Abilities

From World of Charun

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Your character's ability scores are not only used by the game mechanics, but they also largerly determine how the player character is role played and perceived by others.

World of Charun allows for min/maxed and dump-statted builds, by setting numerous penalties for low ability scores. That said, players are expected to demonstrate sufficient maturity to roleplay their attributes, and particularly their mental attributes, correctly. A player who portrays a deficient character as a non-deficient one is cheating, even if this deficiency is taken into account mechanically in some respects.

Quote from the Character Creation rules:
Extremely low ability scores (8 or less) are advised to be avoided, since they are often difficult to portray accordingly. Someone with an intelligence of 8, for an example, would have problems with speaking correctly, solving problems, learning and comprehending ideas. Extremely low ability scores can easily hamper proper portrayal of the character, which can lead to smaller XP awards in the end.


Contents

Ability Increases

Each character gets to increase his abilities thrice during his career: At levels 4, 8 and 10. Abilities can be increased further after reaching level three through choosing certain Boons.

More about: Boons


Average vs Adventurer

  • Average Scores: An average ability score is generally 10. Average ability scores don't have to be roleplayed in any particular way, since they are just that - average. Certain races with racial modifications may have higher or lower average scores. Urmen for an example have a -2 modifier to dexterity to represent their bad reflexes and low fine-motor skills.
  • Above and Below Average: Any ability score that hands out a positive or negative modifier is considered to be a non-average score in comparison to an ordinary human. One's trade in life usually reflects the ability score, even among the general population, where a hard working farmer could have STR and CON scores of 12, while a scholar could have INT 14 and CON 8 to represent his non-physical chores. Abilities other than average have to be role played, since they are the core of your character.
  • Adventurers: Adventurers belong to a fraction of the populace - a group of individuals blessed with genetics, talent and circumstances that have led to them possessing abilities much greater than those of the average man. Some are so strong that they could have competed in weight-lifting in the olympics, while others possess an endurance that would have made them elite marathon runners. Some are genious while others charismatic enough to rise to leadership positions in most of their undertakings. Few average persons could ever survive their endeavours, while few individuals of adventuring material settle with an average life.


Strength

The Strength ability measures your character's physical strength. It is the ability to exert force on physical objects using muscles.

Most of the modifiers due to strength are automaticly regulated by the engine, such as one's ability to carry weight, force through hits in melee and deal out damage in melee.

Strength has an effect on:

  • Armour Penetration with melee or throwing weapons.
  • Damage dealt through melee and throwing weapons, as well as ranged weapons with a mighty property.
  • Attacks made with melee and throwing weapons.
  • The amount of weigh carried.

For more information, see the RL comparison table further down on this page.

How to roleplay below average strength:
A weaker than average person is simply roleplayed as weak. He is not suited for heavy labour or tasks requiring strength, be it lifting a wagon to free a comrade caught under it, or pulling up someone hanging onto a rope.

  • Weak.
  • Unfit for heavy labour.


Constitution

The Constitution ability measures your character's physical fitness, bodily health and physical recovery rate.

A character's ability to withstand exhaustion and the ability to ignore minor cuts and bruises are based on the constitution score and the level of excersise from one's profession.

Constitution has an effect on:

  • Base Stamina which equals the Constitution score.
  • The amount of extra Stamina gained upon levelling.
  • The amount of negative Stamina suffered before death.
  • Movement speed.
  • The amount of Adrenaline Rushes useable per day.
  • Fortitude saving throws.

How to roleplay below average constitution:
A character with a low constitution score will easily get short-winded. He will also be targeted by the flu, or suffer from a stomach disorder more easily than the average person. Thus, walking up a hill with a heavy backpack could lead to him huffing and puffing, and running long distances in armour would be impossible without short breaks.

  • Gets easily out of breath.
  • Gets easily sick.


Dexterity

The Dexterity ability measures your character's balance, speed, reflexes and hand-eye coordination.

A character's ability to dodge attacks, fire missile weapons and perform other dexterity-based skills and feats are automaticly regulated by the engine.

Dexterty has an effect on:

  • Armour class, which determines how easily the character can be struck in combat.
  • Attacks with ranged weapons and finesse weapons.
  • Armour Penetration with ranged weapons.
  • Reflex saving throws.

How to roleplay below average dexterity:
A character with a low dexterity score will be all fingers and thumbs, clumsy, lumbering and poor at throwing and catching things. He will be the one who drops the plate and who never reacts in time if someone pulls the chair from under him. Threading the needle would be a huge undertaking for him.

  • Clumsy, or bad fine-motor skills.
  • Slow reflexes.


Intelligence

The Intelligence ability measures your character's capacity to reason, to plan, to solve problems, to think abstractly, to comprehend ideas, to use language, and to learn.

Intelligence based skills and one's ability to learn languages are automaticly regulated by the engine.

Intelligence has an effect on:

  • The number of languages the character can learn.
  • The capability to defend versus multiple foes.
  • Spell level, damage and spell criticals for spellcasters with Intelligence as their primary ability.

For more information, see the RL comparison table further down on this page.

How to roleplay below average intelligence:
A character with a low intelligence score has trouble speaking properly using the correct grammar, often resolving to a simpler form of language. He will have trouble learning new things, solving problems and understanding matters. The character will not learn how to read or write well enough to be considered proficient at it.

  • Speaks using simple sentences and an easier grammar.
  • Trouble learning things.
  • Trouble solving problems.
  • Has a hard time thinking abstractly.


Wisdom

The Wisdom ability measures your character's common sense, will power and innate capacity to apply his knowledge, experience, and intuitive understanding well enough to the various situations he may find himself in. It is the ability to acquire knowledge without a clear inference or reasoning process.

Wisdom based skills and saves are automaticly regulated by the engine.

Wisdom has an effect on:

  • The amout of Stamina gained through Adrenaline Rushes.
  • The capability to defend versus multiple foes.
  • The capability to plan a safe retreat from combat.
  • Spell level, damage and spell criticals for spellcasters with Wisdom as their primary ability.
  • Will saving throws.

How to roleplay below average wisdom:
A character with a low wisdom score is gullible, has a weaker will power and makes poor decissions, especially impulsive ones. He has trouble using his knowledge and intuition in the situations he may find himself in. Such a character would for an example not be able to through merely observing a person determine whether he posed a threat or not, as easily as an average wisdom individual could.

  • Gullible.
  • Weak will power.
  • Makes poor impulsive decissions.
  • Poor intuition.


Charisma

The Charisma ability measures your character's innate ability to lead, charm, persuade, inspire, and/or influence people, as well as determines whether the character has high or low personal drive. It refers especially to a quality in certain people who easily draw the attention and admiration (or even hatred if the application of such charisma is perceived to be negative) of others due to a 'magnetic' quality of personality. It has very little to do with mere appearence.

Charisma based skills are automaticly regulated by the engine. The number of followers a character gains at higher levels are also determined by charisma.

Charisma has an effect on:

  • The capability to lead a safe retreat from combat.
  • Spell level, damage and spell criticals for spellcasters with Charisma as their primary ability.
  • Prices in stores, where low Charisma characters will pay more.
  • Low Charisma characters will randomly have their chat messages faded down when talking or emoting, representing the fact that they aren't paid attention to, and often ignored.

How to roleplay below average charisma:
A character with a low charisma score is one few pay attention or listen to. He has trouble persuading and inspiring people, even though he may be intelligent, handsome and well-spoken. Such a character is the opposite of a natural leader, and should therefore not take that role in a party of adventurers.

  • Poor leadership skills.
  • Uncharming.
  • Trouble persuading and inspiring others.
  • Not paid attention to.
  • Low personal drive.

Real Life Examples

The following examples should be considered fictional, since we are applying DnD ablilities onto real life people. No political agendas lie behind the choice of persons.

George W. Bush: High Charisma, Low Intelligence
The one thing people who have met him say about him is that he is a charismatic person. He is also believed to be somewhat stupid by the general populace. By DnD standards it would make sense, since he is a lousy speaker and he struggles with the grammar (low intelligence), but he makes people listen to him, he inspires and influences (high charisma).

Al Gore: High Intelligence, Average Charisma
Al Gore was called "Gore the Bore" when he campaigned for presidency against George W. Bush. He was a brilliant speaker, when it came to using the English language, but he wasn't as charismatic as Bush. Charisma is decissive in elections, often leaving intelligence and one's ability to use language to its fullest behind.

Adolf Hitler: High Intelligence, High Charisma, Low Wisdom
Hitler is said to have been a tremendous speaker that also possessed a larger than life charisma. He could mezmerise an audience of thousands for several hours, even with the content he spoke about. However history shows that he made several poor decissions that by DnD standars were based on Wisdom. He repeated the mistake already made by Napoleon when he sent his troops into Russia believing that they would manage to conquer the vast nation before winter arrived. His intuition failed many other times as well, and it is actually possible to assume that his whole initial plan of world-domination lacked wisdom to begin with.

Senior Law Enforcement Officer: High Wisdom
Law enforcement officers often claim to observe suspects and immediately "know" that they possess a weapon or illicit narcotic substances. This feeling is based on both intuition and the ability to apply knowledge and experience well enough into that situation.


WoC Examples

Most inhabitants in Charun have ability scores ranging between 10-12, often based on their profession. It is also the result from most people choosing, or ending up with a trade that fits their abilties. Thus, a weaker than average person wouldn't pursue the path of a blacksmith, nor would a dumber than average individual become a scribe.

The following examples deal with NPCs without an adventuring class. They are merely lvl 1 commoners. The average person very rarely reaches an ability score above 14, which is a high-end mark for talent, genetics and excerise for a commoner.

Base Commoner Ability Score: 10

  • Commoner: No modifiers
  • Smith, Armourer: STR 12-14
  • Heavy Labourer: STR 12, CON 12
  • Scribe: INT 12
  • Learned Scholar: INT 14
  • Barkeep, Waiter: CHA 12
  • Popular Musician, Performer: CHA 14
  • Merchant: INT 12, CHA 12
  • Hunter, Trapper: CON 12, WIS 12


Game Abilities vs Real Life Abilities

In most cases it is difficult, if not impossible, to draw pararells between game abilities and real life measurements of similar abilities. Strength and intelligence have ways of measurement in RL, which can be applied to game abilities.


Strength

WoC STR Weight*
1 2.2 lbs / 1 kg
2-3 6.6 lbs / 3 kg
4-5 13 lbs / 6 kg
6 26 lbs / 12 kg
7 40 lbs / 18 kg
8-9 60 lbs / 27kg
10-11 88 lbs / 40 kg
12-13 132 lbs / 60 kg
14-15 198 lbs / 90 kg
16-17 297 lbs / 135 kg
18-19 285 lbs / 175 kg
20-21 507 lbs / 230 kg
22-23 660 lbs / 300 kg (RL world record is 586 lbs / 266 kg)
24-25 992 lbs / 450 kg (Beyond RL strength)
26-27 1488 lbs / 675 kg
28-29 2200 lbs / 1000 kg
30-31 3300 lbs / 1500 kg

The weight entry details the amount a person can lift above his head with a maximised effort, as in the weightlifting sport, picking the weight up from the ground an pushing it above his head until arms are straightened


Intelligence

WoC INT Mental capabilty
4 Profound mental retardation
5 Severe mental retardation
6 Moderate mental retardation
7 Mild mental retardation
8 Borderline deficiency in intelligence
9 Dullness
10-11 Average or normal intelligence
12-13 Above average
14-15 Superior intelligence
16-17 Very superior intelligence
18-19 Genius
20-21 High genius
22-23 Highest genius
24> Beyond ordinary mortal levels


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