Traits and flaws are another tool for customizing a character. They are analogous to Feats in DnD or Merits in World of Darkness. A list of example traits is provided below but players are encouraged to come up with their own traits as well.
- 1 Example Traits
- 2 Creating Custom Traits
- 3 Flaws
Example Traits ∞
The positive character traits below are provided below is not comprehensive and should be used for inspiration or as an example of the possibilities. Players should be encouraged to consider other traits to help define their character.
Combat Traits ∞
Adaptive Warrior: The character can use different fighting styles during the same turn The maximum number of attacks that can be made is the lowest value of the chosen fighting styles.
Ambidextrous: The character demonstrates equal agility with two hands. Penalties for multiple attacks while dual-wielding are halved. See the section on fighting styles for more detail on dual-wielding.
Archer’s Jab: If the character has not yet been attacked they can make a ranged attack in melee without penalty.
Bar Fighter: The characters take 1/2 damage and does double non-lethal damage during bar fights.
Bellatori Grace: The character’s second attack in a round is at no penalty.
Blooded/Hunter: The character has learned the tricks of fighting a particular beast. 1 species per trait; gain a +d6 on attack rolls against that creature.
Bloody Momentum: The character can make an additional attack whenever they fell an opponent. The character must have at least 4 points in the relevant weapon focus skill.
Careless Attack: The character places themselves in a vulnerable position in order to strike an enemy. The character can sacrifice up to 4 points of their defense for a bonus to attack.
Cavalry: The character is a skilled rider, gifted in the saddle and adept at handling all manner of riding animal. This includes combat and trick riding. They suffer no penalties for combat from horseback.
Close Quarters: The character does not suffer penalties for fighting in cramped interior spaces like caves or narrow hallways.
Crowd fighter: Character can use full defense against up to 2 attacks per round, rather than only one.
Deadeye: The character gains an aim bonus of +3 if they spend an entire round aiming. To take this advantage the character must forfeit all action for one round.
Deadly Improvisation: The character can use improvised weapons without any penalty.
Defensive Fighter: The character can sacrifice their attacks for the round and gain double bonus for defensive stance OR riposte at 4 spread.
Duelist: The character gains a +2 to combat rolls when dueling. To gain this advantage the duelist must focus on a single combatant entirely and this trait only applies to 1:1 combat where all the Duelists attention can be reasonably focused on the enemy with no risk of intercession or interruption by additional forces. This makes it best suited for formal duels. Squaring off against 1 enemy in a larger melee is not considered a duel as in a melee the character must be aware of all actors and actions occurring around them. The bonus gained from the Duelist trait cannot be added to surprise attacks. Any intercession, even aid from an ally, interrupts the Duelists flow and triggers the loss of this bonus.
Elusive: The character is difficult to hit at range. Enemies suffer additional penalties on ranged attacks against the character.
Expertise, Weapon: The character is an expert with a particular weapon. Once per combat they can re-roll an attack and take the higher roll. The character must have at least 3 points in the specific weapon focus skill.
Favoured Opponent: The character has studied a particular type of opponent and gains a bonus when fighting them. Possible groups include Soldiers, Warriors, Thieves, Savages, Machines, Animals. Effects will vary.
First Strike: If the character has not yet acted in a combat they can roll 3d10 for their next attack and take the two highest.
Fortunes Defense: The character can reroll one defense check per combat.
Gunner: The character suffers no penalty for using canna or firearms.
Hard Hitter: The character is capable of focusing their combat capability into a single, powerful strike. The character can forgo taking multiple attacks, instead making a single attack using Power + Combat + Weapon Focus +1. They gain a damage bonus equal to the number attacks sacrificed. This trait can only be used with the following fighting styles: Unarmed, One-Handed, Weapon and Shield, and Two-Handed.
Hew: The character is adept at destroying objects and obstacles; they can inflict double damage against inanimate objects.
Hits like a Tollam: As with knockout but opponent is left out of combat for rest of round.
Impressive Reflexes: Any area affect that would normally cause half damage on a successful dodge causes no damage.
Intuitive: The character has a keen intuition and is adept at assessing opponents. The character has a general sense of the combat ability of any enemy. The ST will indicate the enemies combat abilities are inferior, equal, superior, or considerably superior.
Knockout: The character knows just where to hit someone to make them topple. Once per combat the character can make an unarmed attack against a human enemy. If successful, roll the character’s power vs the target’s power. The opponent is knocked prone and insensate for the number of turns equal to the excess successes. If no excess than no knockout.
Lethal Grace: The character is adept at using their agility and dexterity to land blows from afar. +1/2 Grace to ranged damage. The character must have at least 4 points in Grace to take this trait.
Lightning Reflexes: Grace x2 for Initiative
Maim Enemy: The character can make an attack on an organic enemy that inflicts a -1 penalty on all subsequent attacks. The character must have at least 3 points in a relevant weapon focus skill.
Multidextrous: The character demonstrates equal agility with all hands. Penalties for multiple attacks while multi-wielding are halved.The character must be a Bellator or Tamaa to take this trait and must first take the Ambidextrous before purchasing this one.
Overpowering Blow: Once per combat the character gains a +4 to an attack against a parry defense.
Powerful: The character is adept at causing harm through the use of sheer overwhelming force. +1/2 Power to Melee damage. The character must have at least 4 in Power to take this trait.
Quick Draw: The character can draw their weapon or switch weapons and attack in the same round.
Rapid Reload: The character does not need to spend a full action to reload most weapons.
Scything Blow: Once per round the character can make an attack on 2 enemies with 1 attack roll. The character takes a -4 penalty on their defense the following round.
Skilled Throw: Enemies must use the lower of their Power or Grace defense against the characters throws.
Skilled Trip: Enemies must use the lower of their Power or Grace defense against the characters trips.
Skilled Disarm: Any time an enemy fails against the character’s parry defense the character can roll a disarm check.
Skirmisher: The character employs a hit and run combat technique that works well in asymmetric combat. So long as the character engages a new target each round they gain a +3 bonus to attack.
Sneak Attack:The character inflicts +2 damage when making a sneak attack.
Stone Hand: The character can choose to inflict +1 bashing damage when fighting unarmed.
Strategist: If the character has a chance to prepare for a battle they can formulate a strategy that grants advantage to the character and their allies. The character makes an Intellect + Combat check. Everyone aware of the strategy gains a bonus of +1 for every 5 points over 10 on the check. The bonus only applies in the first round; no plan survives an encounter with the enemy.
Stunning Blow: The character can sacrifice damage from an attack in order to try and stun an enemy. The character declares the attack a stunning blow and if they exceed the targets defense the target is at a -3 to all actions for a number of rounds equal to the spread between the attack and defense values.
Sturdy: The character is made of sterner stuff than most. Injuries are only incurred when an attack inflicts half of their health in damage +1. For example, a character with 8 health would normally take an injury after suffering 4 damage from an attack; with this trait, they would need to take 5 damage.
Sword Master: Character can roll parry against arrow attacks.
Tenacity: The character has a tenacious grip on consciousness and gains a re-roll on all checks to maintain consciousness when hitting their injury limit.
Terrifying Visage: The character is a brutal and intimidating warrior and their attacks inflict double stress on enemies.
Too Pretty to Hit: It’s difficult to hit a character this pretty. Once per combat the character can add appearance to a defense roll.
Veteran: The character is resistant to stress caused by combat or violent situations. They take half the stress in most violent situations.
Will to Survive: The character doubles their will bonus for the purpose of determining their damage Health.
Zephyr: Once per combat the character can make a dizzying combat movement that forces the enemy to roll their defense twice and take the lower result.
Stress Traits ∞
Bon Vivant: The character derives great comfort from their leisure activities. Select one of the following: Plays, Poems, Music, Dance, Storytelling. Any day the character spends at least an hour indulging in their preferred activity they regain stress twice as fast.
Climate endurance: The character is accustomed to all manner of weather and ignores the penalties inflicted by harsh weather.
Resolute: The character has a powerful will and is able to push themselves further and harder than most. Once per game they can reroll a will check.
City Rat: The character is most at home in the bustle of major settlements. They regain stress twice as fast in cities and half as fast in the wild.
Controlled Habit: The character is at no risk of becoming addicted to a specified drug.
Country Mouse: The character is most at home outside of large cities. They regain stress twice as fast in outposts and the wild, and half as fast in the city.
Creator: The character finds the act of creation deeply satisfying. Select a craft such as drawing, tinkering, blacksmithing, writing, or something else for which they have a focus skill. Any day they spend at least 1 hour creating they regain stress twice as fast.
Gourmand: The character derives comfort from rare, exotic, or expensive food. Any day they consume at least 1 gelt worth of food they regain stress twice as fast.
Kaeki Blood: The character has a portion of Kaeki blood and they have a maximum Will of 6.
Lucid Dreamer: The character bears some hint of Oneiri blood and is able to control their dreams. They can recover stress more quickly when dreaming and gain a reflexive defense to unwanted or unexpected attempts to shape their dreams.
Meditative: The character’s stress recovers twice as fast when taking at least 1hr+ per day to meditate.
Playful: The character’s stress recovers twice as fast when taking at least 1hr+ per day to engage in child-like play. This might be making useless trinkets, playing make believe, or just running about like a maniac.
Serenity: The character’s stress recovers twice as fast when taking at least 1hr+ per day to pray or indulge in rituals of worship.
Trickster: The character finds pranks and practical jokes a good form of relaxation, even if others might not. Once per day the character can play a practical joke on another. For each point of stress inflicted on someone else the character recovers a point of their own stress.
Social Traits ∞
Allies: The character has a set of allies they can call upon when necessary. The specific effects of this vary according to the sorts of allies the character has.
Animal Friend: Normal animals are well disposed to the character. They gain a bonus to Animal Handling with passive or avoidant species and are less likely to be attacked or targeted by aggressive or predatory species. This trait does not apply to monstrosities such as Sucha, first age creations, or mutations.
Code of Honour: The specific effects of this vary, as do the articles of the code. The benefit of this trait is that the character is likely known for it and gains the social benefit connected to this reputation, however a character should accumulate significant stress if betraying their code. This sort of stress is permanent unless reparations or atonement are made for the violation.
Companion: The character has a stalwart companion who follows and serves the character. This can be a human, animal, machine, or other creature. The details of this trait need to be determined with the Storyteller and the Companion is effectively an NPC in the ST’s control. The equipment and traits of this character are defined by the Storyteller, though the quality of the companion can be increased by spending additional experience when purchasing this trait.
Connections: The character has a set of connections they can call upon when necessary. The specific effects of this vary according to the sorts of connections the character has.
Liar: Reroll lies once per game.
Membership: Confers its own benefits in certain organizations.
Mentor or Patron: The character has a mentor or patron with their best interests at heart. This figure provides guidance, assistance, and aid as able. The specific effects of this vary according to the sorts of mentor the character has.
Naturalist: The character has a highly logical and analytical mind and suffers no additional stress from encounters with alien or unknown species in the wild.
Personable: The character knows how to use their charisma to inspire others. Once per day they can add 1/2 their personality to an allies roll.
Prevaricator: Player can try an alternate lie if the first one does not work and the target will react only to the second lie.
Unremarkable: People trying to recall details about this characters appearance and mannerisms find it quite difficult and suffer a penalty or roll only one d10 for recalling this information.
Wealthy: This trait is available only at character creation. The character is possessed of wealth, earned, inherited, or stolen. They get an additional 300 gelt.
Merchants Bane: The character knows how to get discounts; 10% off purchases
Religious Traits ∞
Devoted: The character is devoted to an Ayr or philosophy and can heal their own stress through specific ritual acts of devotion. They also gain a bonus on checks against effects that would be counter to the devotion.
Legacy Traits ∞
Ayrblood: The character is descended from ancient and celestial vitae. The effects of this trait will vary and are determined by the Storyteller.
Oath: The character or their family has sworn an oath to a god, ruler, or cause. They gain both benefits and obligations as a result.
Progenitor Blood, Eternal: The character is descended from a progenitor line that was modified for longevity. As a result they are ageless; they reach maturity and cease aging afterwards. They can only die due to disease, accident, or intentional harm.
Progenitor Blood, Immune: The character is descended from a progenitor line that was modified to be resistant to disease. The character can recover from most diseases by way of a potent immune system.
Progenitor Blood, Regenerator: The character is descended from a progenitor line that was modified to rapidly regenerate wounds. The character gains a bonus to the rate at which they heal. There are few wounds they cannot heal naturally and are even able to regrow lost limbs. They heal +3 health per week. This trait cannot be taken with Fast Healer.
Progenitor Blood, Resilient: The character is descended from a progenitor line that was modified to survive in less hospitable environments. The character gains special adaptations and a survival bonus to a particular environment. Select one of the following: Badlands, Chillwaste, Desert, Subterranean, Aquatic, or Mist. The precise effects of this trait depends on the nature of the trait.
Royal Blood: The character is descended from royalty.
Health & Healing Traits ∞
Quasi-human Medic: The character suffers no penalty for attempts to heal quasi-humans.
Tough: The character is more physically durable than others. They gain a +2 to Health.
Fast Healer: You heal +1 health per week per level of this trait.
First Aid: Re-roll any failed stabilization check once.
Iron Gut: The character can eat food and drink that would make others sick with no issue and can re-roll checks to resist the effects of drunkenness or ingested poisons.
Gear Traits ∞
Equipment Trait: The specific effects of this vary according to the equipment chosen, but the items should be both useful and important to the character. These items should gain notable bonuses or additional consideration.
Packrat: The character knows how to carry more gear than most and gains +5 to their Carry. This trait can only be taken once.
Reclamator: The character is adept at reclaiming components from ruins and artefacts. With sufficient time the character can derive more valuable salvage than would typically be available. For each six hour period spent reclaiming the character rolls an Intuition + Technology check and gains +10g per point on the result. An area can be exhausted of salvage. (10’s explode)
Relic Tech: Available at character creation only, the character possesses some form of first age relic technology. The condition and operability of this relic is dependent on the item and number of points spent for the trait. 1 point = an inoperative item, 2-3 semi-working or jury rigged, and 5 = fully functional. Relic tech includes: Arcbows, Hand Canna, Longonn, Sandblades, Folding Armour, Mendikits, Selenian Prosthesis, Folding Weapons. This trait should be discussed with the storyteller for approval.
Travel and Movement Traits ∞
Endurance: The character gains +3 to checks to avoid fatigue.
Fleet Footed: The character is quick on their feet and gains +10% to movement speed.
Mobility: The character suffers no penalties for moving on difficult terrain such as deep snow, mud, or shallow water.
Tumbler: The character is a skilled tumbler and takes reduced fall damage.
Weatherworn: The character suffers no penalties from traveling or camping in inclement weather.
Other Traits ∞
Artisan: Pick one art, the character is proficient in it and can earn money (less than calling)
Distracting: Character can force an enemy to re-roll their perception check once per situation.
Disciplined: Once per day the character can ignore penalties imposed by environment, stress, and wounds, for one skill check for which you have at least 3 skill or focus skill.
Fortunate: The character always seems to find a little extra money; +10% loot
Gifted Aspect: The character is particularly gifted in a single aspect and gains expanded critical range on rolls related to that aspect. This trait can only be taken once and the character must have at least 3 points in the relevant aspect to take this trait.
High Intelligence: The character is brilliant, able to work their way through any issue with sufficient time. The character can make additional lore checks. 1/2 Intellect x/week.
Jack-of-all-Trades: The character can use any skill untrained.
Intuitive Scholar/Technician: The character swaps their intuition for their intellect for certain rolls.
Legal Eagle: Character knows how to argue law; re-roll law related rolls
Light Sleeper: The character is at least partially aware of their surroundings, even when asleep. They gain 1/2 their perception bonus when sleeping
Lucky: The character is lucky. Once per game they can add a d6 to a roll.
Polyglot: The character is adept at learning new languages. The learning period is reduced from 2 months to 1 and the character gains double their language rank as a bonus to understanding any language they are currently learning.
Reliable Talent: (Pre-requisite 4 in specified skill) Once per day the character can elect to skip the relevant skill roll and instead take their base skill x2 as a result. For example, once per day a character with a +7 in Lockpicking and Reliable Lockpicking Talent can choose to skip the roll to open a lock and instead submit a skill check of 14. This trait cannot be taken with a combat skill.
Sleuth: The character can re-roll one investigation check per game.
Creating Custom Traits ∞
Players are encouraged to consider traits from a role playing perspective; what is their character truly like? What sorts of things distinguish them? What advantages do they have over others. The mechanics of a trait should be secondary but some example mechanics are provided below for inspiration.
Examples of Mechanical Triggers for Traits
The character has not yet acted in a combat…
The character has not yet been attacked in combat…
The character is actively engaged with an enemy in melee combat…
The character has acted in a combat…
The character has attacked a target and failed…
The character has attacked a target and succeeded…
The character has failed a roll…
The character has achieved a low result on a roll…
The character is injured…
The character is about to be killed by the enemy…
The character has not been injured…
The character is stressed…
The character has no stress…
The character has not been detected by an enemy…
The character has killed an enemy…
The character spends a plot point…
The character has a certain number in an attribute…
The character has a certain number in a skill…
The character has not yet used this trait in the current combat…
Examples of Mechanical Effects for Traits
…Reroll and keep second roll
…Reroll and keep highest of two rolls
…Tie goes to trait holder
…Decrease damage accumulation
…Decrease stress accumulation
…Increase defense value
…Gain a separate pool of points for adding to rolls
…Gain temporary boost to skill or ability
…Negate critical failures
-Ignore / Automatically dodge first attack of combat / Round / After a specific condition is met (Ranged or Melee Modifier)
-Move after attack, even if you have already moved
-Do not trigger reaction attacks
-Make an attack on all enemies in range 1 / combat, no penalties
-Grant allies in range an automatic defense against a type of attack (lingua, ranged, etc)
-Grant allies in range a bonus to actions (specific or general?)
-Penalty to hit, bonus to damage or vice versa
-Kill streak! Extra actions after killing an enemy
-Healing hands: no check to stabilize dying people, bonus healing
-Free attack 1 / combat of a specific type (weapon, range, condition)
-Take no action this round for a significant bonus in the next (Zen)
-Substantial defense bonus to certain attacks or triggered by conditional
-Immunity to fire / poison / acid / something (needs explanation)
-Double move distance once / combat or after certain condition met or on surprise rounds or first round
-Accumulate a bonus for certain actions in a certain order to apply with another action (combo’s)
-Move vertically at no difficulty or at the same rate as horizontally (parkour)
-Enhanced to hit when you have height advantage / elevation
-Free attack on anyone making melee attack or moving in melee range
-Enemies always / never attack first or 1 character (inconspicuous)
-Ignore some value of cover or armour 1 / combat / under condition
-Lose an action or take a penalty to grant allies a bonus to action or additional action
-All enemies or select enemies are at a penalty when attacking
-Ignore range penalties in certain conditions (elevation, terrain)
-A certain action or chain of actions grants additional actions or damage or initiative nehance
-Reduce defense to gain bonus to attack / damage or additional attacks
Flaws are negative character traits which have a mechanical or narrative effect. The flaws below are examples; players are encouraged to come up with their own flaws with storyteller approval. Players can take up to two flaws at character creation. Each flaw taken grants +5xp to be spent in any other area or the player can take an extra 200g in starting funds. Flaws can be ‘bought off’ for 20xp along with a reasonable in-game explanation. E.g. a Foolish character has spent months tutoring under another or a Cowardly character has demonstrated the ability to work around their flaw.
Poor Aspect ∞
The character has a -2 to a specific aspect. This represents a notably below average ability. The player should come up with a way to roleplay this feature.
Weak: -2 Power
Clumsy: -2 Grace
Foolish: -2 Intellect
Oblivious: -2 Intuition
Unattractive: -2 Appearance
Unlikeable: -2 Personality
Pliant: -2 Will
Psychological Flaws ∞
Psychological flaws are both triggered by stress and tend to make characters less resilient to stress effects. Characters take an additional point of stress from situations related to their flaw and characters who reach full stress must make an unmodified Will check to avoid the deleterious effects of the flaw.
Cowardly: Character flees stressors.
Berserk: Character reacts to stress with crude violence.
Fugue: Character becomes torpid in response to stress.
Compulsion: Character must engage in a specific action to recover form stress.
Hysteric: Character has an emotional breakdown in response to stress.
Flashback: Character responds to stress by disassociating with current events.
The character has an extreme stress reaction to particular stimulus. They take 3 stress each round they are exposed to the stimulus. Examples: Insects, Canids, Felines, Horses, Rats, Grots, a specific species of quasi-human, Water, Mirrors, Darkness, Filth, Confined spaces, Crowds, Heights, Blood, Clatterjacks, First Age Tech.
The character has a particular addiction to a drug or problematic habit. They take stress each day they do not indulge in their addiction.
Examples: Alcohol, Gambling, Ketha, Sex, Violence.
Blood Thirsty ∞
The character takes stress for each day they go without inflicting violence.
Mechanical Effects for Player Created Flaws:
Reroll but keep lowest
Single die for rolls
Tie always goes to opponent
Increase damage accumulation
Increase stress accumulation
Susceptible to injury
Permanent cap on ability or skill
Negative social/resource (enemy, debt)
Negate critical success
Increased critical failure consequence
Increased xp multiplier cost for skill increase
Other Flaws ∞
Atopic: The character is hyper-allergic, meaning their body exhibits an inappropriate immune response to any number of benign triggers. They have 3 or more of the following allergic features; eczema, hay fever, asthma, conjunctivitis, food allergies and others. The combination of allergies makes life difficult and can be potentially terminal as they are at regular risk of anaphylaxis brought on by one or more of their allergies. The condition is hereditary and possibly related to maternal trauma during pregnancy.
Behaviour Blind: The character is oblivious to social signals and cues and suffers a -3 penalty on all social rolls.
Isolate: The character only one language, either their cultural language or common. They also demonstrate a poor aptitude for learning new languages. The character gains 5 xp for character creation but the cost of the Language skill is increased by one multiplier (new level x5)
Notoriety: The character is infamous for something they have done in the past. They may be wanted or simply a laughing stock, but there is a significant chance of people recognizing them with negative consequences.
Terrible Secret: The character has a secret which would, if revealed, would cause them significant difficulty. This secret must be approved by the storyteller.
Withdrawn: The character is uncomfortable in social situations and tends to retreat from conversation. When rolling for social scenarios they use only 1d10.