"Advanced" Character Creation Opinions Sought

So, I’ve got several house rules that make character creation much more detailed. Selection of Backgrounds, an Age Group, and a Social Tier, when describing the character actually gives in-game benefits. I also have Career Specializations. Once you choose a Career, it gives you 5 Career Skills. You then pick a Specialization under the Career, which gives you 3 more Career Skills. All of these selections can give benefits such as bonus skill ranks, career skills, and even low tier talents.

A starting character can easily begin with two tier 1 talents and one tier 2 based on choices during character creation. I’ve reduced base XP granted due to the extra talents, career skills, and ranks that may be granted to make the characters on par with core in strength. I’ve greatly expanded talent lists especially when it comes to crafting and fighting styles. I have several tier 1 talents such as Martial Training, Shipwright, Sailor, Armorsmith, Linguist, Artist, Outfitter, Bowyer, etc which go along with several of the added options during character creation.

Without getting into further detail, I’m wondering if I should simplify things such as removing the granted talents. They talents DO help differentiate the various options I’ve described above. But I’m afraid it’s getting overly complicated. I like it and it’s easy for me to grasp it all, but I created it. I’m worried that new players will be overwhelmed with not only the added decisions (choosing an age, specialization, social tier, background), but with the options they have to select within each of those added steps.

Thoughts? I can answer any questions of confusion about what I’m doing. I just didn’t want to post 40 pages of a rough draft and ask someone to read through all of that. Hopefully I’ve explained it enough. I added some examples of each below.

Background Example
Skills Granted (one): Streetwise or Negotiation at rank 1.
Talent Granted (one): Know this Town or Linguist.

Age Group Example
Skills Granted (one): Geography or Streetwise.
Talent Granted (one): Linguist, Bookworm, Know this Town, or Well Traveled.
Skill Maximum: Rank 2 as usual, but one skill of Rank 3 allowed during character creation.
Characteristic Maximums: Brawn 4, Agility 4, all others 5.
Experience Points: +10 XP.

Social Tier Example
Tier 3 - The well off “gentleman” class. These gentry are often merchants, wealthy craftsmen, ranking military officers, and landlords with peasants, commoners, or even slaves working for them. But, they are not nobility or royalty.
Cost: 15 XP.
Career Skill (one): Negotiation or Leadership.
Talent Granted (one): Sailor, Martial Training, or Courtly Manners.

Career and Specialty Example
Fighter Career
Career Skills: Athletics, Brawl, Melee, Resilience, and Coercion.

Cavalry Specialty
Career Skills: Riding, Discipline, and Cool.
Granted Talents (two): Martial Training, Animal Husbandry, Well Traveled, Armorer.


One thing that strikes me about this is how much character development happens before the game actually starts. This seems to kind of bake-in the extra XP that one would get doing Knight-level play in SWRPG. I’m wondering if you have used this in any play groups yet? I know for my particular play style, while I might have an idea of my character’s background, I need to leave space to explore at the table what that character’s interests and inclinations will grow toward. This system you outline here might be defining too much ahead of time for a player like me, though I’m sure it would work well for others.

Understood. I’ve played a version of it, but it’s greatly changed since then. It’s actually more simplified now. :laughing:

I based the options completely on what is asked to be developed during “Background” in Genesys core character creation (page 34 right column). Lifestyle, family, social standing, and age are all suggested as being developed for Step 1 of Genesys character creation. What I tried to do is codify some of those things.

I’ve left a “default” selection for Age and Social. If you don’t want to alter your character in-game by picking these things, then simply pick Commoner and Adult, each of which does basically nothing for in-game mechanics.