Primary Skill Paths (PSP)
The diagram above illustrates how this relationship works.
Paths that are immediately adjacent to one another bear stronger similarities than those that are opposite. This allows your character to obtain a diversity of skills with reasonable ease. Skills on your PSP are purchased at the cost listed on that path. Skills on adjacent paths are purchased at double the cost listed, and skills on opposing paths cost triple. For example, if you choose Fighter as your Primary Skill Path, you may purchase all skills on the Fighter path for base cost. Since the Rogue, Cleric, and Craftsmen paths are all adjacent to Fighter, you may purchase skills from any of those paths for double the base cost. You may also purchase from the Mage list, but since this is an "opposing" path, (i.e. not directly adjacent) skills on this path will cost triple.
Janna has chosen Fighter as her Primary skill path. She has purchased Small Weapon for 1 Build point, Crit +1 for 4 Build and 6 END points for 3 Build. She is fond of the Waylay skill, which is not on the Fighter path. It does, however, appear on the Rogue path, which is adjacent to Fighter. The cost is listed as 5 Build, but Janna will have to pay double that cost, or 10 Build.
By allowing purchase of skills from any path, we hope to provide players with the opportunity to create unique and effective characters. You may choose to follow only one skill path and become particularly adept at the skills available there. Or you may wish to build a character with a broader skill base who has some ability in a variety of skills or trades. This system is designed to accommodate all character concepts and all player styles. Additionally, as the game develops, new skills or variations of existing skills may be introduced. Players are encouraged to be imaginative in the use of skills and combinations of skills. If you think you have an idea for a new skill, see a game director to discuss it. We will entertain all ideas and suggestions from our players.
Just as new skills may be introduced at future times, there are also "hidden" skills that are available but not listed on the skill paths. These are primarily advanced, specialized, or rare skills that are usually reserved for particular situations or exceptional role-players. These skills will never be announced or published prior to their introduction. If you hope to obtain these advanced skills, role-play well and consistently. Players who create solid character concepts and histories, and who remain in character consistently, have the best chance of receiving an advanced skill.
All skills require build points to purchase them. Aside from the skills you begin the game with (and some racial abilities) all skills also require a teacher to instruct on their use. When you think you want to learn a new skill, you must first have the build points available, and then find an instructor. Seek someone, either PC or NPC who already possesses your desired skill and also has the ability to Teach it to others. Teaching/Learning a skill requires five minutes of role-playing instruction per one point of build cost.
Understanding how and when to use your character's skills will make the game run more smoothly and make your character more effective. Skills and abilities can be divided into four types: Continuous, Ability-based, Tagged, or Packet. Continuous skills, once purchased, can be used any time, all the time. They include weapon skills, literacies, First Aid, and other. You may use or "call" the skill whenever appropriate. There is no limit to how many times it can be used in any given period or day. You can never run out nor over-expend a continuous skill.
Ability-based skills require the expenditure of one of three types of ability points: DEXterity, ENDurance, or PREsence. Dexterity represents physical coordination and fine manipulation. DEX is required for most surgery skills and thieving skills. Endurance represents strength and prowess in physical tasks. Most combat skills require END. Presence represents the capacity for self-awareness and charisma. PRE is required for many non-physical skills like Fear and Courage. Each type of Ability point is purchased individually, and separate from the skills that require them. You cannot use an ability-based skill unless you have the required number of the correct point type.
The effect of a skill is described in the skill definition. When using a skill, be sure you have enough ability points on your tag ring. When the skill is used tear off the necessary number and type of points. Give the points to the person the skill was used on. That person must destroy and dispose of the points. This represents the expenditure of resources to perform certain actions. In some cases, the points are not destroyed. An example is Suture Wound. Because this skill grants the recipient one point of Body, the name and effect of the skill (Suture Wound, 1 Body) must be written on the point tags, and given to the recipient to keep, thus indicating that one Body point has been restored. This must be done for any skill, spell or prayer that grants Body points or armour.
When all of your Ability points of a particular type are spent, you may no longer use the associated skills for the remainder of the period. Ability points are restored to full at the turn of a new period. Be careful never to spend more ability points that you have on your tag ring. Overspending is cheating, and will be punished accordingly. However, there is also an in-game penalty. Over-expending ability points causes your character to fall to complete exhaustion and heart failure. You are instantly in the 3rd phase of your death count with only two minutes left to live. This is why you must have a thorough knowledge of your skill costs.
Tagged skills are not really skills at all, but are rather Spells or Prayers. Mage spells and Cleric prayers are "memorized" at the beginning of each period cycle. You must go to Logistics with your character card and spell book. There, you will indicate which spells or prayers you wish to allocate to the applicable slots. (For more information on spell and prayer slots see the Casting rules.) A staff member will write each spell name on a tag to be added to your ring. Upon casting the spell or prayer, you then tear off the appropriate tag and give it to the target. That person will then destroy it if it is an instant effect, or keep it if it has a longer duration, just like the Ability Points for skills.
Packets are used for some racial abilities. A packet consists of a sealed envelope with a skill tag inside. These are used for abilities that do not have a 100% success rate. When the skill is used, the envelope is opened and the result is success or failure according to the tag. Packet abilities are expended when used, and are not replenished until the next game event.
Ability Points and Tagged skills expire at the end of each period. You must always be sure to use tags of the appropriate period colour. You may not use points or tags from any previous or future periods.
In addition to the expenditure of Ability Points, tags, or packets, all skills and abilities require some form of role-playing. Some also have time and/or material requirements as well. The skill definitions contain an explanation for each skill and ability. Use common sense when role-playing skills. Most skills just require you to act out the procedure. For First Aid, you should pretend to bandage cuts and close up wounds. If you are researching something, rifle through books and scrolls, etc. Better role-playing of skills will get you more RP points to purchase Build. Pay close attention to the skills that have time requirements such as forging and repairing weapons and armour. These time requirements are not optional or flexible. They represent the expenditure of resources and must be adhered to.
There are over 200 different skills and abilities in Wyvern Rising. With such a large variety available, Player Characters can be vastly diverse. These skills are acquired by spending Build points. More powerful or useful skills typically cost more Build points. Moreover, higher-level skills also require you to have certain lesser skills before you can purchase them. The pattern for purchasing skills is represented by the skill paths. Skills are purchased from left to right in a connecting line. Each ascending step from the left is called a tier. Begin by purchasing one (or more) first tier skills and then follow the arrows to the right. You may follow any route you like and you may branch in a new direction at any time. You may build from any skill, provided you can trace a continuous line back to the first tier.
Krixus has chosen Craftsman as his Primary Skill Path. He has played at several events and has acquired several skills as highlighted below. He now has more Build points to spend, and has a few options to consider. He already has Refit Armour, Create/Repair Leather, Create/Repair Chain, and Work Rare Materials. He now has the choice to purchase Create/Repair Plate or Teach, which are linked to Create/Repair Chain. Or he could purchase Increased Efficiency from Work Rare Materials. Krixus, however has other plans. He decides to learn Literacy and Create Wood Weapon, both first tier skills, and Forge/Repair Metal Weapon from Create Wood Weapon.
The Build points required for each skill are indicated by the number in parenthesis '(#)'. The notation in brackets '[ ]' is the number and type of Ability points required to use the skill. If there is no Ability point notation, it indicates that the skill is Continuous. The costs for Ability points are listed on each skill path. Ability points may be purchased multiple times. Most other skills only need to be purchased once. Some combat skills, however, may need to be purchased for each weapon type that you want to use it with. Body points may also be increased with the expenditure of Build points. Each skill path has a listing for the cost of additional Body points. You may spend as many Build points as you have available (listed on your character card) plus the build points you will earn for the event you are currently attending. You may never purchase or learn more skills than you have Build for. If you overspend Build, one or more of your requested skills will be dropped, at director's discretion.
A Teacher is required for all skills except Body Points and Ability Points. To learn a new skill, you must find someone who already possesses that skill in addition to the Teach skill. If that person agrees to teach you, you must both role-play the instruction. It is perfectly acceptable for a teacher to charge in-game money for their services. The role-playing requirement is 5 minutes per point of Build cost. The training does not all have to take place at one time, but it must be completed in a single event. After the entire teaching process is complete, the Teacher must write the skill name, Build cost and his/her own character number on the student's character card. The student may not use the new skill for the remainder of the event, but it will be available at the beginning of the following event.
Aelthrin is a fighter who wants to learn Prof +1 for his 1-Hand Hafted axe. A Prof +1 costs 10 Build points. That's a lot of build, but Aelthrin has saved for this. He has 8 unspent Build on his character card. He also knows he will receive at least two build for attending the current event, so he is OK. Now he needs to find a teacher. He knows Jezzina is a warrior-cleric who is very skilled with her 1-Hand Hafted mace, so he goes to her for help. She agrees to teach him (for a small fee) and immediately begins the training. Since the skill being taught is worth 10 Build, they will have to role-play for 50 minutes. They agree to train for one half hour now, and complete the remaining 20 minutes tomorrow morning. The following day they finish up and Jezzina writes "Prof +1, 1-H Hafted, 10, ###" on Aelthrin's card. Though the training is done, Aelthrin cannot use his new skill until next event. This represents the practice time required to fully develop the new ability.
Racial Abilities must be learned from a teacher as with all other skills, unless otherwise noted. If the race starts with a skill, additional levels (if applicable) do not require a teacher, as is standard with all skills.
Some skills are Hidden skills and are not shown on the skill trees for each Primary Skill Path or listed with in the skill descriptions. These skills require a specialized teacher with whom the player's character has formed a strong bond. Unlike with regular skills, the teacher chooses which hidden skills he/she will impart to his/her pupil. Once learned by a player character these skills may not be passed on to others through using Teach.