In The Garden of Good and Evil
- Choose background. First, create your character’s concept. To help get a handle on your character’s identity and motivations, come up with a short, two- or three-word description of him/her. Also start to think about their lives in Savannah, what they do with their time, where do they work, why do they stay.
- Select Attributes, your character’s innate capabilities: Prioritize the three categories (5/4/3). Your character begins with one dot in each Attribute automatically, already filled in on the character sheet. Dots spent now are in additional to these starting ones. The fifth dot in any Attribute costs two of the dots that you have to allocate.
Example: Jeff wants his character to have his Dexterity of 5. This costs him five dots. His first dot is free and his fifth one costs two.
Mental Attributes: Intelligence, Resolve, Wits
Physical Attributes: Dexterity, Stamina, Strength
Social Attributes: Composure, Manipulation, Presence
- Select Skills, your character’s learned capabilities: Prioritize the three categories (11/7/4) by which sets are most important to your character concept. The fifth dot in any Skill costs two of the dots that you have to allocate.
Mental Skills: Academics, Computer, Crafts, Investigation, Medicine, Occult, Politics, Science
Physical Skills: Athletics, Brawl, Drive, Firearms, Larceny, Stealth, Survival, Weaponry
Social Skills: Animal Ken, Empathy, Expression, Intimidation, Persuasion, Socialize, Streetwise, Subterfuge
- Select Skill Specialties, your character’s focused areas of expertise: Take three Skill Specialties of your choice. You can assign each as you like, whether each to a separate Skill or all three to a single Skill. Specialties improve your chances of making a successful draw in your character’s area of expertise. These can be found in the main World of Darkness book but some may be hidden in other Changeling books….
- Choose your Seeming. Your seeming is the manner in which your Fae nature manifests itself. This determines your true appearance which may come from, at least in part, your lost time in Arcadia. This also determines a blessing from your changed nature as well as a curse. See each Seeming’s section in the Changeling main book for these.
Seemings: Beasts, Darklings, Elementals, Fairest, Ogres, and Wizened
In each seeming there also exists Kiths a further classification of your faeness. Each kith begins with an additional blessing from this defining aspect; any Kiths not found in the main book must be approved by the Head ST before play.
In addition, each changeling receives a free specialty to Athletics, Brawl, or Stealth to reflect the physical changes of the Seeming.
- Swear to a court. Courts are predominate social structures of changeling society. They represent your political allegiances and your philosophy toward life as a changeling. These can be found in the main book as well as more defined descriptions in Lords of Summer.
The Seasonal Courts: Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter
You can choose to not swear to a Court as well, Courtless, or in the course of the story, forswear your court and join another. This last is not to be taken lightly, as you may lose the support network and the trust of others in doing so frequently, and lose access to certain contracts connected to those very same power structures.
- Your character’s connection to the strange energies of Faerie is measured by her Wyrd* Trait. Wyrd represents the raw power of her fae nature, her affinity for the use of Glamour and how strongly her seeming “bleeds through” into reality. All changelings begin with one free dot of Wyrd. This rating may be increased during character creation by spending Merit points, at a cost of three points per dot of Wyrd. Thus, you can raise your character’s Wyrd rating to 2 for three Merit points, or to 3 for six Merit points.
- Choose Contracts. Contracts allow the Lost to call upon the bargains their erstwhile masters made with the world itself. These powers can create miraculous effects ranging from creating items from detritus, walking on ceilings like a spider, or calling the elements themselves in brutal attacks against another. Each category of Contract has five “clauses’ or individual powers, rated one to five dots. Your character begins play with 5 dots to spend in Contracts, but at least two must be spent in either Seeming affinity or Court Contracts. You may also purchase Goblin Contracts, but only on One-dot contracts, any more powerful than one dot are not available at character creation.
- Select Merits. At start, your character has seven dots of merits to distribute as you see fit. These merits should fit into your character concept, and be applicable in live action play. Remember also that you may spend three of your Merit dots to increase your character’s Wyrd by one, or six dots to increase it by two. Any merit not found in the main World of Darkness (WoD) or Changeling books must be approved by an ST. If you want to have local Contacts/Allies/Retainer they must also be discussed with a ST to assess what is available in Savannah.
- Determine Advantages. Health is derived from Stamina + Size, Willpower = Resolve + Composure , Size = 5 for adult human-sized, though Merits and Disadvantages may change this, Defense = Lowest of Dexterity or Wits, Initiative Mod = Dexterity + Composure, Speed = Strength + Dexterity + 5. All of these can be changed by Contract use or physical state so have a section ready to chart changes according to any Contracts you plan to use.
Glamour starts at 1/2 maximum (determined by this Wyrd chart).
- Clarity tracks this delicate balance between the mundane world and the maddening realms of Glamour. A changeling with high Clarity is able to easily distinguish between the two worlds and might even become slightly more adept at spotting supernatural phenomena otherwise hidden from view. By contrast, a changeling with low Clarity finds her perceptions spiraling out of control. All Changelings start with Clarity 7, but this can be changed in creation, players may sacrifice Clarity for 5 experience points, lowering it to a limit of Clarity 5 (10 xp). Clarity cannot be regained like Morality; it must be earned through experience.