Campaign of the Month: February 2016
Rise of the Durnskald
Character Creation Guide
Prelude: Hello There
The old man by the hearth eyes you as you approach. He beckons you to come closer.
“So, you’ve decided to join us. I was wondering how long it would take you to come warm yourself by the fire, this ship is too cold for my liking. Here, take the stool by me. Captain Xelp told me that we should be arriving at The Alabaster Isle tomorrow evening if the wind holds course. I can’t wait to be back on solid ground, when I go home again it won’t be by airship I assure you.”
He looks up at you quizzically, one grey eyebrow arched. You can see that his dark green tunic and cloak haven’t been washed recently. Underneath the dust and grime you can barely make out the insignia of The Apothecus Luminary, the chalice and serpent motif faded with age.
“Well don’t stand around all day like a Mulpin, have a seat.”
Part One: Rolling up your Statistics
You sit, wondering to yourself just what exactly a Mulpin is. The old man plops a small bag onto the short oaken table in front of the two of you. From it he pulls four old wooden dice and five platinum Scales.
“Up for a game?” he asks, while pulling a scrap of paper and a charcoal stick from his pack. "Here is how we play. We’ll each take turns rolling these four dice. If you roll any “ones” with your first toss each turn you may roll them again, but only once each turn! After you are done rolling, you pick any three of the numbers to keep and add them together. I’ll keep track of the results here on this paper. After each round we’ll compare scores to see who has the better luck. Once we’ve each rolled twelve times we both pick six of the scores we’ve rolled and if you have higher scores then I do I’ll give you one of these Scales."
(Follow his instructions, you now have your six ability scores. Assign them as you see fit depending on what type of adventurer you wish to be.)
Part Two: Who and What are you?
“I can’t believe I lost all five games. Well, here’s your money. It looks like you need it more than I do.”
He slides the five coins over to your side of the table, frowning.
“You certainly are lucky though. That’s good.” He smiles again. “It must serve you well in your profession. What is your profession anyways?”
You think a moment to yourself about how professions, jobs, classes, it’s all just a label for what you’ve devoted your skills to. It occurs to you that not all races are well suited for certain jobs, a halfling bear wrestler would have a very short career after all.
The old man clears his throat.
“Not much of a talker I see. Hmm, let me start. I’m a human, clearly, as can be seen by my size and general shape. I’m a healer by trade and my name is Argle Fairweather. Ok, now you try.”
(Now is the time to pick your race and class, any race that doesn’t have a level adjustment is fine provided I have the book it is from, and if you want a race that has a level adjustment you’ll need to clear it through me first. Same principles apply to your class. Might as well think up a brief concept of what you look like too; if you are male, female, short, tall, fat, thin, blue eyed, brown eyed, red eyed, cloven hoofed, made of vapor, what have you. Hair color too, you know, unless you don’t have hair.)
You tell him who you are and where you’re from, leaving out the recent bit that happened in the tavern last week. No one needs to know about that. Who knew Orcs could make such strong liquor? You suppose that the name should have tipped you off, no one in their right mind orders a “Pancontinental Bargle Glaster” in an actual leather boot. You had almost missed getting on the airship in time because it felt like someone had removed your brain from your skull and put it in a jar, then dropped it and stepped on the pieces. All in all it was a good night, or at least it probably would have been if you could remember any of it after ordering the drink. You should probably just get a djinnahntohniq next time.
Part Three: Skills to pay the taxes? That doesn’t sound right.
Argle tells you about his job and about how he can identify seven hundred varieties of mushrooms, and about how that knowledge is actually pretty useless if you know enough to not eat the red ones. You realize after awhile that you have things that you are actually good at too. Things like “finding things in the dark” and “hearing things in the dark” and “hiding from those things that you can see and hear in the dark”.
Maybe you aren’t good at those specific things, just things like them. So what if you might not be able to play the harp or build a boat, or even ride a horse. Maybe you can concentrate really hard, or… something? All you know is that you have learned a few things pertaining to your chosen profession that, once coupled with your natural abilities and aptitudes, prove you aren’t completely useless.
(Time to pick your flaws, skills, and feats. You get to pick out one feat at first level, and at every level divisible by three. You get a bonus feat for each flaw that you take, with a maximum of two bonus feats granted in this fashion. If you take a flaw you had better be prepared to roleplay it, because if you don’t I will force it on your character. You also get a number of skill points to distribute amongst your various class skills, as laid out in the Players Handbook. Humans get an extra feat at first level and an extra skill point at every level. It is usually better to be good at a few skills than to be meager at many skills, but how you distribute them is entirely up to you. The maximum number of points that you can put into any one skill is equal to your current level plus three, which is not the same thing as your ECL if you chose a race that has a level adjustment. The feats you choose may augment your skills or grant other abilities. Your ability scores also affect your skills.)
Argle listens intently as you boast about your skills.
“Whew, impressive. I can see why your House chose to send you. Which one do you serve?”
He looks at your equipment again, his eyes searching.
Part Four: Chapter, Guild, and House
So much of daily life in Pergisursia is centered around the various Houses, almost everyone is a member of one. You were born to the same House as your parents, although it is possible (if cumbersome) to join a different House. Houses do not usually require much from their members other than attending House sponsored events and being a productive member of society, unless of course you become a person of means, power, or influence.
The gods themselves have blessed the Houses with powers known as Dominions, all members of a House gain access to those powers regardless of their standing. It is for that reason that the Houses were created, to give mortals the power of the divine. Each House was granted a different Dominion based on the specialization of the House. In this way the power of the gods is kept in check and is used for the greater good, at least that is what they say. It isn’t uncommon to hear rumors stating otherwise in any tavern once the ale is flowing.
You tell Argle what House you call home.
TO BE CONTINUED… (I ran out of time today)