World of Darkness - Alpha Network
“Never in my house.. Ye abide by m’rules ya see…”
This is a hidden, GM-only-seen Vague Stat that expresses a character’s luck, fate or wyrd-weighted Destiny.
It rises or lowers depending on the actions of the Character or happenings around the character and wether they fulfil or follow their own set goals, inclinations etc.
For example, heroic and selfless play may well move your Karma slowly upwards but then acting suddenly evil or self interested will lose you Karma. You may decide to play an evil character. Evil is a Flawed Merit you should choose. Then evil actions will move you downwards into the negative but has benefits for an Evil Character.
The Stat. ranges from -10 to +10 normally though 0 is the normal for most humans. Mundane Mortals will rarely move away from the -3 to +3 range. Bonuses & penalties depend on the value of this Stat.
Note: For True Faith and honestly devout Characters also raise this through regular prayer, offerings and dare I say it sacrifices. This is a non-denominational Stat that allows for religion and those who pray to something else, be it Fate, Luck, Gaia etc.
It’s also possible for a Character to request “Divine Intervention” or pray to their “Gods” for help in a deadly encounter, an impossible Stunt or a risky endeavour though actual intervention is up to the Storyteller and should be rare. The Storyteller may, if so requested or even when not, decide to “Spend Karma” which will move the Karma towards 0 to add a bonus or avoid deadly consequences much like Fate Points or Hero Points. So someone killed by a lucky roll or unfortunate circumstance may simply be near death and escape death by a whisker etc.
Basically, a more complex and open version of alignment or Morality with Luck rolled in and can be a positive or negative number that ranges from -10 to 10 with 0 being completely neutral. This takes the place of Fate Points or Luck and can be used, sparingly by the Player, with GM approval to decide exactly what happens after the player spends the Karma.
E.g. A Character is seemingly shot to pieces in an ambush of firepower while scouting the place for the group. He lies, bleeding heavily on the floor. The player spends a Karma point, hoping luck might favour him. The GM agreed and the man lies there, seemingly dead but he is unconscious and bleeds until the scene is resolved and the can get him to a medic.