Hello, it’s #TORSday again and we thought we would talk a bit more about character customisation in The One Ring – The Lord of the Rings™ Roleplaying Game 2nd Ed. We’ve already talked a bit about Attributes and how they now impact the Target Number (TN) for your skills. We’ve talked a little about the eleven different Cultures, each with their own Backgrounds, Cultural Blessings and Rewards. Likewise, we’ve dropped a few hints about the six Callings and how they will have a strong influence on your character for Common Skills, Hope and Shadow and today’s subject — Specialties and Traits.
One of the best ways to distinguish your hero from others is by Specialties and Traits. Specialties are things that your hero has learned: like Appraising, Horsemanship, Rhymes of Lore or Siege-craft. Traits are more inborn, like a hero’s tendency to be Bold, Gruff, Secretive or Wary.
When you’re in a situation involving a Common Skill roll and you think that a Speciality or Trait might apply, you can ask to invoke the ability and gain a bonus Success Die on the roll. If someone objects, the Loremaster adjudicates the action. Sometimes your Specialities and Traits can mean automatic success. After all, many things that the hero attempts succeed automatically, Specialities and Traits provide guidance for when your hero might be exceptionally prepared for the challenge. You can also use them to provoke unforeseen actions by using them in clever and unexpected ways. Finally, they can have an impact on improving your hero by providing guidance on when awarding additional Advancement Points is appropriate.
Specialties and Traits arise from a combination of your Culture and Calling. Furthermore, during the course of a game, you can continue to customise them. A hero that has spent months on the road might have a different set of abilities and concerns than their siblings and friends who remained behind. After all, Sam remained Steadfast from his first appearance to his last, but Merry and Pippin became Bold as a resut of their adventures. You might return home to find that the journey has changed you.
Both Specialties and Traits are important parts of your hero. With dozens to choose from, they’re also one way to make sure that your character is a unique individual with abilities and focuses that no one else in the Company possesses.
You can now advance pre-order The Collector’s Edition of The One Ring – The Lord of the Rings™ Roleplaying Game here. Or, if preferred you can now also pre-order the standard edition here. We will have more news for you soon. Hope everyone has a fantastic TORsday!