What's the number scale for abilities?
Most dice pools consist of an attribute (also 0 to 5) plus an ability. For instance, in a foot race, Alice (Dexterity 4 Athletics 1 = total 5) and Bob (Dexterity 2 Athletics 3 = total 5) will be about even, but Charlie (Dexterity 4 Athletics 3 = total 7) will probably beat them both.
Lack of ability
What if I need to roll an ability that I don't have?
- Treat the ability as zero.
- Talents: No difficulty penalty. (VtM 120 et al)
- Skills: +1 difficulty. (VtM 123 et al)
- Knowledge: Auto-fail unless the ST decides otherwise. (VtM 126 et al)
- This includes supernatural powers using the ability in a dice pool, unless the power says otherwise.
- Exception: For supernatural perception (e.g. Awareness, Kenning), if you don't have it, then you auto-fail.
What are secondary abilities?
- More specialized than primary abilities.
- Typical base difficulty for all rolls is 6.
- If a roll is stated in terms of a primary ability, then a relevant secondary ability can be substituted at -1 difficulty.
- If a roll is stated in terms of a secondary ability, then a relevant primary ability can be substituted at +1 difficulty.
- If a substitution is explicitly mentioned, then it's reiterating these clauses, not stacking with them.
- Substitutions should be evaluated on a conceptual basis. There is some overlap. There is no centralized list of "the one and only primary ability that includes each secondary ability".
- Substitutions for supernatural powers (with an ability in the dice pool) is not automatically allowed, in either direction, however the ST may choose to allow it.
- During character generation, a dot in a secondary ability costs half as much as a dot in a primary ability.
- You can spend one of your baseline points on two dots in secondaries instead of one dot in primaries.
- You can buy additional secondary dots for 1 freebie each.
- Your baseline still can't raise secondaries above 3 (that requires freebies).
- After character generation, buying/raising a secondary ability costs the same amount of XP as a primary at the same level.
- This is loosely based on Players Guide to Garou page 177 (but the chargen costs are higher).
- Alertness: This talent indicates your character's (small-a) awareness of the world around her. She is practiced in keeping one ear to the wind and one eye to the sky, even when distracted with other things. Alertness is a measure of how well your character picks up on subtle details and changes in her environment.
- Athletics: Climbing rocky cliffs, leaping chasms or playing brilliant games of badminton are all Athletics-based feats. This ability describes your character's general athletic prowess in both team and individual sports. It assumes a familiarity with the rules and play of the sport in question.
- Awareness: Similar to Alertness, but for supernatural things not obvious to normal senses. See House Rules/Awareness.
- Brawl: Brawling is the ability to fight without a weapon, including basic hand-to-hand maneuvers such as punching, kicking, grappling, throwing, scratching and biting. Brawling can get quite ruthless and sometimes inflicts serious damage if done properly. For purposes of roleplay, a character should gain a specialty when she reaches the expert level in brawl.
- Dodge: Whether your character dives for cover, ducks a punch or sidesteps an arrow, he knows the best way to avoid injury is not getting hit. Dodge simply describes your character's ability to get out of the way of any oncoming attacks.
- Empathy: Empathy is the ability to pinpoint what others are feeling. Through awareness of their facial expressions, body language and tone, your character gains a sense of the other person's general attitude, including her emotional state and her motives. With high levels of this trait, your character can sometimes tell whether someone is lying or not. Successful use of this talent prior to attempting to persuade, intimidate or use subterfuge on the same person reduces the difficulty number on the second action by one; failure increases the difficulty number by one.
- Expression: Expression is the art of getting your point across, no matter what the medium. Expression covers the creation and delivery of speeches, poetry, and other writing.
- Intimidation: The art of intimidation takes many forms from subtle threats to outright physical harm. Choice of method depends on the time, the place and those involved. Characters with this talent know how to get what they want from others when they want it.
- Kenning: Kenning is the faerie sight, the ability to sense Glamour in whatever form it takes, be it a chimera, a changeling, or a freehold. Among other things, this talent allows a changeling to recognize a changeling who has slipped into the Mists or who has yet to achieve Chrysalis, sense the relative power of a chimera, and locate freeholds and trods.
- Primal Urge: This talent describes not only the bestial nature inside every shifter (or animal, for that matter), but also the level of gut feelings the character has in nonhuman forms. Characters with high Primal Urge can more easily rely on animal instincts for guidance and find it easier to transform into their non-human shapes.
- Streetwise: The streets can be a major source of information, aid and money, but their culture and rules of conduct are as complex as the noble courts. The streetwise talent indicates how versed your character is with the local rumor mill, street slang and street etiquette. It represents her savvy when among the less desirable elements of society, and determines not only how well she can survive but thrive and fit in among them.
- Subterfuge: This trait determines your character's ability to conceal his motives and feelings. Moreover, it allows him to decipher the motives of others and use their own plans against them. Subterfuge is the fine art of lying, deceit and underhanded manipulation. Characters skilled in this talent know how to call upon their best theatrics to influence situations and divert the blame without others realizing they've been manipulated.
Acting Artistic Expression Biorhythms Carousing Diplomacy Flight Fortune-telling Guile Haggling Homiletics Instruction Interrogation Intrigue Intuition Juggling Lucid Dreaming Malkavian Time Masquerade Mimicry Negotiation Newspeak Panhandling Persuasion Poetic Expression Public Speaking Scan Scrounging Search Seduction Sense Deception Style Swimming Throwing Ventriloquism
- Animal Ken:
- Crafts: This skill imparts a knowledge of artisan techniques in such fields as woodworking, leatherwork, glassblowing, or gem cutting. With crafts, your character can create lasting pieces of art and functional objects from various materials. The quality of these products depends on the number of successes achieved on the roll. A character should specialize when she reaches the expert level in this skill, if she hasn't already chosen her field.
- Drive: The drive skill represents your character's ability to operate motor vehicles, though it does not mean that she is familiar with all land vehicles. The storyteller may raise or lower difficulty numbers based on your character's experience with that particular type of vehicle. It also implies that your character has earned a driver's license, although this need not necessarily be the case. At higher levels, you can attempt to avoid someone who's tailing you ( if you know they're there ), and it allows you to attempt some stunts.
- Firearms: Skill in firearms means that you have a broad knowledge of all guns, from a simple .22 to an Ingram Mac-10 submachine gun. It does not include the ability to operate heavy artillery. Firearms includes the ability to care for and repair guns.
- Performance: The performance skill covers a broad range of artistic expression from acting to storytelling. It assumes that your character has the basic knowledge necessary and a certain talent in the field she has chosen. As well as defining your character's expertise and creative talent, this skill also represents her ability to captivate an audience and her stage presence, two relatively nebulous qualities. It assumes that some knowledge about the technical side of the society of your character's chosen field. Characters who take this skill should specialize when they reach expert level.
- Security: With the security skill, your character has a proficiency with the tools and techniques for lock-picking, hot-wiring cars, designing and deactivating burglar alarms, and opening safes. It can be used to conduct criminal activities or, on the other side of the coin, to prevent and investigate breeches of security. The more dots your character has in this skill, the more sophisticated the systems with which she is familiar.
- Stealth: Stealth is the ability to sneak about or hide without being noticed. Certain situational modifiers may be applied by the storyteller and is often rolled versus a difficulty number equal to the perception rating of the person that isn't supposed to notice.
- Survival: This skill describes your character's proficiency at surviving in an unfamiliar or dangerous environments. Inherent in it are the abilities to find shelter, scavenge or hunt food, and protect oneself from native predators and threats. It also encompasses tracing and finding safe passage through the area.
Acrobatics Animal Training Archery Artillery Biotech Blacksmith Blind Fighting Boat Handling Body Crafting Brewing Bribery Brood Kenning Calligraphy Camouflage Carpentry Climbing Cooking Dancing Debate Demolitions Disguise Elusion Energy Weapons Escapology Falconry Fast-talk -------- Fire Dancing First Aid Fishing Forgery Gambling Game Playing Gunsmithing Heavy Weapons Helmsman Herbalism High Ritual Hunting Hypertech Hypnotism Jetpack Jeweler Journalism Jury-rig Larceny Leatherworking Lip Reading Lockpicking Maieusis Mechanic Meditation Microgravity Operations Mining Misdirection Mnesis Emulation Music Networking Origami Parachuting Photography Pickpocket Pilot Police Procedure Portents Pottery Psychoanalysis Repair Research Ride Scuba Singing Skiing Sleight Of Hand Soulshaping Speed Reading Storytelling Temporal Sense Torture Tracking Traps Vamp
- Computer: Your character understands how to operate and possibly even program a computer. At higher levels, this may also include knowledge of designing and building a system, as well as complicated hacking. Any attempted use of a computer requires that the character have this knowledge.
- Enigmas: This knowledge represents a knack for piecing together and remembering information vital to many kinds of problem solving. It assists your character in solving the mysteries created by the storyteller. It is essential for divining secret pathways, understanding esoteric knowledge and answering the riddles of mystical guardians.
- Gremayre: This knowledge represents the character's understanding of faerie magic and lore. It can be used when creating oaths or working enchantments, or even to create new Arts. Gremayre gives a character essential comprehension into the in depth workings of all things relating to the Dreaming.
- Investigation: Whether your character is tracking down a lost relative or investigating a crime scene, this knowledge allows her to recognize potential clues and know the procedure for procuring information and records. It provides the ability to procure evidence, perform forensic analysis and predict crime patterns.
- Law: This trait deals with knowledge of legal rights, jurisprudence and jargon. A high level in law does not necessarily mean that the character is certified to practice law. Many criminals and lay people have learned about the judicial system through self study or personal experience.
- Linguistics: Languages supplemental to your character's native language must be purchased through this knowledge. Each level of linguistics allows your character to speak another language fluently. It also gives the character an understanding of general linguistics and the structure of the language. With this ability, your character can attempt to identify accents or read lips.
- Lore Bygone:
- Lore Changeling:
- Lore Demon:
- Lore Fera:
- Lore Garou:
- Lore Kuei-jin:
- Lore Mage:
- Lore Sewer:
- Lore Sorcerer-psychic:
- Lore Spirit:
- Lore Vampire:
- Lore Wraith:
- Lore Wyrm:
- Medicine: Medicine is the study of the human body and the various techniques used to cure its ills. This knowledge incorporates an understanding of the structure and functions of the body, the uses of medicine, and the diagnosis and treatments of diseases. Many methods exist for treating patients, including acupuncture, aromatherapy, homeopathy, chiroparactics, medicinal herbalism and standard medical practices. A character may specialize in any of these fields or assume an overall understanding of many healing methods. Medicine also implies a certain understanding of pharmaceuticals.
- Research (demon):
- Science: The knowledge of science quantifies your character's understanding of the basic sciences: physics, chemistry, botany, biology, geology, astronomy and others. In particular, it defines the useful application of science to make things. A general expertise in all fields is considered applicable to levels one through three. Once your character has four dots, she should specialize in a particular field.
Accounting Alchemy Anthropology Archaeology Architecture Area Knowledge Art History Astrology Astronomy Biology Biopsychology Botany Chemistry Chimerical Alchemy Church History City Secrets Computer Hacking Computer Programming Conspiracy Theory Construct Politics Covert Culture Criminology Cryptology Culture Cybernetics Ecology Economics Electronics Engineering Enochian Ethnology Fine Arts Forensics Forensic Pathology Gematria Genetics Geology Heraldry History Hypermathematics Law Enforcement Literature Logic Mathematics Media Metallurgy Metaphysics Meteorology Military Science Mythology Naturalist Numerology Paleography Paraphysics Parapsychology Pharmacopoeia Philosophy Phlogeny Physics Poisons(Not Used) Power-brokering Propaganda Psychodynamics Psychology Rd Data Religion Religious Rites Religious Scriptures Sacred Geometry Sacred Scriptures Saurimancy Sociobiology Subdimensions Terrorism Theology Toxicology Tribal Lore Umbrood Protocols Vice Virtual Space Xenobiology