Characters are defined by a set of eight physical and mental characteristics. These are strength, agility, health, speed, intelligence, wisdom, willpower, and charisma. Each of these is quantified on a percentile scale from 1-100, with one being the absolute worst score, and 100 being the absolute best score. A score between 40-60 is considered average for human characters. A score of 75 means the character is better than 75% of the people in the world of Exterminis, while a score of 25 means 75% of the world’s population is better than the character. Beginning characters get 400 points to distribute among the characteristics as they see fit, so long as at least 10 points are placed in each one, and no score is raised above 100. A brief description of the characteristics is given below.
Strength represents the physical capabilities of the character. It affects how much damage is done in combat, as well as determining how much weight the character can lift or carry. Warriors usually have a very high strength score.
Agility represents the manual dexterity of the character, as well as balance, grace, and the ability to dodge and get out of harm’s way. It affects how well the character attacks and defends in physical combat. Rogues usually have a very high agility score.
Health represents to overall toughness of the character, how much damage they can sustain before dying, as well as their resistance to poison and disease. It is an extremely important characteristic for all characters, but it is especially important for warriors.
Speed represents the reaction and movement abilities of characters. It determines when characters act in combat, as well as how far they can move in a turn. Some characters with exceptionally high speed scores can attack more than once every round.
Intelligence represents the memory, knowledge, mental acuity, and “book smarts” of characters. It determines how well characters solve problems, take tests, and make connections between different people and events. It is one of the three characteristics (along with wisdom and charisma) that mages might use for casting spells.
Wisdom represents the intuition, insight, and “street smarts” of characters. It determines how well characters understand people and animals. It is one of the three characteristics (along with intelligence and charisma) that mages might use for casting spells.
Charisma represents the charm, leadership, and “people skills” of characters. It determines how easily the character can influence others, intimidate enemies, and talk their way out of tricky situations. It is one of three characteristics (along with intelligence and wisdom) that mages might use for casting spells.
WIllpower represents the mental toughness of characters. It determines how well characters defend against magical attacks, as well as how much mental and emotional damage they can withstand before succumbing to despair. It is a very important characteristic of all characters.
The Characteristic Chart
The following chart shows the die code associated with characteristic scores. It shows which dice are used by players when they are required to perform characteristic checks, as well as the modifiers used in certain situations.
|Raw Score (%)||Die Code||Modifier|
Whenever characters interact with their environment in ways that are not directly opposed by another living entity, the DM might have the player roll a characteristic check to see if the attempt succeeds or not. For example, if your character wants to walk across a slippery, rain-soaked log to cross a deep ravine, the DM might have you make an agility check. To do this, roll percentile dice. If the result is equal to or lower than your agility raw score, you succeed. Roll higher, and you fall off the log into the ravine below. For particularly difficult tests, the DM might assign a penalty to the characteristic, making it lower for purposes of this test only.
In addition to the eight characteristics, characters are further defined by a set of eight conflict codes. These codes are derived from the characteristic scores, and are used to resolve the four types of conflict found in the world of Exterminis. These eight codes are martial attack, martial defense, mystic influence, mystic defense, stealth, perception, social influence, and social defense.
|Martial Attack||Agility + Strength|
|Martial Defense||Agility + Health|
|Mystic Attack||Intelligence, Charisma, or Wisdom + Willpower|
|Mystic Defense||Willpower + Willpower|
|Stealth||Agility + Intelligence|
|Perception||Wisdom + Intelligence|
|Social Influence||Charisma + Wisdom|
|Social Defense||Charisma + Wisdom|
|Akasha||Mystic Attack Die Code|
|Physical Damage||Strength or Agility + weapon|
The conflict codes are used to resolve most of the action that occurs in the game. They are designed to be four sets of opposing rolls: martial attack vs, martial defense, mystic attack vs. mystic defense, stealth vs. perception, and social influence vs. social defense. In all cases, the characters roll their dice, the opponents roll their dice, and the highest total wins. Ties are always given to the defender, but players may spend one karma point to win a tie, if they so desire.
Martial Attack is used when characters wish to use a weapon against an opponent. It is calculated by the character’s Agility and Strength die codes.
Martial Defense is used when characters wish to defend themselves against a weapon attack. It is calculated by using the agility and health die codes.
Mystic Influence is used when characters wish to cast a spell. It is based on intelligence, wisdom, or charisma (player’s choice) and willpower.
Mystic Defense is used whenever a character wishes to avoid the effects of a spell. It is based solely on willpower, but the willpower die code is doubled. If a character has a willpower score of 55 (2d6), the Mystic Defense is 4d6.
Stealth is used whenever a character tries to do anything sneaky or underhanded. It is based on agility and intelligence.
Perception is used when a character tries to notice someone acting sneaky. It is based on wisdom and intelligence.
Social Influence is used when a character wants to persuade, intimidate, or charm someone. It is based on charisma and wisdom.
Social Defense is used whenever someone tries to persuade, intimidate, or charm a character. It is based on wisdom and charisma.
There are a few other characteristics that define characters. Like the conflict codes, these characteristics are based on the ability scores.
Initiative determines when characters act in combat. It is equivalent to your speed score. A combat round lasts for about ten seconds, during which characters can perform one action, such as attack an opponent. The combat round counts down from 100, and everyone acts on their speed score. So if your speed score is 70, you will act after someone who has a speed of 80, but before someone who has a speed of 60.
Health Points represent the amount of damage your character can take before dying. They are equivalent to your health ability score. If your health score is 55, then you can take 55 points of damage before you die. When a character takes physical damage, the points are subtracted from the health point total, but not the health score total. After resting for at least 6 hours, wounded characters roll their health die code to see how many hit points they healed during the rest.
Mental Health Points represent how resilient and mentally tough characters are. They are equivalent to the character’s willpower ability score. If your character’s willpower score is 45, then you have 45 mental health points. After resting for at least 6 hours, characters roll their willpower die code to see how many mental health points were restored by the rest.
Akasha is the number of “spell points” the character can spend each day. It is derived from rolling the Mystic Influence Die Code once every 24 hours, at dawn, noon, sunset, or midnight.
Damage is calculated by rolling either the Strength die code (for power attacks) or the Agility die code (for style attacks), and adding the weapon bonus.
Karma is awarded to characters for defeating enemies, completing missions, solving puzzles, exploring new areas, and making new discoveries. It can be used to increase characteristics, increase conflict codes, re-roll dice, and automatically succeed in certain situations. Karma is how characters become more powerful over time.