora and fauna by teaching people to preserve it, or by actively trying to keep them away from what needs protection.  

Age

The next step is choosing your age. Age is divided into three categories: young (up to 25 years), adult (26–50 years), and old (50+ years). You choose your age freely. Write down your choice on your character sheet. Your chosen age category affects your attributes and your skills. Read more about these below. Note: the age ranges in brackets are for humans and might be different for other races, just think about which of the three categories your character would fit in best.  

Attributes

Your character has four attributes that indicate your basic physical and mental capabilities, each rated on a scale from 1 to 5. Your attributes are used when you roll dice to perform actions in the game, and also determine how much damage of various kinds you can withstand before you become Broken.   Starting Scores: When you create your player character, you can distribute a number of points across your attributes. How many points is determined by your age – see the table below. You can assign no less than 2 and no more than 4 points to any attribute or 5 points to your key attribute (defined by your archetype).
AGEATTRIBUTE POINTS
Young15
Adult14
Old13
  STRENGTH - Raw muscle power and brawn.
AGILITY - Body control, speed, and motor skills.
WITS - Sensory perception, intelligence, and sanity.
EMPATHY - Personal charisma and ability to manipulate others.
 

Skills

Your skills are the knowledge and abilities you have acquired during your life. They are important, as they determine, along with your attributes, how effectively you can perform certain actions in the game. There are twelve basic skills. Skills are measured by skill level on a scale from 0 to 5. The higher the number, the better.   No Skill Level? You can always roll for a skill even if you have no level in that skill – in that case you only use the associated attribute for the skill in question, and gear.   Starting Skill Levels: When you create your player character, you distribute a number of points to your skills. How many points is determined by your age – see the table on the right. You can only start the game with a skill level 3 in your archetype skills – all other skills are limited to a starting level of 0 or 1. You can increase your skill levels during the game.
AGESKILL POINTS
Young8
Adult10
Old12
 

Talents

Talents are tricks, moves and minor abilities that give you a small edge. They are more specialized than skills and give you a way to fine-tune your character. You can usually pick one talent when creating your character – but your choices are limited. Your archetype typically determines which talents you can choose from. You can learn more talents during the course of the game.  

Dark Secret

Your PC has a Dark Secret – something that you have experienced before the game begins that has left its mark on you or still threatens you in some way. Typically, the archetypes suggest Dark Secrets, but you are free to make up your own. Your Dark Secrets is primarily a tool for the GM to create stories with, but can also affect how many Experience Points you get after a game session.  

Big Dream

Your immediate goal in the game is to live another day. But in the long run, mere surviving is not enough. You also have a motivation of your own, something you dream will one day come to pass, that keeps you on your feet when it would be easier to just lay down and die. You can create your own big dream, or choose from the pre-made suggestions listed for your archetype. During play, you will gain extra XP if you risk or sacrifice something significant to move closer to seeing your big dream realized.  

Gear

You must write down all the items you are carrying. Write down one item per row in the Gear section on your character sheet. If it’s not listed on your sheet, you don’t have it with you.   Starting Gear: Your archetype typically determines what gear you can choose from at the start of the game. Clothes and gear used to carry other gear does not count toward your encumbrance and does not need to be noted down.  

Encumbrance:

You can carry a number of regular items equal to double your Strength. Use your base Strength score, not the temporary rating reduced by taking damage.  
HEAVY & LIGHT ITEMS: An item designated as Heavy counts as two regular items, and will typically take up two rows on your character sheet instead of one. Some heavy items count as three or even four normal items. At the opposite end of the spectrum, there are items that are designated as Light – they count as half of a regular item, and so you can list two Light items on one row on your sheet. Some light items count as a quarter of a normal item in terms of encumbrance - the weight of such items are written as ¼ in the gear lists.   TINY ITEMS: Items that are even smaller than Light are called Tiny. They are so small they don’t affect your encumbrance at all. The rule of thumb is: if the item can be hidden in a closed fist, it’s Tiny. Tiny items also need to be listed on your character sheet.
OVER ENCUMBERED: You can temporarily carry more than your normal encumbrance limit (Strength x 2 items). In this case, you need to make a roll for the Endure skill whenever you want to run in a Round of combat or walk a significant distance. If the roll fails, you must either drop what you are carrying, stay where you are, or suffer one point of damage to Agility and keep going.   MOUNTS: If you have a horse or other mount, you can let it carry some of your gear. The animal can carry a number of normal items equal to its Strength doubled, and twice that number if you dismount and lead it.
 

Consumables:

A special category of items in the game are called consumables. It can be food, water, ammunition, arrows, torches, air supply, electric power or others – depending on the setting of the game. You don’t need to track consumables at all times. The GM lets you know when resources are scarce and it’s time to start tracking them.  
Supply Rating: You track each consumable on your character sheet using a Supply rating. A higher rating is better.   Supply Roll: At regular intervals (depending on the consumable in question), you need to make a Supply roll. This means rolling a number of dice equal to the current Supply rating – but never more than six dice. For every 1 rolled, the Supply rating is decreased by one. When the Supply rating reaches zero, you’re out of the consumable.
Group Consumables: Usually, consumables are tracked individually, but they can also be tracked for the group as a whole, depending on the situation. The GM has final say.   Sharing: If you want to give a consumable to another person, you simply increase the recipient’s Supply rating as many steps as you decrease your own.
 

Appearance

You can describe your player character’s face, body and clothing on your character sheet.  

Name

Finally, you give your PC a name.  

Advancement

Experience

The things you learn during the game are measured in Experience Points (XP). You receive XP after the end of each game session. Talk it through and let the whole group discuss what has happened. For each of the below questions that you can reply “yes” to, you get one XP:  
  • Did you participate in the game session? You get one XP just for being there.
  • Did you risk or sacrifice something significant to realize your big dream?
  • Did you risk your life for the PC who is your buddy?
  • Did you perform another extraordinary action of some kind?
  • Specific games can award XP for other actions as well.
  • The GM has the final word when it comes to how much XP each character should get. Write down the XP on your character sheet.
 

Spending XP

You can use your XP to improve your skills and talents, or to learn new ones. You can only spend XP when your PC gets a chance to rest, or between game sessions.   Skills: To increase a skill level by one step costs a number of XP equal to the skill level you want to attain multiplied by 5. For example, an increase from skill level 2 to 3 costs 15 XP. You can only increase a skill level one step at a time.   Learning a new skill (at skill level 1) costs 5 XP. To do this however, you must either have used the skill and succeeded (without skill level) during the session, or be instructed by a teacher. The teacher must have at least skill level 1.   Talents: Learning a talent always costs 5 XP. It also requires a day of practice and a successful Wits roll (roll for the attribute only, and the roll cannot be pushed). You can make one attempt per day. If instructed by a teacher who has the talent, your roll succeeds automatically.  

Find a new dream

After any session, you may change your big dream and replace it with a new one. Try to connect the new dream to something that has happened during the course of the game.

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