As a starting character, you have 30 points. These are used to set your stats, buy powers, and get other bonuses. However, these points are eaten up quite quickly. To get stronger initially, you will need to take flaws.
First off, you have to put points into stats. Of course, you can put no points into your stats and save your points for bonuses. That gives you a character with the skill of a C-average high school student...who never went to college...who knows how to push back when pushed...who maybe had one date and she was as stupid and ugly as you...and you think magic only exists in cartoons. Good luck.
There are five primary stats in this game: Combat, Strategy, Magic, Social, and Intelligence. These stats are on a scale between one and ten and represent your character's ability to interact with the story and the other players. Depending on the situation, you would use either one or a combination of the following stats:
There are several types of races that your characters you can play. You can choose to be a Human, vampire, ghoul, mage, Horadrim, K'nes, Jurvain, werewolf, or a hybrid. Each have their individual bonuses and disadvantages.
PERSONAL MERITS AND FLAWS:
Beyond simple racial attributes, you can juice up your character any number of ways. Just check with your storyteller for permission. Here are a few examples.
You need just a few more points to get that cool power ring that will go excellent with your character. Too bad you blew it all on magic stats. Well, you're in luck -- with your storyteller's permission, you can take a flaw to give you a couple extra points. For example:
BACKGROUND MERITS AND POWERS:
There are also several special merits and powers that a player can then choose from. These include military rank and authority, financial resources, ancient relics, or underworld contacts.
Political Influence: Through money, power, or other means, you have some influence on some major faction. There are various levels of influence from the local to multiple systems.
Political Power: Either through power or money, you have made it into the big time, and actually possess political power. This is much better than influence, however, this time, you have to do the dirty work. With this power, you can lead your faction to victory, but be careful. One false move and you could lose everything.
Noble Birth: ]Let's face it, you were born lucky. You have a title attached to your name handed down from time immemorial -- if you play your cards right, you may be next in line of succession! Er...or maybe not, you'll have to see. This does not mean that you actually have money or estates -- your ancestor may have lost that wealth long ago. Limited to Humans of Asian descent, using European terms for simplicity.
Military Rank: Never beats to have a commission, doesn't matter which armed force you belong to. Of course, commissions are so cheap these days; even imperial dogwalkers are captains. x2 for an actual naval command (e.g., attached to a ship).
Military Unit Command: Need some help? How about a company? Or a battalion? Or even a division? Rank commission is included. Double cost if on independent assignement (i.e., not tied down on garrison duty and restricted to base).
Naval Warship Command: Ah, to boldly go...on routine patrol missions and customs enforcement duty. Naval rank commission is included, and most ships have their own marine detachments. Double cost if on independent assignment (i.e., not attached to someone else's task force or starbase on boring escort and patrol duty).
Business ownership: So you own an industry. Great, a source of revenue! Of course, there's always kickbacks to be made, regulations to deal with...always more paper. However, it's also good for information that might come your way.
Financial Resources: From stocks to raiding the imperial treasury, it never hurts to have money. Do what you want with it. Spend it. Invest it. Burn it. Whatever.
Illegal Industry: There's always a market for narcotics and other uncontrolled substances that most governments still frown on. Illegal ice (black market software for you gaijin) is always trouble. Your product might not be technically illegal in one jurisdiction, legal in another, but there are tons of people who'll kill you for it.
Starship Ownership: It is sure is nice to own your own set of wheels. This is your basic starship ownership. Starships are not cheap but they can be found. Better if you ignore certain regulations. All of these are planetary capable. Triple cost if military armament.
Personal Strike Group: For black ops, rescuing damsels in distress, or for simply saving your bacon. Never hurts to have one of these… but don't expect it to stand up to a army group of equal size, unless you got some other assets to call on.
Contacts: Want to know the word on the street? How about the word on every street in five systems? Contacts are nice. Knowledge is power.
Membership: You may not have the power, but you're attached to someone who does. You get the benefits of a larger organization, but you don't call the shots, and there are certain obligations.
Special Project: Either within a mega-corp or the Middle Kingdom, you are in charge of a special project. Whether its an advanced hyper gate travel or a bio-engineered humans, you are working on something that your benefactor wants to keep quiet. However, the resources are great in the related field.
Allies: You have some people out there who (gasp) actually like you and go out of their way to help you out. However, as much they will help you, they can't do everything. Regular points - Associate, they use you as much as you use them. X2 points - Friend, will bail you out of jail. X3 points - Good friend, will pay for your lawyer. X4 points - Best friend, will bury the body for you.
Personal Control: You own someone. Though either blackmail or honor, someone has to listen to you. It just matters how important they are and how much they owe you.
Personal Organization: You have a personal organization that you control. This can be a cult or a radical group that you lead. (Double the price for complete outfit in equipment)
Henchmen: These are simple employees. You pay them and they work for you. Not much more. 1 point per 5 employees.
Employee: You are a employee of a corporation. Not really powerful in and of yourself but you can draw on the resources of the corporation.
Items: A magical relic or technological piece of hardware. Usually unique or of rare quanity.
All right, now that you've got the rules down pat, you're not exactly sure where your new character would fit on the grand scheme of things. Fair enough -- here we go!
Cheon-Ha Jeong, Earl of New Tokyo -- Starting Character
Human, Asian Descent
C: 1 -- He took a Tae Kwon Do class growing up.
St: 3 -- I wouldn't bet against him in a game of Go.
M: 0 -- I can fly, I can fly...I can't fly! THUD.
So: 6 -- Hobnobs with the quality gentry.
I: 4 -- He knows enough to know what he doesn't know.
Noble Birth -- Duke: 6 points
Resources -- 10 M Cr.: 4 points
Political Influence -- Upper Level: 3 points
Contacts -- Nationwide: 5 points
Military Rank -- Commander, Imperial Fleet: 2 points
Minor Addict -- Nicotine: +1 point
Character Total: 30 points
Cheon-Ha is a young man who grew up into a world of wealth and influence. He went to the right schools, learned the fine art of flirting with well-to-do ladies to impress their fathers, and how to act proper and be a distinguished member of imperial society. However, with school over, and taking over his father's title upon his death, Cheon-Ha suddenly realizes the opportunity to increase his family's power -- a landed family that is now his to rule...as long as he's top dog. However, M. Jeong realizes that nothing has prepared him for the true nitty-gritty of manipulating imperial politics. He needs a few good people to advise him and help him (and especially his family) rise in station to one of the movers and shakers of the galaxy.
Miro Creed -- Experienced Character
C: 8 -- Takes a licking, keeps on ticking.
St: 5 -- Knows how to get what he's looking for.
M: 7 -- Adept at using his horadrim skills.
So: 4 -- Shoot first and ask questions later.
I: 5 -- Knows what he's looking for.
Contacts -- Nationwide: 5 points
Allies -- Galactic Rock/Pop star Priscilla Savant -- Mover & Shaker, Good Friend: 6 points
Employment -- Priscilla Savant's personal bodyguard (equiv. Manager Level/Small Corp): 2 points
Character Total: 40 points
Disappeared some time during Season 4.3 -- Never heard from again...
Experience is awarded at the end of every episode (every four turns or "acts"). How you spend these points is up to you. They can be put into any of the five stats (Combat, Strategy, Magic, Intelligence, Social) or into magical items or into special abilities. Merits cannot be bought by experience points after character generation.
Now pumping up stats is a little tricky, so let me explain it. We have a fixed 1-10 stat system; with 1 being a weakling in that field, to 10 being a legend in their own time. So in order to boost your stats from one point to the next highest, you need to pay that number of experience points. For example, if Bubba has a 5 in Combat, he needs to pay 5 points before moving it up to a six. So you can boost your levels in the lower stages easily, but once you get past master's and doctorate degrees, recognition becomes harder.
So how do you get experience points? Here goes:
Act Orders: Every time you write orders for an act, you gain 1 point. It doesn't matter if those orders are a single sentence or an entire opera, it's still only one. This is your basic participation bonus.
Early Turn-In: If you're really fast on the draw, and send your orders to the Storyteller early, this gives him time to think about what he's going to write, and therefore make a better story. This gains you 1 more point per episode if you are at least 2 days early with your act orders consistently.
Good Orders: You can write just a sentence for your orders, but if you really give good detailed orders (giving me the ability to write a good story for you), then that gains you another point per episode.
Story: Instead of just writing detailed orders, you actually take the time and write a full story, you'll be rewarded (editing someone else's story is a LOT easier than writing an original story) with 1 point per episode.
Personality: If you really develop your character's personality in your orders, then that makes for good storytelling, and you'll be rewarded with 1 more point per episode.
Potential Total Experience=5 points per episode(Extra bonus points for other game-related writing, such as histories, web pages, technology explanations, alternate story lines, or anything that will help fill-out the Tech Infantry universe will be awarded at other times. There is a maximum bonus for 5 points per episode for these contributions.)
Before your new character stats can become official, you must send a letter to the Storyteller, telling him what stats you're boosting. You can also save points from episode to episode, in order to boost something BIG.
JOINING THE GAME
Okay, so you've created your character, given them a name, distributed their starting points among their stats, assigned them merits and flaws, and written up a paragraph or two describing them, their backstory, and their current situation.
NOW what do you do?
You simply email your character's stats, description, and perhaps a few ideas about what kind of story you'd like to write for your character (an overall story arc for your charcter, that you would like to follow), and email it to Marcus Johnston, the Storyteller for this season of the game.
Marcus will then add you to the game's mailing list, inform you that you've joined, and then the next act of the story to be released will include your character's personal prologue. For characters that are in the game from the start of a season, their prologue is, of course, included with everyone else's in the Prologue Episode of the story. For characters joining a game in progress, their prologue is merged in with the results of the act before the one for which they will be writing their first set of orders. Once your character has made his or her (or its, we do have the occasional cyborg character) debut in the combined story, you then write your orders for the following act just like everyone else and send them in to the Storyteller.
Players are allowed and, in fact, encouraged to communicate amongst themselves, collaborate in writing joint orders if and when their characters meet up in the story, and especially to discuss their planned future plot lines with the Storyteller via email (the current Storyteller lives in India, so phone calls are probably not a good idea).
Rules (C)2004 Marcus Johnston. All Rights Reserved.