Author Topic: "Advanced" Character Creation Opinions Sought  (Read 412 times)

Sturn

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"Advanced" Character Creation Opinions Sought
« on: February 06, 2021, 03:33:41 pm »
So, I've got several house rules that make character creation much more detailed. Selection of Backgrounds, an Age Group, and a Social Tier, when describing the character actually gives in-game affects such as a rank in a skill, adding a career skill, or possibly a talent. I also have Career Specializations. Once you choose a Career, it gives you 5 Career Skills. You then pick a Specialization under the Career, which gives you 3 more Career Skills. These selections can give bonus skill ranks, career skills, and even low tier talents.

A starting character can easily begin with two tier 1 talents and one tier 2 based on choices during character creation. I've reduced base XP granted due to the extra talents, career skills, and ranks that may be granted to make the characters on par with core in strength. I've greatly expanded talent lists especially when it comes to crafting and fighting styles. I have several tier 1 talents such as Martial Training, Shipwright, Sailor, Armorsmith, Linguist, Artist, Outfitter, Bowyer, etc which go along with several of the added options during character creation.

Without getting into further detail, I'm wondering if I should simplify things such as removing the granted talents. They talents DO help differentiate the various options I've described above. But I'm afraid it's getting overly complicated. I like it and it's easy for me to grasp it all, but I created it. I'm worried that new players will be overwhelmed with not only the added decisions (choosing an age, specialization, social tier, background), but with the options they have to select within each of those added steps.

Thoughts? I can answer any questions of confusion about what I'm doing. I just didn't want to post 40 pages of a rough draft and ask someone to read through all of that. Hopefully I've explained it enough. I added some examples of each below.

Background Example
Townsfolk
Skills Granted (one): Streetwise or Negotiation at rank 1.
Talent Granted (one): Know this Town or Linguist.

Age Group Example
Middle-Aged
Skills Granted (one): Geography or Streetwise.
Talent Granted (one): Linguist, Bookworm, Know this Town, or Well Traveled.
Skill Maximum: Rank 2 as usual, but one skill of Rank 3 allowed during character creation.
Characteristic Maximums: Brawn 4, Agility 4, all others 5.
Experience Points: +10 XP.

Social Tier Example
Tier 3 - The well off “gentleman” class. These gentry are often merchants, wealthy craftsmen, ranking military officers, and landlords with peasants, commoners, or even slaves working for them. But, they are not nobility or royalty.
Cost: 15 XP.
Career Skill (one): Negotiation or Leadership.
Talent Granted (one): Sailor, Martial Training, or Courtly Manners.

Career and Specialty Example
Fighter Career
Career Skills: Athletics, Brawl, Melee, Resilience, and Coercion.

Cavalry Specialty
Career Skills: Riding, Discipline, and Cool.
Granted Talent (two): Martial Training, Animal Husbandry, Well Traveled, Armorer.
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Swordbreaker

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Re: "Advanced" Character Creation Opinions Sought
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2021, 10:41:08 am »
I think the big issue I see is there's a lot of back and forth, checking and rechecking what each step offers where.

I feel like background and age can be rolled into one easily. Social tier is always an odd mechanic to me, and it feels like it could be developed into a separate mechanic akin to Favors or Organizations.
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Sturn

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Re: "Advanced" Character Creation Opinions Sought
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2021, 12:34:08 pm »
Social tier is always an odd mechanic to me, and it feels like it could be developed into a separate mechanic akin to Favors or Organizations.

My plan was to use Social Tier as the characteristic to go with certain social checks when in social settings, good or bad. For example, trying to Charm someone during a noble's ball, you are forced to use the worst of Presence or Social Tier as your characteristic. A charming peasant in that situation would still have to contend with being extremely out of place. But, a nobleman ordering a peasant to do something with Leadership, could use his social tier instead of presence to advantage.
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Swordbreaker

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Re: "Advanced" Character Creation Opinions Sought
« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2021, 09:09:22 am »
Things like that are really up to you. If you think it is a mechanic you want to use, there's not much to say.

What I would do is reduce where a character gets their skills and talents to as few steps as reasonably possible. I think that the more you have to track in each step, the more times you have to make a mistake or miss some detail somewhere.

If you want players to have more control over their skill selection, BrashFink's Wondrous One-Sheet 01 on the Foundry offered an alternative career method you could test out. I feel that would still keep all the skill selection to a single step, save a lot of page space, while giving players the freedom to customize their selection as they see fit.
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