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Character Creation

You are an Adventurer.

You possess 2d61 x 10 silver pieces (sp), which you can use to outfit yourself prior to the start of your adventure (see Equipment).

You know nothing, but you will learn.

Roll Your Attributes

There are three attributes: Agility, Brawn, and Cunning.

  • Agility: Dodge things, tumble and climb, make ranged attacks, run.
  • Brawn: Hit things, lift and push, make melee attacks, resist.
  • Cunning: Spot things, sneak and deceive, wield magic, hide.
  • Determine them by rolling 3d6 for each attribute to generate a value from 3-18. Roll them in order, starting with Agility. You may swap two results.

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Roll an Extra

2d6 Extra
2 +1d32 health points
3 +2 to attribute on saving throws vs Poison
4 +1 damage
5 +2d6 x 10sp
6,7,8 +1d3 to any Attribute
9 +2 AC, always
10 +1 to recovery rolls
11 +2 to attribute on saving throws vs Spells
12 Learn a Ritual without reducing health or attributes

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Determine Health

Roll 1d6 and add half your Brawn score (rounded down) to determine your starting health. If you gained additional health points when you rolled an Extra in the previous step, apply them here.

If you reach 0 health for any reason during the course of your adventures, you risk dying. See the section on Dying for details.

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Roll an Occupation

You weren’t always an adventurer. Roll 1d20 on the list below to determine what you did before you decided to take up arms and delve into the darkest places of the world.

You always roll with advantage3 when performing tasks related to your occupation.

  1. Archaeologist
  2. Astrologer
  3. Brewer
  4. Burglar
  5. Clergyman
  6. Courier
  7. Dramatist
  8. Ditch digger
  9. Forester
  10. Gambler
  11. Hangman
  12. Healer
  13. Jeweler
  14. Netmaker
  15. Ostler
  16. Scribe
  17. Taxidermist
  18. Trapper
  19. Undertaker
  20. Weaver

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Choose Scars

The more violence you do over the course of your adventure, the more Scars you accumulate. These make you better at inflicting violence in future, but also make it more likely that you’ll die violently. 4 Violence begets violence.

All characters start play with one historic Scar.

To select your Scars, roll 1d6 to select the body part that was injured and then roll 1d6 again on the relevant list on the pages that follow.

  1. Head
  2. Face
  3. Arms
  4. Hands
  5. Legs
  6. Torso

If you want to think about how you earned it then do so. if you don’t, don’t. Sometimes it’s best not to dwell on the past.

Once per initiative round you can modify a roll you make in combat by +/- X, where X is the number of Scars you possess. 5

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Content Warning

The Scars that follow contain graphic descriptions of bodily injuries. If these are not to your tastes, you may wish to write your own Scars.

  1. The tip of one of your ears is hacked off.
  2. A flap of skin was sheared away from your scalp, revealing exposed bone. The skin will never grow back.
  3. Your ear becomes permanently swollen and deformed, resembling a cauliflower.
  4. There’s no physical sign that you were injured, but you’ve become prone to apocalyptic headaches that come on without warning.
  5. The dome of your head is visibly mis-shapen, and helmets don’t fit like they used to.
  6. Hair only grows on one side of your head now. The other side is knotted with scar tissue.

Face

  1. A broken tooth pierced your lip. Your mouth is crooked and your lip is permanently swollen.
  2. The blade sliced straight through your cheek. The scar extends up to just below your cheek bone, and it’s a beautiful shade of dead-flesh-white.
  3. You never use all of your teeth at the same time anyway. Don’t worry - you’ll get used to only being able to chew on one side eventually.
  4. The blow shattered your orbital bone, leaving your eye hanging out of your skull. The bones didn’t set quite right and your eye is visibly lower in your face than it used to be.
  5. Your nose oozes a small trickle of blood constantly.
  6. One of your cheeks is noticeably lower than the other, with a visible lump where the bone didn’t set properly.

Arms

  1. You fractured your shoulder socket. The joint sometimes catches so your arm locks in place and has to be forced back into motion, often painfully. The joint grinds audibly when it moves.
  2. One of the tendons in your forearm is permanently damaged. Now your hand flops a little too far back at the wrist.
  3. The bones of your wrist didn’t quite line up properly when you healed and now there’s a very visible misalignment where your wrist joins your hand.
  4. Your arm hung limp by your side for so long before you set it and healed that your shoulder now sits a little lower than its opposite number.
  5. Elbows are made to bend, and that’s a good thing because yours will never be able to extend fully again.
  6. Your arm is twisted so that when you stand the back of your hand sits at a right angle to your body, the thumb parallel to your thigh.

Hands

  1. You lose the tip of one of your fingers, just below the nail.
  2. The fractured bones of your ring finger rotated slightly during healing and now it overlaps your middle finger every time you make a fist.
  3. One of your fingers has had all the meat and sinew torn away from it, so that only bone remains.
  4. The skin of your hand is boiled and charred, like meat left on the fire for too long.
  5. The veins in the back of your hand are thick and black like they carry an infection.
  6. Pick your favourite finger and say goodbye to it. It’s gone now.

Legs

  1. The bones in your leg were shattered beyond complete repair. That leg will always be fractionally shorter than the other.
  2. One of your feet twists inward at an odd angle, and can never be straightened properly.
  3. One of your kneecaps has been shifted sideways so that it rests on the outside of your leg.
  4. You lose a foot, forever. Find something to replace it with.
  5. Your kneecap is shattered, leaving free-floating chunks of bone just beneath your skin.
  6. Your ankle is crushed, and heals with a large, visible lump.

Torso

  1. Your chest is visibly concave, the result of poorly-set broken ribs.
  2. Most bruises heal. This one didn’t. The skin where you were struck is permanently stained a dull shade of piss-yellow, with hints of brown and flecks of purple.
  3. Your pectoral muscle is separated from the bone, and when it heals your chest on that side is lower than the other.
  4. A thick knot of scar tissue runs down the center of your chest, as though you have been zipped up.
  5. Your stomach was split open and poorly stitched, and now you have no visible belly button.
  6. After breaking all of your ribs on one side, a metal plate was grafted onto your bones. It shines through the hole in your missing flesh.

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Learn Rituals

This step is optional.

All characters can learn magic, but it comes at a cost. You start play with as many Rituals as you dare to learn. 6

To learn a Ritual, follow this procedure:

  1. Decide which aspect of yourself you will sacrifice to learn the Ritual: Health, Agility, Brawn, or Cunning. Roll 1d3 and reduce your max Health or chosen attribute by that amount. If this reduces your health or attribute to 0 or lower, you have died. Make a new character.
  2. Roll 1d3 to determine what kind of Ritual you know: Phrase (1), Sigil (2), or Ceremony (3).
  3. Roll 1d20 once on each of the Word Lists to determine the words that form your Ritual.

Repeat this process for as many Rituals as you would like to attempt to learn.

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Finalise Your Character

Use your starting silver to purchase the equipment you will need on your adventure.

Choose a name. Now you are ready.

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  1. This game uses two types of dice - the normal six-sided cubes you’d find in a board game, and the 20-sided ones you can get from hobby shops. We refer to these as d6” and d20” respectively. The number before the d” tells us how many dice to roll. So in this case, we roll two six-sided dice, add the results, and then multiply the whole thing by 10 to tell us how much money we begin play with.↩︎

  2. To roll 1d3 roll a d6 and halve it, rouding up. A roll of 1 or 2 becomes a 1, 3 or 4 becomes a 2, and 5 or 6 becomes a 3.↩︎

  3. Roll with advantage” means you roll 2d20 and take the most favourable result. This isn’t always the highest result. You can find more information about rolling dice and doing things on page 21.↩︎

  4. The rules for dying are on found here. The more scars you have, the more chance there is that being reduced to 0 Health will result in your death.↩︎

  5. The rules for rolling dice in combat are here. Because you’re often trying to roll between two numbers, it’s sometimes beneficial to reduce the result of your roll rather than add to it.↩︎

  6. You can use your Rituals at any time during play. For details on how to use magic, see Using Rituals. Once character creation is complete, new Rituals must be discovered during play. For details on learning new Rituals, see the section on Magic. You also have the option to transcribe your Rituals onto scrolls. To learn more about this, see Scrolls.↩︎