Merits & Flaws
These Merits and Flaws deal with the psychological makeup of your character, and may describe ideals, motivations or pathologies. Some psychological Flaws can be temporarily ignored by spending a Willpower point, and are so noted. If you possess such a Flaw and do not roleplay it when the GM thinks you should, then he may tell you that you have spent a point of Willpower for the effort. Flaws cannot be conveniently ignored.
Code of Honor (1 pt Merit)
Your personal code of ethics is a strong motivation for you. When battling supernatural persuasion that would make you violate the ethics of your Path, you either gain 2 extra dice to resist, or your opponents D# is increased by 2 (GMs choice).
Compulsion (1 pt Flaw)
You have a psychological compulsion of some sort which can cause you a number of different problems. Your compulsion may be for cleanliness, perfection bragging, stealing, gambling, exaggeration or just talking. A compulsion can be temporarily suppressed with a Self-Control(8) roll or a Willpower point, but it is in effect at all other times.
Dark Secret (1 pt Flaw)
You have some sort of secret that, if uncovered, would be of immense embarrassment to you and would make you a pariah among your peers. This can be anything from having murdered a noble to secretly being a member of a sinister organization. While this secret weighs on your mind at all times, it will only surface in occasional stories. Otherwise, it will begin to lose its impact.
Higher Purpose (1 pt Merit)
All adventurers have some vision of their goals and Path, but you have a special commitment to yours. Your chosen goal drives and directs you in everything. You do not concern yourself with petty matters and casual concerns because your higher purpose is everything. Though you may sometimes be driven by this purpose and find yourself forced to behave in ways contrary to the needs of personal survival, it can also grand you great personal strength. You gain 2 extra dice on any roll that as something to do with this higher purpose. Decide what your higher purpose is, and make sure you discuss it with your GM. You may not take this Merit if you have the Flaw Driving Goal.
Intolerance (1 pt Flaw)
You have an unreasoning dislike of a certain thing. This may be an animal, a class of person, a color, a situation or just about anything else. The D#s of all dice rolls involving the subject are increased by 2, and attempts to restrain yourself to not harass or otherwise vent your dislikes may require a Self-Control roll. Note that some dislikes may be too trivial to be reflected here a dislike of left-handed Tambran potters or papyrus, for instance, will have little effect on play in most chronicles. The GM is the final arbiter on what you can pick to dislike.
Loyalty (1 pt Merit)
You are a loyal and devoted individual. The object of this loyalty may be either a particular individual or a group or cause. You easily resist almost all temptations toward disloyalty. If you are facing supernatural persuasion to betray your master or cause, your effective Willpower (or whatever) is increased by 2 due to your extreme loyalty.
Mild Phobia (1 pt Flaw)
You have an overpowering fear of something. You instinctively and illogically retreat from and avoid the object of your fear. Common objects of phobias include insects, crowds, open spaces, confined spaces, heights and certain animals. You must make a Courage roll whenever you encounter the object of your fear. The D# of this roll is determined by the GM. If you fail the roll, you must retreat from the object.
Nightmares (1 pt Flaw)
You experience horrendous nightmares every time you sleep, and memories of them haunt you during your waking hours. Sometimes the nightmares are so bad they cause you to lose one die on all your actions for ht next day (GMs discretion). Some of the nightmares may be so intense that you mistake them for reality. A crafty GM will be quick to take advantage of this.
Overconfident (1 pt Flaw)
You have an exaggerated and unshakable opinion of your own worth and capabilities. You never hesitate to trust your abilities, even in situations in which you risk defeat. Because your abilities may not be enough, such overconfidence can be very dangerous. When you do fail, you quickly find someone or something else to blame. If you are convincing enough, you can infect others with you overconfidence.
Shy (1 pt Flaw)
You are distinctly ill at ease when dealing with people and try to avoid social situations whenever possible. The D#s of all rolls concerned with social interactions are increased by 1; the D#s of any rolls made while you are the center of attention are increased by 2. Dont expect your character to make a public speech.
Speech Impediment (1 pt Flaw)
You have a stammer or some other speech impediment that hampers verbal communications. The D#s of all relevant rolls are increased by 2. Do not feel obliged to roleplay this impediment all the time, but in times of stress, or when dealing with outsiders, you should attempt to simulate it.
Curiosity (2 pt Flaw)
You are a naturally curious person, and find mysteries of any sort irresistible. In most circumstances, you find that your curiosity easily overrides your common sense. To resist the temptation of simple curiosity (I wonder what is in that cabinet ), make a Self-Control(5) roll. The D# increases under more pressing circumstances (I wonder what those strange sounds coming from that secluded hut are. Ill slip in and check it out no one will ever know ).
Obsession (2 pt Flaw)
There is something you like, love or are fascinated by to the point where you often disregard common sense to cater to the drive. You react positively to anything related to your obsession, even if its not in your best interest. Whenever confronted by the object of your obsession, you must make a Self-Control(8) roll to resist its allure.
Short Fuse (2 pt Flaw)
Your character is easily angered and prone to fits of rage. Whenever your character is insulted or injured, he must make a Self-Control roll or fly into an uncontrolled rage for a few turns. The D# depends upon the severity of the cause, usually ranging from 5-8. While in a rage your character will verbally abuse the object of his wrath, and must spend a Willpower point to avoid attacking it outright.
Vengeance (2 pt Flaw)
You have a score to settle your village was wiped out, a friend was corrupted, a parent was slain; you are obsessed with wreaking vengeance on the guilty party. Revenge is your first priority in all situations. The need for vengeance can only be overcome with a Self-Control roll or by spending a Willpower point, and even then, it only temporarily subsides. Someday you may have your revenge, but the GM wont make it easy.
Berserker (3 pt Merit)
The Rage is in you, but you know how to direct and make use of it. Once per scene you may try to incite a frenzied state by making an extended Conviction(7) roll and achieving 5 successes. The D# is reduced by 1 for every 2 levels of damage you have received during the scene. When the necessary successes are acquired you automatically heal 1 level of Bashing damage and enter a frenzy. In this state you will ignore wound penalties. During the frenzy you must make an all out attack against your foes you cannot use any complex maneuvers or missile weapons, nor may you dodge (but you may block attacks). If any of your allies gets in your way (or if there are no enemies in your immediate area) you must make a Wits(8) roll to avoid harming someone you would rather not. Leaving the frenzy is not always an easy proposition. When your enemies have been vanquished or when retreat becomes necessary, you must roll Self-Control, with a D# of 6 plus the number of damage levels you have taken. You must get 3 successes in an extended roll to leave the frenzied state.
Flashbacks (3 pt Flaw)
You are prone to flashbacks if you are in high-pressure situation or situations similar to previous events in your life. Flashbacks can be caused by almost any trauma torture, extended combat or the death of loved ones. Either positive or negative stimulation could result in an episode. Emotional anxiety and stress are the usual catalysts for flashbacks to begin. Returning to a good and happy vision can be just as dangerous or distracting as suddenly being surrounded by demonic hallucinations. During the flashback, you are not aware of what is really around you. Even people speaking to you will be viewed as people or objects from the vision. You can mistake men for women, people for animals and even inanimate objects for people. To you, reality has shifted, and you are back there again.
Driving Goal (3 pt Flaw)
You have a personal goal which sometimes compels and directs you in startling ways. The goal is always limitless in depth, and you can never truly achieve it. It could be to grant equality to commoners or to visit a Celestine in its pure form. Because you must work toward your goal throughout the chronicle (though you can avoid it for short periods with a Self-Control roll or Willpower point), it will get you into trouble and may jeopardize other actions. Choose your driving goal carefully as it will direct and focus everything your character does.
Hatred (3 pt Flaw)
You have an unreasoning hatred of a certain thing. This hatred is total and largely uncontrollable. You may hate a species of animal, a class of person, a color, a situation or just about anything else, and you constantly pursue opportunities to harm the hated object or to gain power over it. Whenever confronted by the object of your hatred, you must make a Self-Control(9) roll to avoid attacking it outright.
Lifesaver (3 pt Flaw)
You believe that life is a sacred gift and will not take a persons life except in the most extreme of circumstances. You may not ever willingly endanger the lives of innocents or in any way participate in a killing. You have no problems with killing animals (for the right reasons), and will kill evil and violent creatures to protect others if necessary. (Be very careful, however, of your definition of evil ) Senseless death in all forms repulses you, and you feel that those who commit murder should be punished. Witnessing what you consider to be an unnecessary killing requires a Conviction(7) roll to avoid hysterics or outright hostility to the offending party, while participating in a killing counts as a violation of your Path, requiring a Conviction(8) roll to avoid a loss of Path.
Severe Phobia (3 pt Flaw)
You have an overpowering fear of something. Common objects of phobias include insects, crowds, open spaces, confined spaces, heights and certain animals. You must make a Courage roll to avoid freaking out when faced with the object of your fear. The D# depends on the circumstances. If you fail the roll, you must retreat in terror from the object of your fear (usually screaming). If you score less than 3 successes, you will not approach it. The GM has final say over which phobias are allowed in the chronicle.
These Merits and Flaws deal with the mind, its strengths, weaknesses and special capacities. These Merits and Flaws should be carefully considered before being taken because of the degree of effect they may have both on the character and the story.
Common Sense (1 pt Merit)
You have a significant amount of practical, everyday wisdom. Whenever you are about to do something contrary to commons sense, the GM should alert you to how your potential action might violate practicality. This is an ideal Merit if you are a novice player because it allows you to receive advice from the GM concerning what you can and cannot do, and (even more importantly) what you should and should not do.
Concentration (1 pt Merit)
You have the ability to focus your mind and shut out any distractions or annoyances, above and beyond the norm. Any penalty to a D# or Dice Pool arising from a distraction or other inauspicious circumstance is limited to 2 (dice or D# modification), though no extra benefits are gained if the penalty is only 1.
Amnesia (2 pt Flaw)
You are unable to remember anything about your past, yourself or your family. Your life is a blank slate. However your past may some day come back to haunt you, and the GM is under not obligation to be merciful. You can, if you wish, fill out your remaining Flaw points (or even take a few Merit points) without specifying what they are. The GM can supply the details. Over the course of the chronicle, you and your character will slowly discover them.
Confused (2 pt Flaw)
You are often confused, and the world seems to be a very distorted and twisted place. Sometimes you are simply unable to make sense of things. You need to roleplay this behavior all the time to a small degree, but your confusion becomes particularly strong whenever stimuli surround you (such as a number of different people talking all at once or the chaos of a bazaar). You may spend a Willpower point to override the effects of your confusion, but only temporarily.
Eidetic Memory (2 pt Merit)
You can remember things seen and heard with perfect detail. By gaining at least one success on an Intelligence+Alertness roll, you can recall any sight or sound accurately, even if you heard it or glanced at it only once (although the D# of such a feat would be high). Five successes enable you to recall an event perfectly; the GM relates to you exactly what was seen or heard.
Iron Will (2 pt Merit)
When you are determined and your mind is set, nothing can divert you from your goals. Whenever someone tries to affect your mind with magickal abilities, their D#s are increased by one. If you are aware of the attempt, you can strengthen your resistance to a +3 modifier by spending a Willpower point. This extra defense lasts for the remainder of the scene, but a point must be spent for each different person or power used.
Absent-Minded (3 pt Flaw)
Though you do not forget such things as Abilities, you do forget such things as names, directions and the last time you saw someones face. In order to remember anything more than your own name and your own home, you need to make a Wits roll or, as a last resort, spend a Willpower point. This Flaw may not be taken with the Merit Concentration.
Self-Confident (5 pt Merit)
When you spend a point of Willpower to gain an automatic success, your self-confidence may allow you to gain the benefit of that expenditure without actually losing the Willpower point. When you declare that you are using a point of Willpower and you roll for successes, you do not lose the point of Willpower unless you fail. This Merit may only be used when you need confidence in your abilities in order to succeed. You can use it only when the D# of your roll is 7 or higher. You may spend Willpower at other times, however, if the D# is 6 or less, the Merit will not help you.
These Merits and Flaws involve perception (or the lack thereof).
Acute Sense (1 pt Merit)
You have exceptionally sharp hearing, smell, vision, or taste. The D#s of all dice rolls that relate to the chosen sense are decreased by 2.
Color Blindness (1 pt Flaw)
You can only see in black and white. Color means nothing to you, although you are sensitive to color density, which you perceive as shades of gray.
Hard of Hearing (1 pt Flaw)
Your hearing is defective. The D#s of all dice rolls relating to hearing are increased by 2.
Bad Sight (2 pt Flaw)
Your sight is defective. The D#s of all dice rolls related to vision are increased by 2. This Flaw can be a form either of nearsightedness or farsightedness, or a minor form of blindness, though the distinctions mean little in game play.
One Eye (2 pt Flaw)
You have one eye choose which, or determine randomly at character generation. You have no peripheral vision on your blind side, and 2 less dice are rolled when a situation involves depth perception. This includes any roll for missile combat, and may include dodging at certain times.
Deaf (4 pt Flaw)
You cannot hear sound and you automatically fail any rolls that require hearing.
Blind (6 pt Flaw)
You cannot see and you automatically fail any rolls that involve sight. The world of color and light is lost to you.
These Merits establish special capacities and abilities for your character, or modify the effects and powers of your characters other Traits.
Ambidextrous (1 pt Merit)
You have a high degree of off-hand dexterity and can perform tasks with either hand at no penalty. Attempting to use two weapons in combat results in a +1 D# modifier to each action, instead of the usual +2/+3.
Animal Magnetism (1 pt Merit)
You are especially attractive to others. You receive a 2 to your D#s on Seduction and Subterfuge rolls against the opposite sex. However, your appeal tends to aggravate others of your gender.
Mechanical Aptitude (1 pt Merit)
You are naturally adept with all kinds of mechanical devices. The D#s of all dice rolls to understand, repair and operate any kind of mechanical device are reduced by 2.
Natural Leader (1 pt Merit)
You are gifted with a certain charisma that sets you apart from the rest. You have the natural ability to lead others. Your D#s for any roll that involves leadership (especially use of that Ability) are reduced by 3.
Pitiable (1 pt Merit)
There is something about you which others pity. This causes them to care for you as if you were a child (as the Archetype). Some Natures will not be affected by this Merit (Deviant, Fanatic, etc.), and some Demeanors may pretend they are not. You need to decide what it is about you that attracts such pity, and how much, or how little, you like it.
Poison Resistance (1 pt Merit)
You have, for some reason or another, developed a resistance to poisons. It could be that you are somehow naturally resistant, or that you have spent years building up your resistance against various toxins. Any time you need to roll Resistance against the effects of a poison, reduce your D#s by 3.
Natural Linguist (2 pt Merit)
You have a flair for languages. This Merit allows you to gain 3 ranks of Languages instead of the normal 2 for each dot of Academics. In addition, any roll involving languages (both written and spoken) gains an additional 2 dice.
Daredevil (3 pt Merit)
You are good at taking risks, and are even better at surviving them. All D#s are at 1 whenever you try something particularly dangerous, and you can ignore one botch result when you roll 1s on such actions (you can cancel a single 1 that is rolled, as if you have an extra success).
Fast Learner (3 pt Merit)
You learn very quickly, and pick up on new things faster than most do. You gain 1 extra Experience point at the conclusion of each story (not each game session).
Jack-Of-All-Trades (5 pt Merit)
You have a large pool of miscellaneous skills and knowledge obtained through your extensive travels, the jobs youve held or just day-to-day experience. You automatically have one dot in all Abilities. This is an illusory level, used only to simulate a wide range of abilities. If you train or spend Experience in any Ability, you must pay the point cost for the first level a second time before raising it to 2 dots.
These Merits and Flaws deal with your place, position and status in society. Some of them correspond very closely to certain Background Traits (such as Fame, Mentor and Wealth), while others simply elaborate and expand upon them. The Backgrounds give you more creative freedom, while the Merits provide you with exact details of what you possess.
Infamous Mentor (1 pt Flaw)
Your Mentor was, and perhaps still is, distrusted and disliked by your peers or even in your homeland. As a result, you are distrusted and disliked as well. This is a heavy load, and one not easily shed.
Mentors Resentment (1 pt Flaw)
Your Mentor dislikes you and wishes you ill. Given the smallest opportunity, your Mentor will seek to do you harm, and may even attack you if provoked. Your Mentors friends may also work against you. Good luck!
Prestigious Mentor (1 pt Merit)
Your Mentor had or has great status among your peers or in your homeland, and this has accorded you a peculiar honor. Most treat you respectfully, while some have only contempt for you, believing you to be merely riding your Mentors coattails. This prestige could greatly aid or hinder you when dealing with elders acquainted with your Mentor. Indeed, your Mentors contacts may actually approach you at some point and offer aid. Although your Mentor might no longer have contact with you, the simple fact of your apprenticeship has marked you forever.
Rival (1 pt Flaw)
You have an intense rivalry with one of your peers. You are always competing with this individual, either for fun or out of spite. In besting this individual, you go to extremes, and he behaves similarly towards you. Your rival occasionally gets the best of you, but you do the same to him.
Secret Friendship (1 pt Flaw)
You maintain a friendship outside of your accepted social circle, despite knowing that if you are discovered there is a good chance that both of you could be embarrassed, harassed or worse. You are always having to cover up this relationship. You must never reveal this secret or you will be in deep trouble.
Bureaucratic Ties (2 pt Merit)
You have some influence over and contacts with the bureaucratic system of your homeland. You know most of the administrators as well as advisors, messengers and other minor functionaries, and can affect the progress of various processes with limited difficulty. Though it is difficult to intervene in a specific case, you can influence it in one direction or another. These ties can also make it easy to acquire official documents.
Diabolical Mentor (2 pt Flaw)
Your Mentor is engaged in acts that could cause a tremendous uproar. He could be ignoring unabashed evil activities or even worse. Plenty of folks want your Mentors hide, and you may be tarred with the same brush.
Inn (2 pt Merit)
You own a moderate-sized inn, perhaps one of the most well known in the territory. This inn brings in enough to support you well enough (similar to a 1 in Wealth, but it can grow), but more important than the money is the prestige. You may use the inn as one of your Backgrounds (such as a Font), though must purchase the Background trait to do so. The name of the inn, its style, design and its regular patrons are all up to you. Variations on this theme could include a shop, bathhouse or even a temple.
Guardsmen Ties (2 pt Merit)
You have some influence over and contacts in the local guard. You can, with a message, arrange for a small militia to be called. You can also have them look the other way at times. However, the more often you use your ties with the guards, the weaker they become, and the more attention you attract toward yourself. Your influence is not solid (that can be achieved only through game play), and it can let you down at times.
Hideaway (2 pt Merit)
You own a special hideaway a house, cottage or other place that no one knows about but you. It has never been linked to you in any way, making it quite unlikely that anyone could trace you there. It is modestly furnished, and you keep it stocked with necessities for about a two-week stay. Such places are good for hiding from all the various enemies an adventurer might make. Once each game in which the hideaway plays an active part (i.e. one when people might discover it), the GM will call for a roll on 2 dice with a D# of 6. Success means no one has discovered the hideaway. Failure indicates that you didnt adequately cover your tracks, and your foes know the general vicinity of your property. Four such cumulative failures leads them right to you, while a botch immediately renders your secret worthless.
Reputation (2 pt Merit)
You have a good reputation among your peers. This may derive from your own reputation of from your Mentor. Add 3 dice to any Dice Pools involving social dealings with others of your own homeland. A character with this Merit may not take the flaw Notoriety.
Mansion (3 pt Merit)
You own a large mansion a home with 25 or more rooms as well as the surrounding estate. The servants, of you have any, are provided for if you choose this Merit, although they cannot be used as Followers unless you purchase that Background. The mansion is assumed to have all the basic necessities and comforts as you see fit. While the mansion can be in as poor or as good shape as you wish, the more inhabited it appears to be, the more attention it will garner. A ghost house wont attract the Barons tax collectors, but it may attract adventurers or guardsmen if bands of strange people hang out there.
Noble Ties (3 pt Merit)
You have a measure of influence and contacts with the nobility in your homeland. In times of need, you can arrange to unleash various official harassments on your enemies. The more you use your political ties, the weaker they become. Total control can only be achieved through game play.
Notoriety (3 pt Flaw)
You have a bad reputation in your homeland perhaps you violated the law once too often or belong to an unpopular circle of people. There is a 2 dice penalty for social dealings with appropriate people. A character with this Flaw may not take the Merit Reputation.
Religious Ties (3 pt Merit)
You have influence and contacts with one or more temples in your homeland. This allows you to organize people to help you, as well as raise money and help those in need. If you abuse your ties, of course, the greater your risk of being discovered.
Ward (3 pt Flaw)
You are devoted to the protection of someone or something. You may describe your ward, though the GM will actually create him, her or it. If it is a person, you may be related to him, or possibly he is just a good friend. If it is a place or thing, it may be important to your religion or possibly a noble person. Wards always seem to get caught up in the action of stories, and theyre frequent targets of characters enemies.
Black Market Ties (1-5 pt Merit)
You have special ties to the underground networks in your homeland; ties that help you to acquire hard-to-find equipment and supplies. This Merit adds 1 die per point to your Larceny roll when trying, for instance, to obtain illegal weaponry. Difficulties for such rolls are left up to the GM (typically 7 or higher). The point cost reflects how connected you may be. The GM may allow you to use your black market connections during the game to provide you with needed or useful equipment. Such connections will not simply hand you whatever you want these things dont come cheap! It is up to the GM to determine the quantity, quality and availability of the equipment. He may feel free to disallow it entirely if such connections would unbalance the game.
· 1 point Small items and trivial things banned by the local government
· 2 points Average items, such as illegal small weaponry
· 3 points Fancy items, such as rare or expensive things reserved for nobility
· 4 points Hefty items, including large amounts of weapons
· 5 points Yeah right, maybe next game Items that no GM in their right mind would allow you to have on a moments notice
Enemy (1-5 pt Flaw)
You have an enemy or perhaps a group of enemies. Someone wants to harm you. The value of the Flaw determines how powerful these enemies are. The most powerful enemies (kings or ancient vampires) indicate 5 point Flaws, while enemies nearer to your own power level indicate 1 point Flaws. You must decide who your enemy is and how you have earned such enmity in the first place.
Favor (1-3 pt Merit)
A noble or person of power owes you a favor because of something either you or your Mentor once did for him. The extent of the favor owed depends on how many points you spend. One point would indicate a relatively minor boon, while 3 points would indicate that the person probably owes you his life.
Hunted (1-4 pt Flaw)
You have somehow attracted the interest of some agency or individual who now seeks your destruction. This hunter is beyond reason, and has some form of power, influence or authority that puts you at a disadvantage. Your friends, family and associates are likewise endangered. Sooner or later, this Flaw will result in a confrontation. The resolution should not be an easy one.
These Merits and Flaws are different kinds of supernatural benefits or detriments. Because of the potential of these particular Traits, the GM may not allow you to choose from this category ask before you pick any. Furthermore, you should not select such Traits unless they firmly fit your character concept, and you can explain why your character possesses them. In general, we do no recommend that anyone have more than one or two supernatural Merits or Flaws they should be strictly controlled by the GM.
Lunar Influence (1 pt Merit)
The moons have an unusually strong influence on you. You must choose which of the two moons you are attuned to (usually the bright moon), and which of the three Attribute groups it influences. When this moon is dominant, then all rolls involving that Attribute group have 1 D#. When the opposite moon is dominant then those Attributes suffer a +1 D# penalty. When your moon is full you gain an additional die to any roll involving that Attribute group. When the opposite moon is full then that Attribute group loses one die. When the moons are equal then your attributes are normal.
Magick Sensitivity (1 pt Merit)
You have a supernatural gift that allows you to know if any magick is in use or has been used recently within a 10 radius of yourself. How much you know about the magick depends upon the number of successes you roll using your Intuition(8). If you already have an ability that allows you to sense magick, then this Merit reduces the D#s of that ability by 1.
Silence (1 pt Merit)
You have an unusual ability to move quietly that goes far beyond the norm. Reduce the D# on any Stealth roll involving moving quietly by 2. You are even able to move quietly over dry leaves. Should the wind blow while you are moving, there is no way to hear you.
True Love (1 pt Merit)
You have discovered, and possibly lost (at least temporarily) a true love. Nonetheless, this love provides joy in an otherwise arid existence thats usually devoid of such enlightened emotions. Whenever you are suffering, in danger or dejected, the thought of your true love is enough to give you the strength to persevere. In game terms, this love allows you to succeed automatically on any Willpower roll, but only when you are actively striving to protect or come closer to your true love. Also, the power of your love may be powerful enough to protect you from other supernatural forces (GMs discretion). However, your true love may also be a hindrance and require aid (or even rescue) from time to time. Be forewarned this is a most exacting Merit to play over the course of a chronicle.
Eerie Presence (2 pt Flaw)
Other people get a strange feeling when they are around you. You seem to make others very uncomfortable, especially animals and common folk. You have a 2 dice penalty to any social action (except Intimidation). When and how this penalty applies is left to the GM.
Enchanting Voice (2 pt Merit)
You have an almost magickal voice, beautiful beyond words. You may add 2 dice to all rolls directly involving the use of your voice, such as leadership, seduction, singing, etc. Depending upon the circumstances, the GM may allow you to use these 2 extra dice when making a roll involving a magickal ability.
Magick Resistance (2 pt Merit)
For some reason your character can shrug off magickal effects with ease. Any magickal effect that targets you, including those beneficial to you, has its D# raised by 2. If it is an area effect that merely targets the area around you, then the D# is increased by 1.
Magick Susceptibility (2 pt Flaw)
For unknown reasons your character is more readily affected my magick. Any magickal effect that targets you, including those beneficial to you, has its D# lowered by 2. If it is an area effect that merely targets the area around you, then the D# is only decreased by 1.
Medium (2 pt Merit)
You possess a natural affinity to sense and hear spirits, ghosts and shades. Though you cannot see them, you feel their presence and are able to speak with them when they are in the vicinity. It is even possible for you to summon them (through pleading and cajoling) to your presence. Spirits will not simply aid you or give you advice they will always want something in return.
Mystic Ability (2 pt Merit)
For some reason, you have visions. The visions are not necessarily precognitive, but like precognition, the visions occur outside your control. You may make yourself more sensitive to them through ritualistic practices (usually requiring the expenditure of a Mana point), but you can rarely consciously induce a vision. Then again, you may have a vision as you are walking down the street minding your own business. Unlike Precognition, the visions are always steeped in symbolism, and they apply only to yourself. The particulars of how and when this Merit work are left to the GM.
Sanctity (2 pt Merit)
For some reason, everyone considers you pure and innocent, though certainly not naïve. You have a saint-like quality that is hard to put a finger on, but others then do see it in you. You are trusted, even if you are not trustworthy. You tend to receive lesser punishments for wrongdoing and are liked by most.
Special Rapport (2 pt Merit)
You have a special bond with another person that extends beyond any other type of bond you know of. You may or may not love the other person, but you have a special link to him. This link allows you to always know when he is in trouble, when he is in pain, when he is lying and when he needs you. In return, he knows the same about you. Both characters have to buy this Merit. This Merit should not be abused by allowing a relatively weak character choose a powerful one, unless this is approved by the GM.
Surreal Quality (2 pt Flaw)
There is something about you that others find fascinating. At inappropriate times, they will stare at you and strike up conversations in the hopes of getting to know you better. Worse still, those folks who are of less savory nature will choose you over other potential targets for their illicit acts.
Danger Sense (3 pt Merit)
You have a sixth sense that warns you of danger. When you are in danger, the GM should make a secret roll against your Alertness; the D# depends on the remoteness of the danger. If the roll succeeds, the GM tells you that you have a sense of foreboding. Multiple successes may refine the feeling and give you an indication of direction, distance or nature.
Destiny (3 pt Merit)
You have a great destiny, though you may well not realize it. Your birth was attended by powerful omens, and much is expected of you. Your destiny will become more apparent as the chronicle goes on, prophecies and dreams will guide your way and grant you clues to your nature. The sense of direction and security this feeling of destiny grants you helps you overcome fear, depression and discouragement cause by anything not relevant to your destiny. Once per story (not game session), if something threatens your character with a bad end, he may roll his Conviction against a D# of 7. Each success he scores allows him to regain one point of Willpower. He may use these points to avert a cheap death. Until your Destiny is fulfilled, you may suffer setbacks, but nothing will thwart you permanently.
Haunted (3 pt Flaw)
You are haunted by a ghost that only you (and mediums) can see and hear. It actively dislikes you and enjoys making your life miserable by insulting, berating and distracting you, especially when you need to keep your cool. It also has a number of minor powers it can use against you which may include any of the following:
· hiding small objects
· bringing a chill over others and making them ill at ease
· causing a loud buzzing in your ear or the ears of others
· moving small objects such as a knife or coin
· breaking fragile items such as a bottle or mirror
· tripping you
· making eerie noises
Yelling at the ghost can sometimes drive it away, but it will confuse those who are around you. The GM will likely personify the ghost in order to make things all the more frustrating for you.
Luck (3 pt Merit)
You were born lucky. You can repeat 3 failed non-magickal rolls per story. Only one repeat attempt may be made on any single roll.
Oracular Ability (3 pt Merit)
You see signs and omens in everyday life. You are able to understand many magickal portents that are revealed to people everyday, but are seen by few and interpreted by less. You are able to draw advice from these omens, for they provide hints of the future and warnings for the present. Seeing an omen or sign requires a simple roll of Intuition, with the D# based on the degree to which the sign is hidden. Once the sign has been seen, it must be interpreted using Enigmas, with the D# based on the intricacy of the sign. The number of successes determines how much meaning can be gleaned from the sign.
Taint of Corruption (3 pt Flaw)
You are touched by darkness and evil intent and corrupt in the eyes of others. Others using magickal abilities that sense evil taint will sense you, and evil creatures will constantly tempt you to join their side. Even those not sensitive to magick will feel uneasy in your presence, and animals will not tolerate you unless forced to.
Precognition (4 pt Merit)
You have the ability to perceive events before they happen. This ability is not readily at your command. The premonitions usually come to you when you least expect them. The focus of the premonitions is not usually under your control either. You can try to force a vision through meditation or ritual, but this takes at least an hour and requires the expenditure of a Mana point. A roll of Meditation(8) should determine the clarity of the visions, and even if the roll is failed the Mana point is lost. This ability can greatly impact the story, and the exact nature of the effects is left up to the GM. This Merit should not be used to cause problems in the game, but to intensify the experience through additional drama.
Charmed Existence (5 pt Merit)
Your life is somehow protected, and you do not face the perils that others must. It could be that you are simply lucky. Because of this you may ignore a single 1 on every roll you make. This makes it far more unlikely that you will ever botch, and grants you more successes than others would obtain.
Dark Fate (5 pt Flaw)
You are doomed to experience a most horrible demise or, worse, suffer eternal agony. No matter what you do, someday you will be taken out of the picture. In the end, all your efforts, your struggles and your dreams will come to naught. Your fate is certain, and there is nothing you can do about it. Even more ghastly, you have partial knowledge of this, for you occasionally have visions of your fate and they are most disturbing. The malaise these visions can inspire can only be overcome through the use of Willpower, and the malaise will return after each vision. At some point in the chronicle you will face your fate, but when and how is completely up to the GM. Though you cant do anything about your fate, you can still attempt to reach some goal before it occurs, or at least try to make sure that your friends are not destroyed as well. Combining this Flaw with the Destiny Merit is very appropriate.
Innate Magickal Ability (5 pt Merit)
You have some sort of magickal ability that makes you unique. The ability is different from whatever magickal Art you may practice. The exact nature of the ability should remain somewhat mysterious to you, though you have some say in what the ability is. The ability should be comparable to a first or second level ability, and use of it will always cost a Mana point.
Mana Sink (5 pt Flaw)
Your magickal prowess is less reliable than others and your find yourself having to force your Mana forth rather than having it flow easily. Any time you wish to spend a point of Mana you must either spend a turn and roll Intuition(7) or instead spend 2 points. If you fail on this roll you must spend 2 points anyway, and if you botch then you lose the point of Mana to no effect. Characters that do not practice a magickal Art can still take this Flaw, but for them it is only worth 2 points.
Guardian Spirit (6 pt Merit)
Someone or something watches over you, protecting you from harm. You have no idea who or what it is, but you have an idea that someone is there looking out for you. In times of great need you may be protected from harm. A guardian angel cannot be counted upon. The GM must decide why you are being watched over, and by what (not necessarily a spirit, despite the name).
Nine Lives (6 pt Merit)
Fate has granted you the opportunity to come as close to death as anyone can get and still survive. You basically have nine lives. If a situation arises in which you should be killed, you actually survive, though you may be the worse for wear. You get nine opportunities to return, and these are never replaced after they have been used once they are gone, they are gone. A list should be kept somewhere on the character sheet to record how many lives have been used.
Regeneration (7 pt Merit)
Your stamina is amazing. As a result of magickal forces or perhaps a blessing from a Great Spirit you heal much faster than any other person does. For each turn spent resting you recover one level of Bashing damage. Killing wounds require a great deal more rest, but they too can be regenerated at a rate of 1 level per day. While in a magickal place, your wounds may heal at twice this speed (GMs discretion).
Cursed (1-5 pt Flaw)
You have been cursed by someone or something with supernatural or magickal powers. This curse is specific and detailed. It cannot be dispelled without extreme effort, and it can be life threatening. Some examples include:
· If you pass on a secret that was told to you, your betrayal will later harm you in some way (1 pt)
· You stutter uncontrollably when you try to describe what you have seen or heard (2 pts)
· Tools and weapons often break when you attempt to use them (3 pts)
· You are doomed to make enemies of those to whom you become most attached (so whatever you do, dont get too close to the other characters) (4 pts)
· Every one of your accomplishments or achievements will inevitably become tainted or fail in some way (5 pts)
Foe From the Past (1-3 pt Flaw)
An enemy of one of your ancestors pursues you for revenge. This enemy is some form of undying being (such as a vampire or ghost) that your ancestor displeased in some way. This enemy does not pursue you all the time. He is out for revenge against your ancestor, and you are simply the best path to that vengeance. The number of points determines the power level of the foe, 1 being a minor spirit or vampire, while 3 might indicate a truly undying creature like a lich or mummy.
Magickal Prohibition or Imperative (1-5 pt Flaw)
There is something you must or must not do, and your life, your luck, your magick and perhaps your very soul depends on it. This imperative may be something that has always been upon you; a geas prophesied at your birth, a sacred oath or vow you swore, or a promise or bargain you made. Someone (with a capital S) witnessed you make the commitment and is going to hold you to it. IF you disobey, the consequences will be dire, if not deadly.
Characters may have several magickal prohibitions or imperatives, and these may come into conflict. Consequently, most adventurers keep their magickal prohibitions or imperatives secret, lest they be used against them by enemies.
GMs should examine each prohibition or imperative and assign a point value to it, as well as a punishment for violating it. Easily avoided circumstances, such as Never break bread with a red-haired man, are worth 1 point, while more common or difficult things, such as Stop and pet every cat you see, are worth 2. Particularly drastic or dangerous circumstances, such as Never back down from a fight, are worth 3 (or more) points. Consequences are worth points as well. Automatically botching your next magickal roll is worth 1 point, having bad luck for the rest of your life is worth 2, losing all your friends and worldly possessions is worth 3 and dying is worth 4. The player and GM may come up with variants of these.
Traditionally, there is very little that may be done about geasa, which are simply facets of ones destiny, and curses are devilishly hard to lift (the Flaw must be bought off if they are). Characters who accidentally violate prohibitions or imperatives may attempt to atone for their crimes, righting whatever they did wrong. A witch who has vowed to never eat meat, and then suddenly finds a bit of mean in her soup, might be able to atone for the trespass by fasting and taking in any wayward animals. However, if a character violates an oath willingly and with full knowledge- and survives he becomes an oathbreaker, one of the foulest epithets. Oathbreakers are psychically marked. It is virtually impossible for them to find tutors or any sort of aid.
Characters who wish to begin as oathbreakers should take the Flaw Dark Fate or some curse, as well as Oathbreaker, worth 3 points.
These Merits and Flaws deal with your health and physical makeup.
Asthma (1 pt Flaw)
You have difficulty performing strenuous tasks because you cannot breathe properly. With asthma, your lungs only draw a fraction of the air that they would normally require. Any time you exert yourself, you must make an Endurance(8) roll or be unable to perform any action in the next round while you catch your breath.
Catlike Balance (1 pt Merit)
You possess an innately perfect sense of balance. You are able to land on your feet from a fall virtually every time. You receive 2 extra dice when rolling to retain or achieve balance.
Double-Jointed (1 pt Merit)
You are unusually supple. Reduce the D# of any Dexterity roll involving body flexibility by 2. Squeezing through a tiny space is on example of a use for this Merit.
Early Riser (1 pt Merit)
You always seem to be the first one to rise and the last to go to bed. You always get up at least one hour before everyone else, even if you stay up late. You seem to have the ability to exist on less rest.
Lazy (1 pt Flaw)
You are simply lazy. You do not like to do anything that requires a lot of effort on your part. You prefer to let others do the hard work. You like to lie around whenever possible.
Short (1 pt Flaw)
You are well below average height, and have trouble seeing over high objects and moving quickly. You suffer a 2 dice penalty to all pursuit rolls, and you and the GM should make sure your height is taken into account in situations. IN some circumstances, this will give you a concealment bonus. Certain Faerie kith cannot take this Flaw, as it is inherent to their being.
Bad Taste (2 pt Merit)
Your flesh exudes oils which taste so bad that if anyone or anything tries to bite you, they will get nauseous. The biter must spend a Willpower point every turn or retch. Animals will not lick you.
Disfigured (2 pt Flaw)
A hideous disfigurement makes you ugly and easy to notice or remember. You therefore have a 0 Appearance.
Graceful (2 pt Merit)
Youve got a natural flair. Your movements hypnotize and your words charm, harsh though they may be. Its almost impossible for you to look awkward, even when you screw up royally. Most people respect this talent, and even jealous folks have to at least admit youve got style. Reduce the D#s of all Social rolls by 2 whenever theres a chance to make a really good impression. This doesnt apply to threats or brute force, although grace may be intimidating in its own way.
Graceless (2 pt Flaw)
The antithesis of the Graceful Merit; you always look awkward, even when youre totally on top of things. Everything you do looks, feels or sounds wrong, even if you go about it the right way. People think youre a schmuck no matter what you do, and this drives you crazy. Which, of course, makes you look even worse. In game terms, Graceless adds 2 to the D# of all Social rolls which involve looking good, form Seduction to Etiquette, and leads others to think less of you.
Longevity (2 pt Merit)
You are extremely long lived. You do not suffer aging effects until you are 85+ years old (rather than at 65+). You can expect to live to 120-130 years old, barring death in combat.
Deformity (3 pt Flaw)
You have some kind of deformity such as misshapen limbs or a hunchback that affects your interactions with others and may inconvenience you physically. The D# of all dice rolls related to physical appearance are raised by 2. Your deformity will also raise the D#s of some Dexterity rolls by 2, depending on the type of deformity you possess.
Lame (3 pt Flaw)
Your legs are injured or otherwise prevented from working effectively. You suffer a 2 dice penalty to all dice rolls related to movement. A character may not take this Flaw along with the Merit Double-Jointed.
One Arm (3 pt Flaw)
You have only one arm choose which or determine randomly during character creation. This could be a battle scar, birth defect or other form of injury. It is assumed that you are accustomed to using your remaining hand, so you suffer no off-hand penalty. However, you do suffer a 2 dice penalty to any Dice Pool for which two hands would normally be needed to perform a task. A character may not take this Flaw along with the Merit Ambidextrous.
Perfect Balance (3 pt Merit)
Your sense of balance is acute thanks to constant training or inherited talents. It is very unlikely that you will ever fall during your life. You may trip, but you will always catch yourself before you fully lose your footing or handhold. This Merit functions for such actions as tightrope walking, crossing ice and climbing mountains. All D#s involving such feats are reduced by 3. It would take a lot to push a character off his feet if he has this Merit.
Huge Size (4 pt Merit)
You are abnormally large in size, possibly over 7 tall and 400 pounds in weight. You therefore have one additional Health level, and are able to suffer more harm before you are incapacitated. Treat this as an extra Bruised level, with no penalties to rolls. Some Faerie Kith cannot take this Merit, as it is inherent to their being.
Mute (4 pt Flaw)
Your vocal apparatus does not function, and you cannot speak at all. You can communicate through other means typically through signing or writing.
Allergic (1-4 pt Flaw)
You are allergic to some substance pollen, animal fur, alcohol, etc. For 1 point you get hives, sneeze or become dizzy upon prolonged contact with your bane. For 2 points you swell up uncomfortably in the affected area, reducing all Dice Pools by 1. For 3 points your reaction actually debilitates you, reducing appropriate Dice Pools by 3. If the substance is really common in the chronicle, add an additional point to this Flaw.
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