Lifepath Appendix

APPENDIX

Lifepaths

Creating a lifepath for a character allows the player to sketch his backstory and opens up a packet of skills and specializations. Each stage in a character’s lifepath also ages him. Players choose 1-3 paths to begin with and the links that join them.

  • Childhood paths are where characters’ stories begin. They represent roughly the first eight years of a character’s life. They open the common skills: Circles, Resources, and Steel.
  • Education paths represent the years before full adulthood where a character’s personality develops into the man he will become. These paths can represent ten or more yeage the character 8-10 years.
  • Career paths follow a character’s adult life. Characters may take as many career paths as the storyteller deems appropriate, each representing 2-3 years of adult life.
  • All paths are organized by settings. Characters are initially restricted to settings that fit their caste, but may change as the story progresses through links.
  • Links are twists of fortune. In a fatalistic world like Erd, most mortal never dare to hope that life will be better for them than it was for their family before them. A farmer’s son will be a farmer unless blessed with fortune or struck with misfortune. Player characters are the exception. Something drives them to solve their riddle. Players must therefore decide how their characters have climbed the ranks of society or fallen from grace.
    • Peasants might become servants in the house of a noble where a wealthy merchant may fall in love with them at first sight.
    • A poor laborer’s son may decide to join the army and raise his station through sacrifice.
    • A noble’s son may be kidnapped and raised on the streets as a common urchin.
  • Links are the periods in a character’s life that transition him to a new Lifepath setting. Links age a character 1-2 years.
  • For each path and link chosen, a player should consider what important events occurred during that period in their character’s life.
  • See the Skill Appendix for a description of each skill.

Matt already had a backstory in mind for Lugh. Using the Lifepath Appendix he sketches out Lugh’s story so far:

Lifepath (Childhood): Born Peasant: Lugh’s father was a groom for a minor noble, Lord Lusan. Lugh’s mother was Lusan’s youngest daughter, and he was conceived during their illicit affair.

Lifepath (Education): Bondsman: After Lugh’s father was drawn and quartered by the horses he had raised and tamed, Lugh was raised as a kitchen boy by some of the servants and viciously ridiculed by Lusan’s servants and courtiers.

Lifepath (Career): Groom: When he was old enough, Lugh took over his father’s duties until he discovered what had befallen his father. Lugh then murdered his grandfather Lusan, and ran away.

Lifepath Setting Caste Description
Peasant Slave, Peasant The character lives in a sprawling settlement on a landed noble’s territory.
Village Peasant, Low freeman The character lives in a small settlement which is not owned by a noble but is most likely under a noble’s jurisdiction or protection.
City Slave, Low freeman, High freeman, Nobility The character lives in a city or city- state, which may be ruled by Blood, Cheiu, or guild councils.
Court Nobility The character lives in a castle, palace, or on the estate of a noble house.
Servitude Slave, Peasant The character lives as a slave or bondsman on his master’s property.
Religious Low freeman, High freeman The character lives on temple property in a city or on a monastery. Alternatively, the character may travel with itinerant priests.
Soldier Low freeman, High freeman, Landless noble The character lives in a village or city under command.

PEASANT
Path Description Available Skills & Specs
Peasant Born Childhood: You were born on the lands of a noble or rich merchant. In return for living there your family worked the land for its owner. Circles, Resources, Steel
Farmer Education: You were raised by farmers or shepherds.
Career: You made a living growing food or raising animals.
Athletics, Horsemanship, Survival; Trade: Farmer; Survival: Animal Husbandry; Steel: Direness
Tradesman Education: You were raised by a tradesman. You learned his trade, such as herbalism or milling.
Career: You made a living through a peasant trade.
Athletics, Deceit, Etiquette; Sailing, Trade: (Peasant trade); Resources: Barter; Steel: Direness
Woodsman Education: You were raised by a woodsman or hunter. You learned the trade of hunting and trapping.
Career: You made a living off the wild – woodcutting, hunting, or trapping.
Athletics, Horsemanship, Survival; Stealth, Trade: Scout/Hunter; Stealth: Camouflage, Stealth: Moving Silently, Steel: Direness, Survival: (Terrain)
Peddler Education: You were raised by a peasant peddler who hawked his goods among the peasants or sold off extra food and goods to surrounding villages.
Career: You made a living from selling common wares.
Deceit, Etiquette, Lore; Trade: (Merchant trades); Resources: Barter, Circles: (Peasant affiliations and reputations), Steel: Direness
Augur Education: You were the ward of a wiseman or wisewoman who taught you how to tell fortunes, heal, or petition the airt.
Career: You made a living from your arts.
Deceit, Lore, Performance; Medicine, Occult; Lore: The Winds, Lore: Otherworld, Lore: Seidhe, Steel: Direness, Steel: Monstrosity

VILLAGE
Path Description Available Skills & Specs
Village Born Childhood: You were born in a village. Your family made a living by trading goods or services.
Circles, Resources, Steel
Groom Education: You were raised in stables.
Career: You made a living with your equestrian skills.
Athletics, Etiquette, Horsemanship, Survival; Trade: Groomsman; Horsemanship: (Any), Survival: Animal handling
Fisherman Education: You were raised by fishermen. Boats and the tide became second nature to you.
Career: You made a living off the sea.
Athletics, Survival; Sailing, Trade: Fisherman, Trade: Sailor
Runner Career: You made a living by delivering packages and messages between villages or sending them by homing birds. Athletics, Deceit, Etiquette, Horsemanship; Circles: Rumors
Woodsman Education: You were raised by a woodsman or hunter. You learned the trade of hunting and trapping.
Career: You made a living off the wild – woodcutting, hunting, or trapping.
Athletics, Horsemanship, Survival; Stealth, Trade: Scout/Hunter; Stealth: Camouflage, Stealth: Moving Silently, Steel: Direness, Survival: (Terrain)
Village Merchant Education: You were raised to work in a shop or beside a goodscart.
Career: You made a living of selling, trading and bartering as a merchant or goods monger.
Deceit, Etiquette, Lore; Trade: (Merchant trades); Resources: Barter, Circles: (Village affiliations and reputations)
Laborer Education: Your caregivers were unskilled laborers.
Career: You sold your time and labor to build, far, or whatever other jobs you could find.
Athletics, Larceny, Survival, Trade: (Labor); Resources: Labor
Village Tradesman Education: You learned one of the many trades found in a village.
Career: You made a living as a hosteler, blacksmith, clerk, tailor, cobbler, barber, or vintner.
Athletics, Deceit, Etiquette; Sailing, Trade: (Village trade)
Village Watchman Career: You worked for the elders as a watchman. Athletics, Etiquette, Horsemanship, Lore, Survival; Stealth

CITY
Path Description Available Skills & Specs
City Born Childhood: You were born behind the walls of a city or city-state. Your family could have made a living doing almost anything. Circles, Resources, Steel
Courier Career: You delivered messages and packages between important persons or merchants or escorted these important people to wherever they needed to go. Athletics, Deceit, Etiquette, Horsemanship; Circles: Rumors, Lore: Intrigue
Laborer Education: When you were old enough, you were taught to work hard.
Career: You made a living by selling your time and labor.
Athletics, Larceny, Survival, Trade: (Labor); Resources: Labor
Duelist Education: Your family taught you to fight at an early age and the etiquette of honorable combat.
Career: You were trained in combat and performed in tournaments or trials-by-combat as a champion, or you sold your skills as a daylight assassin. If a slave, you were a bloodsport fighter.
Athletics, Etiquette, Horsemanship, Performance; Etiquette: Court, Horsemanship: Jousting, Performance: Tournament
Duelist Education: Your family taught you to fight at an early age and the etiquette of honorable combat.
Career: You were trained in combat and performed in tournaments or trials-by-combat as a champion, or you sold your skills as a daylight assassin. If a slave or servant, you were a bloodsport fighter.
Athletics, Etiquette, Horsemanship, Performance; Etiquette: Court, Horsemanship: Jousting, Performance: Tournament
Urchin Education: You grew up on the streets or as the ward of a criminal.
Career: You made a rough living off the street through begging and stealing.
Athletics, Deceit, Performance, Survival; Larceny, Stealth; Survival: City, Larceny: (Any), Performance: Street performing, Resources: Begging
Criminal Career: You turned to the lucrative life of crime. You are skilled as a thief, burglar, or confidence man. Perhaps earlier in your career you would have been a thug. Athletics, Deceit, Etiquette, Lore; Larceny, Stealth; Deceit: Conning, Circles: Rumors
City Merchant Education: You were raised by shopkeepers or dealers.
Career: You sell goods or services in the city economy. You could be a cargo dealer, barkeep, hosteler, or shopkeeper.
Deceit, Etiquette, Lore; Trade: (Merchant trades); Resources: Barter, Circles: (City affiliations and reputations)
City Tradesman Education: You learned an important trade.
Career: You made a living as a baker, clerk, blacksmith, moneylender, or locksmith.
Athletics, Deceit, Etiquette; Sailing, Trade: (Any trade); Resources: Barter, Circles: (City affiliations and reputations)
Groom Education: You were raised in the stables.
Career: You raised and tamed horses as well as acted as a chariot driver for important persons.
Athletics, Etiquette, Horsemanship, Survival, Trade: Groomsman; Horsemanship: (Any), Survival: Animal handling
Scholar Education: You were fortunate enough to have an education.
Career: You have applied yourself to the study of history, music, politics, or religion. You could be an inventor, doctor, archivist, or court tutor.
Deceit, Etiquette, Lore, Performance; Medicine, Occult; Lore: (Any), Etiquette: (Any)

COURT
Path Description Available Skills & Specs
Noble Born Childhood: You were born in a major or minor noble house. Your family lived as rich merchants or royal rulers. Your Caste decides the standing of your house. Alternatively, you could be the bastard of a noble. Circles, Resources, Steel
Page Education: Not of the highest Blood yourself, you were chosen to be playmate to a near or distant cousin of a noble house. Athletics, Deceit, Etiquette, Horsemanship, Lore, Performance, Trade: (Court); Circles: (Noble); Etiquette: Court
Scholar Education: Your family believed that your education was important to your future career in the court. You studied with personal tutors and learned a wide-range of skills.
Career: You have applied yourself to the study of history, music, politics, or religion. You could be an inventor, doctor, archivist, or court tutor.
Deceit, Etiquette, Lore, Performance; Medicine, Occult, Trade: Scholar; Circles: (Noble); Etiquette: (Any), Lore: (Any)
Cheiu Ward Education: It was discovered very early that you were talented or gifted. You were made the ward of a Cheiu master. Perhaps you were sent away to his estate or his tower was on your family’s land. Etiquette, Lore, Occult, Trade: Cheiu; Circles: (Cabal); Etiquette: Court, Etiquette: Cabal, Lore: (Any) Occult: (Any), Occult: Name-finding, Steel: Monstrosity
Knight Education: You were trained to be a knight so that one day you may serve your lord, rule your family’s lands, or one day become a landed noble yourself.
Career: You serve your noble house as a knight-in-arms.
Athletics, Etiquette, Horsemanship, Lore, Performance, Survival; Circles: (Noble), Etiquette: Court, Horsemanship: Jousting, Performance: Tournament
Scion of the Blood Education: Unlike the hedge nobles in the countryside, you were trained in politics almost exclusively so that you can one day take over your family’s title and lands.
Career: You lived a comfortable life of intrigue and politics in the court.
Athletics, Deceit, Etiquette, Horsemanship, Lore, Performance; Trade: Politics; Circles: (Any), Deceit: (Any), Etiquette: (Any), Lore: History, Lore: Geography, Performance: (Any)

SERVITUDE
Path Description Available Skills & Specs
Born into Servitude Childhood: You were born into bondage. Your family were slaves just as your children will be slaves unless you earn your freedom. Circles, Resources, Steel
Bondsman Career: Through debt or unlucky birth, you served at the leisure of a high freeman or noble. One day you hope to earn your freedom. Athletics, Etiquette, Survival; Resources: Labor, Steel: Direness, Steel: Torture
Captive Career: You were captured in war or raid. You now serve as a slave. Athletics, Etiquette, Survival; Resources: Labor, Steel: Direness, Steel: Tragedy, Steel: Torture
Servant Education: You were raised the child of servants. You began to servant your family’s employers at an early age.
Career: Though often poorly treated, you are technically a freeman, earning coin or lodging for your labor. You serve a house of your own free will.
Athletics, Deceit, Etiquette, Larceny; Trade: Servant; Circles: Servants; Resources: Labor, Steel: Direness, Steel: Torture

RELIGIOUS
Path Description Available Skills & Specs
Temple Orphan Childhood: You were left at a temple or monastery and have been under the care and protection of the priests there. Circles, Resources, Steel
Priest/Monk Education / Career: You joined a temple or monastery. Your duties included the care and maintenance of your temple or monastery and the spiritual stewardship of the faithful in your area. Athletics, Etiquette, Horsemanship, Lore; Medicine, Occult, Trade: Priest; Etiquette: Commoners, Lore: (Any), Medicine: First Aid, Medicine: Illness, Occult: Meditation, Steel: Direness, Steel: Monstrosity
Anointed Career: You left another walk of life to protect the temple and the faithful from enemies. Athletics, Etiquette, Horsemanship, Lore, Survival; Occult, Stealth; Etiquette: Religious, Lore: Religion, Lore: Politics, Circles: (Religious), Steel: (Any)

SOLDIER
Path Description Available Skills & Specs
Conscript Education: You came from another way of life voluntarily or not to work in an army. Athletics, Etiquette, Horsemanship, Military, Survival, Trade: Soldier; Etiquette: Military, Steel: Direness
Soldier Career: You served in an army or other military unit. Athletics, Etiquette, Horsemanship, Military, Survival, Trade: Soldier; Etiquette: Military, Steel: Direness, Steel: Tragedy
Mercenary Career: Disillusioned with the soldier’s life, you used your military training for profit. Athletics, Deceit, Etiquette, Horsemanship, Survival, Trade: Soldier; Circles: (Reputation), Etiquette: Military, Steel: Direness, Steel: Tragedy

Lifepath Appendix

Legacy of Orphans seanpmcochran