Working on a game system is different than writing a story, with a story I have to keep plot, characters, and flow in mind. Does this section read “right” and when this section is put with others does everything read “right,” that is story writing for me. Game design revolves around ensuring the language is clear, concise where possible, and best of all works. Game design takes time, many revisions and edits. Game design gets worse when playtesting happens and what looked good on paper is…flawed.
A few posts ago, I wrote about attributes, took me until yesterday to get to working where I am happy…until edits. 🙂
Attributes and Keywords
Attributes are an abstract measure of a character’s emotional, mental, physical, and skill sets. Attributes are deliberately broad in their interpretation allowing players to go outside the box; to focus on roleplaying their character rather than their character’s abilities or min/maxing stats to get the “best” character.
Each attribute has primary and secondary areas. Primary areas are strengths of the attribute; players may roll the full amount of dice when making checks (one 10-sided die per level). Secondary areas are complimentary to the attributes strengths; players may roll up to half (rounded down) the amount of dice when making checks.
|Example: Fast Kick Tommy’s bashing attribute level is 4. When making a check to pummel a target with his Fists of Iron, Derek may roll 4 ten-sided dice. If Derek wants Fast Kick Tommy to demonstrate his knowledge of fighting styles, a secondary area of bashing, Derek may roll 2 ten-sided dice.|
Keywords are specializations, areas where a character excels. Keywords attach to an attribute providing a bonus to checks made using that attribute.
Physical activity of any kind from climbing up the side of a building to playing sports on a professional team to being a mega-extreme glider fan and knowing who the latest greatest gliders is under athletic endeavors attribute.
Examples not limited to climbing, dancing, jumping, swimming, sport (specify), melee, sliding
Primary: physical activity such as climbing, jumping, swimming, sport (specify)
Secondary: knowledge (including trivia) about sports or athletic activities, perception related to athletic activities, bashing or blasting checks
|Example: A character with levels in athletic endeavors can attempt to climb up the side of a building, attempt to slide past enemies or slide close to an enemy to make a bashing attack, swim in Stroud river, or play in a specified sport rolling 1 ten-sided die per level.
A character with levels in athletic endeavors could make an athletic endeavors check to demonstrate their knowledge about a sporting event, player, or equipment or to notice something during an athletic activity, such as a good place to get a grip or if their opponent is cheating rolling 1 ten-sided die per two levels.
One of two primary fighting attributes bashing is more than a character striking another with a foot, hand, or weapon. Bashing includes feats of strength, dexterity, knowledge about fighting styles, the ability to perceive what an opponent may do next, and dancing.
Examples not limited to melee (armed and unarmed), lifting, pulling, throwing heavy objects, dexterity, dancing, hand-eye, knowledge of weapons and/or fighting styles, tactics, strategy, perception during a fight
Primary: melee combat checks (specify fighting form or weapon)
Secondary: moving heavy objects (lift, pull, carry), knowledge (including trivia) about fighting styles or weapons, perception related to fighting styles or weapons
|Example: A character with levels in bashing can attempt to strike a target with their hands, feet, elbows, knees, forehead or weapon held in one or more hands rolling 1 ten-sided die per level.
A character with levels in bashing can attempt lift a heavy object, demonstrate knowledge about a specific fighting style, make an observation about their opponent to gain an advantage, or make a plan of action for two or more characters rolling 1 ten-sided die per two levels.
The other primary fighting attribute, if a character is attempting to hit anything at a distance, blasting is the attribute. Blasting includes feats of reflex, hand-eye-coordination, ranged weapons, tactics, strategies, and the ability to perceive what an opponent may do next.
Examples not limited to shooting, throwing, precision, hand-eye, reflex, knowledge of weapons, tactics, strategy, perception
Primary: ranged combat checks (specify weapon or attack form)
Secondary: hand-eye-coordination, knowledge (including trivia) about fighting styles or weapons, perception related to fighting styles or weapons
|Example: A character with levels in blasting can attempt to strike a target with a ranged weapon (shooting or throwing) rolling 1 ten-sided die per level.
A character with levels in blasting can attempt card shuffling tricks, sleight of hand, and demonstrate knowledge about a specific weapon.
Basic vehicle operation skills are mandatory to all citizens; because of this, the getting around attribute is more than driving or flying. Getting around attribute includes navigating the city, knowing the hot spots, places of interest, local lore, and places to avoid.
Examples not limited to navigation, driving/flying checks, city knowledge (landmarks, popular spots, unique locations, crime, wealth, etc.)
Primary: driving checks, navigation, city knowledge (landmarks, popular spots, unique locations, crime, wealth, etc.)
Secondary: knowledge about vehicles, perception related to vehicles and/or city knowledge
|Example: A character with levels in getting around can attempt stunt or trick driving or demonstrate knowledge about a place to eat, location to make a deal, or the location of a gang, criminal organization, or legal organization rolling 1 ten-sided die per level.
A character with levels in getting around can attempt to demonstrate knowledge about vehicles and make observations about the condition of a vehicle rolling 1 ten-sided die per two levels.