PF2 Experiment: CoT Traits


Council of Thieves

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

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This is a test to see how the traits from the Council of Thieves Adventure Path would convert into Pathfinder 2nd Edition.

Note: I personally feel that these traits are too unfocused to be useful. I could create different traits/backgrounds for use if I were to actually run the AP.

Child of Infamy
Your family has long been in show business. Perhaps it was your parents, or an older sibling, or an uncle or aunt—whatever the case, one of your close relatives is, or was, a well-known and well-loved actor or actress. That this relation died in some compromising and embarrassing way has done little to alter your family’s name and fame—if anything, the unfortunate death has increased it. When folk learn your last name, they are quick to assume you live a wild life like your ill-fated relative, and whether you bask in this notoriety or do your best to hide your heritage, the years of association with the acting scene have had their effect. You’ve certainly inherited your relative’s talents, and are a larger-than-life figure, a melodramatic attention-hound, or a sly manipulator of emotions.
Benefits
* - Choose two ability boosts. One must be to Constitution or Charisma, and one is a free ability boost.
* - You’re trained in the Performance skill and the Theater Lore skill. You gain the Virtuosic Performer (Acting) skill feat.

Conspiracy Hunter
You’ve long heard rumors of dark deeds afoot in Westcrown. Shipments of valuable cargo that go missing with nary a trace or question asked. People who disappear as though they never existed. Lords of business and nobles who speak in veiled references and accidental slips of masters even they must obey. What lords rule the Westcrown underworld? Do the tales of far-reaching criminal organizations hold a hint of truth? Could the fabled Council of Thieves, said to have been purged from the city ages ago, have somehow survived or reformed? And what hold do they hold over the city today? You don’t know, but you’re determined to find out!
Benefits
* - Choose two ability boosts. One must be to Intelligence or Wisdom, and one is a free ability boost.
* - You’re trained in the Society skill and the Westcrown Lore skill. You gain the Streetwise skill feat.

Diabolist Raised
All your life you’ve lived within the grip of devil-possessed Cheliax. You care little for the religion of your country, but that is the way of life in the most magnificent empire in the world, and who are you to question the faith of the empire’s rulers? Certainly not a fool like some of your more idealistic acquaintances, possessed of bizarre ideals about personal freedoms and egalitarian rulership—who can say whatever happened to them? You know of Hell and the rigidity of its grim rulers, you’ve seen devils and how they might be employed to the betterment of those with the might to control them, and you know of the dark faith of your country. You might not be a devil worshiper yourself, but there are realities to living in Cheliax, and it’s always good to know what’s really going on behind the scenes.
Benefits
* - Choose two ability boosts. One must be to Intelligence or Charisma, and one is a free ability boost.
* - You’re trained in the Religion skill and the Planer Lore skill. You gain the Canny Acumen general feat, but you may choose what it applies to.
* - Special: This background gains you access to the Infernal Language, but you must still select it as normal.
Note: Canny Acumen is not a strong feat, hence the additional language access.

Infernal Bastard
Note: As we know, the Tiefling Heritage is not yet available as a player option. Don’t use this trait until it is.
You are a tiefling. You might be an escaped slave, a hidden shame, or a homeless vagabond, but whatever your upbringing, life has been particularly hard on you. You have suffered greatly, nearly starving to death one winter, nearly being beaten to death by racist sailors one summer, and so on. Whether or not these experiences have made you a bitter and cynical scoundrel or a pious and hopeful optimist is up to you, but one thing is certain—you are something less than your human kin.
Benefits
* - Choose two ability boosts. One must be to Dexterity or Constitution, and one is a free ability boost.
* - You’re trained in the Stealth skill and the Underworld Lore skill. You gain the Fiendish Resistance feat (described below).

FIENDISH RESISTANCE [reaction] FEAT 1
CONCENTRATE|TIEFLING
Trigger You attempt a saving throw against a spell or magical effect, before rolling.
-------------------------------------------------------------------
You defend yourself against elemental effects by calling upon power of your fiendish blood. You gain a +1 circumstance bonus to your saving throw against the any effect with the Air, Fire, or Water traits.

Shadow Child
Note: This trait is difficult to faithfully convert because Blind-Fighting is an 8th Level Fighter/Ranger/Rogue specific feat.
Westcrown has long suffered under a peculiar curse, a blight that rises every night, bringing with it fell beasts that hunt the shadows. No one can say from whence these night-horrors come—though some blame the mysterious wizards of Nidal, other claim that it’s some curse laid by fallen Aroden, while still others suggest some shadowy mastermind manipulates an ebon brood from the depths of Westcrown’s northern ruins. Whatever the case, the people of Westcrown have long feared the night, but not you. Your goal is to reclaim the darkness from the beasts that hide within.
Benefits
* - Choose two ability boosts. One must be to Dexterity or Wisdom, and one is a free ability boost.
* - You’re trained in the Occult skill and the Undead Lore skill. You gain the Oddity Identification skill feat.

Pathfinder Exile
Westcrown’s dilapidated Pathfinder lodge of Delvehaven has long excited your imagination. Forcibly closed by the order of the city’s diabolical rulers, the Pathfinders of Westcrown were exiled, forcing them to leave behind untold knowledge and the treasures of countless expeditions. Today, Delvehaven lies under the pale of fearful rumors and dark magic, and bureaucratic red tape has prevented trespass on the lodge’s well-protected grounds. Having secretly and illegally contacted agents of the Pathfinders, you’ve expressed your interest in aiding their ventures in Cheliax—with a particular eye toward investigating Delvehaven, the source of your long-standing adventuresome interests. To your surprise, some days ago you received a message back from an unnamed Pathfinder operating underground in the country encouraging you to investigate the lodge and report your findings to the Grand Lodge in Absalom.
Benefits
* - Choose two ability boosts. One must be to Strength or Intelligence, and one is a free ability boost.
* - You’re trained in the Society skill and the Pathfinder Society Lore skill. You gain the Multilingual skill feat.
Note: While it can’t be explained at this point, you would find The Mwangi language to be a solid choice.

Westcrown Firebrand
Note: Remember, the Firebrand faction mentioned in the Lost Omens chapter has not yet formed.
There’s something very wrong with the world. Spouses were not meant to huddle at their windows hoping and fearing day after day that their loved ones returned from work safely. Parents were not meant to hush their children when questioned about what happened to their neighbors. Citizens were not meant to avert their eyes and hurry by as guardsmen beat old friends in the street. The people of Westcrown have suffered long enough! It’s time for a change. But how? You’ve heard rumors of bands of free-thinking individuals meeting after the citywide curfew. Perhaps they might share your ideals?
Benefits
* - Choose two ability boosts. One must be to Dexterity or Charisma, and one is a free ability boost.
* - You’re trained in the Stealth skill and the Westcrown Lore skill. You gain the Incredible Initiative feat.

As you can see, I am trying to preserve the Flavor of the trait as much as possible. Look these over and comment.


Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Good work! These look great from a quick read through. The more I think about PF 2E backgrounds the more I think that 1E campaign traits should map across to them well with a bit of work.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

Medriev wrote:
Good work! These look great from a quick read through. The more I think about PF 2E backgrounds the more I think that 1E campaign traits should map across to them well with a bit of work.

There are some problems, in addition to the Blind Fighting issue I already mentioned..

Diabolist Raised was hard to convert, and I am still not 100% happy with it.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

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As I noted, I was not completely happy with the Diabolist Raised or the Infernal Bastard conversion. This is a redo; I hope that these are better.

Diabolist Raised
When I made this background before, I didn't sufficiently understand the mechanics of Ritual Magic, here is a revision that rectifies that shortcoming.
All your life you’ve lived within the grip of devil-possessed Cheliax. You care little for the religion of your country, but that is the way of life in the most magnificent empire in the world, and who are you to question the faith of the empire’s rulers? Certainly not a fool like some of your more idealistic acquaintances, possessed of bizarre ideals about personal freedoms and egalitarian rulership—who can say whatever happened to them? You know of Hell and the rigidity of its grim rulers, you’ve seen devils and how they might be employed to the betterment of those with the might to control them, and you know of the dark faith of your country. You might not be a devil worshiper yourself, but there are realities to living in Cheliax, and it’s always good to know what’s really going on behind the scenes.
Benefits
* - Choose two ability boosts. One must be to Constitution or Intellignece, and one is a free ability boost.
* - You’re trained in your choice of Arcana or Occult skill and the Planar Lore skill. You gain the Canny Acumen general feat, but you may choose what it applies to. Summoning a Devil requires Strong Resolve, Intestinal Fortitude, and the ability to Spot Problems before tragedy strikes..
* - You have access to the Infernal Language, but you must still select it as normal.
* - Special: You know the Planar Binding ritual (Pathfinder 2 Core, p. 414) as you have participated in at least one as a secondary caster!
This should work much better as a replacement for the trait.

Infernal Bastard
Note: As we know, the Tiefling Heritage is not yet available as a player option. Don’t use this trait until it is.
You are a tiefling. You might be an escaped slave, a hidden shame, or a homeless vagabond, but whatever your upbringing, life has been particularly hard on you. You have suffered greatly, nearly starving to death one winter, nearly being beaten to death by racist sailors one summer, and so on. Whether or not these experiences have made you a bitter and cynical scoundrel or a pious and hopeful optimist is up to you, but one thing is certain—you are something less than your human kin.
Benefits
Note: Keep in mind that the original "Infernal Bastard" trait was intended to (needlessly) weaken the Tiefling, so this cannot help but be an improvement.
* - Choose two ability boosts. One must be to Dexterity or Constitution, and one is a free ability boost.
* - You’re trained in the Stealth skill and the Underworld skill. You gain the Fast Recovery general feat, but without needing the minimum Constitution.
* - You have access to the Infernal Language (if needed), but you must still select it as normal.
Note: My FIENDISH RESISTANCE [reaction] FEAT 1 is not good. Please do not use it.
This should work much better as a replacement for the trait.

The other Backgrounds should work as written.


dot


An inherent problem is that if you require players to choose a Campaign Background, you are now limiting them to 7 backgrounds (instead of 20-30).

Taking that into account, I would expand their Ability Boost, Skill, and Skill Feat selection greatly, so as to cover the mechanical space of 20-30 backgrounds but grounded in the themes of the AP.

And I have examples if you'd care to see.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

rainzax wrote:

An inherent problem is that if you require players to choose a Campaign Background, you are now limiting them to 7 backgrounds (instead of 20-30).

Taking that into account, I would expand their Ability Boost, Skill, and Skill Feat selection greatly, so as to cover the mechanical space of 20-30 backgrounds but grounded in the themes of the AP.

I disagree. I am following the examples laid out in the Age Of Ashes player's guide.

rainzax wrote:
And I have examples if you'd care to see.

This I would like. :)


We can agree to disagree, even if you have "official" agreement in your camp.

PM sent.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

rainzax wrote:

We can agree to disagree, even if you have "official" agreement in your camp.

PM sent.

As you correctly point out, just because Paizo did something in a certain way, doesn't mean that it is the best way.

I might quibble some of your specific choices, but as I said in my original posting...
Lord Fyre wrote:
Note: I personally feel that these traits are too unfocused to be useful. I could create different traits/backgrounds for use if I were to actually run the AP.

And, limiting the players to those 7 backgrounds was not my original intent. I was converting what pre-existed in the player's guide.

What you've done is quite good, and it if forcing me to reconsider what I had done.


Whats super cool is that the Background system is incredibly flexible. Something that traits could never really capture. My tinkering here is considerably light-fingered.

The "big idea" is that yes, while I want the players to choose from the 7, I don't want to force the choice upon them. So, the "incentive" is you get an extra Lore Skill, an extra Starting Item, and added flexibility to capture many concepts. Then, for those that want to run backgrounds by the book, I have included what I consider to be "important" Lore skills which players are then free to select separately.

I was wondering how (if at all?) to include Regional Languages into the background system. Perhaps Westcrown is a city representing a great many nations? (ie, no interaction between Campaign Backgrounds and Regional Ancestry).

I am interested in your feedback / quibbles. Did not miss that Superstar Top 32 clinged to the top of your avatar...

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

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rainzax wrote:
I was wondering how (if at all?) to include Regional Languages into the background system. Perhaps Westcrown is a city representing a great many nations? (ie, no interaction between Campaign Backgrounds and Regional Ancestry).

Actually, Cheliax is not helpful there.

Council Of Thieves Player's Guide, p. 4 wrote:
Ethnic Chelaxians amount to around three-quarters of the human population in Cheliax. Azlanti and Taldans make up most other humans in the country. Many ethnic Chelaxians claim a bloodline descended from Old Azlant, and some even portray themselves as genuine Azlanti (no one has ever been able to prove pure Azlanti heritage, though).

And, as we know the "racial language of both Chelaxians and Taldans is Taldane, a.k.a. "Common." So, aside from Diabolist Raised, there would be no "regional" language attached to the backgrounds.

While humans of other ethnicities live in the city, you don't want characters without a permanent attachment, else they would likely leave (to escape the Shadow Beasts) when whatever business they have in Westcrown is completed.

rainzax wrote:
I am interested in your feedback / quibbles. Did not miss that Superstar Top 32 clinged to the top of your avatar...

Don't put too much stock in that. I would point out that, I failed to get any further in the competition.

My thoughts.
* - I would limit the players to level 1 skill or general feats.
* - The way you've laid out your chart appears to connect the districts to the Backgrounds. Is that your intent?
* - Your Lore options seem a little specific. Make sure that they would all be useful in the campaign.


Lord Fyre wrote:

Actually, Cheliax is not helpful there.

Council Of Thieves Player's Guide, p. 4 wrote:
Ethnic Chelaxians amount to around three-quarters of the human population in Cheliax. Azlanti and Taldans make up most other humans in the country. Many ethnic Chelaxians claim a bloodline descended from Old Azlant, and some even portray themselves as genuine Azlanti (no one has ever been able to prove pure Azlanti heritage, though).

And, as we know the "racial language of both Chelaxians and Taldans is Taldane, a.k.a. "Common." So, aside from Diabolist Raised, there would be no "regional" language attached to the backgrounds.

While humans of other ethnicities live in the city, you don't want characters without a permanent attachment, else they would likely leave (to escape the Shadow Beasts) when whatever business they have in Westcrown is completed.

Good point. This was sort of a "for completeness' sake" idea, which I can simply lay to rest.

That said, no matter where a PC hails from, if they end up in Westcrown, for whatever reason, and end up forming strong relationships with the NPCs they meet, I have found this alone is usually enough for them to decide to stay. For what it's worth.

Lord Fyre wrote:


My thoughts.
* - I would limit the players to level 1 skill or general feats.
* - The way you've laid out your chart appears to connect the districts to the Backgrounds. Is that your intent?
* - Your Lore options seem a little specific. Make sure that they would all be useful in the campaign.

1) I'm going to take that advice.

2) Yes that was my intent, but the intent behind the intent is I want each Westcrown native to have a free District Lore to tie them into the city. I suppose I can just have them choose? Then again, not every player will be ready to read up on every District (and the info certainly isn't in the Player's Guide) so in order to meet my original intent, "assigning" a "random" one creates a situation where you pick the trait (background) that sound cool, then suddenly, 2-3 books in, you realize that Lore skill you got "for free" suddenly becomes useful, and now that you've learned the rest of the game, re-engaging with this aspect of character can take on a new attention. So, I suppose I'll keep them assigned, but also add "or another District Lore of your choice" to keep the best of both worlds?

3) Certainly. I go back and forth on it. If there is one in particular you think is strange, let me know? Otherwise I may do minor tweaks here or there.

Thank you for your feedback. Cheers.

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