Intro to Character Creation

Step One: Understanding differences in systems

If you’ve ever played in American LARPs or come from a background of tabletop RPGs, you may be looking for stats, classes, races, and other tried and true methods of creating characters.  You won’t find much of that here aside from a character sheet and a few things on it.  Instead, we rely on our imaginations and what we as people bring to the character to define them.

Rules are secondary to this game. High-quality immersive roleplay is our goal, seconded only by safety.

Step Two: Think like a Mütvian

The first step in creating a character is to figure out who you want to portray.  Maybe an overview of the setting would help to get your mind going.

Mütvia is a dark, gritty land loosely based on Dark Ages Eastern Europe.  Imagine Hollywood’s version of Transylvania but with original legends, gods, and creatures.  Draconian princes and other nobles lord over everything with an iron fist, a common folk toil and labor the the entire day to scrap together something to eat, and outcast itinerant beggars and thieves cause problems and tell fortunes.

Mütvians are a superstitious people.  They stay inside and lock their doors at night for fear of the night’s denizens, and during the day they work, trade, and craft until the sun falls below the horizon again.  Everyone sticks together, strangers are viewed with suspicion, and any who practice magic are daemon-worshippers to be executed on sight. Yet in this horrible world where even the land is seemingly out to get you, there is a glimmer of hope.

Mütvians know how to survive, others don’t.  This has fostered a sense of national pride, for while evil lurks behind every corner you will still always have each other.  This is espoused in a popular saying amongst the common folk: Mütvia Regestoi.  Loosely translated, it means, “We are heart of the Land / The Land is our heart.”

Quick Note: Character Rewrites

Until the end of your third event, you may request a complete rewrite of your character.  You will be able to start from scratch and not lose anything gained.  It’s more important that you enjoy yourself than to be stuck in something that didn’t work out as you had expected. At 12:00 PM on Sunday of your third event, your character is finalized and you will not be able to rewrite them any further.  If rules drastically change, the Directors may permit a character rewrite on a case by case basis after your third event.

Some questions to get you thinking

Mütvia churns out some of the hardest, coldest people out there.  To each other, though, song may fill hearts with warmth around a fire and unite a people.  Who are you around that fire?

Birth and Birthrights

All characters are human and everyone is born into a caste, whether it be a noble, commoner, or drósti.  You can read more about the Castes here, but the short version is some believe nobles, commoners, and drósti are so different in attitude and ability that they are each different forms of human.  Maybe they’re right?  Maybe they’re wrong.

  • Are you a noble?  Were you born into an ancient line of princes and now must prove yourself?  Were you cast out of your noble family and only seek to make your way?  Do you feel out of place and wish to hide your blood’s secret?
  • Are you a commoner?  Is your way a no-nonsense path to crafting excellence?  Are you a servant to a local noble?  Maybe you’re a slave to a drósti family?  Are you a hunter or famer who provides for others?  Or do you secretly practice witchery to ensure the safety … or harm … of others?
  • Are you a drósti?  The road of the drósti is always a rough one.  Are you a fortune teller whose gifts are misunderstood?  Or maybe as an outcast people you seek revenge through theivery?  Maybe the far roads of Mütvia provide distanced protection from nobles and you secretly hold congress with daemons?

Personality and Belief

Everyone has a way to survive.  Some lie, cheat, and steal.  Others hold true to personal codes of honor.  Which is your way?

  • What kind of person are you?  All Mütvians are jaded, but has the courseness of survival made you calloused?  Or do you try to be a beacon of hope to others?
  • How would you survive?  Do you scavange, steal, or murder to stay alive?  Do you gather food from the wilds or grow it?  Do you hunt or need to be care for by others?
  • How superstitious are you?  Some Mütvians think it’s foolish to knock on a door frame and spit over your left shoulder before entering a house.  Others think it’s the key to survival and without it, problems will be caused by evil house spirits or worse.  Which are you?
  • What is your view on magic?  Liquids spoil, food goes rancid, and people bleed from their eyes when dark magic is used.  Do you tolerate its use as a necessary evil despite the dangers to person and community?  Or do you get your torch and bring the offending witch to firey justice?
  • Are you religious?  Worship of the old gods fell out of fashion for centuries and people forgot.  But things seem to be getting worse in Mütvia and that has caused many to turn back to the old ways.  Do you hold your tongue about the gods out of fear of being accused of dark witchery?  Or do you cast your fate with the Old Ones and follow their ancient practices blindly?  Are you curious and want to find out more but remain cautious?

Making your character unique

Everyone has a job to do in Mütvia, from lofty nobles to the laboring commoners they oversee to the thieving drósti who try to steal it all.  Yet regardless of caste, your character can really only do what you can actually do.

If you want to portray a leader, you need to be a leader to have people follow your character.  Likewise, no one is born a mighty hero but instead showed themselves to be one through action.  To be a thief, you need to be stealthy and actually pilfer something.

No amount of statistics, nouns, or adjectives on a character sheet will make your character special and unique, however.  That part is entirely up to you and how you portray your character.

Step Three: Actual rules

What few rules there are exist to either replicate the physics of this fictional setting, to expand on a character’s mastery over those physics, or are employed for safety.

Endeavors

While the majority of actions your character will perform are entirely up to you—like evading an attack, picking locks or someone’s pocket, using a weapon, or wearing armor—some are simply not safe, sane, legal, or cannot be realistically recreated, like balls of fire or bolts of lightning.  Yet your character should be able to do these things by virtue of living in a world where these things are possible.  To replicate these possible actions, Evindale Live uses “Endeavors”. Your character will start with three Endeavors, but they can be learned in the game from other characters and magical items.

Read more about Endeavors here.

Achievements

Achievements are not endeavors, but a reward to a series of actions commited.  The crafting system, for example, requires you to follow 30 recipes or work plans to earn the title of “Journeyman”.  Once you’ve created 30 recipes of a particular crafting type, “Journeyman: [crafting type]” will be added to your sheet to show you’ve earned it.