Tales of the Ruddy Spirits Taproom
For any adventure, it is important to have well developed characters. Not only do they have to be sound statistically, they also have to have a background. A good character background will help drive the character’s motives and goals and make him/her a real person on the adventures to come. To help with this, I have tried to flesh out the character creation a bit more to not only give players a foundation to build off of, but also to make the world more alive and in depth. A place where the characters know their place and the world around them to a fair extent. Have fun making your character and let me know if you have any questions.
I also ask that all players post and update their character description online. If there is anything that is secret or that you would rather the other players not to know, there is a special GM Only section on every page that you can utilize to post information that only I can access. This can include your flaws, secrets from your past, or your true history (if you tend to tell people a false history and that is what you posted publicly).
1) Ability Scores
In order to keep this a challenging campaign and fairly even between players, and to allow for some personal enhancements characters will use the Ability Purchase system outlined on page 15 & 16 of the Pathfinder Core Rulebook. Each character will start with 10 points to spend.
Special Rule – Character Background
Players who submit a detailed character history with the character’s background, motivations, ethics, goals, and fears (including their greatest fear) will receive 2 extra points to spend. The character history must be reviewed and approved by the GM before the extra points can be spent.
All race option in any official Paizo Pathfinder Book can be used. HOWEVER, the predominant races in Kavadin are human followed by dwarf and elf. Any races chosen outside of these three will need a specific reason for being in the city. In addition, any social interactions will be negatively affected by a character’s race outside of humans, dwarves, and elves. The more extreme the race the more severe the penalty. In addition the character’s history must clearly state why the character left his or her own people to come to Kavadin. Finally, any exotic races must be approved by the GM.
All class options in any official Paizo Pathfinder Book can be used. As you choose your class please be aware that a large part of the initial campaign will take place within the city limits, so classes that do not fit well in a city environment may be more difficult to play. In addition, as a GM request, I ask that you not play the monk, samurai, or ninja classes as these to not fit well in my world or campaign design. If you have any questions or concerns, please get them approved by the GM before proceeding.
Special Rule – Cleric Domains
The Church has brought order and peace to religion, focusing not on the worship of a single deity, but rather the pantheon of gods as a whole. The priests serve the good of the people and bring comfort, healing and salvation to those in need. The clerics of the church often travel out into the world, using their blessings and prayers to make the world a better place and to alleviate pain and suffering wherever they can. While the church encourages the worship of the entire pantheon, many priests and clerics favor one god over the rest. Cleric characters can select from any domains except Chaos, Darkness, Death, Destruction, Evil, Madness, Magic, Plant, Rune, or Trickery. Likewise, they can choose any of the Subdomains from the Advanced Players Guide that are not associated with a restricted domain.
More recently a new “faith” has arisen. This faith is not based on the beliefs of gods and ancient powers, but rather on the goodness and abilities of mankind as a whole. Purity of thought strict logical truths, and inner reflection give the individual power beyond the common man. While still new, the philosophy has been growing in size. Likewise, there are a select few that have gained a purity of thought and belief that the have also been able to perform miracles similar to those of the clerics of other faiths. Most who reach this level of understanding choose to live a life of poverty and commonly dress in hooded while robes. The majority also become pacifists, abhorring violence. However belief in the philosophies is very personal and can manifest differently in each individual. Cleric characters that study the philosophies can only choose from the Community, Good, Law, Knowledge, Nobility, and Protection domains and their associated subdomains.
Special Rule – Wizard’s Knowledge
As wizard are more scholarly than any of the other classes, they gain 2 additional skill points in linguistics as they have studied a number of rare languages. One of these points must be used on the Arcanum language, but the other can be used on any language. Similarly, wizards can spend 5 free points in knowledge skills. This represents his expanded fields of study.
Special Rule – House Rules
There will also be several “House Rules” in play to enhance the game. It is important to note that many of these house rules change elements of the game, such as armor class, arcane magic, and alignment.
4) Skills & Feats
Most skills retain the same function as they have in the Core Rules, but there are a few that will either work a bit differently or have additional options. Hopefully this will add a bit more flavor to the game without making it overly complex. Unless otherwise noted follow the skill description in the Core Rules.
Special Rule – Character Profession
One significant change is that every character gains 2 free skill points to spend on a single profession. That profession automatically becomes a class skill for that character. This represents the character’s history and past before becoming an adventurer. See the Profession Skill section below for more details.
Special Rule – Skill Modifications
Bluff (CHA) – This skill can also be used to Gamble. In a gambling situation, both players roll opposing bluff checks. If the opposing roles are within 5, the game is a draw (no winner). Otherwise the player with the higher roll wins. The gambling roll can also gain a synergy bonus from the character’s intelligence bonus.
Diplomacy (CHA) – Diplomacy can also be used as Etiquette. By observing those in the area, the character can pickup on what others are doing and combined with their skill in diplomacy attempt to mimic it. Depending on the complexity of the situation, this can be very difficult, but in most situations, the difficulty will be 20. This use of diplomacy can gain a +2 synergy bonus if they have 5 ranks in Bluff as well.
Drive (CHA; Trained) – Drive is a new skill that allows a character to manipulate and control mobile conveyances such as coaches, wagons, and various tinker devices. A character with 5 ranks in the Ride skill will gain a +2 synergy bonus to the drive skill.
Handle Animal (CHA; Trained) – The handle animal skill can also used to Calm Animal. A character can attempt to calm a frightened or spooked animal. If the animal is a domesticated animal the difficulty is 10, but if the animal is wild the difficulty is 15. This use of handle animal cannot be used to attempt to change the demeanor of a crazed or angry animals or magical beasts except by classes with the Wild Empathy class ability . As this is more challenging, the difficulty is increased by 5.
Knowledge (INT) – Some adjustments have been made to the knowledge skills to fit the tone of the world a full list of knowledge follows:
- Arcana (ancient mysteries, magic traditions, arcane symbols, constructs, dragons, magical beasts)
- Architecture (buildings, aqueducts, bridges, fortifications)
- Dungeoneering (aberrations, caverns, oozes, spelunking)
- Engineering (mechanics, devices, gears)
- Geography (lands, terrain, climate, people)
- History (wars, colonies, migrations, founding of cities)This could be a good skill to have…
- Local (legends, personalities, inhabitants, laws,customs, traditions, humanoids)
- Nature (animals, fey, monstrous humanoids, plants, seasons and cycles, weather, vermin)
- Nobility (lineages, heraldry, personalities, royalty)
- Oceans (waves, tides, animals, weather, navigation, ships)
- Planes (the Inner Planes, the Outer Planes, the Astral Plane, the Ethereal Plane, outsiders, planar magic)
- Religion (gods and goddesses, mythic history, ecclesiastic tradition, holy symbols, undead)
Linguistics (INT; Trained) – Characters begin with their racial common language and their cultural dialect. Additional starting languages can be chosen from the following list of modern cultural languages. Dwarven: Common; Dwarven: Dalontorian, Dwarven: Malliburin, Dwarven: Truanic, Elven: Common, Elven: Daelwyn, Elven: Yl’feen, Elven: Sil’ve, Gar’deen (Hobbit/Gnomish), Orc: Pict’in (Half Orcish), Human: Estodian (Common), Human: Hodin, Human: Ilotan, Human: Krish, Human: Marean, Human: Ollan, Human: Potilian, Human: Sihrian, Human: Stromban, Human: Vestan, Human: Vladik, Human: Yi.
The following languages can only be gained through ranks in the linguistics skill.
- Abyssal (demons and other chaotic evil outsiders)
- Aklo (derros, inhuman or otherworldly monsters, unseelie fey)
- Ancient Elven
- Ancient Dwarven
- Ancient Human
- Aquan (aquatic creatures, water-based creatures)
- Arcanum (magic, spells, scrolls, mystic texts)
- Auran (flying creatures, air-based creatures)
- Celestial (angels and other good outsiders)
- Draconic (dragons, reptilian humanoids)
- Druidic (druids only)
- Giant (cyclopses, ettins, giants, ogres, trolls)
- Goblin (bugbears, goblins, hobgoblins)
- Gnoll (gnolls)
- Ignan (fire-based creatures)
- Infernal (devils and other lawful evil outsiders)
- Orc: Dark Common (full blooded orcs)
- Sylvan (centaurs, seelie fey creatures, plant creatures, unicorns)
- Terran (earth-based creatures)
- Thief’s Cant (rogue only)
- Undercommon (drow, duergar, morlocks, svirfneblin)
Additionally, unknown texts, symbols, and languages can sometimes be deciphered using the linguistics skill. A check is made against the DC set by the GM to determine if the character gains a basic understanding of what is attempting to be communicated.
Profession (WIS; Trained) – This skill works as described in the book, but the character must have access to a reasonable workspace as well as a customer base interested in paying for the profession to earn money from this skill. Characters that own a business associated with their profession can earn significantly more gold, even when off adventuring (assuming they have a regular staff that runs the business).
Feats can be selected from any official Paizo Pathfinder Book. All of the prerequisite requirements must be met to choose the feat.
5) Finishing Touches
Beginning characters who have submitted a character background can choose 2 traits from the Trait section of the Advanced Players Guide (pg. 326 – 333). If you have questions concerning traits, discuss with the GM concerning how they tie into your character background.
Age should typically fall within the normal range. However, if the character’s background supports a younger than normal age or an older character, then the option can be discussed with the GM. The standard statistical adjustments apply to abilities and other stats.
Characters will start with the maximum gold for their class. In addition, characters that have submitted an approved character background can start with an appropriate residence in or near the city of Kavadin.
7) What to post on Obsidian Portal
Post your character’s bio and any information the other characters might know (even if it is a false rumor). Post any clarifying comments or additional notes in the GM+Player section of your character screen.
The key points for your characters motivations and fears should also be posted. While something may be obvious from the character history, it will probably help us both to understand the character if the info is outlined in the GM+Player section. This is where you should post the character’s motivations, ethics, goals, and fears (including their greatest fear).
There is only limited information I need ready access to from your actual character sheet. The following should be posted under the GM+Player section for your character (your whole character sheet should not be posted online).
Armor DR: 3 (armor bonus_)
Defense: 15 (10 + dex, dodge, etc_)
CMD: 13 (normal calculations)
Fort: 12 (10 + Fort save_)
Ref: 11 (10 + Ref save_)
Will: 13 (10 + Will save)
(+4 vs. poisons; +2 vs. spells & spell like abilities; other special bonuses)
Perception: 13 (10 + Perception Skill_)
Sense Motive: 15 (_10 + Sense Motive Skill)
Belius is actually a knight in disgrace. This is. Not known to very many and he does not tell anyone of his knighthood.
Motivation/Goals: to redeem his honor and prove himself worthy
Ethics: to do good and defend the weak. To fight tyranny and injustice.
Fears: failure, snakes – his greatest fear is to die without honor.
Armor DR: 3
(+4 vs. poisons; +2 vs. spells & spell like abilities)
Sense Motive: 15