These traits describe
the special advantages that the character has. Backgrounds are most often
what the character begins with. They are often somewhat beyond the character's
control or were gotten by special effort on the character's part. They
differ from merits in that backgrounds are more common. Most backgrounds
are social in nature so therefore can be won and lost during the course
of a game, however, backgrounds can only be won and lost through roleplaying.
As a storyteller I limit the backgrounds to level five for most games unless the extra background is gained through roleplay.
There are three types of background:
|Normal Backgrounds||Normal Backgrounds||Supernatural Backgrounds|
Your Allies are mortals who help and support you -- they can be family or friends or even an organization to which you are friendly. Allies have their own life to live, so they are are not always at your beck and call, but they often have influence in the community and access to contacts or resources. An ally is a normal who is ignorant of your supernatural origin but who protects and supports you out of common interest or love.
For each dot in allies the character has one ally with reasonable contacts. More powerful allies may be bought for extra dots. Example: the mayor of New York would be a 4 point ally all by himself.
You know many people from many different walks of life, and they comprise a system of information and help that could come in handy some day. For each dot in contacts the character has one major contact and several subsidiary contacts in the same field. Example: a pimp and several of his working girls.
You are widely known among
mortals (as a mortal). This gives you great priviledges is but also makes
you attract notice.
|-||You are average joe. No extra fame a few people on your street know you.|
|O||You are known by a select not very large subculture of society in a city (the local grunge band groupies)|
|OO||Your are known by a large subculture in your city (the local club scene)|
|OOO||You are recognized by a majority of the local populace (local TV station does periodic newsstories on you)|
|OOOO||You are recognized within your state or other similar large area (former governors, local stars made good)|
|OOOOO||You are recognizable on a national level (Popular sitcom star)|
|5 + O||You are quite reknowned when reminded almost everyone in your local country knows you and quite a few remember you without being reminded.|
|5 + OO||You are incredibly famous and well known in most of the world.|
|5 + OOO||Your face is known just about everywhere. Reporters follow you when they know you enter an area.|
|5 + OOOO||You are a very popular star of some sort. The entire civilized world knows you.|
|5 + OOOOO||Go anywhere they will know you. (Sean Connery, Arnold)|
Flash back is an important part of an Immortal campaign and can be of use to any game with long lived characters. Of course the Storyteller can choose to run a flashback at any time, but with this background you make him run one. If you need information about the adventure you are currently on, this Background rates your ability to draw on your experiences to help you understand the present. At any point during the chronicle you can roll your Intelligence + Flashback (difficulty 12) and for each two successes one pertinent fact about the chronicle must be released during the flashback. This trait does not restrict the information the Storyteller can give out, it just sets a minimum. The character must be at least one hundred years old for each dot in Flashbacks (at least 100 for one dot, at least 500 for five). It is up to individual Storytellers to decide whether or not to allow this background.
|-||No roll at all|
|O||You remember something similar|
|OO||You knew one of the minor players before|
|OOO||You once met the major villain|
|OOOO||You were good friends with one of the minor players|
|OOOOO||You've fought with the major villain. You know his patterns and his motives.|
|5 + O||You have indepth knowledge of both the villain and some information about situation.|
|5 + OO||You know the major villians and have indepth knowledge of the situation|
|5 + OOO||You know the major villains and two minor players|
|5 + OOOO||You know the major villain and several other minor players|
|5 + OOOOO||You have indepth knowledge of the entire situation|
You have built up a number
of normals that you can call upon to help protect you and can be used for
a number of tasks. They are not as tightly controlled as retainers or as
useful as allies but they do know that you are supernatural. If the character
is a vampire he may safely feed on any of these individuals. The Friends
must be defined as a group. This combined with Allies and Retainers can
help define quite a few things. Example: a small cult that worships the
|-||Average joe. No one knows your secrets you have a few friends but they are just aquaintances|
|O||3 people readily availible when needed|
|OO||6 people readily availible when needed|
|OOO||12 people readily availible when needed|
|OOOO||20 people readily availible when needed|
|OOOOO||30 people readily availible when needed|
|5 + O||45 people readily availible when needed|
|5 + OO||60 people readily availible when needed|
|5 + OOO||80 people readily availible when needed|
|5 + OOOO||100 people readily availible when needed|
|5 + OOOOO||125 people readily availible when needed|
Influence reflects your ability
to produce results when attempting to sway or control the political and
social processes of the mortal community. It is the ability to compel mortal
society to act on your behalf.
|O||Moderately influential on a very local level.|
|OO||Well connected at a city level loosely connected at a state level.|
|OOO||Very well connected at a city level, connected at a state level.|
|OOOO||Well connnected in state politics, national politics knows of you.|
|OOOOO||Minor factor in national politics.|
|5 + O||Broad personal power, a factor in national politics.|
|5 + OO||Vastly influential in national politics.|
|5 + OOO||Vastly influential in national politics. Connected to international politics.|
|5 + OOOO||Well-connected to international politics.|
|5 + OOOOO||Vastly influential in international politics.|
This background describes
an elder who looks after your welfare and occationally asks favors of you.
Each dot in mentor describes how powerful your mentor is. Your Mentor can
advise you, protect you from other elders, speak for you to the prince,
caution you when you intrude in the affairs of other elders, speak for
you to the prince, and inform you for opportunities for power and advancement.
As a general rule the mentor will assist you in your endevours when they
do not interfer with their own and will occationally assist you irregardless.
As an alternative the character may take a more powerful mentor who the
character has less pull with. IE a justicar which is actually a 6 point
mentor may be taken as a three point mentor for one who is simply a promising
A character may have more than one mentor but they must spend background points separately on each mentor.
The following rule is immutable for any character playing a ghoul since the mentor is the character's source of vampiric blood: The mentor is eighth generation or above for two dots. The mentor is seventh generation for three or four dots. The mentor is sixth generation for five dots.
|-||No mentor you are on your own. Your sire let you go and holds no anamosity but you are the past|
|O||Mentor is older and more powerful than you but of little influence|
|OO||Mentor is an elder and is fairly powerful|
|OOO||Mentor is an elder and is fairly powerful and well respected locally|
|OOOO||Mentor is the elder of their clan in the city or is respected and known world wide|
|OOOOO||Mentor is the prince of the city or is well known and respected world wide|
|5 + O||Mentor is a justicar|
|5 + OO||Mentor is a justicar but is also one of the most powerful of their clan besides.|
|5 + OOO||Mentor is a methuselah.|
|5 + OOOO||Mentor is a clan originator.|
|5 + OOOOO||Mentor is one of the methuselah second generations|
The trait describes your
financial resources, or your access to such resources. Your resources are
not completely liquid, but you can often sell them to gain money.The
timeperiod has a great effect on resources this is simply a basic relative
wealth level. Each timeperiod will eventually have their own resources
list but this gives a metalogic behind the resources.
|Dots||Effect||Example Middle Ages||Example Modern Day (1990's)|
|-||You are dirt poor by the standards of the time.||Criminal no place||Bum on the streets ($10 maybe, clothes on back)|
|O||You are dirt poor but you have some stretch in your resources.||Serf with place. Food supplied even if not good.||College Student ($10 maybe, paid for dorm room)|
|OO||You are middle class by the standards of the time.||Serf in underpopulated area.||Average College Professor (house paying for, 2 cars)|
|OOO||You are upper middle class by the standards of the time.||Knight, Chancellor, Priest||Average managerial staff. (big house paying for, 2 cars, boat)|
|OOOO||You are lower upper class by the standards of the time.||Bishop, Chancellor, minor lord||College president. Federal Senator. (big house paid for, 2 cars, boat)|
|OOOOO||You are rich by the standards of the time.||Lord of a successful landholding||Successful business owner (big house paid for, 3 cars, nice credit card limit).|
|5 + O||You are very rich by the standards of the time.||Major Trader.||Successful stock broker (mansion owner, servants)|
|5 + OO||You are incredibly rich by the standards of the time.||Lord of a major landholding||Owner of a national successful business (company cars, 6 figure income, large resources to draw on)|
|5 + OOO||You are fantastically rich by the standards of the time.||King's advisor.||Owner of a national very successful business (high in the 6 figure income approaching the seven).|
|5 + OOOO||You are probably the most wealthy person in your state.||Popes, favored. King of a small country||In the top 80 richest persons in the world|
|5 + OOOOO||You are one of the most wealthy people alive in your time period.||Pope, King of France||Sam Walton (money does not exist for you you want something you get it. You play money games on a level few ever see in a lifetime)|
And these are loyal servants
and assistants they are trustworthy and constantly available (usually living
Each dot in retainers gives you one useful retainer. You can trade in more retainers for fewer or more powerful for even fewer.
The character had in the
past some powerful teacher. This teacher is gives the character access
to skills they might not normally have access to. They are less involved
in the character's life and may very occasionally show up. Better
teacher's also give access to more IP points. Extra IP can only be
spent with gm approval.
|Dots||Special Affect/ Description||Extra IP|
|-||Teacher is less than a hundred years older than you, you cannot have supernatural lores||none|
|O||Teacher is between 100 and 300 years older than you, you can have low levels of supernatural lores||5|
|OO||Teacher is between 300 and 500 years older than you,||10|
|OOO||Teacher is between 500 and 800 years older than you||15|
|OOOO||Teacher is between 800 and 1000 years older than you.||20|
|OOOOO||Teacher is between 1000 and 1500 years older than you. You can have high levels of supernatural lores||25|
|5 + O||Teacher is between 1500 and 1500 years older than you.||30|
|5 + OO||Teacher is between 1000 and 1500 years older than you.||35|
|5 + OOO||Teacher is between 1500 and 2500 years older than you.||40|
|5 + OOOO||Teacher is between 2500 and 4000 years older than you.||45|
|5 + OOOOO||Teacher is over 4000 years older than you.||50|
These traits define the supernatural backgrounds available to supernatural characters. The backgounds that are reserved for particular supernatural types are listed with those files. Supernatural background changes should be rare and well roleplayed in any game that does not involved all supernatural characters.
idea for this background came from the Highlander net game but I've been
fighting with a new concept of how to handle it and finally I have it.
Age is the number of years that the entity has existed. The background gives the character extra points to purchase skills with, however, there is a cost. It also effects the character's ability to regain willpower. The more dots the character has in age the slower their willpower is regained.
A player may lower the effects of age on willpower by buying a 3 point/level merit. This merit lowers the chart 1 level / dot. Example: Jon a 300 year old vampire has a particularly strong connection to himself. Two dots in age would normally mean that he could only regain a willpower 1 / week. Jon buys the merit connected and pays 3 freebie points for it. Jon regains willpower at a rate of 1 / 3 days. If he had paid 6 freebie points he would regain willpower at a rate of 1 / day.
|Dots||Age||Extra Improvement Points||Willpower regeneration|
|-||below 150||none||1 / day|
|O||151 - 250||200||1 / 3 days|
|OO||251 - 400||400||1 / week|
|OOO||401 - 550||600||1 / 2 weeks|
|OOOO||551 - 750||800||1 / month|
|OOOOO||751 - 950||1000||1 / 2 months|
|5 + O||951 - 1200||1400||1 / 4 months|
|5 + OO||1201 - 1500||1800||1 / 8 months|
|5 + OOO||1501 - 1900||2200||1 / year|
|5 + OOOO||1901 - 2500||2400||1 / 2 years|
|5 + OOOOO||2500 - 5000||2800||1 / 5 years|
The supernatural world fights against mortal awareness.
One of the aspects in which this occurs is called Arcane. When the
particular supernatural calls attention to himself this rating lessens
or modifies the effect this has on the world at large.
Anytime someone is tracking or find the character add the character's Aracane rating x2 to the difficulty.
Also anytime a luck roll is required to determine whether the character is "caught in the act" add Arcane + Luck and roll under to avoid difficulty.
The character's higher self was Awakened when the character became supernatural. This higher self is visible to others who can see spirits but always stays near the character. The Avatar take almost any form. The Avatar has several primary effects. Anytime the Avatar is assisting the character to resist a supernatural affect add the Avatar rating to the other person's difficulty. The Avatar also guides the character. The more powerful the Avatar the better guide it makes. The Avatar does not always guide the character and in fact lets the character take his lumps most of the time.
The character has access to a place of power. This
place of power gives one power/turn per dot in this ability. More
than one character may all spend background points on this ability to make
a node they all have access to. Nodes are valuable and must be fought
or hidden to be kept. All nodes give 1 mana / month for the working
of true magic as well and allow the working of true magic up to a level
of power equal to the points in this ability in low mana timeperiods.
|Beastial||Social Groups||Supernatural Creatures||Basic Talorian||Index Merits and Flaws|