Character Generation Rules

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Character Generation Rules Empty Character Generation Rules

Post  Guest on Tue Dec 06, 2011 5:22 pm

This thread is a mish-mash of items from the PTOLUS book, various PATHFINDER sources, and stuff approved by the DM.

Character Generation - The Really Short Version:

Abilities: 32 Build Points
Races: Most Core Rules and Bestiary races allowed, many with some minor tweaks
Experience: level 7
Classes: All Core / APG / UM / UC classes and archetypes allowed
Equipment: Standard wealth by class, plus 23,500gp

You will find the following information especially useful when creating characters for the Ptolus Campaign. Unless otherwise mentioned, use the Core Rules for all other character creation details. As always, your DM is final arbiter of what is allowed in the game.

You have 32 points to spend on ability scores. Modifiers for race are applied after points are spent and abilities are purchased. Costs are as follows:

Character Generation Rules Ability


Common Races
All of the following races are available as player characters. They’re also the most common NPC races.

Dwarf, Stonelost – Use the standard rules for dwarves when creating a stonelost dwarf.
Dwarf, Grailwarden – Use the standard rules for dwarves, with the following changes: they enjoy no special bonuses versus orcs, goblinoids, or giants; they gain a +2 racial bonus to Profession (engineer), Craft (machines), Knowledge (machines), and Craft (alchemy) skill checks.
Elf, Shoal – Use the standard rules for elves, with the following changes: they enjoy a +2 racial bonus to Profession (sailor), and they need sleep like humans and other races.
Elf, Wood – Use the standard rules for elves when creating a wood elf.
Gnome – Use the standard rules for gnomes when creating a gnome. Unlike the Core Rulebook, gnomes in Ptolus are actually distant kin of elves.
Half-Elf – Use the standard rules for half-elves when creating a half-elf.
Half-Orc – Use the standard rules for half-orcs when creating a half-orc.
Halfling – Use the standard rules for halflings when creating a halfling. Unlike the Core Rulebook, halflings in Ptolus are actually distant kin of elves.
Human – Use the standard rules for humans when creating a human.

Uncommon Races
The uncommon are so-called due to their relative rarity and — from a game point of view — their newness as potential PC races. DMs should consider whether or not these races would make appropriate player characters for their Ptolus Campaigns.

Aasimar – Use the rules for Aasimar (Pathfinder Bestiary page 7) when creating an aasimar.
Dhampir – Use the rules for Dhampir (Pathfinder Bestiary 2 page 89) when creating a dhampir.
Elf, Dark – Use the rules for Drow (Pathfinder Bestiary page 114) when creating a dark elf. Do NOT use the rules for the Drow Noble.
Elf, Cherubim – Use the rules for elves, with the following changes: +4 Dexterity, -4 Constitution (replaces standard ability score adjustments); flying speed of 40 feet [average maneuverability](in addition to their base land speed of 30 feet).
Elf, Harrow – Use the rules for elves, with the following changes: +2 Dexterity, +2 Wisdom, -2 Charisma (replaces standard ability score adjustments); racial skill bonuses: +2 racial bonus to Craft (Alchemy), Intimidate, Use Magical Device (replaces Keen Senses); spell-like abilities 1/day each – detect magic, ghost sound, mage hand, prestidigitation, and one 1st or 2nd level spell chosen by the player and DM (replaces Weapon Familiarity).
Fetchling – Use the rules for Fetchling ((Pathfinder Bestiary 2 page 123) when creating a fetchling.
Ifrit – Use the rules for Ifrit (Pathfinder Bestiary 2 page 160) when creating an ifrit.
Litorian -
Orc – Use the rules for Orc (Pathfinder Bestiary page 222) when creating an orc character. Unlike the Bestiary, orc characters in Ptolus must be from the Ornu-Nom tribe.
Oread – Use the rules for Oread ((Pathfinder Bestiary 2 page 205) when creating an oread.
Strix - +2 Dexterity, -2 Charisma; Medium Size; base speed 30 feet, fly 60 feet (average); low light vision; darkvision 60 feet; +1 racial bonus to attack rolls against humans; +2 racial bonus to Perception and Stealth while in dim light or darker; +2 racial bonus against illusion spells and effects; automatic languages – Common and Strix. See the Pathfinder Campaign Setting – Inner Sea World Guide page 313 for full description.
Sylph – Use the rules for Sylph (Pathfinder Bestiary 2 page 258) when creating a sylph.
Tengu – Use the rules for Tengu (Pathfinder Bestiary page 263) when creating a tengu.
Tiefling – Use the rules for Tielfing (Pathfinder Bestiary page 264) when creating a tiefling.
Undine – Use the rules for Undine (Pathfinder Bestiary 2 page 275) when creating an undine.

NPC Races
The following races are typically reserved only for NPCs in Ptolus, although a DM may consider allowing one to be used as a player character race.

Lizardfolk (aka: Assari)
Orcs (Sorn-Ulth tribe)
Orcs (Toruk-Rul tribe)

Since the dawning of the Empire, surnames have become popular, because the Prust have long used them. Prustan (Imperial) names sound Germanic or even Prussian. Other human names descend from such diverse cultural backgrounds that they can be almost anything. Some halfling names sound a bit like non-Prustan human names, while others hearken back to the race’s distant elf ancestry.

Dwarvish names are short and somewhat harsh, often using diphthongs like “au” and “ou.” Elvish names are long and grand, using diphthongs like “ae” “ai” and “oe.” Both dwarves and elves often use surnames that are Common tongue translations, like Stonemate or Hammersblood for dwarves and Moonshadow or Wavesong for elves; many gnomes have a similar practice. Some elves — particularly those from the south — keep the Elvish translations of their surnames, like Lorenci or Vaenarum.

You are either from Ptolus or have come to the city from elsewhere. If you are a city native, think about what district you grew up in and where you live now. Think about some of the organizations involved in the city, and decide whether you have any affiliation with them or, more likely, aspire to have one (your DM may wish to have a say in this). If you are not a Ptolus native, the DM will help you create your background by providing details about the lands that surround the city. You should think about why you’ve come to Ptolus.

It also is the responsibility of the players to decide how the PC group forms. Some ideas:
•You’ve all come to Ptolus looking to strike it rich (or for other reasons), and you meet on the road and decide to work together.
• Two or more people in the group are family members or long-term friends already.
• Two or more of you met recently and discovered that your goals coincide enough to band together for mutual support.
• Some major patron has gathered you together for a specific task.

You can even work out a couple different reasons to join together into two or three small groups, then leave it to the DM to throw the groups together once you’re in the city. In that case, at least some of your initial meetings will occur in-game, and you’ll know some of the other PCs better than others. Your DM can give you access to a larger map of the city of Ptolus than the one in this book, as well as a calendar to help you keep track of time passage, and various other visual aids.

New characters will begin play with 35,000 XP, placing them at level 7.

Here are a few notes regarding how various character classes fit into the Ptolus Campaign.

Alchemist (Pathfinder Advanced Player’s Guide): The alchemist is the master of alchemy, using extracts to grant him great power, mutagens to enhance his form, and bombs to destroy his enemies. Many alchemists live and work in Ptolus, and the science of alchemy exists on the fringe of other resurgent technology. The Shuul and House Shever are likely affiliations for alchemist characters.

Barbarian (Pathfinder Core Rulebook): Human barbarians likely come from the recent invasion from east of the Grey Mountains (known as the Eastern Hordes). There are no elven or dwarven barbarians (unless you’ve got a really interesting backstory).

Bard (Pathfinder Core Rulebook): This being an urban-based campaign, bards fit in very well. Minstrels with talent are well received in the city, where the taverns are outnumbered only by the temples. An organization of martial bards called the Knights of the Chord dwells in Oldtown.

Cavalier (Pathfinder Advanced Player’s Guide): Mounted upon his mighty steed, the cavalier is a brave warrior, using his wit, charm, and strength at arms to rally his companions and achieve his goals. In Ptolus, Cavaliers are uncommon, owing to the fact that large mounts generally don’t belong in buildings or dungeons. Those few who do follow the path of the cavalier likely pursue the same affiliations as fighters or paladins.

Cleric (Pathfinder Core Rulebook): Clerics are, not surprisingly, among the most respected people in society. Clerics of Lothian have some political clout (but in turn have to cope with the Church’s byzantine structure and politics). You can work with the DM to choose a deity appropriate to your needs.

Druid (Pathfinder Core Rulebook): A long time ago, there were many more druids in the area than there are now, and they belonged to a group called the Circle of Green. No major druid organizations exist anymore. Druids are mostly loners now, and — truth be told — aren’t often found in Ptolus. They are almost certainly the least common character class. Consider adopting a different archetype (like Blight Druid or Urban Druid from the Pathfinder Advanced Player’s Guide) if you want to play a druid in a Ptolus campaign.

Fighter (Pathfinder Core Rulebook): The campaign includes a number of orders of knighthood that you may wish to join one day. There is also the warriors’ guild, the Order of Iron Might, to consider. Many fighters get their start in Oldtown’s combat arena.

Gunslinger (Ultimate Combat): The infamous gunslinger, that rare warrior who forgoes blades and bows in favor of the mysterious art of black powder and thundering firearms, is becoming more common on the streets of Ptolus. With the resurgence of technological arts, people who are willing to dedicate themselves to the mystery of the gun are well known among technophile groups like the Shuul and the Sorn. [House Rule for firearms: the "Range and Penetration" rule, Ultimate Combat page 136, is being omitted and is not in play; see the Firearms and Technology section of this post for details]

Inquisitor (Pathfinder Advanced Player’s Guide): Scourge of the unfaithful and hunter of horrors, the inquisitor roots out the enemies of her faith with grim conviction and an array of divine blessings. Inquisitors are often found in certain zealous or fanatical religions and religious groups in Ptolus, such as the Concliators of the Lothianite faith.

Magus (Ultimate Magic): The magus uses both spell and steel to devastating effect, casting spells and swinging blades with ease. Rising in power, the magus becomes a blur of steel and magic, a force that few foes would dare to stand against. In Ptolus, they are welcome in both martial and arcane circles.

Monk (Pathfinder Core Rulebook): The monk tradition, it is said, comes originally from the far south. Now it is very pervasive, and orders of monks are quite common — usually dedicated to a particular cause or belief. Unlike the way they are presented in the Core Rules, many temples treat monks as religious figures. In this way, they become like very different sorts of clerics, but remain representatives of a deity and a belief system.

Ninja (Ultimate Combat): The ninja, an alternate class version of the rogue, whose mystical powers augment keenly honed reflexes to make a deadly spy and assassin. These skilled shadow warriors can be found amongst all of Ptolus’ criminal organizations.

Oracle (Pathfinder Advanced Player’s Guide): Drawing upon divine mysteries, the oracle channels divine power through her body and soul, but at a terrible price. Sometimes seen as primitive by the cosmopolitan clergy of Ptolus’ many temples, oracles exist in many religions as enlightened prophets and zealous apostles.

Paladin (Pathfinder Core Rulebook): The campaign includes a number of orders of knighthood that you may wish to join one day. Also, look at the cleric’s discussion above regarding religion, as most paladins in the campaign have a close connection with a specific deity.

Ranger (Pathfinder Core Rulebook): Rangers are uncommon but certainly not unheard of in Ptolus. Human rangers are likely to be from the Viridian Lords of Palastan. Elves are very often rangers, particularly elves from the Moonsilver Forest north of the city.

Rogue (Pathfinder Core Rulebook): While there is a major thieves’ guild in Ptolus (the Longfingers), remember that as a rogue, “thief” is just one option. Rogues make excellent scouts, spies, and even merchants and artisans, due to their skillfulness. This may be the most common PC class in the city.

Samurai (Ultimate Combat): The samurai, an alternate class version of the cavalier, is a disciplined warrior whose skill is matched only by his impeccable sense of honor and iron-hard resolve. These stoic combatants can be found among many of Ptolus’ martial organizations and knightly orders.

Sorcerer (Pathfinder Core Rulebook): Sorcerers were the first mages, born with magical abilities innate within their very blood. They command great respect. Many sorcerers aspire to join the Inverted Pyramid mages’ guild, although no character can begin the game with such an affiliation.

Summoner (Pathfinder Advanced Player’s Guide): Bonded to a mysterious creature called an eidolon, the summoner focuses his power on strengthing that connection and enhancing his strange, otherworldy companion. As arcanists, they often seek entry into the Inverted Pyramid, or other affiliations that favor arcane classes.

Witch (Pathfinder Advanced Player’s Guide): Lurking on the fringe of civilization, the witch makes a powerful connection with a patron that grants her strange and mysterious powers through a special familiar. Although sometimes seen as uneducated or uncultured, witches are generally welcome anywhere that welcomes wizards or sorcerers, such as House Sadar or the Inverted Pyramid.

Wizard (Pathfinder Core Rulebook): Wizards, as opposed to sorcerers, are extremely scholarly — they look upon magic as a science and attempt to learn its rules and utilize its loopholes. Because people acknowledge and respect their power, wizards often figure into the military, City Watch, etc. Elves are only very rarely wizards — they become sorcerers instead. A surprising number of Grailwarden dwarves are wizards in Ptolus. Many wizards aspire to join the Inverted Pyramid mages’ guild, although no character can begin the game with such an affiliation.

The scope of the Ptolus Campaign is much like that suggested in the Core Rulebooks. Most people are commoners, and low level at that. At 4th to 5th level you’ve started to make a name for yourself. By 9th or 10th, you’re “somebody.” By 15th, you truly stand among the elite of the elite. Beyond that, you join the ranks of those the bards still sing songs about.

Characters will begin play at level 6.

Not surprisingly, magic is prevalent in the Ptolus Campaign. It’s as common as the Core Rules suggest. That is, magic remains beyond the reach of the common man, but certainly well within his observable world. One can say the same of monsters — while not everyone’s seen a dragon, there’s certainly no one who “disbelieves” in them. And most people have seen many other types of horrible creature in their lives. They’re just far too common for locals to remain unfamiliar with them.

In a world this old, with magic having been common throughout history, there are literally thousands of magical traditions, theories, and methods. To reflect this heritage, all players with spellcasting characters should name their own spells and be able to describe the appearance of their effects fairly freely. One wizard might know magic missile as “Inoris’ slap of retribution” and cast it as a slapping hand made of energy, while another calls it “daggers of death” and causes it to manifest as white-hot daggers flying through the air.

Further, players creating spellcasting characters should be aware that a few spells — mostly of a planar nature, such as astral projection or banishment, function a bit differently in Ptolus. Your DM can provide you with details, should you need them.

Characters can buy and sell equipment costing up to 100,000 gp in the large city that is Ptolus. Standard gear is available throughout the city, although Ebbert’s Outfitters in Delver’s Square is a popular spot for adventurers. One can buy and sell magical gear in Midtown at Myraeth’s Oddities — a shop run by an elf wizard named Myraeth and guarded by powerful wards and a couple of ogre fighters. Myraeth also buys other valuables (gems, jewelry, artwork, and so on) for a fair price and offers spell components and similar wares as well as resale magic items. The DM should determine at any given time what magic items Myraeth has on hand. For 100 gp per item he also can identify items brought to him, with a twenty-four-hour turnaround.

For custom-made permanent magic items, people sometimes speak of the Dreaming Apothecary, but characters just starting out do not know how to contact this group. A place called Potions and Elixirs, also in Midtown, has a large stock of potions for sale. A number of arcanists offer scrolls for sale all over town. A few other places sell potions as well, and most temples sell divine scrolls and potions to help fund their religion.

Characters will begin play with an extra 16,000gp which they may spend on anything they wish from the Core Rule Book, Advanced Player's Guide, Ultimate Magic, Ultimate Combat, or this forum.

Unlike the Core Rules, in Ptolus characters have access — albeit extremely limited — to a slightly higher level of technology than what would be considered early medieval. This includes firearms, most commonly known as “dragon pistols” and “dragon rifles” (although there are other types as well). It also includes spyglasses, pocketwatches, spectacles, and powder bombs. In the city, player characters will find printing presses, hot air balloons, and even steam engines.

However, all these devices are rare and steadily becoming more so. Such advancements in science helped forge the Empire, but as the Empire declines, so too does the knowledge of how to create and maintain these wonderful devices. It is often difficult to purchase such items these days — although rumors abound of a place in the North Market called the Smoke Shop where they are available.

Firearm House Rule
The Firearm rules, as presented in Ultimate Combat pages 135 to 143, appear to be designed to represent an advancement in firearm technology that renders armor obsolete (much like what occurred in the real world). In order to make firearms and other medieval weapons equally powerful (both mundane and magical versions of each), the "Range and Penetration" rule is being ignored. This rule states that, at specific ranges, firearms ignore armor bonuses (including natural armor bonuses) enjoyed by their targets. The DM has determined that no weapon in the campaign shall be deemed so superior as to grant the effect of a +33 attack bonus against an ancient red dragon....

The Gunslinger class ability Deed: Deadeye is unaffected; a gunslinger can still conduct a ranged attack with a firearm as a touch attack by spending grit points.


Craft (Firearms) - allows you to create or repair firearms.
Craft (Machines) - allows you to create or repair machines.
Knowledge (Machines) - allows you to identify, understand, and sometimes operate an unknown machine.
Profession (Engineer) - allows you to design new machines, or design alterations of existing machines, including firearms.

New Uses for Old Skills

Disable Device - can be applied to many machines and technological devices. Examples: make a firearm unable to fire, make a compass point east, make a steam cart unable to move.


Character Generation Rules Firearms

Character Generation Rules Equiplist


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