In the 2021 Character Creation Challenge I had the opportunity to create a character for the D20 Star Wars Revised Core Rulebook. At the time I mentioned that I didn’t know what was the difference between the revised rules and the Saga rules since I did not own the Saga core book. Well over the summer of 2021 a friend (not the same friend who moved back east) offered to give me his Saga books since he knew they would be going to a good home. So for the 2022 challenge, I decided that I would make a character using the Star Wars Saga rules.
Over the holiday break I had the opportunity to watch my college aged kid play a lot of Star Wars Jedi Fallen Order, so I think I want to make a young Jedi character. I was tempted to use the Knights of the Old Republic guidebook, but it’s been a buys day so far so I’m going to stick with a pre-empire era character. Keet Apaal is a young Zabarak Jedi serving with the order on various assignments.
I haven’t done a lot of dice rolling for this year in the #CharacterCreationChallenge, so I elected to go with the 4d6 drop the lowest method listed in the book. There was also a point build option and a standard score package just as there was in the revised rules. I ended up the following. STR 12, DEX 13, CON 11, INT, 11, WIS 14, CHA 11. I see that they moved back to the term “Hit Points” for the Saga edition. I added my racial and class abilities. No armor class, but the savings throws are used as defenses with the Fortitude added to the Damage Threshold.
As a Jedi Guardian, I selected the appropriate skills (Use the Force and Perception), feats (Force Training) and force powers (Move Object, Rebuke and Surge). I started filling in my equipment and weapons. For some reason there was no crit information on the weapons despite it being listed on the character sheet. I was done with the creation process. Here is the sheet.
It’s been a year since I did the earlier D20 Star Wars character. I don’t recall there being too much difference between the revised and Saga character creation process. I think it was a little clearer this round, but having just completed the process may make it fresh in my mind.
I’m still a big fan of the D20 system based off of the Dungeons and Dragons 3.5 rules. I could very easily see myself playing this game if an opportunity arose. There could also be some homebrewing in the future if inspiration struck.
I’ve added a couple more blogs that are participating in the #CharacterCreationChallenge. As I was doing this, I noticed that we have more links to blogs than we did in 2021. Please let me know if I’m missing anyone.
So the basics of the game appear to be roll 2d6, multiply by a stat or power to get the result (beat an opponents roll or a difficulty number). If you roll doubles, roll another d6 and add it. If it matches the double, roll another one until there is no match. Then multiply. Thank you for putting the basic concept at the front of the book. I hate having to dig for the core mechanic. The keep rolling on doubles sounds like an interesting concept.
So there are three character stats. Brawn, Agility and Mind. Pretty straightforward. These range from 1 (normal man), 2 (standard professional like soldier, average marksman, scholar, etc.) 3 (exceptional professional like a very competent scientist) 4 (human max for any stat like geniuses, pro-athletes, etc.) 5 (alien or machine like quality, max for the stat). I like that they define what each level represents. For new characters, you get 7 points to spread across the three stats. You can reduce the number of powers by 2 in order to get an 8th stat point. This must be a hold over from the super-hero game. There are different alien races in step two that have minimums or maximums in order to select that race. So before deciding on my stats, I looked over the races to see if anything interested me. Hmm.. Eldans may have been influenced by Vulcans and the Velkar sounds like Klingons. There is a race of lion like people called the Simbasa. Let’s run with that. Races have certain advantages, disadvantages, skills and powers. Do I get them for free or do I have to pay for them during character creation? I couldn’t find an answer so I’m going to say “I have to pay for them.”
Next comes Advantages and Disadvantages. You gain an advantage for each disadvantage you take. Well the Simbasa already have Long Sleeper (need more sleep in a day) disadvantage. So I’ll take an advantage of my choice. Unknown Ally is a mysterious GM controlled ally who appears at random times and helps out. I really liked the sound of that. There is no information on the number or maximum advantages/disadvantages that a character can have or how you could gain future advantages/disadvantages in the rules. So I’ll stick with the one set.
You get 7 points of powers. Some powers were straight from the superhero game. Others were things that could have been skills (dog fighting in a starfighter?). Four points were already taken by the powers gained from the Simbasa species. So with the three left over points I selected off-hand pistol (I can attack with two pistols) and quick draw (I have a feeling I’m making an alien lion gunslinger).
Next is skills. You have mental skills (based off your mind score) or physical skills (based off of your agility score). The number of skills is equal to the attribute. So I’ve got three physical skills (one of which is already taken up by athletics) and two mental skills. Each skill has a specialty so it’s something you are extra good at. I selected several that I thought would be good for a space lion who was separated from his pride and had to make it on his own as a streetwise mercenary. That was the end of chapter one on character creation.
The next chapter went into equipment. Each character started out with 5,000 credits to buy equipment. I selected what a merc could have. And as with most games, there are sections of the character sheet that are still blank? Somehow I missed where the Hits a and Wound Threshold is at. Back at the key terms, it states that heroes get 100 hits. The index guided me to a page in the combat rules for the Wound Threshold and needed a better explanation. The gist is if you are damaged it can affect your agility and skill rolls. Makes sense, but what do I put the threshold at? Meh, since I have no GM to ask, I’ll just leave it blank for now.
So the character, named TaChar, was a member of a Simbasa pride out roaming the universe when he got separated from the pride. A group of mercs took him in and he learned the trade. He takes different jobs trying to survive and is continuously looking for his pride to see if he can rejoin. Here is the character sheet.
There is an image near the start of the book that looks like it came from the Star Ace RPG. I don’t have a copy to check, but it looks familiar.
This is clearly a sandbox game. There were lots of examples of different styles of play and different sci-fi genres (post apocalyptic, fighting mecs, cyberpunk, space opera, space fantasy and examples that were clearly inspired by various sci-fi franchises. A ton of “your GM can adjust things for their game and here’s how” guidelines. However there was a lot of superhero feel to the text. It could have used a little bit more polishing. I wonder how the game holds up in actual play?
I’ve discovered another blog that is participating in the #CharacterCreationChallenge and added it to the CCC page. I’ve also added a link to the hashtag on Twitter so anyone can see the latest posts with that hashtag.
I’ve really enjoyed the different Men In Black movies. They were silly and a little campy and looked like fun. It was also one of those franchises that screamed, I should be used in a role playing campaign. Back in the 90’s I recall some friends playing an MIB game that I think was based off of the original comics. I don’t believe it was this system however. So when a friend was moving back east and needed to do a serious reduction in the number of items he needed to pack, most of his RPG books were donated to me. This was one of the books that was included in the set. As I mentioned in my Star Wars D6 entry into the Character Creation Challenge, I loved this system and was very interested in seeing how the MIB D6 game compared.
The MIB character creation rules have three options, take a template of pre-made characters (located in the back of the book), create a character from scratch or base the character on yourself. Yes, I’m going to make myself in this game. I mean, come-on I get a flashy thingy device to use right? Right?
There are eight attributes for the game. Reflexes, Coordination, Endurance, Strength, Knowledge, Perception, Confidence and Charisma. Each attribute has several skills listed that are appropriate for that category (example: Ignore Pain is under Endurance, Dodge is under Reflexes, etc.) Each character gets 24 six-sided dice (24D) to slot into all of your attributes. A die can also be broken up into three pips (0, +1 and +2). Then you get an additional 7D to add to various skills (which can also be broken up if desired). I set my attributes and skills. Each new starting character has 5 Character Points and 1 Fate Point. For the body points I rolled my endurance (3D resulted in 13) and added 20 to get 33. I liked that there was a section for “useless trivia” just to round out the characters. Agent C knew about the television show “Star Trek”.
Equipment was assigned by the Director so I wrote down what I thought Agent C would need as a MIB Agent. I wrote down CLASSIFIED for his background. For the agency he is an Alien Tech Specialists. I also noted that Agent C is very excited about the new technology he gets to encounter while in the field.
I was having more flashbacks to the West End Games Star Wars RPG while creating this character. I could see myself playing this game or writing up homebrew material for it. It’s too bad that there isn’t a group I could test this out with.
There has been an updated version of the D6 System. I’m certain that the MIB RPG could very easily be updated to the latest version.
I’ve noticed that the number of entries posted with the #CharacterCreationChallenge hashtag is much, much larger than the 2021 event. Again I’m seeing a ton of entries that I have never heard of. I’m glad to see participants getting into the spirit of this fun challenge.
As I mentioned in my Day 1 entry in the 2021 Character Creation Challenge, I never owned the blue covered Basic Dungeons and Dragons rulebook by Eric Holmes when I first started playing D&D. A friend had a copy, another had the Basic/Expert version of the rules and I owned the first Basic set from BECMI. We all compared notes and basically picked what we liked the best for our games. That all changed on December 18, 2004 when I found a copy at a local thrift store. How do I know? When I opened this book for today’s challenge, I found the receipt for the purchase. After tax, I only paid 52 cents for this book that was in very good shape. It even still had the chits attached for those players who did not have dice (this was early in the gaming industry and not a lot of people had the different shaped dice). I actually remember the trip well. I had no cash on me at the time so I had to use a card to pay for the book. Not wanting to run my card for half a buck, I looked all over the store to see if I could find anything else to buy. I even tried to look for some article of clothing for my wife. But with no luck, I tried to buy the book with my card and prayed that the store wouldn’t state that there had to be a minimum purchase. Luckily for me they were just fine running a card for such a small amount. Whew.
For this character, I’m going to use the oldest dice I own and let them decide what type of character this is. Just a straight 3d6 down the line. The dice rolled the following: Str- 16, Int- 10, Wis- 12, Con- 8, Dex-11, Cha- 6. He’s not to good looking and not of the best of health, but he’s pretty strong. So fighting man it is. No ability score can be lowered below nine, so I can’t take away anything from Intelligence to put towards Strength, but I can lower Wisdom by 3 to raise Str by 1. So Wisdom now equals 9 and Strength equals 17. Had Intelligence been higher, I might have considered an Elf character, but I’m happy with a strong, but slightly ugly fighting man (not fighter in this rule book). There were bonuses for high Dexterity and Constitution in the RAW, but nothing for a high Strength.
I ended up with 4 hit points. So Cylath will have to be careful until he gains additional levels. Next it stated I should roll for my gold and pick my equipment. 3d6x10 later I’ve started out with 110 GP. I outfitted Cylath with pretty standard equipment that a fighting man would need. I really wanted a horse but I didn’t have enough money to get one. For an alignment, It had the nine standard. I elected to go with just Neutral. I found the section on Savings Throws and wrote them down.
Cylath was the first son of one of the town guards in his small village. When he became the age of 20, his father could see that Cylath was not into the life of a farming village. The father revealed that he had once been an adventurer before settling down and felt that Cylath should set out to find his fortune and see where fate would take him. If he couldn’t make it as an adventurer, there would always be a place for him back at the village. If he could make it and find riches, he could return and help the family. Cylath jumped at the chance to get out of the sleepy village that held no interest for him. His father provided some of his old adventuring equipment and set his son off into the world.
Now I want to find some friends and go on a dungeon crawl. Here is a scan of the character sheet.
The rule book actually referred the reader to the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 1st edition Player’s Handbook for the higher levels. I can also see where a lot of items were changed for the B/X version of the game. I think that’s part of the reason I’ve enjoyed the #CharacterCreationChallenge. It reminds me of the differences when you see the rules as written (RAW).
There was no official character sheet for the Holmes-Basic edition. I even checked with a Holmes centric Facebook group. (Note to self: Holmes-Basic and Blueholme are not the same book) Luckily the internet came through and I found a character sheet for Holmes-Basic here.
I found two more blogs of participants that have been posting characters and added them to the Character Creation Challenge page. The It’s Mister Wilson entries because of his reviews. Besides posting a character, he also talked about what he liked about a game and what he would consider changing.
Coming Up Next:
The Men In Black Role Playing Game by West End Games
“We are constantly searching not just for answers to our questions but for new questions.” Sisko- Emissary, Stardate: 46379.1 #StarTrek #StarTrekDS9 #WeAreStarfleet
January 4 “The only person you are truly competing against is yourself.” Picard- Coming of Age, Stardate: 41416.2 #StarTrek #StarTrekTNG #WeAreStarfleet
January 5 “There is a certain scientific logic about it.” Spock “I’m glad you approve.” Anan 7 “I do not approve; I understand.” Spock- A Taste of Armageddon, Stardate: 3192.1 #StarTrek #StarTrekTOS #WeAreStarfleet
When I was reading the other entries in the 2021 Character Creation Challenge, I saw an entry for the marketing role playing game, Wendy’s Feast of Legends and had a V-8 forehead slap moment. When am I ever going to get a chance to play this game? (spoiler alert: never) So using it for the #CharacterCreationChallenge was perfect. I’d get a little bit of a taste (pun intended) of the game and I can check a box off in my geek cred. I even bought lunch to go along with this character set up, so the advertising must be working.
So first you select your order. I elected to go with the Order of the Spicy Chicken Sandwich. A fire based magic user (even with the weird name) sounded good. Next you rolled 4d4 (to represent the $4 for 4 deal that I’ve never taken advantage of) to come up with numbers for your stats. The stats used are Strength, Intelligence, Charm, Arcana and Grace. Pretty basic. After electing which stat to place my five rolls into (and adding the bonus from my order) I ended up with STR 8, INT 10, CHA 7, ARC 13 and GRA 9. Got 11 hit points, (rolled 10 + 1 for the order). Only got a basic weapon and some order skills (spells basically). 10GP as starting money doesn’t really allow buying anything else. I guess additional equipment is picked up during roleplay.
The RAW lists additional skills and spells for different levels. But I was unable to find out how characters move up in level. I wonder if this is buried deep in the GMs section? However since I was eating food from Wendy’s I would have gotten several buffs for that game. Other than a bio (His teachers didn’t understand, they kicked him out of school at a tender early age, just because he didn’t want to learn things. He had other interests. He liked to burn things!) this character is done. Bonus points if you can name the song I just quoted. Here’s a scan of the sheet.
Yea, I’m not seeing myself playing or homebrewing for this game. I don’t even know if anyone is even playing it now.
The advertising budget for this project must not have lasted very long. The game was released in 2019 and the website for the game is no longer active. It’s not even pointing towards the primary Wendy’s website. Thus the link above is to the free PDF on Archive.org.
While looking through the PDF, my college age art-student kid loved the internal art in this book. So that is some high praise in my mind.
I would also like to say that I’m very grateful that Taco Bell didn’t release a marketing role-playing game. I don’t know if I could have handled that one.
While I was writing the date at the top of the character sheet, I wrote 2021 and then quickly corrected it to 2022. It was the same mistake that commonly happened when writing checks in January of a new year.
I’ve got a few more links sent to me to add to the Character Creation Page. The RPG.net forum page is going like gangbusters (no not the RPG). I’m also seeing a lot of use of the #CharacterCreationChallenge hashtag. Where are you seeing new characters at?
For my birthday in 2021 I received an Amazon gift card. While there was a lot of stuff I could have picked up with the gift card, I really wanted it to be something special. This was a birthday gift and that should be something that will be remembered, not something plain like a pair of socks. Luckily, Dune Adventures in the Imperium had just been released and I was able to find a physical copy of the book to buy. I’ve discovered that when learning a new system, I prefer to have a dead-tree version of the rules in my hand.
Dune is one of those franchises that I learned to appreciate from my Father. It was one of the many sci-fi loves that he had passed onto me. I was also very excited for the (then) upcoming Dune movie to finally be released in the theaters. However I was a little nervous about the RPG being released by Modiphius. While I’ve been enjoying the Star Trek Adventures RPG, I would always get the urge to re-write the core rulebook to make information easier to find and to read (colored text on a black background was a bad idea). Luckily the lessons learned from the STA fiasco were applied to the Dune core rulebook and I’ve found it much better to read and understand while giving a ton of detail about the universe the franchise is based in. After looking through the core rulebook, I knew that Dune Adventures in the Imperium was going to be my first entry for the 2022 Character Creation Challenge.
Before you create your character in the Dune RPG, you first create the Noble House that you and all of your fellow party members are associated with. This makes a ton of sense since the game is usually about various types of political intrigue and they should all be on the same side. For the purposes of this entry, I’m going to create a house on my own pretending that it was done in a group.
In the game a noble house is one of four types ranging from Nascent House (just starting House Minor with few enemies and serving a House Major) to Great House (largest and well known, but lots of enemies and lots of House Minors serving it). The larger the house, the more Threat that the Gamemaster receives for game purposes. In most 2d20 games from Modiphius, Threats are used by GMs like Momentum is used by players. In Dune, just as there is Threat that can affect player characters, there is also Threat that can affect the house as part of the political intrigue part of the game. The type also determines how much land the house actually controls. I’ve decided that House Nimoi would at least control an entire planet (Eridani), which meant it would have House Major status. It would have more Domains (see below) but would also have more enemies (2 Threats per player). As a House Major, Nimoi would have 1 primary and 2 secondary starting domains. Domains are what the house produces or is famous for. I selected Science (expertise) Researchers as the primary. The house is known for educating and finding the best researchers in the known universe. For the first secondary I selected Industrial (produce) Refined Alloys. I felt that this went along with the research angle. Once a new alloy was discovered, then House Nimoi would want to profit by producing it’s new alloy. The last secondary domain would be Political (machinery) Expensive Trinkets. These special items are used as diplomatic gifts with various noble houses to keep House Nimoi in the political spectrum. A gift of one of these trinkets would be considered a great honor.
Next there is a section in the rules to describe the homeworld (choose stuff, nothing random) and Banners and Arms (again choose stuff). So Eridani is Earth like with a variety of continent types and oceans. The banner would be the brazier with a flame and the colors would be Red and Gold. Each house has a trait that members of the house can use as part of their characters. The traits in the Dune RPG are primarily descriptive and can be used for both houses and characters. Luckily there were quite a few character and house write-ups in the back of the book which allowed me to gather an idea of what what could be used. For House Nimoi I selected “Scientific Accuracy” as the house trait. The houses listed in the back had multiple house traits, but the rules did not state how many traits a house starts with. So for the time being I’ll stick with the one. For the Roles of the house, I just filled in some names thinking that the stats would have been generated later.
Enemies of the house is the first section with die rolls. As a Major House, House Nimoi has one Major House and one Minor House that serves the primary enemy and opponents. Instead of rolling twice, I’m going to just name both of them and roll for the primary. House Tevon serves House Malak. For House Malak I rolled a 12 on a d20 for Hatred which means that the house lothes House Nimoi. For reason I rolled a 4 resulting in some past Slight against House Malak. Finally the house stats are done. Now onto the Character
Dune has two character creation options for the game. Planned creation (make the character in full) or Creation in Play (make a few stats and fill in the rest via roleplaying). If I was actually playing in a Dune campaign, I’d be tempted to do the Creation in Play. However I’ll be doing a Planned Creation.
In the 2d20 Star Trek Adventures you have attributes of Control, Fitness, Insight, Presence and Reason. For Dune, Modiphius changed this up to Duty, Faith, Justice, Power and Truth (called Drives). As this is only my second Modiphius 2d20 game, I believe that all of their books under different titles are altered in such a way as to fit the universe that they are for. The Skills are listed as Battle, Communicate, Discipline, Move and Understand. You get a focus(es) for Skills (think specialization) and Statements for your Drives (again something that stands out).
Darkin Tal is the younger Swordmaster for House Nimoi, training under the master Swordmaster: Areth Bishiop. For his Archetype I selected Battlemaster-Warrior. After going through the character creation steps he ended up with the Drives of Duty 7 (My house is my life), Faith 4, Justice 6 (I must shield those in my care), Power 8 (Objects are rarely immovable) and Truth 5. Skill ended up being Battle 7 (Long blades, Short blades, Dirty fighting), Communicate 5, Discipline 6 (Self-control), Move 5 and Understanding 5. I think this is a pretty balanced character. For my three assets I selected a pulse-sword, a semi-shield and an Old-Friendship. I liked how assets could be intangible things as well. After going through the creation process, there are still blank spots on the sheet. Advancement points would need to be earned, but I had to look up faction and determination. Each character starts with one determination and can earn more during play. Factions are specialty groups like the Bene Gesserit or the Spacing Guild. So basically the character is done. Here is both the House and Character Sheet.
Since the game was recently released I did not have any additional supplements to pull character information from. However I did have the core rulebook errata with me. The setup for the rules and character creation was a vast improvement from Star Trek Adventures, but still had a few stumbling blocks. I would have loved to have an experienced GM to answer questions about setting up talents and drives. For some of the talents I had to look at the examples in the back of the book. The overall building process was much easier than it was in Star Trek Adventures. I’d really like to see how this game stacks up in actual play.
I also liked that Dune had a character advancement system and it made sense. If you had difficulty in a task, you earned points towards advancement. I had some friends state their displeasure in a character advancement system in STA. Characters in the show grow on screen, they should do the same in the game.
There has already been a TON of characters posted on the RPG.net message board or found with the social media hashtag #CharacterCreationChallenge. I was entering in so many links to the Character Creation Page that I almost rand out of time to get my first character done. Again if you have a link and I haven’t posted it yet, please email me at Carl (at) TardisCaptain.com and thank you for participating. I hope you are having fun with this.
Also the thread on the RPG.net forum has been named a 100 Staff Pick. So the thread is getting a lot of attention.