Star Crusade does not have a character generation system; instead, players submit a background, description, and a few other items to staff and then have their statistics hand-set based on the character's background and experience.
Applications require five items:
- Proposed Blessings & Curses
- Exceptional Abilities
- Plot Hooks
Proposed Blessings & Curses
On Star Crusade, the meat of a character's personality and history are encapsulated in her blessings and curses, and any character application needs to include a proposed list of such traits. Staff may edit or delete the list, but it is this list which helps define who a character is.
Players should submit several careers as well as a handful of personality and other traits with their application as described below.
Every character will have one or more Career blessings. Career blessings describe the primary focus of your character's life over roughly a five-year period; the blessings provide synergy bonuses when relevant and are also used by staff as the primary guide when statting your character.
A character should have one Career blessing for every five or so years they have lived after the age of 12 or 13. A brand new fifteen-year-old knight would have one Career blessing; a slightly more experienced knight at 20 would have 2, while a seasoned veteran at 25 would have 3 and a now-aging crusader at 30 would have 4.
You can take a Career blessing more than once. A thirty-year-old who has spent her life at court might, for instance, have Debutante and Courtier III. Similarly, if none of the Career blessings listed on the Blessings and Curses page fit your character's background, just talk to staff and we can either add an appropriate blessing or steer you towards one that matches your character.
Personality and Others
Characters should also pick several Personality blessings and curses, and - if appropriate - some Physical or Reputation traits. In general, characters should have 3-5 non-Career Blessings and 3-5 non-Career Curses, and they should have a roughly equal number of each. If you don't see the Blessing or Curse you want, talk to staff: we can always add a new Blessing or Curse when appropriate.
Tell us if your character has Psi, Theurgy, Cyber, or other exceptional abilities, including noteworthy training. If there is something you see your character as being so good at that they could compete in the Olympics or the equivalent, tell us. If there is something you see them as being so good at that they could win the Olympics, tell us that too.
This isn't just your character being very competent; this is your character being Usain Bolt (or Lance Armstrong, for the drug-loving Decados) exceptional. The answer can and often will be 'no' - your character can be great at something, or great at several somethings, without being Olympics-quality. But we do want to know if you see your character that way.
Before submitting an application, make sure you have set a @description on your character. Your description does not need to be a novel, but should give us some sense of your sex, age, and physical features. We use this description to match physical blessings and curses that you have requested.
In addition to your @description, you should also set @sex, &age, &fullname and any other +finger attributes you would like to set up.
Using the background code (+help backgrounds), submit a short background for your character. Your character's background does not need to be a novel. Most backgrounds are 3-4 paragraphs, though a concise paragraph will suffice, and some players instead choose to write several pages of background.
If your background is more than five to six paragraphs, please include a brief one-paragraph summary at the top of your background giving the highlights of your character.
All backgrounds should include:
- What planet is the character from?
- What social class was the character born into?
- What sort of environment (city, country, monastery, traveling) was the character raised in?
- What is the character's outlook on religion?
- What has the character done since he or she left home? (This should roughly align with the character's Career blessings)
- Why has the character come to Yathrib?
If you like, you can address these topics as a sort of questionnaire; alternately, you can write a narrative that addresses these questions.
At the end of your background, please include 1-5 plot hooks. These plot hooks take the place of benefices and afflictions from prior editions of Fading Suns and are a quick way for staff to generate stories particularly relevant for your character.
All plot hooks provide some benefit and some detriment for a character, usually because they connect the character more squarely with the world.
A plot hook should have the following format:
- Plot Hook Title: Short description.
Here are some suggested plot hooks:
- Vendetta: The character has an enemy who is out to get him or her. The enemy may cause trouble for the character, but the enemy's enemies may also seek the character out and offer aid.
- Ally: The character has an NPC ally, usually an important political figure on or off-world. The ally may lend aid to the character's endeavors, but will also expect help in return with his schemes.
- Artifact: The character has a strange or unique artifact, perhaps an Ur relic, a functioning Second Republic think machine, or something else. It may hold secrets that will help the character, but it will also attract attention from rivals who wish to claim the artifact for their own.
- Infamous Family: The character is from a particularly infamous branch of their family or has a relative famous for his or her misdeeds. This reputation may proceed the character, attracting people looking to settle old scores but also giving the character the opportunity to redeem the family name or just trade on its infamy for intimidation value.
- Very Wealthy: The character has a store of movable, personal wealth from past success. This may be an inheritance, a previously found treasure, or something else. This store of wealth increases the effective level of the character's lifestyle, but also may attract thieves looking to steal the character's riches.
- Black Sheep: The character has been ostracized by her house, guild, or church sect for real or percieved past misdeeds. The character cannot call upon the usual support of her faction, but in turn may find welcome among outcasts and iconoclasts.
- Claim of Right: In addition to the character's "natural" faction, the character can claim membership in good standing in a second group. Perhaps the character is a priest from a noble family who still has strong links with his house, is a Muster officer who is now on a permanent contract to the Imperial Army, or is the noble child of a Decados lord and a Hazat lady welcome in both families. Questing Knights, Swords of Lextius, and members of other adventuring orders all have this hook.
- Secret Society: The character is a member of a secret society, with the benefits and drawbacks thereof. This may be membership in an occult coven like the Fayvana or the Invisible Path, participation in a revolutionary group like BAMA or the Third Era, or in an underground splinter sect like the Incarnates or the Sathraists. Even noble conspiracies like the Royal Gambit can qualify.
Submitting an Application
Once you have decided on all four of the items above, it is time to submit your application. Make sure you have set your background and plot hooks using the +help backgrounds and have set a @description on yourself.
Then, use +request (+help +request) to submit an application request. Include in your +request your proposed blessings and curses.
Once Your Application Is Received
Once staff receives your application, they will review your background and set you up with a set of statistics. The staffer setting you up will check your stats with you and talk briefly about your background and concept until you are both relatively content.
Final approval requires more than one staffer to look at your +sheet and +background, but to expedite getting characters on the grid we approve characters as soon as one staff member signs off and hits +approve. If there isn't a second staffer on, however, this is a 'provisional' approval and it's possible some last-minute tweaks will be made after you hit the grid.
Regardless, once you hit the grid, have fun roleplaying!