To describe a character, we use attributes and skills. Attributes are the innate abilities of the character. It’s the basic building blocks: Size, Strength, Endurance, Coordination, Learning, Awareness and Magical Aptitude. Skills are the abilities attained through training, such as swimming, climbing and fighting skills. They are all based on the attributes. The skills are divided into three categories: Physical, Mental and Perception. The physical skills are based on coordination. The mental skills are based on learning. The perception skills are based on awareness.
- 1 Character Sheets
- 2 The Attributes
- 3 Numbers
- 4 Making a Character
- 5 Advantages and Disadvantages
- 6 Damage Bonus
- 7 Body Points
- 8 Rolling the Dice
- 9 Open Ended Rolls
- 10 Increasing Attributes/Skills/Spells
- 11 Carrying the Weight
- 12 Falling
- 13 Fear
- 14 Skills
To make and record a character, use the Character Sheet (or the Character Sheet with Magick Lore and Spells). The sheets are rather self explanatory when you read the rules. The dotted underlines beside attributes and skills are for marking training and experience. Use the sheets to fill in the character's values and print it out for the game. Mark training and experience with a pencil. You may also print out blank sheets and fill inn everything with a pencil.
- The size of the character’s body. A character with a large size can take more damage but is easier to hit with a missile weapon than a smaller character. The size is determined from the weight of the character.
- The physical strength of the character. With zero in this attribute you are paralyzed.
- The physical and mental endurance of the character. With zero in this attribute you are dead.
- The character’s dexterity and agility. With zero in this attribute you are paralyzed.
- The character’s ability to assimilate new knowledge and know how to use it. Learning has little to do with the character’s IQ, since this is roleplayed by the player. With zero in this attribute you are dead.
- The character’s perception and reaction speed. With zero in this attribute you are dead.
- Magical Aptitude
- The character’s ability to perceive and manipulate mana. Most people have 0 in this attribute. With less than zero in this attribute you are dead.
The general description of the character such as appearance, weight and height is determined freely by the player. The GM may wish to exclude extremes.
The attributes and skills of a character is rated by a number. Human attributes vary from 0 to 9. The size of an adult human is from 2 to 5. The human potential in strength, endurance, coordination, learning, awareness and magical aptitude is 9 (7 in strength for women). This can not be exceeded without very special magic. Other creatures have different potentials in the various attributes. See the Creatures chapter for these.
The mean human value of the attributes is 3 between ages 15 to 30. The size is based directly on the weight of the character and is found using the table below
|½||< 10||6||< 300||12||< 1000|
|1||< 20||7||< 400||13||< 1150|
|2||< 50||8||< 500||14||< 1300|
|3||< 100||9||< 600||15||< 1450|
|4||< 150||10||< 725||16||< 1600|
|5||< 225||11||< 850||+1||+200|
The average value in the skills will vary a great deal more than the attributes. This is because skills have much to do with specialization. While a farmer and a fisherman may have the same attribute values, the fisherman may have 3 in swim and the farmer 0.
To get an idea of the various skill ratings, take a look at the table below.
Making a Character
To record a character, use a character sheet.
Distribute 60 points among the attributes strength, endurance, coordination, learning, awareness and magical aptitude according to the following system: to go from 0 to 1 costs 1, from 1 to 2 costs 2, from 2 to 3 costs 3, etc. (see the table below). The first point of magical aptitude costs 10 points extra. Size is determined from the weight of the character and has no “cost.” It is usually 3.
Distribute 60 points among the skills after the same system.
All characters start with 5 in their spoken language unless more points are added to it. This basic in their native language is free.
Remember to set the values according to your character’s background. If he is a hunter, coordination and awareness should be a priority. Likewise the skills of hide, move quietly and bow.
Only in special cases should a character be allowed to begin play with any magick spells.
The table below gives an indication of how powerful a character is, based on allocated points for attributes and skills.
Advantages and Disadvantages
To make a character stand out and be more special, the GM can let the players add Advantages and Disadvantages for their characters. It is wise to balance these so that an equal amount of Advantage Points and Disadvantage Points are given. The GM can easily give each character 1 Advantage and 1 Disadvantage point. If he gives the character as much as 3 Advantage and Disadvantage Points, the characters will stand out more. Go to the Advantages and Disadvantages page for a full list og options.
The damage bonus applies to combat as explained in the next chapter.
It is: 1 per full 3 in the character’s size + strength.
Body points (BP) describe how much damage a character or creature can withstand. It is 2 × size + 1 per full 3 in endurance. If you are wounded (half or less of your total BP left) you get a –2 penalty on all rolls. If you are heavily wounded (quarter or less of your total BP left) you get a –4 penalty on all rolls. At 0 BP you are helpless (conscious but unable to do anything). At negative BP you are unconscious. At minus your total BP you are dead (i.e. if you have 6 BP you die at –6 BP).
The body points apply to combat as explained in Combat.
If your condition is helpless or worse, you roll a dice every 5 minutes. A 1 means you loose 1 BP from bleeding, while a 6 means you have stabilized and don’t have to make any further rolls. A successful medical lore roll will also stabilize your condition.
An unconscious person will awaken in d hours. Even though he is now conscious, he will still have all his damage to recover from.
Rolling the Dice
Whenever a character attempts to do anything that involves a skill, a dice is rolled.
This is called a skill roll. Add the result on the dice to the attribute + skill in question. The exception is knowledge skills where you only add the skill to the dice, not the attribute. The total is matched against a difficulty rating (DR) to see if it is successful. If it is equal to or higher than the DR, the character succeeds. Example: A character attempts to climb a wall with a coordination of 3 and a climb skill of 3. A 5 is rolled on the dice giving a total of 11. The GM has already determined the difficulty rating to be 11, so the character just manages to climb the wall successfully.
For difficulty ratings, see under the specific skills later in this chapter, and also in the chapters on combat and magick. For other DRs, the GM should use the table below as a guideline.
|–3||Impossible to miss|
|3||Likely if not trained|
|5||Possible if not trained|
|7||Very tough if not trained|
|20–25||Guinnes book of records|
Open Ended Rolls
Unless otherwise indicated, all dice rolls are so-called “open ended.” It works like this: if a 6 is rolled on the dice, roll the dice again. If 4–6 is rolled, add 1 to the roll and roll the dice again, etc. If a 1 is rolled on the dice, roll the dice again. If 1–3 is rolled, subtract 1 from the roll and roll the dice again, etc.
There is no limit to the result you can get with an open ended dice roll, including negative results such as –5.
Training will increase attributes and skills.
Experience will also increase the skills.
A teacher must have 3 more in the attribute or skill he trains another in. This figure is reduced by 1 per full 2 of the teacher’s teaching skill. You may train on your own without a teacher.
You need 10 “experience marks” to get a chance to increase an attribute or skill (subtract 1 per full 3 in learning).
When you get your chance to increase in an attribute or skill, roll a d6 and add your current value. The result must be equal to or less than the potential. A roll of 1 is always a success, while a roll of 6 is always a failure. If you fail, you get to keep one experience mark. Multiple failures to increase give accumulated experience marks until you automatically increase in that attribute or skill.
The potential for humans in attributes is 15, so it is very easy for an average human to increase in e.g. strength or coordination. Your current value in Coordination is the potential for all physical skills, while current score in Awareness is the potential for perception skills and current Learning makes for the potential in knowledge skills.
The human potential in Learning is 15. The potential for Magic Lore is the character's Learning. The potential in a specific magic path (Black Lore, Air Lore, Fire Lore, etc) is the Magic Lore.
A week of training with a teacher gives you 2 experience marks.
A week of training without a teacher gives you 1 experience mark in physical attributes and skills. Two weeks of training without a teacher give you 1 experience mark in mental or perception attributes and skills.
You may not teach yourself new spells, but you can research higher spell levels. To learn a new spell requires 4 weeks with a teacher or 8 weeks with a magick spell book. Increasing levels in a spell once you have learned the spell requires 2 weeks with a teacher or 4 weeks self research or with a magick spell book. To teach someone a spell level, your level in the spell must be at least three higher than your pupil. You cannot learn spell levels that requires a casting roll higher than 6 (i.e. The DR + Spell Level cannot be higher than the Spell Lore + 6).
You may not train if you are heavily wounded (¼ of total BP left). If you are wounded (½ of total BP left) you may only train mental attributes or skills.
Experience may also increase attributes and skills. You get an experience mark each time you use a skill in a critical situation. It is generally not a critical situation when the DR is less than your modified skill. Whether a combat is critical or not is up to the GM.
When one consecutive “action” consists of up to 5 skill rolls, you only get one experience mark for the whole “action.” An action requiring 5 or more skill rolls gives two experience marks (like with a combat lasting 5 or more rounds).
Carrying the Weight
As a character gets loaded with items, his abilities are hindered.
Normal clothes do not count as encumbrance.
You get the following adjustments to all physical skills and actions:
|Up to 2 × strength||0|
|Up to 5 × strength||–1|
|Up to 10 × strength||–3|
|Up to 20 × strength||–5|
Particularly unwieldy or bulky items should count as more than their actual weight. Try climbing a tree carrying a ladder. The GM should use his discretion for this.
Above 20 × strength, the GM must use his discretion, as we are now talking kilograms with a capital K. No penalties are given to mental or perception attribute or skill rolls. All weight is multiplied by 5 for the purpose of encumbrance penalties when swimming.
When you fall it acts as a “hit” doing a damage of d – 4 + meters fallen (1 per 2 meters in water) + surface modifier – 1 per full 3 in tumbling.
Now and then the characters will encounter situations where they would be thoroughly scared, sometimes to death. It is very difficult to roleplay a character correctly when he or she meets the first zombie or werewolf. In addition to this, the fear might result in physical reactions beyond any roleplaying skill. To handle this, the character should make an endurance roll with adjustments according to the Fear Adjustments table. The result is checked on the Fear table to find the effects the fear has had on the character in question. Status will not affect this roll.
Characters with a weak heart could get a heart attack at a higher result than usual (in addition to fainting or falling into a coma).
|0||Never seen before|
|+3||Seen a few times|
|+6||Seen many times|
|13–14||–1 in status for 30 seconds.|
|12||–3 in status for 30 seconds.|
|10–11||–3 in status for 1 minute.|
|9||Victim attacks opponent in a rage trying to grapple it with the result of loosing 10 in defense value.|
|7–8||Victim flees as far as possible from the source of the fear for 5 minutes.|
|6||Victim stands immobilized as long as the source of the fear is active unless snapped out of it or attacked. If this is the case, apply the result from 7–8.|
|4–5||Victim becomes hysterical and will stay in place as long as the source of the fear is active unless snapped out of it.|
|3||Victim faints and remains unconcious for 10 to 30 minutes unless actively awakened.|
|2||As above and the hair of the victim turns white.|
|1||Victim falls unconcious (coma) for 1 to 4 days and will need an additional week of rest.|
|0||Victim suffers a heart attack and urgently needs medical attention. A medical lore roll of 6 or above is needed within one minute for the victim to survive. If the victim survives, he or she will need medical care for an additional one month, and will suffer a permanent loss of 1 in potential and current in strength, endurance and coordination.|
Here follows a list of all the skills used. If the GM feels a need for other skills as well, he may invent them on his own, using these as a guideline. Feel free to ask for an account at this site to pitch in and add more skills to the Amar RPG rules.
The skill of lock picking is not included. The reason is that all normal medieval locks are dead simple to pick. A person with a crash course in this would pick a lock in 10 to 60 seconds with the right equipment. For very difficult locks, the GM must determine a difficulty rating and the character makes a sleight roll.
All physical skills have a minimum value of 1 per full 3 in coordination. The exception is skills you have never practiced, in which case you have a skill of 0. A week of training will take you from 0 to 1 per full 3 in coordination.
A character has one skill for every weapon he wishes to use. See the chapter on combat for more details.
- Alchemy Lore
- Medical Lore
- Path Lore
- Ritual Magick Lore
- Spell Lore
- Survival Lore
All perception skills have a minimum value of 1 per full 3 in awareness.