For every player involved, each will be required to make their
own characters. This chapter will go over how this process works
and includes everything that they'll need to know for the moment
step by step.
You may want to download one of the FARPS character sheets while you're at it. There are three sheets (although two of the three are connected). The first sheet is the first page of print out version and includes character stats. The second sheet is second page which covers the character's background info. And finally the third sheet is for online play through IRC or PBEMs. This one you'll want to save on your HD and edit as you need.
To make things easier, I'll also be supplying an example character at the end so that anyone confused about the system has something to compare their results against.
Step One: Character Concept
Before an artist begins to paint, they need to come with a concept to use for their new painting. The same can be said about players when they trying to create their own character. The first step you will need to take is a character concept: what the character does in life that can be summed up in one or two words such as "Martial Artist", "Magical Girl", "Tomboy", and so on. The chosen character concept doesn't really have a major impact on the character itself, although GMs should be ready to remind the player what his concept is if he decides to pick up any oddball powers. Why would a martial artist need to be able to use magic?
Below is a (very) short list of the more common anime character concepts. If you need more of them, I strongly recommend visiting Akane's Anime RPG page who happens to have a large list of anime character types on his web site along with descriptions and examples.
Stats are used in FARPS to rate how good a character's innate physical, mental, and social abilities overall are. By having a higher stat, you increase the chance of success when you roll a dice depending on the situation. There are five basic stats in FARPS: Muscles (physical prowess), Agility (manual dexterity and reaction speed), Brains (IQ\Brain Power), Spirit (Spiritual strength), and Appeal (mix of attractiveness and charisma). Depending on the rating of the stat, you get a modifier to any dice roll that requires its use. A character with a high Agility stat would be able to dodge and strike with more accuracy.
Muscles (M): The character's overall physical prowess including strength, stamina, constitution, and endurance. It effects their ability to deal and take damage. Each point of Muscles allows a character to lift 20 pounds. Thus a strongman with an 18 in Muscles would be able to lift 360 pounds. For each level of the Super Strength power, this is increased 200 pounds.
Agility (Ag): Overall ability to move and react fast. Agility also covers the character's ability tasks that require hair trigger accuracy and supreme manual dexterity such as the various attack skills as well as those skills that rely on speed or dexterity. Agility also covers how fast the character can move in one round.
Brains (B): Overall smarts, brightness, and ability to handle complex machines. A must for any would-be mad scientists. A lower rating might not neccessarily mean that the character is stupid, but possibly slow to pick up things or notice clues.
Spirit (S): The overall power of the character's spirit. The Spirt stat is often used in instances where the character is being seduced, manipulated, or using sheer willpower. For any would-be magician or psychic, it also represents how strong they are with their given powers as Spirit is used to determine the base damage for any power related attack form (see Secondary stats for Power Damage).
Appeal (Ap): An elective mix between sexual appeal and pure charisma. It's essentially the character's overall ability to interact with other people without looking like a complete moron. Also includes the ability to make people do what you say, lie your way out of bad situations, and so on.
All characters have 20 points for buying stats. Note that the +2 for buying a rating of 6 is a bonus that can be applied to buying more stats. Any unused stat points are converted to CP to buy skills, powers, and so on. No skill can start higher than 16.
Rating Cost 6 +2 8 0 10 1 11 2 12 3 13 4 14 6 15 8 16 10 17 12 18 14 19 16 20 20
In addition to the four basic stats, there are a couple secondary stats that are dependant on the ratings of those primary stats. The exception being Armor, which is only effected by the quality of armor the character wears.
Hit Points (HP): Calculated as 6 x Muscles. Each time a character takes damage, they lose HP. When a character reaches zero (0) HP, they are knocked unconcious from their wounds. In normal and low animeter FARPS games, there are two different types of damage- Kill and Stun- and should be kept seperately on the character sheet provided with FARPS. Kill damage determines how resiliant the character is to damage that can mortally wounding such as sword cuts and bullet wounds. If the character reaches zero Kill HP they'll fall unconcious and may die if not given medical attention quickly. Stun damage covers assault with blunt objects such as clubs and hand-to-hand combat. While painful, stun damage won't kill the character unless they continue to suffer damage after being knocked unconcious. Any damage afterwards should be considering kill damage. More information on damage and healing will be found in Chapter 5: Combat.
Spirit Points (SP): Calculated as 4 x spirit. Spirit Points act as an energy gauge for the character's mental endurance. Each time a character uses one of their powers- be it energy blasts or telepathy- it requires the expenditure of Spirit Points. When a character cannot meet the required amount of SPs, they cannot use that power until they rest up and get them back. If the GM desires, SPs can also be used for endurance if the character depending on the situation.
Reaction (Rea): Calculated from Agility + brains\2. Reaction determines how fast the character is at reacting to iminent danger. In combat, the character must add his reaction modifier to a 2d6 roll for determining Initative. Higher the reaction stat (and modifier), the better the chance of going first in a fight.
Physical Damage (P. damage): The character's ability to inflict damage through a physical damage. This stat is calculated as Muscles divided by 2 plus one. A Muscles stat of 10 would thus translate to a PD of 6. Any fractions should be rounded up.
Special Damage (s. damage): The character's ability to inflict damage through harnessing any type of power (magic, psionics, or super- powers) to cause damage. This stat is calculated as willforce divided by two plus one (willforce\2 +1). Thus a Willforce stat of 10 would translate to a MD of 6. Any fractions should be rounded up.
Armor (ARM): Getting smacked around is something that eventually is going to happen. By wearing heavy armor, the character can decrease the amount of damage that they take by any form of physical attack. When struck, subtract the armor rating from the damage of the attack.
In addition to just having stats, each character gets an extra points known ambiguously as "character points" to spend on various other goodies. These goodies include skills, powers, and advantages. The amount of CP given depends on how power heavy the game will be.
Description CP Little or no powers 30 Powers are fairly Common 40 Everyone's a superhero! 50
First thing you'll want to consider are skills. Skills allow you to perform certain tasks beter than you normally would just by using your natural talents (ie, stats). The ratings for a stat range from 6 to 18 with 6 being lousy, 10 being average, and 18 being grand master.
Rating Description 6 Rookie 8 Poor 10 Average 12 Competent 14 Skilled 16 Experienced 18 Grandmaster
As for CP costs for each skill, use the below table.
Rating CP Cost 6 1 8 2 10 3 11 4 12 5 13 6 14 8 15 10 16 12 17 14 18 18
Below are some example skills. These shouldn't be considered all the skills you can possibly get. If there are some skills that aren't on the list, feel free to make them up. Each skill also includes what stat they are used with most of the time. If you want to poke some fun at the rather bland names for the skills, list them as "parody name\real skill name: +rating". For instance, you could list melee weapons: 10 as "Hit people with sharp things\ melee weapons: 10.
Note: Attack skills such as Melee weapons, Guns, Hand to Hand, archery, throw, ect. also factor into the damage that can be done with them. Divide the skill rating by three and add it to the p. damage score. It may be a good idea to have the combined damage in parenthesises.
Acting (Ap): The character is capable of lying and acting profiently enough to fool another person. This skill can also be used for simple disguises, feigning emotions, and impersonating another person.
Animal Handling (Ap): The character has been properly trained in taking care of, controling, and training animals. This skill would be used for instance if the character was trying to calm down a scared horse. The difficulty might be increased depending on how wild or docile the animal is.
Animal Riding (Ag): The ability to ride a living animal such as a horse under difficult conditions such as combat. The difficulty may be increased or decreased depending on the condition of the terrain or the mood of the animal.
Archery (Ag): the ability to accurately use any form of bow and arrow or crossbow.
Athletics (Ag): An overall value of the character's ability to perform athletic feats such as jumping, swimming, climbing, and running.
Big Guns (Ag): The ability to blow the snot out of somebody with really big guns such as missle launchers, bazookas, and assault cannons.
Concentration (S): The character's ability to concentrate and summon all their willpower. The skill is often used when the character is being seduced or charmed (as in the use of the mind control power). Other uses of the skill include resisting knock out or performing a dramatic comeback.
Computer (B): The character's ability to use and program a computer. The computer skill is also used for any attempt at hacking or sneaking on to a computer system. Detailed hacking rules may be included in a future appendix.
Dodge (Ag): The character has had practice at dodging out of the way of other people's attacks. This skill is often used to dodge ranged attacks such as stuff thrown at the character or gun shots. It can also be used if the character lacks hand to hand, melee weapons, or a weapon to parry an attack.
Drive (Ag): the ability to drive most normal land-based vehicles such as cars, light trucks, or tanks under difficult conditions. Dice rolls should be done when trying to perform complex moves or stunts such as swerving out of the way of a car trying to ram the driver's vehicle or trying to jump over a car on a motorcycle.
Guns (Ag): the ability to shoot any small personal firearm (everything from revolvers to gravblasters) accurately. Includes all flavors of pistols, shotguns, and rifles. Bigger stuff like assault cannons, vehicle mounted gunnery, and Bazookas are handled by the Big Guns skill.
Hand-to-Hand Combat (Ag): the ways of beating up people using your fists, feet, and occassionally throwing them around. This skill can also be used to parry (block) hand to hand attacks with the character's hands and legs. It can also be used to block melee weapons
Invent (B): A mad scientist's best friend. This skill allows a character to create new gadgets. The uses and effects of this skill will be explored in a future appendix.
Leadership (Ap): Anyone can have a magnetic personality that draws people to their cause, but only a few know how to lead. The leadership skill determines how well the character can lead a large group of people.
Mecha Pilot (Ag): Through this skill, the character knows how to pilot a mecha without crashing it. This skill often replaces other skills (dodge and hand to hand for instance) once the character has grabbed the controls of the mecha. It could be considered an extension of the drive skill. Rules for using mecha are included in Appendix One: Mecha
Melee Weapons (Ag): the use of various weapons used in close combat such as knives, swords, axes, clubs, and so on and so forth. If the character desires, the melee weapon skill is also can be used defensively to parry blows from other melee weapons or even Throwing weapons (In extreme animeter games parry thrown weapons carries not penalty. In other games, it comes with a -2 penalty)
Perception (B): The ability to notice little things and clues that are out of place. It also lets you see things that might be hidden or concealed delibertly such as hidden doors or secret compartments.
Persuasion (Ap): more or less, How to make other people do what you say be it through carefully constructed lies, subtle intimidation, or well contracted business loop holes.
Pilot (Ag): The character has been trained in handling aircraft- fighter jets, helicopters, Balloons, Dirigibles, and so on. Like the drive skill, it is used when the character tries to pull off a dangerous stunt such as dodging out of the way of missles.
Repair (B): How good the character is at repairing various machines, gizmos, and gadgets- everything from toasters to mecha. The job may be more difficult depending on how severe the damage is or the tools used and the complexity of the machine.
For every 8 hours spent working on the device in question, the character can restore a (result + repair skill\2) Hit Points if the device has been physically damaged. The character may also sacrifice points restored to do the job faster at a rate of two points for each hour. Critical successes restore double the HP.
Research (B): Libaries and data bases can hold important information for those that know where to look. By taking this skill, the character knows the best ways to derive information from books, data bases, web pages, and other methods of storing information. The difficulty may be decreased or increased depending on the size of the area being researched or the topic.
Seduction (Ap): The character has practiced in the many way of seducing members of the opposite gender through the use of their body and natural charm.
Steal (Ag): This also includes pick pocketing, shoplifting, and other ways to obtain goods without paying for them.
Stealth (Ag): Sometimes full-frontal assaults just don't work. This skill measure how good the character can sneak around without getting caught.
Survival (B): This skill allows the character to live off the land, find food and water, and identify hazardous plants and animals in the wild.
Teaching (B): The best way to learn is from a more experienced person. The teaching skill alows the character to teach other people (PC and NPC alike) skills that they possess. This process requires time and patience; the teacher and student must spend at least 2 weeks per plus training (so that'd be 10 weeks upgrading a +4 to a +5). By using a teacher, the character requires skill bonus x 2 XPs instead bonus x 3 as usual if the character were to simply practice on their own.
Throw (Ag): The character can pick up and throw things accurately. These include both improvided weapons (rocks, softballs, sewer lids, ect) or throwable weapons like knives, boomerangs, and shurikens.
Tracking (B): The ability to follow a trail by observing tracks, marks, broken twigs, and so forth. The difficulty may be increased depending on the age of the tracks, the present weather, and the terrain.
Use Power (S): Sure you got some major powers, but how well can you use them? This skill allows the character to successfully use their powers.
While on the subject of skills, not necessarily all skills are well represented here. To cover up for it (and have an excuse for including) it, we introduce "knacks". A knack works just like a skill but cost less (1\2 CP per +1, any leftover decimals are rounded down). Typically these are activities that are rare, unusual, or don't fit into what one would think of for a skill. Some examples might include "Do a dramatic pose", "Play soccer like a pro", or "yo-yo champion". The names may be as screwy as the examples or as tame as the skills. The GM should feel free to prohibit the use of a knack if the player is trying to bend the rules to get something that a skill can do by only paying half price.
Pending on the campaign involved, most characters aren't like normal people. Maybe they're super strong or can generate energy blasts? In FARPS, all supernatural powers- be they comic book style super powers, magic, psionics, or something else altogether- are covered collectively as "Powers". The nature and effects of all powers are ultimately left up to the player. If they pick Energy Blast for instance, it can be a lightning bolt, a telekinetic Blast, a fireball, or whatever as long as it remains true to their character concept. GMs should feel free to disallow players from picking up powers that are totally unnecessary for their intended character. For instance, what would a mecha thrashing school girl need telepathy for?
Because of the sheer volume of powers, you will find the descriptions and rules for all of FARPS' powers in Chapter 4: Power.
Depending on the genre the game is planning to use, you may want to consider what stuff the character owns or has access to. You would expect a kendoist to own a bokken, wouldn't you? What stuff you can start out with depends mostly on what would be suitable for the character concept and the character's wealth advantage if they have it. Any extremely powerful magic powered equipment will require the artifact advantage.
More information on equipment will be available in chapter six: Equipment.
Advantages and disadvantages give a character certain abilities that might not already be governed by powers, skills, or the character's background. An advantage is a beneficial bonus that costs character points to buy. A disadvantage on the other hand is a penalty that might effect how much control the player has over his character or place him dangerous positions. They do however give the character a few extra character points that they might spend on other skills, powers, or advantages. At the most a character can have five points worth of advantages or disadvantages.
Ally (2): the character has an NPC that they can depend on for help. This person is of equal power of the character and will come to their aid whenever the gamemaster thinks that it would be appropriate. An example of such an ally would be Tuxedo Mask, who always comes to Sailor Moon's rescue when she is in danger.
Ambidextry (2): The character is capable of using his off hand as well as his normal hand of choice. As a result, they may wield a weapon in each hand (pending on it being large enough to be used with one hand).
Animal Companion (1,3,5): Your character has a loyal pet animal that will stay with them through to the end. There are three seperate options for the advantage, depending on the size of the critter. All critters have survival: 12 and Perception: 12.
1 CP: The critter is of the small, cute, and usually furry type- squirrels, chibi-totoros, kittens, piglets, small dogs, and what not. The animal has 10 points for stats but really isn't much use in any sort of combat situation.
3 CP: The critter is a mediumed sized animal such as a large dog or a horse. The animal has 15 points for stats and Hand to Hand Combat: 12.
5 CP: You've lucked out and own a large beast like a bear or a tiger. The animal has 20 points for stats and Hand to Hand: 14. If the player wants, the animal may be of the small plushy persuasion with some form of special power\use. A cabbit that could turn into a spaceship would be a prime example. Such animals have 10 stat points but 10 points for powers.
Artifact (Special): The character has come into possession of an artifact: an object of power either made by a more advanced culture or imbued with a supernatural force such as magic. There are three types of artifacts: Objects, weapons, and armor. Alternatively, this advantage can also be called "gadget" for complex electronic devices that may imbue the character with some form of power such as a pair of spring shoes (jump power) as long as it's being worn or activated. Chapter six: Equipment will also provide more artifact specific rules as well as some examples of each type.
Object artifacts are various items like amulets, rings, boots, and whatnot that are imbued with magic. When worn or activated, they offer some sort of power (_one_ power) that the character may use. Some popular examples of an object artifact include power gloves, force field amulets, and armor rings. The CP cost for the advantage is equal to the CP cost of the power -2 (mininum of 1 CP).
Weapon artifacts are special weapons made of high quality materia. As a result, they do an extra +2 damage for each level (2 CP\Level). In addition, they may also grant a power or special benefit unique to weapon artifacts.
Armor artifacts work much like weapon artifacts, save that they provide a +2 Armor bonus per level (2 CP\level) over a normal version of the armor in question. They may also provide an extra power depending on how powerful the armor is. Compared to weapons artifacts, armor artifacts are more suitable for physical powers such as regeneration, the super stats, and resistance.
Calmness (2): This is the "Kasumi" level of calmness. Nothing can possibly shock, suprise, or otherwise scare the character no matter how out of the ordinary it may be. It takes an act of extreme agression to something the character holds personal (say, the character's family) to make them show any sign of negative emotion. Most (but not all) characters with this advantage also suffer from the pacifist (+3) disadvantage.
Danger Sense (1): You have an unusal sixth sense that warns you of danger. How the danger sense works is largely up to the player- it might be a tingling feeling in the back of the head or a gut reaction. By taking the danger sense advantage, you are essentially immune to ambushes although suprise attacks are still possible. When such an attack is about to occur your danger sense goes off like an alarm.
Dumb Luck (3): Your character, for the damndest reason, is blessed with extremely good luck. The player may re-roll any failed rolls as many as three times during a session. When role-playing, the character tends to accidently stumble over important clues, find money, and make friends that might otherwise be enemies. Letchers and Airheads tend to have this advantage the most often.
Immortal (5): Somehow (be it from mermaid flesh or membership of an ancient race of demons), you are an immortal being. Because of your immortality, you can live forever without growing old. On top of this, you regenerate damage instantly at a rate of 5 HP a round. The only way to permamently kill an immortal is either cutting off their head or burning them completely. This doesn't always work though- remember Himuro Gemma from Ninja Scroll? The character is also capable of living without breathing but must still eat, drink, and sleep like normal humans. Most immortal NPCs are usually either depressed most of the time or are psychotic (meglomania being a very popular option).
Mechanical Genius (3): The character is a genius when it comes to complex science and machinery. The difficulty for the invent skill is degraded by one level when they invent new gadgets or mecha. Characters with this sort of advantage include the likes of Bulma and Mr. Bloomers (Dragonball Z), Washu (Tenchi Muyo!) or B-ko (Project A-ko).
Mentor (2): People don't become martial artists, mecha pilots, magicians, and whatnot by accident- they learn their trade through a mentor. By taking this advantage, the player's teacher is still alive and willing to teach their pupil new tricks. At any time the player wants to learn a new skill or work on improving a previous skill as outlined under the teaching skill. Gamemasters be careful as to what skills the mentor can teach depending on their concept. Afterall, why would a fighter be able to teach magic?
Reputation (1 or 2): You have managed to build up a solid reputation for your chosen profession among both your peers and the normal people who often need your help. In game terms, you'll often get a favorable reaction from any NPCs that they players encounter unless they have a reason to think otherwise. If the gamemaster wants, the player would most likely be able to make a bigger impact on NPCs via a +2 bonus to their social skills. A variant of this advantage, limited reputation (1), gives character the same bonuses but to a smaller group of people- perhaps your school or hometown.
Secondary Language (1): The character knows a second language as well as his native tounge. ie, a japanese character who speaks English fluently. The character may take aptitude with other languages at a cost of 1 CP for every two extra langages.
Stunt Driver (1): The character has an unusual talent for driving vehicle in ways they were never meant to be driven. Halve all penalties for vehicle stunts.
Underling (1): You have a person that works for you and will do whatever you say. Such a character, while being extremely loyal, is also weaker than a normal player characer (about 60 points for stats and 15 CP). Such characters often specialize in a certain field or skill such as Kuno's ninja spy Sasuke in Ranma 1\2 or B-ko's squad of misfits. For 1 extra CP, you can get two more underlings. Five underlings, for instance, might cost you 3 character points.
Wealth (2/level): It is assumed that most character will be of a comfortable middle class. By taking this advantage, the character is a little higher up on the economic food chain. Under normal circumstances, the character has an allowance that they can draw from in case of emergencies. With a level 5 wealth in any extreme animeter campaign, the character is essentially a "rich kid" along the lines of Shuturo Mendo from Urusei Yatsura. It's trivial for them to gain access to things like jets, tanks, heavy weaponry, and a small army of flunkies.
Airhead (+2): Your character is among the ranks of Serena, C-ko, and Mihoshi as being an extreme clutzy airhead. You may not take the perception skill and you must pay twice the normal amount of experience points to increase the intelligence stat. In role-playing, your character is often totally clueless and extremely forgetful- don't dare tell them to take something out of the oven at a specific time cuz they'll only remember they were supposed to take it out when the black smoke starts coming out of the oven. 9 out of 10 Airhead teenagers have a history of tardiness for class. Male airheads tend to either look like potheads and speak like 80's surfers even if they speak japanese (don't ask me why- they just do) or act immensely stupid (sorta like Kuno from Ranma 1\2). Airheads are the last to know if someone actually likes or are interested in them. They could be saved by the character from certain doom, be crowned king\queen after the character buys the country, or be blatently told "I love you", and the airhead still wouldn't understand why the character is being so nice to them.
Amnesia (+2): You are unable to remeber anything about your past, yourself or your family. You life is a blank slate. However, your past may come back to haunt you and the gamemaster is under no obligation to merciful. You can, if you wish, take up to 3 point of disadvantages without specifying what they are. The gamemaster can supply the details. Over the the course of the compaign, you and your character may slowly discover them.
Babe Magnet (+3): Similar but not quite the same as the unwanted love interest disadvantage; this disadvantage tends to cause the character to get almost any person of the opposite sex to fall for them. The classic examples of this include Tenchi Masaki (Tenchi Muyo!) and Ranma Soatome (Ranma 1\2- granted he has 4 fiancees already, but almost any woman he comes across tends to fall for him). Possessors of the disad tend to get more girlfriends than they need by sheer accident- normally if the player tries to get a girlfriend naturally (through trying to date them), the relationship tends to get wrecked (possibly by the rest of their little harem) or not work.
Bad eye sight (+2): Alternately known as the "Mousse Syndrome", this disadvantage means the character has horrendously BAD eye sight that requires you to wear a pair of really thick glasses (so thick people can't see your pupils). If your glasses are ever knocked off or broken, you are immediately considered blind until you put them back on. For role-playing purposes, all you see are allot of blurry blobs of color. It's possible that a near blind martial artist might accidently hit another player character without their glasses.
Bizzarre Appearance (+1): Your character looks _very_ wierd for someone of the present setting. This is a must for aliens, cyborgs, monsters, or any character concept with a very inhuman appearance. Minor things like some little horns or cat ears don't require this disadvantage. The character suffers a -1 penalty to any social roll because of their odd appearance.
This might also be usable for gaijin characters in a feudal japan setting.
Can't Swim (+1): In most cases, all players are assumed to be able to swim when in water. They might not necessarily make them olympic material but they won't drown (immediately at least). Characters suffering from this disadvantage however sink like a rock in deep water. They're the first to scream "help! *gurgle* I'm *gargle* drowning!" when the ship capsizes after getting trashed.
Curse (+1 or +3): The character suffers from a curse that causes them to go through a transformation when the trigger event of the curse happens to the player. Common triggers include cold water, sexual stimulus (ie, turned on), the activation of another disadvantage (ie, having a nosebleed), using a certain power (say, magic) or drinking\eating a certain substance. At +1, the character switches gender or takes the shape of a medium sized animal such as a wolf or large dog. At +3, the animal form is of a smaller animal such as a rat, mouse, kitten, small dog, or a piglet. While in their cursed form, the character's strength and stamina drop temporarily to 1 although agility increase by one point. Any powers cannot be used while in this condition.
Compulsion (+1): You have a psychological compulsion of some sort, which can cause any number of problems. Your compulsion may be for cleanliness, perfection, bragging, stealing, gaming, exaggeration, or just talking.
Flashbacks (+2): Your character is prone to flashbacks if you are in either high-pressure situations or in circumstances that are similar to the event that caused the flashback itself. Flashbacks can be caused by almost any trauma- torture, extended combat, or magical\genetic experimentaton. Either positive or negative stimulation could result in an episode. Emotional anxiety and stress are the usual trigger events for a flashback to begin. Returning to a good and happy vision can be as dangerous as suddenly being surrounded by demonic hullucinations. During the flashback, you are not aware of what is really around you. Even people speaking to you will be viewed as people or objects from the vision. You can mistake men for women, people for animals, and even inanimate objects as people. To you reality has shifted, and you are back there again.
Frequent Nosebleeds (+1 to +3): You happen to suffer from frequent nosebleeds when you see a member of the opposite sex in the nude or in a suggestive position (panty shots and popping open blouses). At +1, there is a 100% chance you will have a nosebleed whenever the GM requires it and will black out as well. At +3, the character will black out if even embraced\kissed by a member of the opposite sex on top of the effects of the +1 option. Most frequent nosebleed victims are very shy around the opposite sex and tend to get picked on by other boys\girls.
Infamous (+1): This is the exact opposite of the famous advantage. The character has actually become universally disliked by everyone and inspires fear where ever they go. They get a +1 bonus to charisma + persuasion rolls where the player is acting intimidating. However, the character often scares people. Typically, characters with this disadvantage have spikey hair or a dark purple aura.
Jinxed (+2): Bad luck seems to follow you like an unwanted pet. Any time the character makes a roll for anything (even in fights), there is a 50% chance the roll wll be jinxed by a -2 penalty. This disadvantage cannot be taken if the character has already picked the dumb luck advantage. Jinxed characters tend to be very clutzy and break things easily. Airheads with the jinxed disadvantage are absolutely dangerous to everthing within range of them so beware.
Language Problem (+2): Under most circumstances, It is assumed that all character can speak the local language where the game takes place. However, your character is a foreigner from another country and have only lived in the local area for a few months (maybe less than that). In that time, they haven't quite gotten the hang of the language and speak it somewhat "brokenly" ala Shampoo from Ranma 1\2. The character will never use pronouns. They will always refer to the person in question and will to not use articles such as 'the' or 'or'. Example: "Shampoo is best fighter! Akane no can defeat Shampoo."
Letcher (+1 or +3): You have the rather unfortune (or fortunate to your demented mind) role of playing the campaign's Letcher. For starters, there is a 75% chance you'll glomp either a girl you're specifically attracted to (ie. Kuno- the +1 option) or any girl with an appearance rating of 3 or more (ie. Ataru or Happosai- the +2 option). Unfortunately, you tend to be the constant victim of the "Angry female strike" technique. Even if you don't glomp or get smashed, your character suffers a -2 modifier to any social rolls with females no matter how suave you think you are.
Nemesis (+1 or +2): Someone of equal (+1) or greater (+2) power is out to embarrass, defeat, maim, kill, or all of the above you. This nemesis should always be a problem for the character where ever he goes. The +3 option also counts for having a group of nemesis (such as a whole clan of ninjas). Any nemesis will stop at nothing to get the character with very few exceptions. Temporary alliances are possible and other player characters can be a nemesis if the GMs allow it. The player should also give a reason for why the nemesis hates him so much. A +2 nemesis should have an extra 10 CP\XP than your character has- maybe more.
Pacifist (+1 or +3) Your character is adverse to any form of violence. At +1 (the Dr. Tofu from Ranma 1\2 or Lin Kyle from Robotech option), the character will only attack another person if in a situation where they absolutely must fight. At the very dangerous +3 option (the Kasumi (Ranma 1\2) or Belldandy (Oh my Goddess!) option), the character is absolutely incapable of attacking or hurting another person. They just _can not_ do it. The +3 pacifist is not allowed to take weapon skills or martial arts of any kind.
Phobia (+1, +2): By taking this disadvantage, the character has a phobia of something: be it water, soap, heights, cats, dogs, spiders, insects, or anything that the player desires. With the +1 version, the phobia is bad but the character can make a willpower + concentration roll to resist running away from it. If the character's roll fails, they will try to run or at least get as far away as possible from the source of their trauma. The +2 option, however, means the phobia is more severe. There is no roll- the character automatically runs away in terror from the source of their phobia. Usually, the more severe version of this disad is caused by a bizzarre incident that involved a certain type of animal when the character was a child (ie, Ranma's "cat-fu" training when he was five years old).
Poisonous Cooking (+2): This is one of the most feared disadvantages in all anime-dom, often found among girls who are trying to impressing their fiancee or friends by cookng food for them. Quite the opposite actually as everything the character makes comes out as a deadly toxin no matter how hard they try to get better at cooking. The potency varies- roll 1d10 and the result is how strong it is. Poison types vary, but damaging or paralytic are what the food usually comes out as- GM's choice. Of course, you could just role-play through the tainted meal. Most victims will become violently ill with constipation, diareha, heartburn, or stomach aches to follow after. Sometimes, the victim will do their best impression of a dragon- breathing fire and such. The exact effects should probably depend on the food used. Tacos or spicy foods might cause the fire breathing effect for instance.
Secret Identity (+1\+2): Normal teen by day, daring crime fighter at night. You are...Otakuman! Just kidding, but your character has an alter ego requires them to keep a lid on his or her 'night' job. The character could be a demon hunter, magical girl, batman style masked vigalante, or could be a high school student who works part-time as a crossdresser at a restaurant for money (ala Yakumo in 3x3 eyes). If the truth got out, the character would probably die of embarrassment or be in deep trouble. For the +1 option, the character's other side isn't all that publicly well known. It's not too hard keeping your secret identity secret. The +2 option, on the other hand, means the player character is somewhat famous and is often the target of attention on the news and in the local paper. There might be any number of reporters out to find out just who is behind the mask?
Split Personality (+1 or +3): The character possesses two unique personalities: that of their normal character and a second personality that the player may design. This disadvantage works in alot of ways like the curse disad in that the 2nd personality is awakened when a certain trigger event occurs. The type of personality is dependent on the severity of the disadvantage. At +1, the 2nd personality is neutral to the character and normally doesn't get the character into too much trouble. At +3 however, we have the classic Jekyll-hyde problem with both personalities being in constant conflict. The 2nd personality absolutely hates the original personality and will do anything they can to gain total control. Usually, the 2nd personality is the exact opposite of the original. For instance if the original character is a pervert, the 2nd personality is a perfect gentleman. While the 2nd personality is active, the gamemaster has the right to control the character as an NPC and the new personality may have totally different skills or powers than the original character.
Unwanted fans\love interests (+1): Also known as the "Ranma Syndrome", your character suffers from one (or more) love interests that they don't want or have gotten themselves stuck in. The most famous example of this is Ranma Soatome's four fiancees. In extreme Anime settings, It's recommended that each love interest taken also comes with one or more nemesis. Gamemasters should use these love interests in the best ways that they can to get the player into more trouble then they can handle.
Vow: (+1) Your character has made a special vow that they cannot break unless maintaining it will get the character maimed or killed. The vow is something very dangerous that the character has promised to himself to never to do again. This kind of vow might be used by a martial artist to never fight again after severely hurting\maiming someone with their skills. If the character breaks their vow, they automatically lose one XP for the game even if the character had no other way around it. It can also be used to keep a dangerous secret (ie, Ranma's promise never to tell Akane who 'P-chan' is. If Akane found out the truth, she would probably kill both Ryouga and Ranma).
Wierdness Magnet (+3): The character has the most unnerving habbit of being smack dab in the middle of chaotic wierdness. At any time, your house is occupied by an alien princess (or two), a letcherous master martial artist, a goddess first class, and the monster that lives in the basement just loves those fabulous tea cakes your mom makes. Some well known victims of this disadvantage in animedom included Tenchi Masaki (Tenchi Muyo!) and Kenichi Morisato (Oh My Goddess!).
Young\Old (+2): While most of the other characters are in their teens, your character is either 10 years old (or younger) or above 50 years old. Either way, the character suffers a -1 to all three physical attributes (strength, agility, and stamina) and a -2 penalty to any social roll when dealing with someone older (young) or younger (old) than yourself. The penalties are offsetted with the cute advantage (free) if the character is young (there is no such thing as ugly kids in anime!) or a +1 to intelligence or willpower (for old people. Most old people are smarter than the wippersnappers. Must pick a specific attribute to give the bonus to). Eitherway, the character tends to get looked down upon by the older\younger characters or teased because they're too young\old. Any young character will remain so for the duration of the campaign. Some good examples of young anime characters include Sasami (Tenchi Muyo!), Gohan (early to middle DBZ), Goten & chibi-trunks (later DBZ), and Euwly (Ronin Warriors). Some old guys include Happosai and Cologne (Ranma 1\2), Cherry (Ursei Yatsura), or Nicotine (Samurai Showdown II).
You did all the stat stuff- picked attributes, skills, powers, advantages & disadvantages, and are packing equipment. All that's left to do is flesh out your character. In order to this, I recommend using the formula below and filling it out.
Appearance: Nationality aside, this is where you describe your character's overall appearance. This includes general physical features (eye & hair color, hair style, height, weight, build, and so on), what kind of clothing, jewelery, or accessories does the character wear (the standard black anime school uniform, traditional japanese or chinese clothing, a simple blue and white sailor fuku, or maybe your character dresses like the standard teenage american slob?), and the character's general posture and expressions (like does he constantly walk as if he was marching in a brigade or maybe with a stupid smirk on his face?).
Background: This could be seen as main part of your character's concept. Background sums up what the character has done for the most part of their life up to the point that the campaign started. Some questions that players should answer are what village, town, city, or nation (if they aren't japanese- this is an anime RPG you know) did they grow up in? What kind of parents, siblings, and family did the characters have (or didn't if they were orphans)? How were they treated at home? What kind of school did the character go to or are attending. Do they like what they do for a living or planning to do? Also were there any important events that occurred that shaped the character's life. If the character is a martial artist or benefit from super powers, magic, or psychics, explain how they recieved their powers.
Personality: This is includes the character morals, beliefs, and the way the character acts. Players should give a lot of thought to how their character acts and carries themselves as it provides a good portion of color to the character.
Possessions: This largely deals with special personal possessions that are important to the character that don't have a price tag. They might include a family signet ring that's been passed down through the character's family for generations or a favorite necklace or locket given to the character by a family member. Artifacs and unique weaponry also count and should be described here.
Goals: This is essentially what the character wants to do with their life in the long run. Become a great martial artist or magician? Travel the world and see all the cultures that make it up? Bring peace to a war-torn country (easier said then done)? Go on a date with someone of the opposite sex? Have sex with an incredibly gorgeous babe (or stud, as the case may be)? Untangle all your social problems? These are some simple ones but goals may be complex, long thought out ones such a character that wants to become a great magician so that he might bring back his lost love to life so he can get laid. Outlining your character's goals are an excellent way for gamemasters to make interesting adventures around them.
You're finished! There's nothing more that you have to do. Of course, you'll want to check yourself again and make sure there isn't anything you should change or drop before the actual game begins.
To make things easier on newbies, I will be going step by step through the process of creating a character people familiar with Battlemaster High, my anime RPG setting, might recognize: Ichiro Kiramanji.
Step One: Character Concept: This one's pretty simple. Martial artist High School Student.
Step Two: Choose stats: 20 points for stats. Being a bit of a speed freak, I'll give a high agility- about 15 (8 stat points). He'll need to be tough too so his Muscles should be about 14 (6 points). I'll leave Brains and appeal at 10 (1 stat point each) so there's 3 left for a spirit of 12.
Step 3: Skills and CPs: Time for some fun stuff. 40 CP for skills, powers, and other stuff. So we'll start with skills. Definitely have to have hand to hand, dodge, and athletics. 15 in HtH and Dodge will take up 20 CP while a 12 in athletics will absorb 4 CP so that's 24 CP already. I'll also give him Perception 10 (3 CP), Drawing 10 (3 CP) and acting 10 (3 CP). 31 CP so far.
Step Four: Now for powers. Being Ichiro, he's gotta have the Burning Star Rocket- Energy blast: 3 (5 CP). And level 2 Super Speed (4 CP). That's 40 CP total but we're done yet...
Step Five: Equipment: Ichiro doesn't have any special equipment so I won't bother with this step.
Step Six: Advantages & Disadvantages: Can't forget these. First there's the frequent nosebleeder disadvantage (+2) which is countered by a Calmness advantage (2) and a pacifist (+1). Hmm. What to do with that extra point. He speaks english so we'll cover that with the Secondary Language (english).
Step Seven: Finishing touches: So on to his background material. This is more or less a cut n' paste of his background from the BMH site.
Appearance: A tall young man with a well toned atheletic build, Ichiro is a rather handsome seventeen year old. His hair is blonde, a tell-tale mark of his half-american half-japanese ancestory. He keeps his bangs long (they reach past his chin) while the back is kept short. He also wears glasses, an oddity for someone who is a martial artist. When not stuck wearing the standard anime male uniform, he often wears simple long sleeved shirts and baggy jeans.
Background: Ichiro Kiramanji is the son of Maria and Hiroshi Kiramanji. His mother is an american english teacher from california who came to japan nearly twenty years ago hoping to find a better salary than what she got in the states. Hiroshi, Ichiro's father, is the latest in a long line of martial artists. Their home, the Kiramanji Dojo, includes a spacious yard and a small pond. Aside from Ichiro, they kiramanji clan also includes Miya, Ichiro's eight year old sister, and both grandparents are still alive. Grandpa Kiramanji is a know letcher and Grandma has been to occassionally whack him upside the head with a frying pan. The most popular topic of late around the house seems to be "when is Ichiro going to get a girlfriend?". He has evaded the question whenever asked, but he seems to tense up when the topic arises in conversation.
Back to Ichiro. ^_^ Since he was only five years old, Ichiro has woken up at 5:00 am to practice his family's karate style with his father. He has excelled to the point that Ichiro has mastered the way of focusing his Ki into his famous "Burning Star Rocket" technique. His life was going fine until he reached senior high school a year ago. His old school, Hiryuu sr. high, was much like Inazuka with its warring factions and Ichiro became a prominent martial artist. One faithful day, his arch-rival challenged him to a fight and the boy delivered a severe concussion. Although he came out okay, it was a miracle that Ichiro hadn't killed him with such a blow. As punishment, he has been reassigned to Inazuka high with all the other troublemakers. On his first day, he was attacked by Rock of the red claw gang and used the brute's chain to tie him up. Since then he has been asked multiple times by Ayumi of the girl's karate club to join as his skill would be extremely useful. He has flatly turned down all of her requests, citing that he no longer wants to fight. Daisuke, the Karate club's captain, is becoming jealous of all the attention Ayumi is showing to recruit him. Some of the gossip mongers are expecting that within at least a month we should see a confronation between the two.
Personality: Ichiro simply "exudes" coolness. He has a way of speaking that rarely hints at whatever emotions he currently is feeling. His overall behaviour is polite yet emotionless. His personality does have a tendency to "crack" whenever the topics of girlfriends, love, or sex come into play. The first sign is usually sweat or sweat drops, but can progress to blushing and nosebleeds.
Goals: Ichiro only has one real goal- to finish high school without getting into any more fights. This, however, is extremely unlikely considering he's already getting a reputation. In the long term, he'd like to become a manga artist. He already is a pretty decent artist but still needs to refine his talents.
And the final stats:
Muscles: 16 (+2)
As character successfully complete adventures, they will gain experience points that will allow them to improve their stats, skills, and other abilities. Players should average about 1 to 3 XP per adventure.
For completing the adventure: 1 pt.
Trait XP cost Power CP needed x 2 Power (new) CP cost x 3 Skill (new) 3 XP
Stats and skills use a slightly different formula. The cost is the stat\skill's CP cost divided by two. So a character that want to go from a skill of 15 to 16 must spend 5 XP. For stats, add one XP extra since upgrading a stat is going to have wider effects than upgrading a skill.