Welcome good men and women of Ambria! (And... others) I am Aro Korinthia. Nobleman, lover of fine things and third cousin, once removed of our glorious Queen (may Prios watch over her). I am here today outside the gates of Thistle Hold with opportunity for the common man! The same opportunity your own Duke Berakka seized during the war against the Dark Lords to secure his land and title in spite of noble birth. The same opportunity that funded Mayor Nightpitch's building of the very fortress town I stand in front of to make this address. I speak of course of the call to adventure! The ability to bravely seize the unknown! To grasp the world by it's unmentionables and squeeze until it gives you what you want!
Twenty years a go it was the war that called such brave men and women to be exemplars of what man can be. Now it is the holy duty of taming the dark forest of Davokar. Prios gave us this earth to tame and make use of. Not to be held back by abominations, foolish elves and the filth of corruption. As a result I have, at considerable expense acquired an Explorers Licence for the provision of ten brave individuals to be allowed to explore Davokar. This, combined with maps in my mens possession is a wealth of opportunity for the common man. Go into the forest! Seize wealth undocumented and bring it to me! You shall all be handsomely paid in Thaler past what a year of toiling at a farm or being a second class laborer in Thistle Hold would bring. All for just one day, one day of bravery against the world!
Behind Aro the forest of Davokar creaked in the wind. Few in the crowd were interested in joining on for a nobleman's folly.
So hi, hello. The woods image is the OOC break. So I want to go over the general idea of this campaign before covering house rules that we'll be using and character creation.
Though first to address an obvious question of what you need to play: Nothing! At least, at a minimum you should be perfectly able to play in this game without owning any of the books. The only bit of character creation you will be missing by not owning things is equipment. Which the system thankfully makes easy by mostly just giving you equipment for whatever abilities you pick up in character creation. For what it's worth this game will be making use of content from both the Core Rulebook (CRB in page annotations) and the Advanced PlayerBook (APB in page notations).
The theme for this campaign will primarily be explorations into Davokar. Setting off from Thistle Hold or, for deep woods explorations, Karvosti. As a result it will mostly be dealing with the ruins of Symbaroum (the old civilization), abominations, the Iron Pact (an order of mostly elves who protect the forest according to an ancient treaty with man) and the corruption that interacting with Davokar can bring. However they'll also be some adventures taking place in the towns and dealing more with people than monsters.
Format wise I plan to run one or two games a week during evenings GMT time. With the day mostly up to when groups can make it. The games are planned to be drop in/drop out and be semi west marches in that characters are expected to die in Davokar reasonably regularly.
For Optional Rules we will be using:
Instant Kill (CRB 178): With this rule if the attack that brings your character to 0 toughness (the games HP) is equal to or higher than their pain threshold (half your Toughness) then the character is instantly killed with no chance for recovery. We'll be using this because I think it fits with the reasonably grim setting and also gives players a reason to feel threatened by larger creatures/abominations.
Re-Roll for Corruption (CRB 179): You want a re-roll? You can take on 1 permanent corruption (edging you closer to becoming an abomination) to re-roll any dice. This is nice because it gives non Mystics a way to engage with corruption as a concept without using artefacts and also plays into the theme that just being in Davokar can be a risk.
Roll for attributes (CRB 181): Self explanatory. Rather than assigning 80 points among your attributes you instead roll 2d6+3 8 times and then assign them to whatever stats you want.
XP For character creation (APB 101): You start with 50XP when creating characters as opposed to normal chargen. This mostly lets us accommodate boons and burdens.
Expanded Races (Homebrew): This is a rule designed around making the campaign (with it's ahem, turn over of characters) feel more thematic in terms of how races work and how many are present. Under this rule at the start of character creation you roll 1d20. The higher you roll the more choice you get for races. With humans being the most common and true oddities such as Elves and Trolls being the rarest races. In addition to this races each have stats which have a guaranteed minimum. When creating a member of this race those stats are ensured to be at the minimum value. This means that, for example, you can't have a Strong 5 ogre. Ogres will always be strong.
(char sheet here
Step One: Roll for race and then select any race with a roll requirement equal to or lower than your dice roll:
Step Two: Roll Attributes by rolling 2d6+3 8 times and then assigning them as you wish. The attributes are Accurate (default attack skill and hand eye co-ordination), Cunning (wit and knowledge), Discreet (the ability to be agile and sneaky), Persuasive (talk people's ears off), Quick (Relfexes and also your initiative and defense) Resolute (resilience to influence, key for mystics as it effects your corruption threshold), Strong (your strength, also your character's Toughness/HP and pain threshold) and Vigilant (your characters Awareness).
If after assigning the attributes any of your stats are below your races minimum for that attribute you may raise it to meet the minimum.
Step Three: Spend XP on abilities and Boons. If you have the book you can look them up there. If not you can use Symbook
to reference everything you need. In an admittedly pain in the ass way. You have 50XP to play with at the start.
Novice Level abilities cost 10 XP, Adept a further 20XP and Master 30XP (so adept is the highest you can buy at char gen). Boons cost 5 XP and Burdens give you a further 5XP to use. You are limited to two burdens at character generation in this campaign.
Bear in mind that each Mystical Power you pick up without the matching Mystic Tradition's Ability will add one point of permanent corruption to your character. Being an independent mystic is possible but might prove inadvisable.
If you're stuck for what abilities to pick and how to assign stats the book actually has a varied selection of Archetypes that function as build advice and also entitle you to unique abilities if you play into them. Feel free to ask me and describe what sort of character you'd like if you don't have the book to reference them.
Step Four: Equipment, this will need the book to let you have full choice. However if you don't have it then don't worry. The system provides you with equipment for whatever abilities you picked up. As a result if you don't have the book I'll happily finish your character sheet by filling the equipment section in with the basics and leave you to spend money at a later date.