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Frog God Games reveals the next Lost Lands piece with The Blight, for Pathfinder, Swords & Wizardry, (and now!) 5e.
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Character Background Traits in the Blight

Posted by Frog God Games (Creator)

While Richard is taking us on a nice little Christmas tour of beautiful, jolly Castorhage-by-the-sea, I thought I'd pop by to drop a little tidbit on character development in the Blight (I found my pantomime horse costume so it's safe for me to come out in public again at least...still haven't gotten the FGG keys back from Richard yet, though. Fortunately a murder of tengu assassins has been dispatched, so I expect results shortly. Tallyhoe!....I mean, NNNnnneeiigghh!*)

*If none of the above made sense, please refer to Update #10. It might still make no sense, but at least you'll be up to speed on the nonsense as it were.

But without further digression: Character Background Traits. 

Note: As in previous updates, this one is presented in the original PF rules format but will be converted accordingly in the other rule systems for the actual book itself.

Blight Back-story Traits

This optional rule gives urban characters an easy way to identify his start in life without it unduly affecting gameplay.

We are the result of a thousand factors beyond our control—the factors surrounding our birth, our parent’s situation, our use of pantomime horse costumes to overcome crippling agoraphobia [[We should probably scratch that one from the manuscript before going to print. - Ed.]], their friend’s stories, and so on. Often our background is entirely ordinary but even an ordinary story is still a story. A backstory gives your PC a beginning to his tale. How and if you use these backstories is up to you; is it little more than colourful fluff to commenced a characters history, or is it much more than that—an entire tale waiting to unfold?

The examples below are deliberately unusual; in keeping with the strange setting you have before you--don’t be afraid to make the PCs extraordinary. Although the list is given as a random one, if you are all happy, choose a backstory that best commences your character, or one you’d like to build upon and weave into a story. You may have this character for a long time to come, so a little forethought can give a tale that may take you in an unexpected direction. As always, try to avoid using the trait as a simple mechanic, make a story—however simple—from the backgrounds below.

  • 1. Abandoned 
  • 2. Alleychild 
  • 3. Almost Killed 
  • 4. Apprentice 
  • 5. Artists’ Quarter Born 
  • 6. Bastard Nobility 
  • 7. Between Marked 
  • 8. Blight Touched 
  • 9. Boatchild 
  • 10. Booktown Born 
  • 11. Born to Beer Slops 
  • 12. Brine Touched 
  • 13. Briny Kin 
  • 14. Brothel Waif 
  • 15. Capitol Born 
  • 16. Child of a famous beauty 
  • 17. Chimney Sweep 
  • 18. Choir Child 
  • 19. Circus Act 
  • 20. Cruel Kin 
  • 21. Devotee of Mother Grace 
  • 22. Educated 
  • 23. Festival Born 
  • 24. Foundling 
  • 25. Freakshow Touched 
  • 26. Gablemaester’s Child 
  • 27. Guild Child 
  • 28. Guild Family 
  • 29. Haunted by Between 
  • 30. Hollow Hills Born 
  • 31. Jumble Born 
  • 32. Kissed by Angels 
  • 33. Mill Child 
  • 34. One of Many 
  • 35. Orphan 
  • 36. Riverchild 
  • 37. Seventh Child of Seventh Child 
  • 38. Sewer Brat 
  • 39. Sideshow Touched 
  • 40. Sinks Born 
  • 41. Strange Relations 
  • 42. Streetwaif 
  • 43. Thirteenth Child of Thirteenth Child 
  • 44. Toiltown Born 
  • 45. Touched by Between 
  • 46. Touched by the Unsea 
  • 47. Tough Childhood 
  • 48. Town Bridge Born 
  • 49. Wicked Stepsisters 
  • 50. Wild Child 

Abandoned: Abandoned to live on the streets as a child, you grew up tough. Pick one skill from Bluff, Intimidate or Knowledge (local), you gain a special +2 to any one skill of your choice. Also select a home district you mostly grew up in; in that district that skill bonus increases to +3. When alone, you find it uncomfortable and try to seek out company when possible. 

Alleychild: The narrow defiles and ginnels were your childhood playground and home. Pick one skill from Climb, Escape Artist or Stealth, you gain a special +2 bonus to this skill, or you can have +1 to each (choose when character backstory is made). You find wide open spaces a bit distressing…  

Machpants, Robert Manley, and 5 more people like this update.


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    1. Ezekiel Bones on

      Oh thirteenth child of thirteenth child sounds cool

    2. Anders Bonderup Kirstein on

      I hope you keep "our use of pantomime horse costumes to overcome crippling agoraphobia" in the final book(s). It is excellent stuff :)

    3. Missing avatar

      Jim Clunie on

      Some great possibilities in there. Might I expect "special bonus" would become "trait bonus" in print?