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[HeroQuest] Character Concepts

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  • lordsmerf
    I currently have three character concepts that i would like to work out in play. I will provide brief sketches and you can get back to me about what you feel
    Message 1 of 9 , Sep 3, 2004
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      I currently have three character concepts that i would like to work
      out in play. I will provide brief sketches and you can get back to
      me about what you feel would be most appropriate to the feel and
      setting of the game so far Mike. I will include personal weight
      with each character:

      1. Terpsichore. Terpsichore is one of my pet projects. She's a
      combat/intelligence specialist. Combat style is highly influenced
      by the Chinese short sword (a straight, thin, relatively flexible
      blade). Physically Terpsichore is short (5' or shorter) and
      delicate looking. Emotionally she is something of a wreck. She was
      raised as a slave, trained in "The Dance" which is an entertainment
      form for the extremely wealthy. Basically a performance art that
      includes the skills for assassination. She has been betrayed in a
      _major_ undetermined way in her past such that she trusts almost no
      one. Her driving Premise is one of trust. I am a little
      uncomfortable dealing with her since i am not precisely sure how to
      handle her (there is a lot more going on in the background than i
      related...)

      2. Katrina. Katrina is a relatively recent character conept for
      me. She's a pyromancer focusing on fear/terror/inferno. Physically
      she is similar to the middle Asian Steppe peoples (between the Huns
      and the Mongols, perhaps the Ye-Tai). She is bald, the skin of her
      scalp shows clear and lurid burn scarring which is extremely
      extensive. Aside from the scalp scarring she is quite attractive
      and her voice is sonorous. She was foolish as a child, shirking her
      combat training (which was expected culturally) and was quite vain.
      Somewhere in her mid-teens she was raped. She finally prepared
      herself for motherhood and lost the child to miscarriage. She
      descended into despair, learned Pyromancy, and is out for revenge.
      Due to her emotionally scarred background she distrusts people in
      general and men in particular. Her driving dual-Premise is Vengence
      and Trust.

      3. Sebastian. Sebastian is someone i have always wanted to play.
      He is basically an intelligence/information gathering expert seeking
      someone to serve. Physically he is a mousy bureuacratic looking man
      with plain features, a "gray" man if you will. He has a network of
      informants and while able to gather information is especially good
      at analysis. He has recently reached a point where he feels that he
      should "do something more" with his abilities and contacts and has
      begun to search for someone who would use his services well. His
      driving dual-Premise is Loyalty and Responsibility.

      So, those are some brief sketches. I do not, and have not been able
      to glean, enough about the setting/situation to know which of these
      would be appropriate to play. So, i am looking for a little
      guidance... Races, nationalities, affiliations, etc...

      Thomas
    • Mike Holmes
      ... Hmmm. First thing to look at is what culture she s from. There are quite a few that take slaves, but locally, I m thinking the Vajaari. Meaning that she d
      Message 2 of 9 , Sep 3, 2004
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        >From: "lordsmerf" <lordsmerf@...>

        >1. Terpsichore. Terpsichore is one of my pet projects. She's a
        >combat/intelligence specialist. Combat style is highly influenced
        >by the Chinese short sword (a straight, thin, relatively flexible
        >blade). Physically Terpsichore is short (5' or shorter) and
        >delicate looking. Emotionally she is something of a wreck. She was
        >raised as a slave, trained in "The Dance" which is an entertainment
        >form for the extremely wealthy. Basically a performance art that
        >includes the skills for assassination.

        Hmmm. First thing to look at is what culture she's from. There are quite a
        few that take slaves, but locally, I'm thinking the Vajaari. Meaning that
        she'd probably be Shay - she'd be a really short Rhiani. Shay are most often
        dark haired, and vaguely eastern european looking, but actually range a lot
        in appearance. Culturally, that would mean that she'd have been taken from
        Kaitaine likely.

        Another option that's sorta less plausible, and which I have reservations
        about because of the stereotyping going on, would be that she was a slave in
        the Lankan empire, and Nuyani to start. Yeah, that would make her "asian"
        looking. It's on the other side of the continent, so we'd need to figure out
        how she got to where the action is. That all said, Scott's characters have
        made that trip, so, if you want to do that it'd work.

        The Vajaari are tall and fairly dark skinned, and worship a dark war god in
        a tropical environment - think Khmer kingdoms in SE Asia. The Lankani are
        similar, less dark, and worship a death god (well, they'd tell you he's a
        sun god, but he requires a lot of human sacrifices) in an arid environment -
        think Mayans in Egypt. There are other options if neither appeal.

        >She has been betrayed in a
        >_major_ undetermined way in her past such that she trusts almost no
        >one. Her driving Premise is one of trust. I am a little
        >uncomfortable dealing with her since i am not precisely sure how to
        >handle her (there is a lot more going on in the background than i
        >related...)

        Well, I think that characters like this work very well in this game. So I
        wouldn't consider the subject matter in question to be impossible to deal
        with.

        >2. Katrina. Katrina is a relatively recent character conept for
        >me. She's a pyromancer focusing on fear/terror/inferno. Physically
        >she is similar to the middle Asian Steppe peoples (between the Huns
        >and the Mongols, perhaps the Ye-Tai).

        That's the Nuyani again, all over. Hmmm. What's the culture like, however?
        That's really more important. For instance, she could be a Rhiani, who live
        the mongol lifestyle. They just don't look quite like Mongols.

        >She
        >descended into despair, learned Pyromancy, and is out for revenge.
        >Due to her emotionally scarred background she distrusts people in
        >general and men in particular. Her driving dual-Premise is Vengence
        >and Trust.

        Hmmm. Sure these aren't the same character? Very similar, thematically, it
        would seem from what we've seen. Ability wise, we can work all that out for
        either of the above, for any culture, really. I'm more concerned with the
        cultural impact on the characters right now.

        >3. Sebastian. Sebastian is someone i have always wanted to play.
        >He is basically an intelligence/information gathering expert seeking
        >someone to serve. Physically he is a mousy bureuacratic looking man
        >with plain features, a "gray" man if you will. He has a network of
        >informants and while able to gather information is especially good
        >at analysis.

        Hmm, neat concept. Could be from just about anywhere. He does strike me as
        being from a more advanced society, so I'm thinking probably Kaitaine, given
        their cosmopolitan outlook. In fact, it's one of the only places where the
        character really makes sense. Other places have spies, but not ones that do
        a lot of networking and analysis.

        Sel-kai makes even more sense for this, but is a long way away. That said,
        those folks get around via skyships, however, so maybe not so outlandish.
        Sel-kai is an even more wealthy trading state, and the most advanced nation
        in the world. Kaitaine is somewhat larger, however, and does more volume of
        trade.

        You could link him up with Adrienne's character, and he could be "our man
        over there" as it were. That would be in keeping with the whole
        "colonization" thing. Either being from Sel-kai or Kaitane, actually. This
        would make him Shay, given the "mousy" description.

        >He has recently reached a point where he feels that he
        >should "do something more" with his abilities and contacts and has
        >begun to search for someone who would use his services well. His
        >driving dual-Premise is Loyalty and Responsibility.

        With the above concept, he could be sorta "freelancing" for the Kaitaine
        colonizers. Ready for something more.

        So, what's sticking here? They all sound fun to me.

        Mike

        _________________________________________________________________
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      • lordsmerf
        Well, Terpsichore and Katrinna _are_ quite similar. The big differences are all in history and Cutlure. Terpsichore comes from some highly cosmopolitan
        Message 3 of 9 , Sep 3, 2004
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          Well, Terpsichore and Katrinna _are_ quite similar. The big
          differences are all in history and Cutlure. Terpsichore comes from
          some highly cosmopolitan society. She is in her element in the
          corridors of power. Katrinna is from some sort of "unsettled
          border" region. Basically from an area where people band together
          for mutual protection. Very insular, willfully
          ignorant/uninterested in the world outside their incredibly limited
          borders. I guess you could say that they are similar characters
          played from different perspectives/angles...

          All that said, i think that Sebastian is probably a good fit here.
          I like the idea of a Sel-kai freelancer. Mainly the advantage here
          is that he is tied into the story and characters, which i consider
          to be an advantage. In fact he could even be on the run from
          someone back home who thinks he knows something that they think he
          should not know. He may or may not actually know whatever it is...
          This would indicate that while he does have some sort of network of
          informants, he will need to significantly improve it since it is
          probably not very good. So that gives him an immediate personal
          goal (outside of serving his employer's interests).

          Thomas

          --- In indie-netgaming@yahoogroups.com, "Mike Holmes"
          <homeydont@h...> wrote:
          > >3. Sebastian. Sebastian is someone i have always wanted to play.
          > >He is basically an intelligence/information gathering expert
          seeking
          > >someone to serve. Physically he is a mousy bureuacratic looking
          man
          > >with plain features, a "gray" man if you will. He has a network
          of
          > >informants and while able to gather information is especially good
          > >at analysis.
          >
          > Hmm, neat concept. Could be from just about anywhere. He does
          strike me as
          > being from a more advanced society, so I'm thinking probably
          Kaitaine, given
          > their cosmopolitan outlook. In fact, it's one of the only places
          where the
          > character really makes sense. Other places have spies, but not
          ones that do
          > a lot of networking and analysis.
          >
          > Sel-kai makes even more sense for this, but is a long way away.
          That said,
          > those folks get around via skyships, however, so maybe not so
          outlandish.
          > Sel-kai is an even more wealthy trading state, and the most
          advanced nation
          > in the world. Kaitaine is somewhat larger, however, and does more
          volume of
          > trade.
          >
          > You could link him up with Adrienne's character, and he could
          be "our man
          > over there" as it were. That would be in keeping with the whole
          > "colonization" thing. Either being from Sel-kai or Kaitane,
          actually. This
          > would make him Shay, given the "mousy" description.
          >
          > >He has recently reached a point where he feels that he
          > >should "do something more" with his abilities and contacts and has
          > >begun to search for someone who would use his services well. His
          > >driving dual-Premise is Loyalty and Responsibility.
          >
          > With the above concept, he could be sorta "freelancing" for the
          Kaitaine
          > colonizers. Ready for something more.
          >
          > So, what's sticking here? They all sound fun to me.
          >
          > Mike
          >
          > _________________________________________________________________
          > Check out Election 2004 for up-to-date election news, plus voter
          tools and
          > more! http://special.msn.com/msn/election2004.armx
        • Mike Holmes
          ... You refer to the whole colonization thing? Just to be sure, we should check in with Adrienne to be sure that everyone s comfortable with the crossover.
          Message 4 of 9 , Sep 4, 2004
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            >From: "lordsmerf" <lordsmerf@...>

            >All that said, i think that Sebastian is probably a good fit here.
            >I like the idea of a Sel-kai freelancer. Mainly the advantage here
            >is that he is tied into the story and characters, which i consider
            >to be an advantage.

            You refer to the whole "colonization" thing? Just to be sure, we should
            check in with Adrienne to be sure that everyone's comfortable with the
            crossover. That is, Adrienne, do you mind Thomas' character being involved
            with your background concept?

            >In fact he could even be on the run from
            >someone back home who thinks he knows something that they think he
            >should not know. He may or may not actually know whatever it is...

            Heh, fun. And he's not really sure whether or not they know that he knows
            (or does not in this case) what he thinks that they think that he knows
            <Mike does the eyebrows thing>. If it's that complicated, then it has to
            involve the elves of Namar Tol. They're not evil, but they think so much of
            themselves that their machinations sometimes seem that way. :-)

            >This would indicate that while he does have some sort of network of
            >informants, he will need to significantly improve it since it is
            >probably not very good. So that gives him an immediate personal
            >goal (outside of serving his employer's interests).

            Hmmm. Well, with the level of ability that the PCs start with, you can't
            have the best of networks anyhow. So I won't argue the point.

            This is something that I hope all of the players read - the characters that
            we're making are only a little better than "starting" HQ characters. As I'm
            fond of saying starting HQ characters aren't incompetent (as starting
            characters are in lots of RPGs), but they are inexperienced. Relatively. I
            do give every character an additional edge in this game to start, and I'm
            considering giving the new characters some advanced experience to keep up
            with the joneses. Though that's seeming less and less important as few
            characters are returning. In fact, the only one I'm sure of is Elkaru, and
            he's not really the type that's going to intimidate anyone (or even be
            around that much). :-)

            The point is, even with the extras, the characters are pretty normal folks.
            The thing that makes them exceptional, rules-wise, is that they'll have Hero
            Points. But other than that, none of them are going to be the best in their
            field, or at all reknowned for anything. Which isn't to say that they won't
            have potential as protagonists, they will. Just that nobody is making a
            Lancelot, Robin Hood, Athos, Man With No Name, Indiana Jones, or James Bond
            to start. Even with magic, characters will be on a very common level of
            ability overall.

            Thomas, so we've got his homeland, Sel-kai. I'm seeing him working for one
            of the noble merchant houses. An important one, potentially even one of the
            fifteen on the council that rules the city-state. Sound about right? Maybe
            one edging to get into the council? Or would you prefer some other sort of
            concern to be working for?

            Next, racially he sounds Shay, which are the "common men" of the continent.
            Like I said, fits the description. Should we go with that, or do you want
            something more exotic. Perhaps he's a short Laan man? Elves in this world
            are generally taller than men, so half-elven sounds right out (elves require
            special consideration as they're unaging in this game world).

            After that, you need to specify occupation. I'm thinking that he might have
            some background in merchantilism? I subscribe to the LeCarre school of spy
            stuff, where most spys are in most respects normal people. Sound right for
            your character? Or are you thinking more along the line of trained spy?
            Actually, if you're familiar, right now I'm getting a real Graham Greene
            feel from this character (no, not the native American actor, the author).
            In any case, what I'm looking for is the character's occupation keyword.

            Then, after that, comes the question of the characters religious beliefs.
            The people of Sel-Kai typically worship the lords of Orhan in a general way.
            Is that what he's about, or is he more religiously involved? Does he know
            any magic? If so, where's it from?

            Mike

            _________________________________________________________________
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          • Adrienne Traxler
            ... Not at all. PC-PC connections usually make things easier, in my experience. -Adrienne _______________________________ Do you Yahoo!? Win 1 of 4,000 free
            Message 5 of 9 , Sep 4, 2004
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              --- Mike Holmes <homeydont@...> wrote:
              > You refer to the whole "colonization" thing? Just to
              > be sure, we should
              > check in with Adrienne to be sure that everyone's
              > comfortable with the
              > crossover. That is, Adrienne, do you mind Thomas'
              > character being involved
              > with your background concept?

              Not at all. PC-PC connections usually make things
              easier, in my experience.


              -Adrienne




              _______________________________
              Do you Yahoo!?
              Win 1 of 4,000 free domain names from Yahoo! Enter now.
              http://promotions.yahoo.com/goldrush
            • lordsmerf
              ... for one ... one of the ... right? Maybe ... sort of ... This sounds entirely up his alley. I see him as something of an information broker who has had his
              Message 6 of 9 , Sep 4, 2004
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                --- In indie-netgaming@yahoogroups.com, "Mike Holmes"
                <homeydont@h...> wrote:
                > Thomas, so we've got his homeland, Sel-kai. I'm seeing him working
                for one
                > of the noble merchant houses. An important one, potentially even
                one of the
                > fifteen on the council that rules the city-state. Sound about
                right? Maybe
                > one edging to get into the council? Or would you prefer some other
                sort of
                > concern to be working for?

                This sounds entirely up his alley. I see him as something of an
                information broker who has had his services retained. He is most
                likely in trouble back home because he dealt with the wrong person
                (he probably bought some info from someone who had the dangerous
                info, no one is sure if he actually bought the dangerous info
                itself, but the risk is such that he must be eliminated). Sebastian
                himself may not even realize that he has the info (if he does) as he
                may not recognize its significance.

                > Next, racially he sounds Shay, which are the "common men" of the
                continent.
                > Like I said, fits the description. Should we go with that, or do
                you want
                > something more exotic. Perhaps he's a short Laan man? Elves in
                this world
                > are generally taller than men, so half-elven sounds right out
                (elves require
                > special consideration as they're unaging in this game world).

                Shay sounds right, Sebastian would be "The Man with Purple Sneakers"
                if you are familiar with Spider Robinson. So i see him as being
                about as non-descript as you can get (totally average).

                > After that, you need to specify occupation. I'm thinking that he
                might have
                > some background in merchantilism? I subscribe to the LeCarre
                school of spy
                > stuff, where most spys are in most respects normal people. Sound
                right for
                > your character? Or are you thinking more along the line of trained
                spy?
                > Actually, if you're familiar, right now I'm getting a real Graham
                Greene
                > feel from this character (no, not the native American actor, the
                author).
                > In any case, what I'm looking for is the character's occupation
                keyword.

                Not familiar with Graham Greene... I see Sebastian as average in
                many respects. Definately a background in mercantilism. He is not
                so much a spy himself as a collector and analyzer of information.
                He may have some small knowledge of tradecraft, but he probably
                views fieldwork as something to "leave to the professionals" while
                he takes all the data and tries to figure out what it means.

                > Then, after that, comes the question of the characters religious
                beliefs.
                > The people of Sel-Kai typically worship the lords of Orhan in a
                general way.
                > Is that what he's about, or is he more religiously involved? Does
                he know
                > any magic? If so, where's it from?

                I do not see him being very religious, at least not at the start of
                the game. Any magic he had would be almost exclusively
                communication focused. He wants to keep in touch with his network,
                but beyond that he probably would not have much, if any, magic.

                Hope that makes things somewhat clearer...
              • Mike Holmes
                ... OK, how does this sound? He s currently working for House Ullizi, who basically are financiers. They do a lot of backing for projects, warehousing,
                Message 7 of 9 , Sep 7, 2004
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                  >From: "lordsmerf" <lordsmerf@...>

                  >This sounds entirely up his alley. I see him as something of an
                  >information broker who has had his services retained. He is most
                  >likely in trouble back home because he dealt with the wrong person
                  >(he probably bought some info from someone who had the dangerous
                  >info, no one is sure if he actually bought the dangerous info
                  >itself, but the risk is such that he must be eliminated). Sebastian
                  >himself may not even realize that he has the info (if he does) as he
                  >may not recognize its significance.

                  OK, how does this sound? He's currently working for House Ullizi, who
                  basically are financiers. They do a lot of backing for projects,
                  warehousing, expediting, and general insurance. They've decided to back the
                  heads of the Kaitaine expedition, who came to them with the proposition with
                  the intent of spreading around the funding on the project (so no one backer
                  failing would throw things into disarray). The Ullizi cut is substantial,
                  and they want a man on the scene to be sure that everything proceeds as
                  proposed, and that it all succeed if possible.

                  >Shay sounds right, Sebastian would be "The Man with Purple Sneakers"
                  >if you are familiar with Spider Robinson. So i see him as being
                  >about as non-descript as you can get (totally average).

                  Gotcha. Interestingly, HQ is the only game I know where one can make a
                  superior ability out of being average. That is, I think he should have
                  "Non-descript" as one of his ten abilities.

                  Anyhow, Shay gives: Stocky 10, Hardy 13

                  To keep him average, it's best not to alter these. Sel-kai homeland gives:
                  Speak Shay, Bargain, Sel-Kai Geography, Sel-Kai Customs, Urban Survival,
                  Orhan Pantheon Myths
                  Personality Traits: Enterprising, Cosmopolitan, Cautious
                  Relationships: Family, Neighborhood, Guild

                  >Not familiar with Graham Greene...

                  Check out:

                  "Our Man in Havana"
                  "The Comedians"
                  "The Third Man"

                  The last has Orson Wells in his only appearance as a pure villain. A must
                  see.

                  But the point is that spies are just people, too. Ones who happen to be
                  asked to find things out, and tell what they know.

                  >I see Sebastian as average in
                  >many respects. Definately a background in mercantilism. He is not
                  >so much a spy himself as a collector and analyzer of information.
                  >He may have some small knowledge of tradecraft, but he probably
                  >views fieldwork as something to "leave to the professionals" while
                  >he takes all the data and tries to figure out what it means.

                  Gotcha. So, again, I'm seeing the Merchant Occupation keyword, with an
                  emphasis on certain things. This is what Merchant gives you:
                  Fast Talk, Carry Heavy Loads, Estimate Market Value, Know Customers, Know
                  Local Area, Load Pack Animal, Tend Pack Animal, Staff Fighting
                  Personality Traits: Persuasive, Entrepeneurial, Shrewd
                  Relationships: Customers, Contacts

                  (I think this might be missing something, so we'll check it later. Also,
                  it's a tad primitive for a Sel-Kai merchant, so if you want to substitute
                  out some abilities for others that make more sense, go ahead)

                  >I do not see him being very religious, at least not at the start of
                  >the game.

                  OK, sounds like your typical Worshipper of the Orhan Pantheon. We'll go with
                  that. About the same as saying that somebody attends church on Christmas and
                  Easter. This gives:
                  Worship Orhan Pantheon
                  Virtues (personality traits): Civic Minded
                  Relationships: temple

                  >Any magic he had would be almost exclusively
                  >communication focused. He wants to keep in touch with his network,
                  >but beyond that he probably would not have much, if any, magic.

                  He could take the Common Magic keyword, which basically allows you to select
                  five "little" magic abilities that he knows. Lots of people who aren't
                  dedicated to religion, or the study of the essence know a little magic. In
                  any case, it's up to you.

                  At this point, the next question is what's his "special ability." My best
                  suggestion at this point would be to buy his information network as a
                  keyword. This would allow for all of the information gathering and analyzing
                  abilities and contacts and such, to all start off at level 17 (instead of
                  13). Something like the Traveler keyword in the book - might even include
                  languages, and area knowledges. Other options that I can see would involve
                  jacking up the Merchant Keyword, or just giving points for purchasing such
                  things.

                  Let me know what makes sense. If you choose a "Network" keyword, then let me
                  know what abilities you think should go into it.

                  After all of this, enumerate the ten abilities that your character has
                  outside of keywords. Remember to purchase any followers that you want to
                  have. That is, NPCs that you have some direct control over.

                  Mike

                  _________________________________________________________________
                  Get ready for school! Find articles, homework help and more in the Back to
                  School Guide! http://special.msn.com/network/04backtoschool.armx
                • lordsmerf
                  ... who ... back the ... proposition with ... one backer ... substantial, ... proceeds as ... That sounds good, this seems to imply that his network of
                  Message 8 of 9 , Sep 7, 2004
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                    > OK, how does this sound? He's currently working for House Ullizi,
                    who
                    > basically are financiers. They do a lot of backing for projects,
                    > warehousing, expediting, and general insurance. They've decided to
                    back the
                    > heads of the Kaitaine expedition, who came to them with the
                    proposition with
                    > the intent of spreading around the funding on the project (so no
                    one backer
                    > failing would throw things into disarray). The Ullizi cut is
                    substantial,
                    > and they want a man on the scene to be sure that everything
                    proceeds as
                    > proposed, and that it all succeed if possible.

                    That sounds good, this seems to imply that his network of informants
                    is probably relatively small and made up mostly of members of the
                    colonization party. I bet poor Sebastian is having fits trying to
                    build a network of locals considering their strict honesty policy.

                    > Gotcha. Interestingly, HQ is the only game I know where one can
                    make a
                    > superior ability out of being average. That is, I think he should
                    have
                    > "Non-descript" as one of his ten abilities.
                    >
                    > Anyhow, Shay gives: Stocky 10, Hardy 13
                    >
                    > To keep him average, it's best not to alter these. Sel-kai
                    homeland gives:
                    > Speak Shay, Bargain, Sel-Kai Geography, Sel-Kai Customs, Urban
                    Survival,
                    > Orhan Pantheon Myths
                    > Personality Traits: Enterprising, Cosmopolitan, Cautious
                    > Relationships: Family, Neighborhood, Guild
                    > Gotcha. So, again, I'm seeing the Merchant Occupation keyword,
                    with an
                    > emphasis on certain things. This is what Merchant gives you:
                    > Fast Talk, Carry Heavy Loads, Estimate Market Value, Know
                    Customers, Know
                    > Local Area, Load Pack Animal, Tend Pack Animal, Staff Fighting
                    > Personality Traits: Persuasive, Entrepeneurial, Shrewd
                    > Relationships: Customers, Contacts
                    >
                    > (I think this might be missing something, so we'll check it later.
                    Also,
                    > it's a tad primitive for a Sel-Kai merchant, so if you want to
                    substitute
                    > out some abilities for others that make more sense, go ahead)

                    I feel that something is missing too... He probably has an ability
                    for building networks, or getting plugged into existing ones.
                    Probably something tied to organization as well (he runs a
                    distributed business so he has to delegate).

                    > OK, sounds like your typical Worshipper of the Orhan Pantheon.
                    We'll go with
                    > that. About the same as saying that somebody attends church on
                    Christmas and
                    > Easter. This gives:
                    > Worship Orhan Pantheon
                    > Virtues (personality traits): Civic Minded
                    > Relationships: temple

                    This sounds exaclty right, one of those CEO types (Christmas,
                    Easter, Other special occasions)

                    > He could take the Common Magic keyword, which basically allows you
                    to select
                    > five "little" magic abilities that he knows. Lots of people who
                    aren't
                    > dedicated to religion, or the study of the essence know a little
                    magic. In
                    > any case, it's up to you.

                    I think that Sebastian has no magic at this point... My ideas may
                    change, but i just see him being one of those "rely on logic" people.

                    > At this point, the next question is what's his "special ability."
                    My best
                    > suggestion at this point would be to buy his information network
                    as a
                    > keyword. This would allow for all of the information gathering and
                    analyzing
                    > abilities and contacts and such, to all start off at level 17
                    (instead of
                    > 13). Something like the Traveler keyword in the book - might even
                    include
                    > languages, and area knowledges. Other options that I can see would
                    involve
                    > jacking up the Merchant Keyword, or just giving points for
                    purchasing such
                    > things.
                    >
                    > Let me know what makes sense. If you choose a "Network" keyword,
                    then let me
                    > know what abilities you think should go into it.

                    At the moment i am trying to decide whether he has a network in
                    place or if i want to build one through play... If i end up
                    building one through play then i will probably save the points for
                    the time being...

                    > After all of this, enumerate the ten abilities that your character
                    has
                    > outside of keywords. Remember to purchase any followers that you
                    want to
                    > have. That is, NPCs that you have some direct control over.

                    Sebastian will definately have an underling of some sort. Perhaps a
                    go-between for the network or someone who handles his field work...

                    I will do some thinking and get back to you...

                    Thomas
                  • Mike Holmes
                    ... Heh. Well, first, I think it would still be interesting to have contacts far and wide. Doesn t have to be the world s greatest network, but don t limit
                    Message 9 of 9 , Sep 8, 2004
                    • 0 Attachment
                      > > The Ullizi cut is
                      >substantial,
                      > > and they want a man on the scene to be sure that everything
                      >proceeds as
                      > > proposed, and that it all succeed if possible.
                      >
                      >That sounds good, this seems to imply that his network of informants
                      >is probably relatively small and made up mostly of members of the
                      >colonization party. I bet poor Sebastian is having fits trying to
                      >build a network of locals considering their strict honesty policy.

                      Heh. Well, first, I think it would still be interesting to have contacts far
                      and wide. Doesn't have to be the world's greatest network, but don't limit
                      yourself to just the local situation. For example, I'd think that he's got
                      to have contacts in Sel-kai, probably a number of them. Then he probably has
                      some in Kaitane as well. Other major trade cities that he might have
                      contacts in would be Lethys (port far to the north on another continent),
                      Artha (Capital of Danarchis, known for it's wines), Ardan City (new
                      city-state on the far side of the continent), in Namar Tol (advanced elven
                      kingdom), Sarnak (Amazon City-state), and many other places, potentially.
                      Might have even had some contacts in Sherezak before it's recent demise.
                      Kaitaine and Sel-kai are far apart, and only trade because of the important
                      stops in between - that and the fact that Sel-kai has flying ships that can
                      make the trips very quickly.

                      Second, yep, he should be well connected to the colony, but that only makes
                      sense. As for the natives, you're sorta right. Actually, as long as you're
                      honest with the locals, it's very easy to get them as contacts. Given that
                      they don't lie to each other, in fact, information you get from them is very
                      reliable. But digging for information is, yes, difficult. If something isn't
                      forthcoming, then it's very much advisable not to try and trick them out of
                      it. For example, about the worst thing you can do is to say, "X told me that
                      you should give me the information." Because when X finds out, X and the
                      person who you told may try to kill you. In fact, under certain
                      circumstances they'd be expected to do so by the other locals.

                      I try to emphasize this, because people in the last phase forgot it
                      occasionally, and I had to remind them about it. Not that it always stopped
                      them from lying, but I just want people to know the potential
                      ramificiations.

                      >I feel that something is missing too... He probably has an ability
                      >for building networks, or getting plugged into existing ones.
                      >Probably something tied to organization as well (he runs a
                      >distributed business so he has to delegate).

                      >I think that Sebastian has no magic at this point... My ideas may
                      >change, but i just see him being one of those "rely on logic" people.

                      Cool. The neat thing about this is that it leaves room for the character to
                      expand into something if he wants to do so.

                      >At the moment i am trying to decide whether he has a network in
                      >place or if i want to build one through play... If i end up
                      >building one through play then i will probably save the points for
                      >the time being...

                      Hmmm. First, one neat thing about HQ, is that things always scale up well.
                      That is, with a Network Keyword at 17, this represents a fledgling network.
                      Basically established, but certainly no great shakes. By spending HP in
                      play, he'd would be making it into a "real" network through play.

                      Again, this is important, and I hope people are reading - a 17 keyword in
                      something means that you're a professional, but an entry-level professional.
                      No real experience that you could put on a resume. As such, they're a good
                      place to expand from - but they dont' represent being really good at
                      something. They represent basic competence.

                      As such, you can really make a character look more competent by adding to a
                      keyword. That is, if you really want him to be a merchant who is just now
                      starting to network worldwide, that's fine, but then I might spend the
                      special ability on elevating the merchant keyword. To give him something
                      that he's good at.

                      OTOH, if you really, really want to play a character "new" to this sort of
                      thing entirely, then by all means, don't take the bump on merchant, or take
                      the Network Keyword. But consider taking something else in it's place. You
                      don't have to do so, but I'm not sure what we'd do with a special ability
                      that wasn't "spent" at chargen. I suppose you could have it sprout up later
                      somehow. Hmmm.

                      >Sebastian will definately have an underling of some sort. Perhaps a
                      >go-between for the network or someone who handles his field work...

                      Consider both of these. If you can't see one as particularly important, then
                      make them a retainer. These are fun spear carriers. Only make followers out
                      of guys that you want to really have a small part in the drama.

                      Oh, keep in mind that the cost of things is based on the normal HP costs. So
                      your pool of 25 extra points (I've added five to the normal pool), isn't
                      always one for one. For instance, a follower costs three as opposed to a
                      retainer which only costs one.

                      Mike

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