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Just wonderin'

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Just wonderin'

Postby umbraldragon » Tue Feb 28, 2017 5:53 pm

I was looking at the core rules today and was wondering what you're favorite things might be as far as creating characters. Like what's your favorite background event, do you even use them? Or what's your favorite starting culture, or your favorite career to play and why?

I usually like playing primitive or civilized sailor. I think they have a lot of depth you can add to the back story and a lot of versatility in terms of what your character has picked up skill wise.

As far as backgrounds goes, I usually create one, also I roll on the table just to see if it's something I like. I usually modify that into something that makes sense with the setting which is usually Korantia. :ugeek:
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Re: Just wonderin'

Postby Bilharzia » Tue Feb 28, 2017 9:11 pm

I don't get the chance to make many PCs, but something I like about the character generator Excel sheet is the ability to just press the "auto generate" all the background setup for a PC, and the ability to generate random background events with a button press. This lets you step through some possibilities quickly without having to roll and look them up.
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Re: Just wonderin'

Postby Matt_E » Tue Feb 28, 2017 9:15 pm

Although I like and admire the table of background events in RAW, I must admit I have not actually used it in chargen. Honestly, though, I probably should, at the last stages of rounding out a personality. My players don't seem to mind the way we do it, though.

Yes, integration is paramount. It's fun to invent details to make the setting accommodate the personalities, and vice versa. I wrote it in that order mindfully: Unless the personality is somehow outlandish, I think it's the fine points of the setting that usually end up getting tweaked. "Oh, you want to be a minor noble? OK, you're...the son of the baronet of a small, unremarkable patch of land in...this part of the map. Your father is..."

I don't know about a favorite, but in terms of useful adventuring skills, Barbarian Scout and Barbarian Herder are very strong careers (for outdoorsy stuff, anyhow). I know, I know, "useful"... I mean, for the things my group often ends up doing, those folk are well equipped.

Our setting is primarily Barbarian, so I haven't explored as much of the other professions. I am getting some familiarity from writing scenarios, especially those set in The Realm, which is mainly Civilized.

An upcoming Old Bones scenario will feature Primitive culture. I have had some fun making characters for it...
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Re: Just wonderin'

Postby umbraldragon » Tue Feb 28, 2017 9:36 pm

Nice, looking forward to what you have concocted in that mind of yours! ☺
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Re: Just wonderin'

Postby Jefferiot » Tue Feb 28, 2017 11:58 pm

My favorite character, in one version of the Korantia universe, was a primitive fisher, with background event #20. He crafted huge outrigger dugout canoes and free-dived for big game fish, with his tribe, who were the other PCs. They lived on the oceans and never needed to come ashore, but a deity began sending them ashore on away missions to hot spots where they'd have to fine-tune events. The usual problem was that civilization was making the land-lubbers sin, which sin by butterfly effect was starting to cause heat death to cover more and more of the world. His tribe was entrusted with the responsibility to make sure no civilization became so civilized that it destroyed the known world, which was actually just one ultra-huge caldera.
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Re: Just wonderin'

Postby umbraldragon » Wed Mar 01, 2017 11:56 pm

Was he Dagomil?
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Re: Just wonderin'

Postby nDervish » Thu Mar 02, 2017 5:44 am

[quote="umbraldragon"]Like what's your favorite background event, do you even use them?


I roll them randomly and generally take whatever I get, although there are a few that I'll veto for being utterly inappropriate to the setting. For example, the very first background event I ever rolled was for a character in a no-magic campaign... and I got "you have a mystical connection to a member of the opposite ***, allowing you to always know where they are and whether they're OK". Umm... no.

I occasionally dream of expanding it into more of a (Mongoose) Traveller-style lifepath system, giving you multiple events that provide skills and sometimes call for the player to make choices in how they go, but I haven't actually done anything about it yet.

[quote="umbraldragon"]Or what's your favorite starting culture,


I go against the grain and create custom cultures for societies which are actual cultures, not just "do you live in a city or on a farm?". In real-world terms, I think that someone living in Chicago and someone living in Berlin should be from different cultures (American vs. German), not the same culture (civilized).

Of course, in practice, that gets to be a lot of extra work, so I tend to start off by half-assing it with the Luther Arkwright "home parallel" system until I'm ready to work a culture up in full detail, which tends to not happen until after it's been explored a bit in play.

[quote="umbraldragon"]or your favorite career to play and why?


Whatever suits the character, based on their (randomly-rolled) stats, (random) background event(s), (customized) culture, etc. I prefer to GM exclusively and one of the reasons is because I like to play all different types of characters.
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Re: Just wonderin'

Postby Matt_E » Thu Mar 02, 2017 9:01 am

nDervish wrote:I go against the grain and create custom cultures for societies which are actual cultures, not just "do you live in a city or on a farm?". In real-world terms, I think that someone living in Chicago and someone living in Berlin should be from different cultures (American vs. German), not the same culture (civilized).


I totally agree about the Chicago-Berlin idea, and I use it, or at least keep it in mind, when choosing characters. However, in keeping with what I have come to call the "just complete enough" principle, I don't bother to codify the details strictly, beyond the idea stage. That avoids all the extra work. For me, the four culture types are sufficient, and if during chargen I feel the need to change a detail about what skills are offered for Chicagoans versus Berliners, then I can scribble a note on the spot and move ahead.

I think part of this difference is the way we're using the word "culture". To be more precise, I think I would term RAW's four flavors as "Culture Types" or "Culture Classes", but that would be so very clunky. I certainly don't think the Makers ever meant to imply that all Civilized cultures are more or less the same; they are far too nuanced for that. Witness Mythic Britain, and the new Logres supplement.

I wonder how much detail you prefer beyond a common baseline, nDervish. Can you list the skills that would be available to a Chicagoan, and a Berliner, or highlight how they differ from each other and from simple RAW?
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Re: Just wonderin'

Postby Jefferiot » Thu Mar 02, 2017 6:20 pm

umbraldragon wrote:Was he Dagomil?

This is from Flies with Swordfish's first character sheet when he was 12-years old. His tribe names its people by something they were seen doing when they were young.

Appearance

Looks weathered like a normal human Korantian sailor of a ship with an open deck. He doesn't have webbed hands like a Dagomil would, so he doesn't get undue attention when on away missions to hot spots on land. In fact, his tribe comes from Korantia, originally.

Background

Civilization stole the land of their hunter/gatherer primitive ancestors, so they took to the sea. One of the gods took pity on them and gave them methods to survive on the sea.

Event #20 Fate has closely watched over him as he grew to adulthood. Siblings have drowned, friends died from plague, parents disgraced, but he has emerged unscathed from everything. Is he truly blessed by the gods?

And I should include this to complete the picture.

Tribal Voice

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Re: Just wonderin'

Postby nDervish » Fri Mar 03, 2017 5:21 am

Matt_E wrote:I wonder how much detail you prefer beyond a common baseline, nDervish. Can you list the skills that would be available to a Chicagoan, and a Berliner, or highlight how they differ from each other and from simple RAW?


I had a feeling I'd regret that choice of example. :D I haven't spent enough time in either Chicago or Berlin to have a solid sense of what the difference would be. What I should have done instead is take the time to go through some of the Conan RPG materials to find another barbarian culture which contrasts strongly with Cimmerians, so that I'd have a starker example of "they're both barbarians, but they're not the same". Or perhaps Aquilonia and Zamora for distinct urbanized (some might dispute calling Zamora "civilized"...) cultures.

So, just off the top of my head, start with the core book's "civilized" as a baseline. Aquilonia seems pretty close to the fantasy standard, so just replace Conceal with Ride and it's probably good. The Zamorian City of Thieves, on the other hand... Replace Drive with Perception and maybe also Willpower with Stealth in standard skills, then in professional skills, swap out Art and Courtesy for Gambling and Sleight. I could also see taking out Craft and/or Musicianship in favor of skills that further emphasize the underhanded nature of the city, but, in RAW, every culture has Craft, Lore, and Musicianship available as professional skills, so I can never bring myself to omit them.
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