Monday, May 30, 2016

Character Creation: Unwritten

Got a little time before my players get here to play Chill, chili's in the crock pot, why not?

The Game: Unwritten: Adventures in the Ages of MYST and Beyond
The Publisher: Inkworks Productions
Degree of Familiarity: Some. I've run it once, and it uses Fate, which I'm pretty familiar with.
Books Required: Just the one.

I played MYST once years ago, but there's a whole expanded universe that I'm now, like, slightly more familiar with. I just wrote a review of the game for RPG.net, and it'll be up in a couple of days, but it's pretty favorable - I like this game a lot.

Now, if we were actually playing a game of Unwritten, I would be creating a whole framework with my other players. Since it's just me, however, I'll just assume the same framework that we used when we played the game recently (though not necessarily the stuff specific to what we did). In order to make a character, I start, as usual, with a concept.

Well, if I were playing this game, I'd want to spend my time going through different Ages and chronicling things. Rather than playing an naturalist, though, I think I want to play someone who's obsessed with Yeesha (one of the important figures of the setting; she could do things with Writing that no one else could). My character is writing The Chronicle of Yeesha, and is convinced that by following her journey through a particular set of Ages, he can unlock her messianic message for the world. He's also superstitious about learning any Writing - he's happy to use Linking Books, but he doesn't believe he's worthy to go making Descriptive Books himself (that, I think, would be a fun character arc).

So my High Concept is "Chronicler of Yeesha." His name is Leslie Ruck.

Now I do my Journey. This would involve picking two prompts from a "steps along your path" list (formative experiences) and two from a "crossing paths" list (dealing with other PCs), but given that I have no PCs, I'll just have to make up other characters, I s'pose. And then there's an Aspect attached to each one.

Well, for the my steps bits, the obvious one is that he believes, above all else, that Yeesha can save the world. He believes that Yeesha's journey throughout the Ages was a pilgrimage, but he also believes that figuring out where she ended up won't help - the journey is just as important. I think this all came about the first time he went adventuring in an Age. He Linked into an Age called Hystek; it was dark and underground and at first he thought he was still in D'ni somewhere. And then he found it - a huge mural, carved (and signed!) by Yeesha. He copied it into his book, and that's what he references whenever he gets stuck. I think that book makes for a decent Aspect, so I'll take "My Magnum Opus, the Chronicle" as my first Journey Aspect.

Since I want Leslie to be experienced and enthused about jumping from Age to Age, I'll describe another Age he visited and what happened there. He visited an Age called Plateau, which, when he got there, was just a featureless expanse - no puzzles, no life, no nothing. And then he kept walking, for days and days, and reached the edge. The bit that he Linked to was the dead center of an immense plateau (hence the name), and over the edge was a pulley and lift that lowered him down into a lush jungle with amazing, vibrant plant life and plentiful food. This taught Leslie that if someone went to the trouble of making a Linking Book, there's something there to see. The Aspect is "Every Age Has Wonders."

Now I need a couple more Aspects. I could make up other characters to have Leslie have crossed paths with, but eh. I have a pretty good sense of his personality.

Well, he's definitely fit and clever, because he goes traipsing off into Ages alone. And he was willing to walk for days rather than Linking home, so he's dedicated as heck. I'll take Just A Little Further to represent his stamina and perseverance. Finally, I picture Leslie as being rootless. He owns very little, seldom stays in one place for long, and though he returns to D'ni often, it's mostly just to plot his next move. I'll make that Aspect You Own Nothing You Can't Carry.

Now, Skills! I get one at Great, two at Good, three at Fair, and four at Adequate. Well, Surveying is unquestionably my Great Skill. My Goods are Athletics and...hmm. My gut says Survival. That's probably wise.

My Fairs are Research (gotta learn about those Ages first!), Rapport (he's personable) and Craft. His Adequates are Empathy, Engineering, Will, and Notice.

Now, stunts. I get three, unless I want to lower my Refresh, which I don't.

Well, I know I want a stunt to boost my Research with regards to Yeesha's journey. So I'll call it Endless Search: I get +2 to Research using a Discovery action about an Age that shows up in the Chronicle.

I'll make one up called Trust the Journey: If I spend a Fate point to declare a Yeesha-related detail about a scene, I get a +1 to Create an Advantage based on it.

And finally, I am Extremely Dedicated: I get a +2 to oppose with Will if someone is trying to talk me out of going to an Age or something else related to my quest.

And I think that's it, actually.