Thursday, September 3, 2020

Random Character Creation Fun

There's something fun about passing time following a Traveller life path. I remembered that I own Sword of Cepheus which adds Sword and Sorcery or Sword and Planet to the Traveller based Cepheus Engine.

Generating characteristics - with the Iron Man optional rule : Roll 2d6 in order

Strength 11, Dexterity 8, Endurance 7, Intelligence 8, Education 5, Social Standing 9

Fancy, I get to introduce the hexadecimal method of portraying characteristics. Anything over 9 becomes a letter code, and that leads to some fun things like the Universal Personality Profile. More on that later.

6-8 is average, so he's clearly stronger than average, not as well learned and, for some reason, is almost aristocratic.

Background Skill

Large City is probably appropriate for a near-aristocrat. As he's not well educated, choosing Craft would be inappropriate, so it's either Carouse or Streetwise. Carouse is probably more fitting, so : Carouse-1

At the young age of 14, I try to qualify for my first four year term in a career. A Soldier requires an Endurance check of 8+ on 2d6. Failing to qualify means he can be a Commoner or Vagabond.

Qualification roll : 11. He's going to be a soldier!

During the first career, a character automatically learns the six service skills at 0. At Rank 0, he gets a free upgrade to Melee Combat.

0-Archery, Artillery, Craft, Recon, Riding

1-Carouse, Melee Combat

Survival Throw : Here's where you see if you died or not. However, I'm using the Mishap optional rule. For a soldier, that's STR 6+. With a STR of 11, that's a +1 to his survival.

Survival roll : 8. He's made it to be 18!

Skill Table : Each term, you roll to learn one thing from one of the four tables. For the first term, you learn two from two of the tables. As he is only EDU 5, he can not learn anything from the Advanced table.

Service skill : Archery, Specialist skill : Liaison ... I was hoping for Stealth... I guess his aristocratic nature is showing.

0-Artillery, Craft, Recon, Riding

1-Archery, Carouse, Liaison, Melee Combat

Advancement roll : SOC 7+, with his SOC of 9, he gets a +1 to this roll.

Advancement roll : 9. Rank up! He is now a Tesserarius and gets Leadership-1 and an additional skill roll.

Personal Development : Melee Combat. Welp...

0-Artillery, Craft, Recon, Riding

1-Archery, Carouse, Leadership, Liaison

2-Melee Combat

Event Table : Each term, you roll to see what significant thing happened.

Result : 7, Life Event. Life Event Result : Something good happens. +1 Benefit roll.

More on that later. Maybe. Finally, re-enlistment opportunity. Failure means mustering out. Success means you can choose to continue in this career. 12 means you're required to continue in this career. I'm using the optional rule that you can leave a career and try to qualify for another, but he's pretty happy where he's at right now.

Re-enlistment 5+ : 3. Well, he was happy. They don't want him back. Maybe because he's still a teenager. Who knows. Either way, his soldiering life is over, time for the benefits.

Mustering Out : One roll per term of service on either Gold or Material. This character gets +1 Benefit, so he gets two rolls of his choice. Fortunately, he has Carouse-1, so he gets +1 on his rolls if he chooses Gold.

Gold Benefit : 100 gold coins. Material Benefit : SOC +1. Interesting. Maybe he was tossed out of the military because he's too aristocratic. SOC 10 places him just under knighthood. I mean, the dude can carouse, lead, liaise and stab people in the face. Or back. That being said, here's the final character with the awesome Universal Personality Profile (UPP). It's one of the reasons I enjoy Traveller so much. It's concise.

Lars Renatus, Aristocratic Tesserarius, 18 years old B8785A

0-Artillery, Craft, Recon, Riding

1-Archery, Carouse, Leadership, Liaison

2-Melee Combat

Aside from the skills, and whatever gear I give him, that one bold line tells you almost everything you need to know about Lars. B8785A is the UPP code for his ability scores. If only more games could condense all that information into one line.


  1. Somtimes I think that the Traveller character generation process is the enemy of long campaigns -- it's so much fun that you always want to start over from the beginning.

    1. Ha ha ha. I know exactly what you mean. Generating characters with the table and inventing the stories they shared are as much fun as playing an actual campaign.