Skills

“In my generation, there was a single girl given the strength and skill to fight the spread of darkness…but in your generation, there are nearly two thousand with the powers of the slayer, and not all have chosen to use their newfound abilities conscientiously.” – Joss Whedon, Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Some Character Examples are here and also Merits with some earlier Spell List (High) and Skill Examples

  • Perception Checks…
    General “Spot” Check with no Skill involved relies on your general emotional state. Natural Perception Checks are : Wit+Com as this not only gives us a Character’s quickness of mind and sensory awareness but their level of Concentration and their emotional attitude at the time.

Otherwise, Wits + Relevant Skill: So to notice the training a person may have undergone, Wits + Brawl; understand the stance of an animal, Wits + Animal Ken; Notice the state of an old building, Wits + Engineering; Notice potential crime scene, Wits + Investigation.

Rolls – Spotting something relevant or spying something important can be easily done by using Wits either with the relevant skill or as a pure Perception Roll (Wit + Com). Some actions occur that are just not skills.. Perception being the main example.. Make a Perception Check of Wits + Com rather than a skill. If you are talented in a relevant “Awareness” or “Sense” such as Direction Sense, Combat Sense, Awareness Merit you may add that also due to being talented in that area.

  • Knowledge Checks….
    Intelligence or Idea Rolls – General knowledge or ideas on a particular subject or topic. Such a roll may be tried once every topic.. and the outcome of the roll played out and another roll is only possible on another topic or when the situation and circumstance of the topic changes enough. This is when no obvious Skill is relevant, if it is then Composure is replaced by the Skill.

Natural Knowledge Checks are : Int+Com. The number of Successes gives you the level of knowledge you are able to dredge from that cruel, sharp trap of a mind. 1 DoT is surface knowledge, basic and easily known while 4 DoTs of Successes is Expert knowledge, hard known.

  • What about those “obvious” prerequisites..
    Sometimes a character may be an expert in a particular field or Skill but not in what would seem to be the prequisite skills. Why does a character have none if those “obvious” prequisite?
    It is simple, Skill DOTs is considered the level or ability in a skill that is consistently controllable by that Character. It does not mean that at other times a character may show expertise and ability in a skill.. it just means it isn’t something they’re entirely comfortable with.
  • ????- In the middle of buying Skills.. You may have started spending your XP and purchased some of the next “Skill Level” or DOT but not quite had enough to complete the purchase…
    This puts it still under the control of the GM until you finish the purchase but it doesn’t mean you can’t use it at all.. Consider it temperamental and not always reliable but it may work sometimes, if you’re lucky.

DoTs Proficiency Level
1 Novice: Basic knowledge and/or techniques; typical kid who has tried out the activity more than a few times.
2 Practitioner: Solid working knowledge and/or techniques; a child that has been taking classes in this Skill for a few years and knows a few tricks, or has a great deal of natural ability and some strong models to imitate.
3 Professional: Broad, detailed knowledge and/or techniques; a kid who has practiced it for years and has a great knack for it.
4 Expert: Exceptional depth of knowledge and/or techniques; rare in children, this indicates a superior degree of natural talent and long hours of practice.
5 Master: Magnificent depth of knowledge and/or techniques; unheard of in children who aren’t genius prodigies.
6 GrandMaster: Beyond the norm of Human Endeavour, these people are rare examples of Mortals at their global best. Anything beyond this tends to lie in beyond the mundane, in the realms of the Unreal & Supernatural.

House Rules…

  • Broad Rules: There are certain times where a Skill may just be to broad for that specific situation. For example An Olympian Archer.
    Simply, if the Storyteller determines too broad a category, and the PC has no dots in the Speciality then add a Penalty using the DoTs System as a guide.
    -5 points for Absolutely no experience of the Sub-Skill.
    -4 points Basic Knowledge
  • Unskilled Dice Penalty: add any of these that apply for a total Unskilled Penalty of -5.
    - 3 for lack of knowledge
    -2 for lack of practical experience
  • Double Skills: Often, real world skills may be better represented by considering how a secondary skill fits in. Combining two skills gives a huge, almost infinite variety… For example : Craft Explosives & Heavy Weaponry;
    Investigation & Medicine for performing an Autopsy,
    The second Skill Bonus should be halved and included only if relevant and if an obvious part of the Character Concept.
  • Certain Skills may have an “R” code (®) : Restricted, a prerequisite is needed such as certain amount of dots in another Skill, “Resources”, a “Status (Group)” Merits etc.
  • Exotic Specialities: These may exist in each Skill, representing those stranger or unusual parts of a skill.. If no speciality then take a larger Penalty.
  • Stacking Specialities: Stacking relevant Specialities of any Skill is possible, so one can drill down very deeply into a specific Skill, while limiting your expertise in other Skills. “Master of Masters” at a very focused or limited Area of Expertise requires stacking. As many of these Specialities can be added together as seem relevant for the action (As GMC Rules). A Skill can have a maximum of Specialities equal to Int + Skill DoTs.
  • Forced Specialities: A Skill must have a Speciality when it reaches 3 DoTs. The PC should buy a Speciality for that Skill that strengthens and supports their Character Concept. Then for every DoT after that they should do the same, showing the growth of their Characters trading and learning. So for each Skill at 3 DoTs, at 4 DoTs and 5 DoTs etc.

This allows a Character to deeply specialise in a single or few areas very well or to spread out those Specialities more broadly, showing wider scope of knowledge and experience.

NOTE: Specialities from different skills can be added with GM approval. Example: A “Mad Scientist” who wishes to build a nuclear missile might have many Specialities. Eg. Intellect (3) + Science (1) + Engineering (1) + Physics (1) + Electronics (1) + Nuclear Physics (1) + Missiles (1) = 9 while his Biology may be only 4.

  • Theoretical Vs. Applied: Science, Arts or Academics is often considered the Theoretical Knowledge of a particular subject while Construction, Medicine & Technology are used for applying the knowledge in practical activities.
  • Difference between Crafts & Construction:
    At first look, they may seem very similar but Craft ING tends to be with smaller, delicate objects and is the knack of making things from scratch while Construction is about putting larger, already crafted objects together or modifying them in some way such as reinforcement.

Physical Skills

Skill Specialities Examples Requirements
Acrobatics Aerobatics, Backflip, Body Control, Balance, Climb, Dive, Dodge, Evasion, Flip, Fly, Juggle, Jump, Leap, Somersault, Tumble, Vault, Whirl, Agility, Balance & Body Control.
Athletics Archery, Bow, Chase, Dive, Endurance, Flee, Games, Jump, Leap, Longbow, Long Distance Running, Raft, Running, Shooting, Skiing, Sports, Sprint, Swim, Team Games, Throw, Train, Fitness & Hand-Eye Coordination.
Brawl Assault, Bare Knuckles, Box, Brawl, Cuff, Disarm, Dodge, Evasion, Grapple, Improvised Weapons, Kick, Knock Unconscious, Lunge, Martial Arts, Overpower, Pub Fights, Punch, Subdue, Take Down, Wrestling, Unarmed Combat.
Drive Bike, Boat, Car, Chase, Dirt, Helicopter, High Performance, Insane Risks, Instruct, Motorbike, Off-Road, Pilot, Police Training, Racing, Street, Stunt Driving, Shadowing, Ship, Submarine, Tank, Yacht, Vehicle Manipulation.
Firearms Aim, Artillery, Automatic, Crossbow, Exotic, Fast Reloads, Glock, Heavy Firearms, Luger, Machine-gun, Marksmanship, Rifle, Pistol, Sharp Shooter, Six Shooter, Sniping, Tricks, Ranged Weapons.
Heavy Machinery Battle Armor, Construction, Crane, Digger, Explosives, Forklifts, Heavy Guns, Machines, Heavy Weaponry, Lathe, Missile, Missile Launcher, MRI Scanner, Repairs, Ship, Submarine, Tank, Vehicle, Warehouse Machinery, X-Ray Machine, Yacht, Familiar with Large Machines.
Larceny Alarms, Break & Enter, Burglary, Conceal, Electronic Locks, Exotic Animal Theft, Fence, Human Trafficking, Lock-Picking, Pick Pocket, Safe-Cracking, Security, Smuggling, Illegal Operations.
Stealth Camouflage, Eavesdrop, Flash Vanish, Hide, Shadow, Silently, Sneak, Snoop, Spot, Spy, Surveillance, Tap, Track, Trail, Vanish, Covert & Silent Operations.
Survival Arctic, Cold, Desert, Edible Fungi, Herbalism, Extreme Environment, Forage, Hunting-Bow, Hunting-Exotic, Hunting-Spear, Hunting-Traps, Ice, Mountains, Navigation, Ocean, River, Rural, Track, Urban, Extreme Environments.
Weaponry Assault, Axe, Bat, Broad Sword, Claymore, Club, Dagger, Exotic, Fire Axe, Flick Knife, Gladius, Knife, Lassoo, Mace, Machete, Melee, Parry, Rope, Shiv, Spear, Staff, Sword, Tomahawk, Whip, Wood Axe, Melee Weapons.

Mental Skills

Skill Specialities Examples Requirements
Academics Accounting, Antiques, Appraise, Art, Calculus, Geography, Geometry, Languages, Linguistics, Literature, Logic, Mathematics, Research, Study, Taxes, Tax Avoidance, Tax Evasion, Teach, General Education.
Construction Architecture, Armaments, Automobile, Barricade, Bridge, Building, Clockwork, Construction, Customise, Engines, Floors, Fortify, Foundations, Jury-Rigging, Machinery, Mechanics, Modify, Reconstruction, Refit, Renovation, Steam-Power, Steam-Punk, Turret, Putting together Objects & Structures.
Crafts Antiques, Art, Booby Traps. Construction, Cooking, Demolitions, Electronics, Embroidery, Explosives, Forgery, Jewelry, Leatherwork, Musical Instruments, Murals, Painting, Repair, Secure, Skinning, Smithing, Tailor, Traps, Weaving, Welding, Woodwork, Wood Instrument, Dextrous Creation of Objects.
Humanities Anthropology, Archaeology, Business, Cultures, Economics, Finance, Fine Art, Geo-Politics, History, Humanities, Languages, Linguistics, Literature, Primitive Cults, Primitive Cultures, Psycho-analysis, Psychology, Religion, Sales, Sociology, Theology, Society & Human Study.
Investigation Autopsy, Background Checks, Code Breaking, Crash Sites, Crime Scenes, Criminal Profiling, Crosswords, Cryptography, Decipher Language, Decode Message, Diagnostics, Enigmas, Forensic Techniques, Money Trails, Online Research, Paper Trails, Puzzles, Research, Riddles, Search, Logical Following of Evidence.
Medicine Bio-Tech, Cybernetics, Diagnostics, Disease, Estimate Health, First Aid, Hematology, Pathology, Pharmaceuticals, Plastic Surgery, Poisons, Psychiatry, Psychotherapy, Research, Sanitation, Surgery, Therapy, Trauma, Triage, Viruses, Healing & Anatomy.
Occult Alchemy, Angels, Astrology, Biblical References, Demonology, Esoterica, Ghost Stories, Legends, Local Lore, Magic, Meditation, Psychics, Rituals, Spirits, Supernatural, Witchcraft, Yoga, Esoterica & Mysteries.
Science Astronomy, Biology, Bio-Chem, Chemistry, Electrical, Electronics, Explosives, Geology, Nano-Tech, Quantum Particles, Quantum Physics, Physics, Poisons, Worldly, Physical Study.
Technology Applications, Artificial Intelligence, BioFeedback Monitors, BioTech, Complex Systems, Data Analysis, Data Retrieval, Diagnostics, Electronics, Hacking, Hardware, HyperTech, Medical Monitors, Networks, Neural Networks, New Emerging Technology, Operating Systems, Programming, Quantum Computing, Robotics, Security, Software, Complex Artificial Systems.
Warfare Ambushes, Battlefields, Combat, Combat Codes, Cover Advantages, Escape, Group Tactics, Historical Battles, Maneuvers, Recon, Sieges, Strategy, Terrain Advantages, War Politics, Warfare, Weaponry, Weaponry-Exotic, Theory & Strategy of Combat.

Social Skills

Skill Specialities Examples Requirements
Animal Ken Breeding, Care, Combat, Cross-Breeding, Empathy, Exotics, Riding, Ride: Camel, Ride: Dog Sledge, Ride: Horse, Taming, Training, Vetinary Medicine, Animals.
Empathy Body Language, Buying & Selling, Counseling, Detect Lies, Profiling, Read Emotions, Read Mood, Relate, Sales, Soothe, Sympathise, Talk Down, Human Emotions.
Etiquette Business, Celebrity, Church, Foreign Culture, High Society, Manners, Media, Politic, Social Chameleon, Theatre, White Collar Crime, High Class Customs & Behaviours.
Expression Accents, Acting, Affect, Art, Comedy, Dance, Drawing, Fake Emotion, Film-Making, Mime, Oratory, Painting, Photography, Perform, Sadden, Sketch, Getting your point across in any medium.
Intimidation Appear Dangerous, Bad Cop, Blackmail, Debt Recovery, Extort, Frighten, Interrogation, Robbery, Scare, Threaten, Torture, Aggressive Interactions.
Persuasion Bargain, Bribe, Cajole, Charm, Convince, Debate, Fast Talk, Flirt, Haggle, Indoctrinate, Oratory, Reason, Seduce, Pleasant Interactions.
Politics Business, Church, Civil Servant, Finances, Form Filling, Government, International, Legal, Logistics, Mega-Corp Systems, Money Making, National, Politics, Red Tape, Wheelin’ Dealing, Working Complex Social Systems.
Socialise Anecdotes, Carousing, Dating, Dining, Drinking, Drunkeness, First Impression, Gossip, Happiness, Make Friends, Rumors, Rumor Gathering, Rumor-Mongering, Parties, Partying, Small-Talk, Wine & Dine, Friendly, Fun Group Interaction.
Streetwise Area Knowledge, Black Market, Fence, Gangs, Initiations, Local Haunts, Local Services, Local Knowledge, Local People, No-Go Zones, Street Etiquette, Street Culture, Lower Class Customs & Behaviours.
Subterfuge Catfish, Con, Conceal, Disguise, Grifting, Hustle, Impersonate, Insult, Lie Convincingly, Misdirect, Sexual Manipulation, Tall Tales, Taunt, Troll, Underhand Trickery & Deceitful Interaction.

XP costs = Next Skill Level * 3
1 DOT = 3 XP
2 DOT = 6 XP
3 DOT = 9 XP
4 DOT = 24 XP (12 + 12)
5 DOT = 30 XP (15 * 15)

Skills

ANother World of Darkness - Alpha Network Greyman Greyman